Tuesday, 26 January 2016

A Quick Peek at P.Burgos St, Makati, Manila

 Accidental Tourist 
I did the usual research on the top 10 destinations before visiting Manila, and not surprisingly, P.Burgos St didn't come up. But that sounds like a place i would like to visit, at least in the day time.

Street sign, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
O, what a tangled web of wires they weave.
When first I set my eyes on Burgos Street !

Yesterday, when my hotel's shuttle bus drove past the corner of Makati Ave and P.Burgos St, a yellow building by the business name of Moulin Rouge squats at this corner caught my eyes successfully. Because it was less than 15 mins walk from my hotel, I decided to drop into this red-light district for a quick peek the following day.

Moulin Rouge, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines

Moulin Rouge, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
The front (left photo) and side (above) of Moulin Rouge.
The pair of alluring eyes beckon, "Why don't you come in and see me sometime..."
Yes pretty please! And I'll stay here for 101 nights (and days if you let me).

This yellow Moulin Rouge bar (I think) marks the start of P.Burgos St at Makati Ave. This joint lures the Arabs with eye candies (of eyes), Francophilia and belly dancing (I'm imaging. Who knows what else is going on inside. Probably some hookah smoking is involved). Satan, oops! Santa (what a terrible typo) stood outside the door ringing the bell for business. Hoe hoe hoe, it's glorious mix of multiculturalism, globalisation and tradition. Oui oui!

Jeepney, Makati, Manila, Philippines
The iconic jeepneys waiting for passengers on Makati Ave. An American legacy from WW2's Pacific theatre

 Survey the Lay of the Land 
I went there after my chicken lunch at Jollibee (located at the corner of Jupiter and Makati Ave). P.Burgos is located just across the street from this Jollibee. So I thought I would take a little walk into chicken town to work off my lunch ("chicken" is Cantonese - Hong Kong's local dialect - slang for sex worker).

Since it's afternoon and P.Burgos St is a red-light district, meaning it's still sleeping (come back aftersun, not afternoon). While the business hours for red-light district is 9 to 5, it's 9pm to 5am. So you won't find too many businesses open now and streets were quiet with an occasional tourists like me, walking around like a black sheep lost. Bah...Humbug!

This worked out fine for me as I wasn't gonna enter their premises (without duly protection), I was here strictly for boring sightseeing. I imagine the workers here are camera shy in general, and the customers are probably camera phobic. Coming here at this time was great. To me, sightseeing without shooting is like eating without chewing (or eating without teeth).

The Clipper Hotel, P.Burgos St, Makati, Manila, Philippines

The Clipper Hotel, P.Burgos St, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Didn't expect to see an art-deco building here with a cruise-ship theme.
Pretty sure this place had seen many U.S. sailor boys.
Big surprise for big sucker of art-deco architecture.

I had to admit, going there at day time, you would have missed all the tacky bright neon lights. Red-light district always looks more alluring at night - in a 2-bit tart kinda way - than in the cold day lights where you can see things as they really are (who wants that ?! You're here for fantasy. Not reality). The kitschy neon lights can be quite good if done well. The swarm of touting for business can also be a source of joy, and quite heart-warming interactions where heartstrings pull on g-strings that pull on purse-strings in a string of emotional transactions. Bewdiful!

Another thing about walking at this time of the day is that it's extra safe. Not that it's unsafe to walk here, but it's even more so at this time of day. That's the vibe I got. One fella approached me with a few boxes of Viagra. I stood erect and said to him with my eyes, "Hey buddy, you think I need Viagra! What I need is 2 dozens of XXXL size condoms. Just for tonight!" (after all, tomorrow is another day).

Apparently, he was neither a mind or eyes reader. But he slipped away quite quickly, he didn't stick to me like silicone-based gel, and left me with only one attempt to sell me those recreational aids (the 4 letters are all in lower case. Ok?).

