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The Iskandarian ISSUE 61 | SEP 2017


KDN : PP17797/06/2012(032765) | Singapore MICA : MCI (P) 095/11/2016





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UMLand’s Catalytic Development

Bandar Seri Alam With a plethora of schools and universities located within its township, Bandar Seri Alam has been officially recognised by the local authorities as a “City of Knowledge.” The list includes Masterskill University College, Universiti Kuala Lumpur, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Excelsior International School, UniWorld International School, Japanese school, Nam Heng Chinese Primary School, Malaysia Art School as well as seven other national primary and secondary schools that help to nurture future leaders. The renowned Foon Yew High School will soon join the list when it opens its new campus at the township. Adopting a green concept as part of the development, Bandar Seri Alam is dotted with lakes and parks and a beautifully landscaped environment. Residents have access to two recently upgraded large smoke-free parks which feature lakes with cobbled pathways, exercise equipment, jogging and cycling paths. A 33-kilometre bicycle lane has been incorporated into the township to promote an active lifestyle and to reduce carbon emission for a healthy township. To enhance the leisurely and relaxed lifestyle, the township offers a comprehensive list of retail outlets including Tesco, Today’s Market, McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, Marry Brown, KFC, Tea Garden and Starbucks Cafe, to name a few. Gravity Green – the new happening spot in Bandar Seri Alam is a food haven and hang out place for the residents of Bandar Seri Alam and greater Pasir Gudang area. With a total land area of 4.87 acres, it consists of various F&B operators, each offering different concepts and ambiance. Amongst the operators include Starbucks Café, Der’Cabin Bistro, Moonlight Cake House, Bay Street 66, Vivo, Anglers Pitstop and Chill Cafe. Other F&B operators are Sugar Bun Restaurant, Walnut Café, Redtro and Banafe Restaurant (to be completed end of the year). Apart from eateries, one can also find One Gadget Dot Com, a one stop centre dealing with handphones and accessories operating here.

OPAL RESIDENZ: Zircon (32’ x 70’) 2-storey Cluster house

No efforts are spared in serving the fast-growing community at Bandar Seri Alam. To improve safety and security, the Eastern Police District Headquarters was set up within the township. The reputable Regency Specialist Hospital – a member of Singapore’s Health Management International Limited – operates within the township. True to its tagline“Smart Healthy City,”Bandar Seri Alam will soon see a “Lee Chong Wei International Sports City” being built to cater to sports fans and to provide training facilities to groom the nation’s future generation of sporting talents. To date, the township has won recognitions like the Asia Pacific Property Awards, Green Award, Prime Minister’s Hibiscus Award, First Cycle Connected Township, Blue Ribbon Award, GAIA Award and TIMA Award, among others.

OPAL RESIDENZ: Ruby (36’ x 70’) 2-storey Cluster house

OPAL RESIDENZ (SECTION 2): 2-storey Cluster house & 2-storey Semi-detached house All units feature a modern design and offer a jogging track and children’s playground within the Gated & Guarded community. The freehold units come in 3-types of design with the Zircon Cluster being priced from RM 784,800 with a built-up size of 2,228 sq ft, Ruby Cluster priced from RM 851,800 with a built-up size of 2,361 sq ft and Amethyst – Semi D houses priced from RM 894,800 with a built-up size of 2,443 sq ft respectively. In total, only 82 units in Section 2, making it a very low density development.

FORTUNA HUB PREMIER : 4-Storey Shopoffice with elevator Strategically located within Bandar Seri Alam’s central business district, all units come with an elevator and a built-up size of 6,720 sq ft from RM 1,463,800. Most of the 78 units are sold, leaving a limited number of units available in this new freehold business hub. CCC has already been obtained.

