Wednesday, 6 July 2016

KL Historic City Centre

KL's Historic Centre is quite small. I covered it in half a day because of my excessive photo taking and being flat-footed (meaning i have no spring in my steps). Most probably can do it in an hour or so.

Google map, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Stops i made around the KL Historic City Centre
(Click to enlarge)


I took the pano below by standing at  on the above map. This gives a nice overview of the KL Historic Centre.

Panorama, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
180° panorama view from the Independence Square
(Click to enlarge)

  KL City Gallery

To read about KL City Gallery


  Music Museum (Muzium Muzik)
I didn't visit this museum even though it's right next to KL City Gallery. I may visit it another day if i have time. It's a heritage building that was the National History Museum. It's built in 1888.

This is an eclectic architectural style with something of a blend of Renaissance and/or Palladian style that incorporating Islamic architectural elements like Moroccan or Moorish arches. To the Western eyes, the result is that it's something familiar, and yet exotic.


Music Museum, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Handsome porte cochère with a Moroccan arch


  Independence Square (Dataran Merdaka)

To read about Independent Square 


  National Textile Museum (Muzium Tekstil Negara)
Like most heritage buildings, this is a government building that had changed hands several times. In many British Colonial cities, the government buildings were usually done in the classical Greco-Roman style just like those back home in London.

Take Singapore is a good example where its most prominent Colonial landmarks such as The Fullerton Hotel and former Supreme Court fall into this category (these 2 building also next to Singapore Padang area).

While KL and Singapore share many similarities in culture, history, tradition, laws, etc, but the Colonial buildings in KL in Islamic style is quite a departure from Singapore (the similarities between these 2 places are hardly surprisingly as Singapore was part of Malaysia once and only celebrated its Gold Jubilee last year of its independence from Malaysia. What i'm surprising was how little KL cab drivers know about Singapore, thinking it's a city as different from KL as Beijing or Manila). The National Textile Museum is a good example of this.

This building is in the Mughal-Gothic style (aka Indo-Gothic or Neo-Mughal). The most well-known building in the world in the Mughal style is the Taj Mahal, one of the 7th Wonder of the World.

National Textile Museum, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Walking on Jalan Raja, this building is dominated by the octagonal Gothic tower at its corners with different arches
used in each of its 3 floors: cinquefoil, semicircular Romanesque and ogive style of arches.

One of the feature of the Mughal style is the use of ornamental pavilion called chhattri (it means "canopy" or "umbrella"), of which there're 2 of them sitting on top of the main entrance, which could be seen in the photo below.

Chhatris (note the 2 'h', most will just write 1 'h'. I don't mind) are Indian architectural element, but it's incorporated into the Mughal style.


National Textile Museum, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia


 Sultan Abdul Samad Building
This is the most prominent building around the Padang and it's in the similar style as the National Textile Museum. Actually this building is a slightly, just bit more eclectic than its neighbour.

This building was designed by A.C. Norman, who also responsible for the design of 2 other buildings around the Padang: Royal Selangor Club buildings, and St. Mary's Cathedral.

Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
KPK stands for Kementerian Penerangan, Komunikasi dan Kebudayaan Malaysia in Malay
or Ministry of Information, Communications and Culture of Malaysia

Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia Clock Tower, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia Clock tower, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Moroccan arches, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia

Moroccan arches, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia

Moroccan arches, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Behind the porte cochère of Sultan Abdul Samad Building. Note the Royal Selangor Club buildings across the street

Moroccan arches, Sultan Abdul Samad Building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia


  DBKL City Theatre (Panggung Bandaraya) & Old CIty Hall
This is yet another heritage building lining the main street in the Historic City Centre (Jalan Raja) that was built in the Mughal architectural style. These buildings were designed by different British Colonial architects, but there was obvious a conscious effort in maintaining this architectural style to reflect the Malaysian state religion of Islam.

This Old City Hall was in 1896 and designed by A.B Hubback, who also designed and built the National Textile Museum in 1905.

DBKL City Theatre and Old City Hall, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
This could easily mistaken as 1 building but actually 2 that consists of DBKL City Theate and Old City Hall.
Note the 2 entrances, and porte-cochère.


Facade, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
This part of the facade contains fair amount of Western architectural elements like pediment as well as
Indian element of jharokha (a type of Rajasthan balcony)

Old City Hall, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
The adjoining Old City Hall's facade is designed with far more Islamic architectural elements like multifoil arches and
onion dome that are typical of Moorish architecture.


Old City Hall, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia Facade, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia Portico, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia


I ducked into the Theatre's lobby for a little cool relief.

Lobby, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Theatre's lobby
The lobby area also features a couple of stained glass windows framed in Moroccan arches.

Stained glass window, Lobby, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia Ticket window, Lobby, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia Stained glass window, Lobby, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia

Cat, DBKL City Theatre, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Musical Cat ?


Next to DBKL City Theatre, and recedes slightly further from Jalan Raja is the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia (Kementerian Pelancongan dan Kebudayaan Malaysia), according to the sign on the building.

Ministry of Tourism and Culture, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Office of Ministry of Tourism and Culture. Except for the agive arches, this building is mostly in Western architectural style.

On the other side of DBKL City Theatre, located at the corner of Jalan Raja and Jalan Tun Perak, is the Old Sessions and Magistrates Court building.

Like the Old City Hall and DBKL City Theare nextdoor, the domes in this building are also in dramatic black.

Old Sessions and Magistrates Court building, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia


  Jamek Mosque
This mosque is A.C. Hubback's other masterpiece that was built in 1909. Naturally, it was built in Mughal style.

The eyesore of the blue tarp indicating that it was under renovation while i was there. In fact, the whole area was under construction. Because of it, the public was off limit to the mosque.

Jamek Mosque, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
Jamek Mosque as viewed from a bridge on  Leboh Pasar Besar. The mosque situates right between the fork where
Klang River splits into Klang and Gombak River.

Jamek Mosque, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia


While the blue tarp is only a temporary eyesore, the more permanent eyesore is the big rusty pipe and supporting structure crossing Klang River between the bridge and the mosque.

Ministry of Tourism and Culture, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia
The eyesore

Jamek Mosque, KL Historic City Centre, KL, Malaysia


 

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