I wonder if they're doing brisk trades by having their customers admitting their plumbing problems in public (try to say the last 4 words rapidly, i dare you. And no shower please. I just had one). It's like kids being seen in supermarkets buying condoms with price check being broadcast over loud speakers (except there's nothing wrong with that. The kids certainly have more than adequate level of hydraulic pressure to lift their cranes to a level that's higher than firemen need to reach to put out the fires).

Apart from drug - strictly Viagra - pushers (ok, ok, they should be called hustlers), you could also be approached by ladies who ask you if you want a massage.

Shampoo Bar, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Pagan, Muslim and Christian at the corner of the Shampoo Bar
(click to enlarge)

After taking this photo, the lady (boy oh boy!) in pink approached me and asked if I wanted a massage. There were also other ladies asked me if I wanted massage. But the touting were brief and not aggressive. Maybe they're still sleep walking.

If I remember correctly, I watched on Sydney's TV more than a few decades ago (before the web) that there were female performers showering themselves with lots of soapy lather on stage in Manila. Is this Shampoo Bar provided that entertainment? Is this kinda entertainment still available in this day and age? Was it all just a very nice and clean adolescent dream? Am I a soapy froth who dreamed I was a man? Or a man dreaming of watching live show? What's the sound of no hand clapping?

 Ring the Bell at Ringside 
One of the more stood out place in P.Burgos St neighbourhood is Ringside bar, located right in heart of it. Well, midget-boxing is certainly uniquely Manila. Si, señoras y señores.

Where did the whole idea of midget-boxing come from? I'll try to make some educated guesses. Filipinos got to like boxing because Manny Pacquiao is probably the most notable Filipino outside the Philippines (ok, only Imelda Marcos - the 1st Lady with 1,220 pairs of shoes - could match his fame. Ladies and gentlemen, in the red corner, we have Duchess with the Mostest, and in the blue corner...well, you know the rest). Ok, ok, Pacquiao is more well known among gals and Marcos among guys (I say that just so that I won't appear sexist. Pervert, yessiree Bob. Sexist? Absolutely not!).

In the 10 days I stayed in Manila, I've seen Pacquiao at least 5 times on TV. Pinoygreats is a sports website, but features almost exclusively boxing. There's a photo of Pope Francis receiving a boxing championship belt (yeah, Catholics is the other Pinoy's great love).

Ringside, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Guy: "Hey look over there!"
Santa:  "Shhhhh..."

That explains the popularity of boxing, and even lady boxing (醉翁之意不在酒), why midget boxing?

Professor Jim Turner (from Home of the Brave) opened Hobbit House - not far from Rizal Park - back in 1973 where the restaurant's waitstaff are consisted of  Hobbit size Filipinos. The fact that it's still in business after 40+ years suggests that this little market niche in the tourism business can work. Others see and seize the opportunity and expanding it out to cover other area, like the national sport of boxing. Just connecting these 2 dots (one big and one small, but more numerous), and Voilà, you get midget-boxing. Let's throw in the ladies (but without the towel) into the ring as well.

At least, the Filipino Hobbits weren't being tossed about in the Philippines as they do in USA and Canada in the sport of dwarf-tossing (if you watched and remembered the first few mins of The Wolf of Wall Street (2013), you know what I mean). These countries - ok, probably just USA - may also give Pinoy the idea of midget-boxing. Why not? The adult entertainment in Burgos St is very American friendly because America is one of Pinoy's great love (if there's a boxing match between Uncle Sam and the Pope, i think the match would be a draw). O say, can you see, by the dawn's early light...(or afternoon's cloudy sky)

Ringside, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines

Adult Entertainment venue, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Burbon Babes, I never heard of it until now. Only Filipinos would cater such an exquisitely beautiful American entertainment

Montana Club, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Another offering for American tourists. In NYC, this is probably a gay bar; in Manila, it's a girlie bar.
Something is lost in the different English accents.
In any case, not that you can't have a gay time here, in a manly way.
Giddy-up partner! Let's ride into Brokeback, sorry...Montana Mountain. Yeehaw!