OPAL RESIDENZ: Amethyst (32’ x 80’) 2-storey Semi-Detached house

Bandar Seri Alam embodies Smart Healthy Living at an affordable price - Mr Freddie Lee Executive Director, Bandar Seri Alam

The Iskandarian

KDN : PP17797/06/2012(032765) Singapore MICA : MCI (P) 095/11/2016

ISSUE 61 | SEPT 2017 FREE COPY Official Newspaper

The Iskandarian Iskandar Malaysia’s Official Newspaper, is a synergistic product by True Soul Media PLT & IRDA’s Social Development Division



The Iskandarian Monthly Drill

We interview CEOs & Chairmen with drilling questions

pg 9

We are also presently planning to launch a medium and lower cost project consisting about 1200 units - Freddie Lee Executive Director, Seri Alam Properties Sdn Bhd


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Renaissance’s Snowskin Mooncakes are back to tantalise your tastebuds

Read on pg20

We recapitulate the buzz around the Sungai Segget rejuvenation Read on project pg16 Segget rejuvenation project is now in its third phase involving landscaping and beautification works

World’s Largest IBS Factory in Johor

- The RM2.6 billion project will feature technologies from Germany, Italy and China

Read on pg25

(Pic by Hakim)


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TMJ Unveil New JDT Stadium Design Concept The football stadium to be ready by end of 2018


he Crown Prince of Johor, Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim officiated and unveiled the new Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) football stadium design and concept at Forest City. Countr y Garden PacificView Sdn Bhd (CGPV) is entrusted to build the upcoming stadium that encompasses a professional football field with a ground floor area spanning 140,000 square metres and 70,000

square metres of building area. “We are more than honoured to be associated with JDT Football Club. The stadium which will have a natural grass field, advanced sounding system with live broadcast system can house up to 40,000 spectators in full capacity,” said Executive Director of CGPV, Datuk Md Othman Yusof at the launch. Othman continued that to complement the RM200 million stadium,

CGPV is also planning to build a sports centre and a commercial centre. The stadium is expected to meet completion by end of 2018 while earthworks are under way. Also in attendance was the Crown Prince’s consort Che’ Puan Khaleeda Bustamam, daughter Princess Tunku Khalsom Aminah Sofiah and Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin. by Maressa Esa TI

Crown Prince of Johor, Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim (right), Che’ Puan Khaleeda Bustamam (middle) with Executive Director of CGPV, Datuk Md Othman Yusof and Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin (left) overlooking at the scale model of the new JDT stadium

Taking a Stand Maximising Volunteerism Among the Youth on Suffering Animal lovers walked in silence to create awareness


Gleneagles MEDINI

Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin (middle) with representatives of governmentlinked companies at the official launch of the Johor Relief Organisation (Ihsan Johor)

“In The Arms Of One Who Cares”

Johor Birds & Animal Lovers (JOBA), Wira Kasseh, Homeless & Orphans Pet Exist (HOPE) and the public who joined in the Silent Awareness Walk

A SEND LETTERs or inquiries to

group of over 30 people from Johor Birds & Animal Lovers (JOBA), Wira Kasseh, Homeless & Orphans Pet Exist (HOPE) and the public made a statement on animal sufferings and rights through the inaugural Silent Awareness Walk Johor 2017. Braving the traffic with placards, banners and posters written ‘Respect Animals’ and other depictions of animal sufferings, many road users also supported the cause by honking and waving at the marching individuals. The walk commenced at the Johor Zoo, stretching almost 5km along Persiaran Tun Sri Lanang heading towards town via Jalan

Tan Hiok Nee and stopped at several local tourist eateries whilst getting onlookers to focus on their message. “It is a good cause and a good start to tell the public about animal rights and stop abusing animals. The public also responded to us and I hope that the message was well spread and received, and extended to their family and friends too,” said Farhana Ismail from Wira Kasseh who joined the walk. Elsa Aeria from Penang Stray Rescue (PGSR) who co-organised the walk with JOBA also stressed that such movement requires perseverance to go through challenges and hope that it will be continued from time to time. - by Maressa Esa TI


fter a year old with several voluntary projects done, the Johor Relief Organisation (Ihsan Johor) was officially launched by Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin to be a platform to promote ideas of volunteerism among the people of Johor. The organisation which now has numerous volunteers especially from the

