Feb 2016 - Ampang Park Food Court

On the day that the Year of the Goat ended to make way for the Year of the Monkey, twelve of the Enak team paid a visit to a shopping mall with an uncertain future.  Ampang Park – the first shopping mall in Malaysia – has been served notice that it is to be demolished to make room for an MRT station.  Although legal avenues are being explored to ‘Save Ampang Park’, the consensus is that, after 43 years, the owners and tenants in Ampang Park may soon be forced to close their doors for good. February’s Enak was a 2-part outing.  We started off with a tour that took us down mazelike hallways.          

We met owners of family-run businesses that have been serving the community for decades. With the exception of two banks, a post office and a convenience store, all of the shops in Ampang Park offered products and services that are not normally found in modern-day shopping malls. 

If the legal appeal fails, many of the items for sale in Ampang Park, as well as the standard of service provided by the independently owned businesses, may cease to exist.   We had to rush the tour a little to ensure that we could be seated in the Ampang Park Food Court before the lunchtime rush.   

From the number of empty bowls on the table, one could assume that the spicy noodle dishes from Thu’s Northern Vietnam kitchen were the most popular. For some, the choice of what to have for lunch was a puzzler as there was an abundance of food stalls offering tantalizing choices at very reasonable prices.

Where else can 12 expats sit down at the same table with plates of food representing Indian, Indonesian, Malaysian, Vegetarian and Vietnamese cuisines?


Joining us on the tour and for lunch was Simon Lau, owner of I-Zone Hair & Beauty Salon. 

Simon answered questions about the history of Ampang Park and elaborated on the legal process the ‘Save Ampang Park’ campaign is undertaking.    After lunch, we set out in a smaller group to either explore more of Ampang Park or to go back to one of the shops to snap up one of those bargains spotted earlier in the tour.    


This was an outing that introduced us to some charming locals, made us laugh and even tugged a little at the heartstrings.  A special thank you goes to Simon and Katherine, Mr. and Mrs. Lee, Ah Hong, Mr. Goh, Esther and Thu for their warm welcomes and friendly smiles.

.  We wish them success, good luck and good fortune in the Year of the Monkey.

Hosted by Randee Duncan