Filipinos describe their Spanish colonial period as "Living in the Convent",
and their American colonisation "Living in Hollywood". I don't think the population can all fit in here.
You only live twice, or so it seems...

All these American theme is of course no surprise because the Philippines was once an American colony (or as my friend David would say, what do you mean "once"?). Even without the history of American colonialism, as I said in this Pattaya article that many red-light districts in SE Asia, and one in Sydney is created for the American navy boys. Where there're military bases, there're red-light districts. This is closest thing being home away from home with all these American sights. Why would Manila be any different?

Virgin Mary statue, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Quietly stands next to a traffic light opposite Ringside.
She looked at me with the expression, "You don't bring me flowers..."

 To Market, to Market 
Arabs aren't the only large group of tourists here; judging from the Korean businesses, they're by far the biggest group.

South Korea is known for their frontier businessmen. I believe their government encourage them to do so. They tend to develop businesses in less developed markets such as those in the Philippines, Cambodia, etc. The Korean here are both tourists and locals.

Korean Business, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines

Korean Business, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines
Korean business around P.Burgos St

Korean Business, P.Burgos Street, Makati, Manila, Philippines

I didn't walk the whole length of this street. I'd seen enough to get the bittersweet taste of a typical SE Asian red-light district. It touched me in such a funny and unexpected way  (or is it unexpected funny way?).

I'm glad that I visited here despite it was off my radar. Obviously, my radar needs some serious tweaking. Probably an overhaul. My gaydar, on the other hand, works perfectly fine. No, i'm not gay folk ("not that there's anything wrong with that." Especially my gaydar. I'm a pervert, remember?).

Lots to see that give you lots of pauses and rewinds. Play it again, Sam.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Jollibee, Makati, Manila

 All Roads Lead to Jollibee 
I decided to go to Jolibee for lunch. This is best described as Pinoy solution to American fastfood restaurants like KFC + McDonald's. I made it very clear that Filipinos love chicken above all else in Max's Restaurant, which is one of the better known restaurant chain that specialises in chicken among the countless of chicken franchise restaurants mushroomed in Manila.

Ada told me that there's a Jollibee outlet within 4 mins walk on the right hand side of Fraser Place where we stayed. Instead of turning right from the hotel, I forgot her direction and turned left.  After 7 mins walk, I found a Jollibee outlet at the corner of Makati Ave and Jupiter (just "Jupiter". No "street" following it. The next few parallel streets are named "Juno", "Hercules", "Constellation". To keep it consistent, none of these street names are ending in "st" or "ave" or such indicators).

Jollibee, Makati, Manila

Jollibee, Makati, Manila
A beesy chef and security guard welcome you at the door

The moral of the story is, no matter which direction you walk, you will end up at a Jollibee outlet. All roads lead to Jollibee (from Jupiter to Mars). Just close your eyes and follow your nose (for the smell of fat food), and look out for the beesy chef mascot at the door.

Well, if Filipinos are obsessed with chicken, and Jollibee is the biggest fat-food (oops, fat fingers, i meant fast-food) chain of fried chickens, escape is obviously impossible. Ok, they also serve burgers and other stuff. While its logo is a bee, but I think their chickens are the best (I don't think they do fried bees. Maybe in Thailand, Cambodia or China? Also, if you're in the Philippines, why would you be eating anything else? I'm too chicken to try something else.

Chicken meal in Jollibee, Makati, Manila
Chicken meal comes with rice. I ordered fries separately

Before my visit (at the end of 2015), Jollibee only has stores in Asia (ME is part of Asia), and of course, USA (not because - or not just because - it's a place that invented and has an unhealthy relationship with fast-food).