younger generation, focuses on four different workforces namely; Ihsan Johor Homes that assist the needy in building homes and house makeovers in three days, Ihsan Johor Kitchen which feeds the urban poor and homeless in the streets, Ihsan Johor School that highlights education for the less fortunate and hospitalised children and lastly, Ihsan Johor Squad which is a response team

that lends support during natural disaster and provide emergency relief. “We want the act of volunteerism to play a huge part in the society of Johor people and not just something seasonal. Let it be a lifestyle and transform as a state driven by society,” said Khaled during the launch. The state government also generously presented RM500,000 assistance to the organisation in support of the good cause to build 20 homes this year with a target of 30 more units in 2018. To date, Ihsan Johor has completed 10 homes in different districts, 7 series of Ihsan Johor Kitchen, and two story telling activities under Ihsan Johor School. The organisation also welcomes any parties lending a helping hand for donations as well as volunteers in line of sustaining their mission by contacting Ihsan Johor FB page. - by Maressa Esa TI

Medini Clinches Green and Smart City Awards


edini Iskandar Malaysia Sdn Bhd (MIM) recently won two distinguished awards at the International Greenery, Recreation, Infrastructure, Parks (IGRIP) Conference and World Urban Parks in Singapore. MIM’s urban park developments in Medini City clinched the Green Champion Award in two categories, ‘Emerging Green City’ and ‘Smart and Green Infrastructure: Greenfield Development’. Dr Digby Whyte, Chief Executive Officer of World Urban Parks, and Maria Boey, President of the Institute of Parks & Recreation Singapore (IPRS), presented the two awards to Dr James Tee, Managing Director/Chief

Executive Officer of MIM. “We are committed to shaping Medini City as the address of choice for business, leisure and healthy living. The green environment provides an opportunity for everyone to enjoy better lifestyles, fresh air, safe surroundings and a creative environment that is far away from crowded roads, smog and pollution. As a corporate citizen, this is a way for us to give back to society. It is truly a ‘City With A Difference”, said Dr James. Medini is an integrated urban township development that covers an area of 2,230 acres and Medini City is touted as the CBD of Iskandar Puteri.

Published by True Soul Media PLT [No.51-B, Jalan Impian Emas 5/1, Taman Impian Emas, 81300 Johor Bahru] Printed by Twinstar Synergy Sdn. Bhd. [Lot2A, Jln 13/2, Seksyen 13, 46200, Petaling Jaya, Selangor] Copyright of articles, contributions and photos which are published by The Iskandarian is the property of True Soul Media PLT. The Iskandarian does its best to ensure the authenticity and accuracy of its contents, the publisher cannot accept any responsibilities for errors, mistakes and inaccuracies. The publisher reserves the rights of this product and no part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means without the permission of the publisher.


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The Public Has a Say in Developing the State Public views and inputs considered to better develop Johor by 2030


ohor Town and Country Planning Department recently launched the Publicity and Public Participation Programmes Over view, Johor Structure Plan 2030 (Review) at Persada Johor International Convention Centre. The Johor Structure Plan 2020, which is now in effect, was prepared in 2001 and was gazetted on 3rd January 2008. It acts as a statutory document containing a written statement describing state-level strategic policies and proposals with regards to the development and use of land within the city and rural areas. Restructuring exercise was done every five years, and research on the revision started back in August 2016 through the allocation of the Federal Government and the State Government, under the provisions of Section 11 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1976 in line with the preparation of a five-year state development plan. Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin expressed the need

to update and revise the information and planning data in the document according to time. “First of all, it provides space for future development proposals, in tandem with the rapid expansion that has taken place lately.” “Development plans and mega projects in Johor must take into account the long-term effects and requirements while urban planning and development agenda must explore innovative ways to solve local problems,” said Khaled in his speech, adding that other than strategic and sustainable development plans in line with market needs, the funding aspect should also be given attention. “The review of Johor Structure Plan 2030 involves several levels including taking into account views and inputs from agencies and technical departments, focus group discussion and technical working group before presenting to the public,” said Datuk Zainuddin Ahamad, Director General of PLANMalaysia. - by Hakim Malik TI

Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin handing over a copy of the review report to state secretary, Datuk Azmi Rohani

Bandar Baru Uda to Receive a Specialist Hospital Lower medical service bills for the public soon


specialist hospital will be developed groundbreaking ceremony. Khaled added that the hospital is also and operating by the year 2020 at Jalan Tahana, Bandar Baru Uda open for public to enjoy medical services at which aims to provide free medical an affordable price compared to other private services for over 3000 asnaf (underprivileged) hospitals. - by Maressa Esa TI under Johor Waqaf Fund (TWRJ). The RM600 million project by Johor Islamic Cooperation (PIJ) and Kencana Healthcare Sdn Bhd (KHSB) is the first medical complex in the country to be built on a spread of 5.5 acres waqaf land under Johor Islamic Council. “The complex comprises of 32 commercial units, a convention centre, and a four-star Muslim friendly hotel. Apart from that, it can cater up to 300 beds, 60 specialist clinics, 120 specialist facilities and rooms, and 650 parking Scale model of the upcoming specialist hospital lots,” said Johor Menteri Besar Datuk in Bandar Baru Uda (Pic: Mohamed Khaled Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin during its Nordin FB Official page)



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Ride in a Safer City Inaugural Iskandar Safe City Ride 2017 received more than 1,000 participations


ore than 1,000 cyclists took part in the inaugural Iskandar Safe City Ride 2017 held in Puteri Harbour. A collaborative effort between PDRM and UEM Sunrise, the master developer of Iskandar Puteri, the ride helped create a harmonious and safe living environment and inculcated a healthy lifestyle for the communities of Iskandar Puteri. Officiated by Johor Chief of Police, Dato’ Sri Wan Ahmad Najmuddin Mohd, the Iskandar Safe City Ride also established Puteri Harbour as a safe place for communities to grow, and as a key destination for cycling and other sporting events. “The Iskandar Safe City Ride is part of UEM Sunrise’s long-term efforts to incorporate healthy living for the communities into the blueprint of Iskandar Puteri. “These are key markers of the quality of life of any city. As an iteration of our commitment to the development and wellbeing of our communities, we are proud to develop a programme of events including the Iskandar Safe City Ride to enhance the quality of life of the people living at Iskandar Puteri,”

news Sporting Event in Support of SEA Games 2017 1000 TAR&H employees competed in SOU 2017 at Educity Sports Complex


Johor Chief of Police, Dato’ Sri Wan Ahmad Najmuddin Mohd presenting the lucky draw prizes to the winners

said Dato’ Roslan Ibrahim, Chief Operating Officer, Development of UEM Sunrise. Admission to the event was free and divided into two categories, a six-kilometer Family Ride for children 12 years old and above and a 39-kilometer Power Ride for amateurs. Also happening on that day was various peripheral of activities such as food and beverages bazaars, PDRM performances as well as family activities. by Hakim Malik TI

hemed Attractions Resorts & Hotels Sdn Bhd (TAR&H) with more than 1000 employees from all of its Operating Units had gathered for their fifth annual State of Union (SOU) assembly at Educity Sports Complex in Nusajaya. Held in conjunction with the SEA Games 2017, the participants were employees from The Datai Langkawi, KidZania Kuala Lumpur, KidZania Singapore, LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort, Hotel Jen Puteri Harbour, SANRIO HELLO KITTY, Thomas Town, The Els Club Malaysia and Desaru Coast. “We are a firm believer that sports carnival like SOU plays a big role in

bringing all of our employees across Malaysia to come together in the spirit of sportsmanship t h u s celebrating diversity and inclusion,” said M u h a m m a d TAR&H employees during their Parade performance as the opening remark of Zainal Ashikin, the SOU Games 2017 Chief Executive Officer of Destination also included many Resorts at TAR&H, adding other traditional games that the company also including sepak yem, a promotes passion for unity popular traditional game in Johor to support the and healthy living. Featuring a variety ‘SayangMalaysia’ campaign of sports tournament by the Ministry of Tourism including badminton, and Culture Malaysia to netball, football, volleyball, promote Malaysia as a dodgeball and tug of premier tourist destination. war, the sports carnival - by The Iskandarian TI

