BESIDES gatherings and feasts with loved ones, another exciting part of festive seasons in Malaysia is taking in the beautiful decorations put up by shopping centres.
Though a tad restrained this year due to ongoing pandemic, the thematic displays seen in the northern region will still bring cheer in the lead up to Hari Raya Aidilfitri.
In Kedah, Aman Central celebrates the tradition of homecoming with its nostalgic ‘Mai! Balik Kampung’ set-up
featuring a traditional kampung house surrounded by greenery.
There are plenty of Instagrammable subjects. Spot roosters and chickens on the loose, tweeting birds in a rattan cage, or the giant lanterns and enormous crescent moon descending from above.
But be sure to sneak a peek at the back of the house, as there is a classic Raya eve scene of cooking ‘lemang buluh’ over an open fire, stirring dodol and preparing festive delicacies.
The mall’s senior marketing communications manager Ken Chin said, “There’s nothing like getting to spend time with family members that you don’t see often and having a joyful celebration together.
“But with the pandemic and strict travel restrictions imposed, many aren’t able to balik kampung this year. So we decided to recreate a kampung scene here to help uplift spirits.”
In Penang, Gurney Plaza’s Moroccan Summer Palace is worth exploring. The centrepiece of its ‘Salam Aidilfitri’ celebrations features a courtyard fountain surrounded by grand arches and lush palms.
On the floors and walls are intricate mosaics in shades of blue, green and orange, which pop against the structure’s earthy beige tones. Photo-taking opportunities abound.
“We wanted to take shoppers’ imagination away and create the experience of being abroad during this pandemic, ” centre manager Peter Chan said.
Gurney Paragon Mall’s ‘Majestic Raya’ decorations also draw on rich Moroccan culture. Hanging fabrics in gold and cobalt blue fill up its atriums, alongside giant lamps and light balls.
Complementing those are panels of patterned tiles, which marketing communications head Jasmine Tai said were inspired by the architecture of Marrakesh.
She pointed out, “Balik kampung may not be possible for many this year. So rather than focusing on that, we went for something luxurious to complement our festive bazaar.”
Straits Quay celebrates a Malaysian icon with its ‘Batik-Batik Raya’ festivities. Keep an eye out for the much-loved fabrics that adorn various spaces of the retail marina.
Marketing manager Gillian Tan said, “Batik is a beautiful art form with rich tradition. Besides
creating a festive ambience, our team also wanted to give shoppers the opportunity to learn more about these iconic fabrics.”
Familiar motifs of Hari Raya anchor Queensbay Mall’s ‘Sinaran Aidilfitri’ decorations. Descending from above are golden lamps and stars. At ground level, there is a giant crescent moon sculpture.
The management said the aim is to let shoppers have a safe celebration while ensuring the spirit of festivity shines bright and brings hope to all those who visit.