Lucky Plaza, Singapore
A place to try Pinoy food while you're in Orchard Rd, Singapore

 In the Shopping Ghetto 
There's only 1 Jollibee outlet in Singapore, which naturally located in Lucky Plaza, which is a Pinoy fave shopping centre. In Singapore, because of its small population, you won't have Pinoy Place, Thai Town, Baby Burma or Korea Khetto (although Tanjong Pagar Rd comes close), but there're shopping centres or malls that associated with the different ethnic groups that live and work in Singapore. So there's Lucky Plaza for Pinoy, Peninsula Plaza for Burmese, Golden Mile Complex (this is a HDB flats, not shopping mall) for Thai, and Tanjong Pagar Rd for Korean, etc.

Peninsula Plaza, Singapore
A place to try Burmese food

Sorry, I digress. I just have too much to share (one reader told me that I give too much information. I like to share, especially fa[s]t food. I want to watch my figure, not just in a mirror, or in a phone camera's selfie mode). Anyway, I haven't tried the Jollibee in Lucky Plaza. A little Pinoy birdie (it's a chick) told me this one tastes different from those back home in Manila, which is better. As this was straight from the horse's (sorry bird's or chick's) mouth, I decided to head straight to try the original Jollibee in Manila.

Verdict? I don't like it. To be fair, I don't like deep-fried stuff in general. I think KFC is better. Sorry Jollibee. I'm not very good at lying to others (however, I'm an ace in lying to myself. Practice makes perfect). Still, I'm not sorry I gave this Pinoy icon fast food restaurant a try.

Go! Jollibee! Go! Give me a Bee! Give me a banana!

Sunday, 17 January 2016

3D Street Art in Sentosa and Other Tricky Arts

 Seeing Things in 3D 
When I heard of a 3D street art has been painted outside the Trick Eye Museum in Sentosa, I thought I would check it out (ok, I can do with some walking exercises, but I just need an excuse). The street painting is meant to enter the Guinness Record. No, I don't want to pay money to see Trick Eye Museum. I'm still waiting for the free ticket.

3D street painting, Sentosa, Singapore
The 3D street art in front of Trick Eye Museum

If you look at this street painting, the Singapore financial district skyscrapers is perhaps provided the best 3D effect. If you look at them against the legs of passerbys, the group of skyscrapers look more like a 3D model than something that's painted on street flat in 2D.

Since I was there alone, I didn't have anyone I can take photo with. If I can get somebody to stand right next to the CBD skyscrapers, the effect of 3D would be even better than it's shown on this photo.

The effect of the lady in red on the extreme left side of the photo that she's standing on the cliff is also quite good.

Here she is again in the photo below where she appears to be stand on the edge of the cliff about to fall into the blue water below. The 3D effect of the pigeon next to her is also quite good.

3D street painting, Sentosa, Singapore

This kind of 3D street art, (aka 3D pavement art) were popping up all over the sidewalks only in the last 2 or 3 years around the world. Suddenly, they're there every angle you turn (unfortunately, the same phenomenon is also occurring with the blasted selfie sticks. There're more selfie sticks than you can poke any kind of other sticks at).

For the technically minded, this kind of art is based on the principle of anamorphic projection. Sometimes it's called anamorphic illusions. It's a drawing / painting that done on a 2D, but when viewing at a specific location or perspective, it appears to be 3D.

The artist usually indicates where you should stand to look for best 3D effect. Of course, I would take photo of the picture above by standing at the spot indicated by the artist. Look for instruction written on the ground near the painting that says something like "Stand here to take photo".

 Old Art Renewed 
While this 3D pavement art fashion trend started only a few years ago (as far as I know), this kind of painting has been known for more than a few centuries. It was at least known as early as 16th century when the great German born painter Hans Holbein the Younger who completed his masterpiece the Ambassadors (1533).

The Ambassadors by Hans Holbein the Younger
The Ambassadors by Hans Holbein the Younger
Source:  National Gallery à  Londres

This is a well-known painting for its many hidden massages or symbols. One of such symbol is a mysterious looking thing on the floor in the foreground. If you look at the painting front on, which is the normal way of viewing a painting, you wouldn't able to make it out very well what is supposed to be.