J-Biotech’s Bio DesaruA Feather on Johor’s Cap


io Desaru – The Organic Food Valley is an integrated food production hub focusing in upstream farming activity. The projects in Bio Desaru are based on biotechnology or innovative farming technology practices developed by investors consisting components of bioagriculture, bio-livestock, bio-aquaculture and bio-tourism. Agricultural biotechnology is rightfully given prominence in the National Biotechnology Policy, as part of the Government’s focus on revitalising and transforming the agriculture sector to becoming one of the main thrusts of growth. Johor Biotechnology and Biodiversity Corp (J-Biotech), the driving force behind Bio Desaru has brought the brand globally. At the four-day Bio Taiwan 2017 Conference & Exhibition held in July, J-Biotech announced that it was in the midst of finalising investments worth RM 250 million in bio-tourism and farming for this year. Chief Executive Officer, Asman Shah Abd Rahman, said Johor was on track to achieve its target to become the country’s main food producer by 2020. “This is because one of the state projects to meet the target, Bio-Desaru Food

Valley, has received good responses from not only local investors but also the foreigners,” said Asman adding that the 3,600-hectare project was managed by Bio Desaru Sdn Bhd, a J-Biotech group subsidiary. Currently, almost 90% of the area is occupied involving investments of over RM1.6 billion in 30 projects consisting the biggest and most advance shrimp hatchery, Grandparent Stock (GPS) poultry and Swiftlet Birdnest Farming nationally and globally besides other key projects by anchor companies under national programs like NKEA, Pioneer and Bio-Nexus Status. Asman Shah said in order to complement these three bioagri activities, Bio Desaru also introduced the bio-tourism segment as another component that would spur economic activity in the area. Annually, Bio-Desaru produces about 2.6 billion shrimp fingerlings and more than 250 thousand parent stock chicks. It also produces 800 thousand chicken eggs daily for local and Singapore markets. Asman added that the group has been aggressive in establishing exchange of innovative farming ideas and biotechnology in various fields, especially research,

J-Biotech Chief Executive Officer Asman Shah Abd Rahman

development and innovation. Bio Desaru is the first-of-its-kind integrated bio-agri food production hub model with BioSecurity compliance as its main concept. Bio

Johor Police HQ 07-221 2999 / 07-225 4499

Nusajaya Police IPD 07-511 4222

Tourism Malaysia Hotline 1300 88 5050

Johor Tourism 07-223 4935 / 224 9960

JB South Police IPD 07-2218 999

Ministry of Tourism (Johor) 07-223 3171

Tourism Malaysia Johor 07-222 3590 / 91

Immigration 07-224 4233


Desaru envisions being the main Integrated Biotech-Driven Agro Food Production Hub & Bio-Tourism Destination within the Region by 2020.

Senai International Airport 07-599 4500

Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) 07-233 3000

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Ms. SHOPhia Set to Change ‘Game of the Country’s Shopping Game Accountants’ Secretariat Shopping Malaysia stops in town to introduce the shopping icon to shopping industry players

Seven accounting firms’ fight it out on the court at this year’s Johor Inter-Accounting Firm Games


