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2012.01.17

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Nate @ House of Annie

How can something like this be preserved? All the money in the world can't keep this bar's doors open forever. Thanks for doing your part to keeping this place alive.

Robyn

Hi Nate, I think that the point of the interviewee I quoted is that with some careful, creative thinking -- and some of the funds that have been put into frankly idiotic development in Malacca (the viewing tower, the monorail to nowhere, etc etc) is that some -- not all maybe -- but some places like this can be preserved. This place could be a tourist attraction -- not in a ticky-tacky way (and that's always the danger). But Java Lane could be, there could be ways to draw pple over here. This could turn into a book so I'll try to keep it short. Malacca is in such a state compared to George Town. None of the public millions that have been spent there have even gone to putting together a decent walking map of true heritage sites. Compare George Town -- you can pick up an "old trades" walking map of a "historic foods" walking map. I've seen tourists using these maps and they often stop at the places noted to, say, have a serbet or buy a songket. So there are ways to promote real and true heritage without turning it into a circus.
But the will (and a little insight and true understanding of the **value** of heritage), on the part of those in charge, has to be there. And in Malacca it just is not. And that is not going to change, I'm afraid.

Showshanti

There's a desire for me to want both the familiar watering hole and exotic destination in one. I have yet to find both sides of that ideal in one Beijing bar. This post conjures beautiful images in addition to the photos accompanying it.

Kalyan

Wow i never really go out looking for bars when I travel. Coffee shops work as watering holes for me. But after this post I want to go to Malacca. For the 3rd time

Robyn

Thank you Shanti. You may be 20 yrs too late to find that kind of bar in Beijing. ;-)

Kalyan - gosh, local watering holes tell us as much about a place as its eateries. We like a pop before dinner so if we're somewhere where that is done (openly) then we usually keep our eyes peeled when we're out wandering for a place to return to after the good photo light has faded in the evening.

Doug

Another wonderful article showcasing a hidden gem. The "Disney" approach to development appeals to those looking solely for entertainment, resulting in glossy, nondescript tourist centers ignoring the very heritage they were supposed to protect.
Coffee shops, bars, warungs--any places where locals stop to relax and talk are great to get the measure of a town.

Albert

Great post. Although drinking at home is always a lot cheaper, especially here in North America, but there is something undeniably comforting about hanging out in a friendly neighborhood bar.

Katie

Hi, my husband stumbled upon this delight after having a haircut at the Tay Boon Wah barbershop. Lian Suan was a delightful host and to sit at that magnificent bar and watch the sun set on the small community was our favourite activity in Melaka! Lian Suan had served a group of Aussie travellers the night before and perhaps, if we can spread the word on this little local magic she will be able to stay afloat for some years to come.

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