But if you move to the side and below the painting and view it at an oblique angle and the correct distance, this anamorphic image will reveal itself to be a skull.

Anamorphic skull, the Ambassadors by Hans Holbein the Younger
The skull when viewed at the right angle or perspective.
Source: wikimedia, user Opoterser.

 Of course, it's entirely possible that this anamorphic technique were known a long time before Holbein used it in this painting.

 More Arts to Trick the Eyes 
Not surprisingly, artists have long been having a love affair with the play of perspectives in their arts. Here's just 2 more examples.

I saw both of these in less than the last 2 months.

The 1st one was a exhibit in National Gallery Singapore when I visited it during its grand opening.

This is an artwork by Mathew Ngui, entitled, oddly, Chair (1997).

Sculpture, Chair (1997) by Mathew Ngui, National Gallery Singapore
An empty chair sits quietly at a corner
This chair is unsittable (short for unsuitable for sitting)

From a specific angle, you see a chair leaning against a corner. But if you walk away from this particular spot (that I took my photo), in other words, viewing from a different angle, you don't see the chair anymore. You just see a random scattering of parts that made up the chair (in our mind).

Sculpture, Chair (1997) by Mathew Ngui, National Gallery Singapore

Sculpture, Chair (1997) by Mathew Ngui, National Gallery Singapore
Excuse me...Is that the Ikea's DIY thingy ? Where's the instruction manual ?
It's a DIY in your head...

This Chair sculpture is slightly different than the 3D street drawing in that it's not creating a illusion of 3D object from a 2D plane; rather it creates an illusion of a familiar object from a disjointed assembly of parts. They share one thing in common, that they have to be viewed from one specific spot in order for it to work.

I don't know if this piece is a permanent exhibit. If not, they might have picked up the pieces when this exhibit ends.

I saw the next sculpture while I shopped in Suntec City last week. It's a sculpture by Sun Yu-li, entitled Abundance III (can I assume that there're at least 2 more sculptures in the series that are scattered around Suntec City).

Abundance III by Sun Yu-li, Suntec City, Singapore
Abundance III outside Suntec City

As I walk around from left to right of this sculpture, naturally, I thought to myself: "as I'm continue my walking, I'll eventually see a circle". I was thinking that this is a cylinder, not unlike a wedding band, just far bigger.

Abundance III by Sun Yu-li, Suntec City, Singapore

Abundance III by Sun Yu-li, Suntec City, Singapore

As it turned out, Mr. Sun was trying to play with my optical or perceptual assumption. All the cross sections of familiar cylindrical objects we come across such as water pipes, gas pipes, wedding band, washers, handle bar, etc look like the 1st photo above from a certain angle. And you - like me - would expect to see a circular ring as we view it from the right angle (by right angle, I mean 90 degrees).

This 3rd photo above shows an object  - a elongated elliptical object - that we unlikely to come across in real life. In art, that's another matter.

 A Matter of Perspectives 
All these 3 sculptures are using different ways to trick your perceptions. But they all have one thing in common: the illusion is that all of them created with the plays of perspectives.

Artists have long been observing, studying, exploring these optical illusion for many centuries. Initially, the European artists learnt over time to replicate the 3D reality onto a 2D canvas by employing ever increasing sophisticated understanding of perspectives. But this anamorphic art is taking this 3D effect one step further.

medieval european painting showing a lack use of perspective
A painting created in the Medieval Europe shows a lack of use of perspectives. It looks flat.
However the houses up the top showed some rudimentary understanding of 3D perspectives

painting, Architect's Dream (1840) by Thomas Cole
Architect's Dream (1840) by Thomas Cole.  This 19th century painting shows a mastery of visual perspectives.

It's only quite recently - like in less a century - that scientists have undertaken research on these areas.

If there's a takeaway, take "Seeing is believing"  with a grain of salt. Nah, better with a quarter tea spoon.

This street art ends in 22 Jan.