Participants of the seminar at Amari Johor Bahru Hotel


ourism M a l a y s i a ’s Secretariat Shopping Malaysia (SSM) held a seminar and briefing session with close to 50 local retail industry players at Amari Johor Bahru Hotel, their second roadshow tour stop this year after Penang. In order to promote some of the ongoing promotional events by SSM in conjunction with the Malaysia Mega Sale and Year End Sale carnivals 2017, the event also shared the latest achievements and

status of the shopping industry for the whole of last year. Among the topics highlighted is the Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS), a scheme that allow tourists visiting Malaysia to claim a refund of GST paid on eligible goods purchased from an approved outlet. Johor recorded a low TRS claim rate at 2 % compared to Kuala Lumpur’s rate of 79 %. SSM also introduced their shopping icon ‘Ms. SHOPhia’ to retailers and mall operators and

discussed about opportunities on collaborating with SSM. The public should checkout Ms. SHOPhia at https://www. for more information regarding ongoing sales and promotion near you. With more than 24000 followers on Facebook and 16000 on Instagram, mall operators are encouraged to enquire on how to collaborate with SSM on promotional events and social media platforms. - by Hakim Malik TI

he I nter-Accounting Fi r m G a m e s ( I A F G ) Johor was back this year with seven main local and international accounting firms in the state namely PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Ernst & Young, Deloitte, KPMG, M.S Wong, Cheng & Co and Baker Tilly competing on the futsal court at Sports Prima Pandan, Johor Bahru. PwC as one of the organisers of this year’s IAFG believe that it is a good platform to realise the work-life balance aspiration in line with their value that promotes a balanced working life and staying fit. It is also a platform to demonstrate talent, team spirit and

perseverance. “IAFG also serves as a network for accounting firms to connect with Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA) Johor that has enabled firms to connect not just with clients, but within the profession too,” said Syed Aidid, Senior Associate at PwC adding that MIA has been assisting them with a great pleasure to communicate with various firms across Johor by helping to spread the word about IAFG 2017. PwC bagged the top prize on that day while Ernst & Young and Cheng & Co. came in second and third respectively. - by The Iskandarian TI

Participants of the IAFG 2017 at Sports Prima Pandan, Johor Bahru


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Attack of the Plants at AEON Academy of Esports Mall Bandar Dato’ Onn Iskandar Puteri Kicks Off


ver 300 students and volunteers swarmed the upcoming AEON Mall in Bandar Dato’ Onn for AEON’s Hometown Forest Programme, and planted a total of 10,075 plants from 50 different species. The initiative is part of AEON CO. (M) Bhd’s tradition conducted together with the local community prior to the opening of any mall in tandem towards reviving and emphasising the importance of preserving nature for the future generation. “The green initiative gave us an opportunity to further help create a green surrounding besides allowing AEON to foster closer relationship with the local residents within the vicinity of the mall. We are glad to see our young friends joining as we come together with a common vision to preserve and conserve Mother Nature. We believe

that every small effort makes a huge difference in leaving an on-going environmental legacy in Malaysia,” said Managing Director of AEON CO. (M) Bhd, Shinobu Washizawan during the event. Most of the students from SK Taman Daya 3, SK Taman Daya 2, SK Bukit Mutiara, SJK(C) Pandan and SJK(T) Ladang Tebrau were given demonstration on tree planting before getting hands on to plant saplings such as tualang, meranti, keruing, rambai, plum mango, Tongkat Ali, lemon grass, Mahkota Dewa, spider lily, heliconia and more within the mall’s surrounding. To date, AEON CO. (M) Bhd has planted more than 500,000 trees in their malls nationwide over a period of 26 years. Good news for Johorians as the new mall will be officially opening its door on 7th September 2017. - by Maressa Esa TI

Students participating in the tree planting in AEON Mall Bandar Dato Onn

IIB’s President and CEO, Datuk Ir. Khairil Anwar Ahmad (middle) at Makespace, Kuala Lumpur


he Academy of Esports (AOES), Iskandar Malaysia’s first Esports education institute, was officially open for registration from aspiring gamers and game enthusiasts; taking the future of Esports in Malaysia a step higher. Unveiled at a press conference at Makespace, Kuala Lumpur, AOES offers certification-level education and is powered by Iskandar Investment Berhad (IIB), a key player in Iskandar Malaysia’s transformation into a regional metropolis of international standing. Kieran Lam, CEO of Academy of Esports, said, “We are excited to be the first to launch Malaysia’s full-fledged professional Esports education facility, which would enable gamers and game enthusiasts to further their career in the Esports industry. All these wouldn’t be possible without IIB’s