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Technical Analysis of Barrick Gold Price Chart

 Out At Last! 
As I mentioned in my article When Will the Price of Gold Recovers that I bought some Barrick Gold (ABX) stock back in Oct 2015. Here's my thinking - or more importantly, the lesson I've learnt - about the purchase.

5 year chart of Barrick Gold (ABX)
5 year chart of Barrick Gold (ABX)
(Click to enlarge)

This chart shows that for the 1st time in some 4.5 years, the price of ABX has finally broken out its downtrend line.

Let's zoom in to take a closer look at it with the latest 1 year chart.

1 year chart of Barrick Gold (ABX)
1 year chart of Barrick Gold (ABX)
(Click to enlarge)

If you look at this 1-year chart, the best time to get into it is after Nov 2015 when the price had broken out the downtrend line. To play it safe, it's better to buy, say in mid Dec 2015, when the price had well and truly clear its downtrend line.

 The Waiting Game 
It was reckless of me to buy it in Oct 2015, instead of waiting for merely another 2 months. My impatience has got a better of me from time to time.

However, I would like to defend myself for the decision of purchase back in Oct 2015 for the following reasons.

The 1-year chart shows some bullish divergences in the MACD, Money Flow, and RSI on July and August 2015. It's this bullish divergence that spurred my decision that when the price comes against the downtrend line in Oct 2015, I jumped in.

On hindsight, while this has worked out for me, I wasn't disciplined enough. I SHOULD have waited until the price had broken well clear of the down trend line sometimes in mid Dec 2015. On the other hand, again in defending myself, since I'm not a day trader, but a contrarian investor, I wouldn't require precision timing to such degree. Still, it's good to be disciplined.

In any case, things had worked out well so far, and ABX is now in the uptrend line. How long? Nobody knows. But let's look at a few additional things.

Let's see how ABX fares against the spot price of gold so far since this uptrend started back in early Oct 2015.

1 year spot gold price chart
1 year spot gold price chart
(Click to enlarge)
While the gold price slid - dramatically I might add - between mid Oct and start of Dec, and yet ABX share price held steadily around the $7.5 - $8 range until it broke out of the downtrend line. When company's underlying product of gold is falling in price, and yet its share price held up, it's a positive sign for the stock.

 Share Price to Gold Ratio 
We all know that the share price of a gold producer is leveraged to its changes in gold price. If gold price falls by, say 50%, the gold producer's share price will typically fall much more than 50%. In fact, this had been the case until last Oct as the following chart clearly indicates.

5 year chart of ABX to Gold ratio
5 year chart of ABX to Gold ratio
(click to  enlarge)

The downtrend in this ratio chart is telling us that ABX is falling faster than its underlying spot gold price, as is expected (and it's also true in the opposite direction. I.e. its share price is also rising faster than spot gold price rises).

We can see from this ratio chart that ABX outperforms gold price since last Oct. And its out-performance (indicated by the steepness of the curve) had never been so strong throughout the whole 4.5 years of the bear market in ABX. This suggests ABX's share price strength relative to gold price of late. A positive sentiment for the stock.

What's also showing is that a golden cross is about to occur. A golden cross happens when its 50 day average (blue line) crosses above its 200 day average (red line).

It hasn't happened yet. If you look at last July on the chart, the blue line touches the red line and then turns back south, instead of crossing above it. This time, it can repeat what happened in last July, and many previous occasions where the blue line fail to cross above the red line.

So if I want to play it safe, I should wait until this happens, which would happen very soon. As a matter of a week or two at the most. My gut feeling tells me it would cross. Having said that, a golden cross ALONG isn't sufficient indicator. Again,  if you look at the ratio chart, you can spot a golden cross at Jan 2014, but it turns out to be a false or short-lived golden cross.

Well, I won't have to wait long to confirm my gut feeling.

Of course, there're many fundamental reasons why gold price should go up, but since this is an article on TA, some of my gut feelings were also derived from fundamental analysis.

 Fundamentally Speaking 
I'll talk about the fundamentals of ABX briefly.