assistance and continuous support in making our dream a success.” IIB’s President and CEO, Datuk Ir. Khairil Anwar Ahmad concurred, “As a catalyst of change for Iskandar Malaysia where education is one of our promoted sectors, the development of AOES fits very well into IIB’s DNA,” adding, “This initiative is one of IIB’s placemaking activities to establish Iskandar Puteri as the preferred destination for sports, education, lifestyle, investments and careers. IIB welcomes potential partners to join us in this new Esports hub.” The one-of-its-kind academy will kick off with a one-week, free-of-charge Dota 2 Training Bootcamp from 9th October to 23rd December 2017. The Bootcamp will be a prelude for would-be students of the academy to experience and learn the training routine of professional Dota 2 players through

the development of a winning mind-set of insights, inspiration, advice and tools; crucial elements that will improve their winning chances in the next tournament. With classes from Monday to Saturday afternoon, the Bootcamp will include programmes such as Personality Test, Scrims / Skirmishes, Post-Game Analysis & Replays, MMR/ PUB and a Tournament; all overseen by reputable coaches, the likes of Wilson “ShenGG” Quak, Yusuf “Groov” Razak and Kieran “ZergRush” Lam, along with industry experts. As the academy offers programmes that has been endorsed and recognised by experienced players and coaches, it serves as a great platform for Esports enthusiasts in terms of career pathways, giving them the opportunity to look beyond being just professional gamers. Future students will be able to work on their gaming techniques as the bootcamp will aid them in developing soft skills such as critical thinking, problem solving, strategic planning, teamwork, conflict management, communication skills and many more. The event received overwhelming support, attended by Esports enthusiasts, Dota professional gaming teams, Dota gaming coaches as well as Malaysia’s Department of Skills Development (DSD), Ministry of Education and IIB’s representatives. The Academy of Esports, open to Malaysians as well as international students, is presented by Iskandar Investment Berhad. TI


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Monthly Drill Interview By Editor A subsidiary of UMLand, Bandar Seri Alam or better known as the City of Knowledge, as it houses a number of higher learning institutions as well as international schools, is all set to soar to greater heights. Apart from the booming F&B outlets around the area, the upcoming Pasir Gudang Hospital, Foon Yew Secondary School and the Lee Chong Wei International Sports City is poised to make the township among the most sought after in the state. Freddie has been with Seri Alam Properties Sdn Bhd for over 20 years and has played a major role in developing Bandar Seri Alam from an oil palm and rubber plantation into a bustling satellite township.

the purchasers is rather difficult due to the stringent guidelines imposed by Bank Negara. However, our prices are well supported by the valuation of such properties and we do have quite a good success rate with loan applications. Currently, I must say there is a rather large overhang of high rise apartments and condominium which may take a few more years to clear- hopefully with some relaxation in end-financing and foreign ownership rules, especially for completed properties.


Before getting into the property business, you were quite active in the hotel industry to an extent of holding a Director position of the then Holiday Inn Johor Bahru (currently known as Mutiara Hotel Johor Bahru). Why did you switch industries? It was not a switch but rather a progression. I started my working life after secondary school in the hotel industry before leaving for England where I studied International Marketing and Hotel Administration. I was attached to the Central Group of Hotels and then Holiday Inn Bristol, UK, before returning to Malaysia to work for Regent Hotel in Kuala Lumpur. I then joined Chee Tat Group in Singapore who was developing the Holiday Plaza and Holiday Inn Hotel in JB as a Project Manager. Upon completion of the project I was appointed as a Director – owners’ representative in charge of the hotel. When Chee Tat Group decided to convert their large agricultural land bank to property development, I naturally got involved with the property project - Bandar Seri Alam was born. I was involved in the planning, relocation of the estate workers and development of the 3762 acres Township from a rubber and oil palm estate to what you see as Bandar Seri Alam today.