When gold price is rising for awhile, the management typically became careless about its finance in a rush to grow the company as if the gold price will go up forever by taking on escalating debts. When gold price begun to fall, all that financial troubles reared its ugly head. Oct 2012, the company share price plummeted for more than 60% in the next 8 months. The worst period during this ABX 4.5 year decline.

The change in sentiment in the company that captured in the chart was due to its change in fundamentals, especially in 2015 where the company's new management made aggressive moves to clean up the company balance sheet and operation to a healthier state and has restored some confidence in investors.

What happened to ABX is typical during a boom in any industry. When gold fall, many company suffered similar fate as ABX (to different degrees of course). This leads to shrinking supply. And you know what happen to the price of gold when that happens.

That's true for any commodity, and the reason why market cycles exist.

 Contrarian Speaking 
Perhaps the best reason to buy gold is because all the "experts" are crying gloom and doom.

As Warren Buffet said, "Be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful." Looking at these articles, many others are very fearful.

I can offer another saying, "Bull market climbs a wall of worry."

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

The Eight @ Grand Lisboa Macau

The 8 Restaurant
2/F Grand Lisboa

After checking out the Michelin-rated French restaurant Robuchon au Dôme in Grand Lisboa yesterday, it's only fair that we also did the same for The Eight, which is another 3 Michelin stars restaurant in Grand Lisboa.

Since Ada is a great lover of dim sum, she didn't need the rubber-tyre cartoon logo to convince her to sample the food here. It helped, at least for justifying in paying the inflated prices.

 The Place 
The location isn't as good as Robuchon au Dôme, which is located on 43/F with nice aerial view of Macau. The 8 is located on 2/F, and without windows.

Eight is a lucky number for the Chinese.  For example, the Beijing Olympic was opened on 8pm on 08/08/2008. I'm not sure about mins and secs. It would be perfect if they did it at the time of 8pm and 8 mins and 8 secs.

So, what's more logical than applying this lucky number than in a casino? Would be even more interesting if the restaurant is located on 8/F.

If you pay attention, you can see the '8' motif in the different decor throughout the restaurant.

Decor, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
This "grill" can be found at the reception desk at the entrance

Decor, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
Another stylised figure 8 hanging down from the ceiling. Also every 2 circles of this "drape" forms the figure '8' 

 The Food 
To make up for the views outside the windows, there's much to see in the restaurant's decor and especially on your table. Depending what you order, many of the dim sums in the menu are works of art.

Receipt, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau

Of course, we ordered a few of these. You would now face the problem that's they're too pretty to eat.

I'm not gonna review every individual dim sum, except to say that while they weren't the very best I have eaten, but they're of high standard. They don't just look good.

wet wipe, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
The restaurant is full of gimmick.
Don't eat it, unless you have a strong stomach.

wet wipe, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
It turned into a wet wipe after water was added.
No, it doesn't taste like chicken.
May need to eat another one to confirm.

abalone, Dim sum, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
Complimentary abalone

shrimp dumpling, Dim sum, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
Prawn dumpling

BBQ Pork buns, Dim sum, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
BBQ pork buns

Pork floss with shrimp puff pastry, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
pork floss and river shrimp (with taro) puff pastry

Crispy duck and abalone croquette, Dim sum, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
Crispy duck and abalone croquettes
sherbet and ice cream, Dim sum, the Eight Restaurant, Grand Lisboa, Macau
Sherbet and ice cream

Overall Score: 9 / 10. If you're kids, or kids-at-heart, lover of dim sums, or food art,  you would want to check them out. They didn't earn 3 Michelin stars just for the gimmicks and food arts. Their standard are quite good. Few tasty dim sums place would give you this menagerie of food sculpture: a feast for your eyes and stomach.

Even if you're not a big fan of dim sums, with such a fun food fare, it's an unique dining experience.

I would come back for food that I haven't tried in my next visit to Macau. I learnt that they have a large menu. Perhaps I'll try their dinner menu instead of dim sums lunch next time.