Can you give us a status update on the Lee Chong Wei International Sports City? Seri Alam Properties Sdn Bhd signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Chong Wei Binajaya Sdn Bhd (CWBJ) to develop the Lee Chong Wei International Sports Academy in Seri Alam. CWBJ is now in close

Any updates that can be shared about the upcoming Pasir Gudang Hospital? This is a Federal Government project undertaken by Jabatan Kerja Raya (JKR) for the Ministry of Health. We have numerous meetings with the Ministry of Health, JKR and Local Authorities pertaining to the planning and infrastructure issues. At the latest meeting, most if not all the issues have been cleared and JKR is now drawing up the plans for submission. It was reported at the meeting that the hospital will be completed by 2021.

How are all the other UMLand developments in Johor Bahru doing?

Freddie Lee consultations with their appointed Architects and Consultants to finalise the development plans for Kebenaran Meranchang (KM) submission to the Local Authorities. Development on site should begin as soon as the building plans are approved.

The 3,762-acre Bandar Seri Alam is about 63% developed and will probably take another 15 to 20 years to fully develop. What other developments are being planned for the township? Developing a vast track of greenfield land involves constant planning and re-planning the estate to achieve the most balanced and sustainable township. In view of the current economic environment, SAP has over the last few years been actively developing “Value for Money” homes in the four hundred to five hundred thousand selling price ranges to cater to the housing needs of first-time house buyers and young upgraders. All these homes are freehold landed properties in a gated and guarded environment complete with Club house and other facilities. These homes are well received and we are achieving very good response from the buying public. We are currently building some 1000 units of these properties and all Non-Bumi units are sold. Moving forward, we are converting our other land bank to develop more of

Executive Director

Seri Alam Properties Sdn Bhd (SAP) these homes. We are also presently planning to launch a medium and lower cost project consisting about 1200 units to cater for the medium and lower income buyers. We are in dialogue with the state authorities to fast track this project for the benefit of the public.

Your opinion about the current property market and the health of Bandar Seri Alam in terms of property take up rate. Looking at our sales report and feedback, there are still many people out there looking to buy a home. SAP is responding to this need and is actively planning and building homes within this affordable range. Our homes are selling at about RM350 per sq. foot- landedfreehold property within a gated and guarded precinct complete with Club House and amenities. This is very good value for money and we do not have enough units to sell! There is no lack of buyers for such properties but getting end-financing for

UMLand as a Group is doing well even though the environment is rather challenging. Our latest flagship, the Amari Johor Bahru hotel in our Suasana Iskandar opened for business in May and is enjoying very high occupancy. The spaces at the lifestyle and entertainment hub at the Zenith are gradually opening and the third component - the Suasana Suites Service Apartments will be opened by November 2017. Our other housing projects like Seri Austin in Johor and Kia Aces in Semenyih, Selangor are doing very well too. Our UM City and other projects are under construction and we are confident these projects will be well received upon completion.

Are you happy with the progress of Iskandar Malaysia as a whole? Any areas to improve? Iskandar Malaysia has been and will be the engine of growth for the Johor State. It has been well conceived and under the initiative of Iskandar, the main infrastructure, especially the roads and highways in Johor have improved tremendously. Iskandar will do well and bring more development to the rest of Johor and Malaysia. However, it is my opinion that developments like LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort and Pinewood Studio are underutilised and has failed to generate the expected influx of population that the developers and investors had hoped for. Hope this will change when more films are being produced here. TI


FREE COPY | The Iskandarian ISSUE 61 | SEPT 2017 |


peggy loh

My johor stories

Our resident writer, Peggy Loh, actively writes in her blog about matters that are close to her heart. She can be reached at

A Major Milestone for My Johor Stories understanding. I appreciate the partnership of The Iskandarian which provided me with an avenue to share more Johor stories and have even dedicated an entire page to My Johor Stories in their monthly publications. As Johor is rapidly developing into a modern metropolis with new leisure, education, business and residential developments in Iskandar Puteri, investors and new residents are moving to live and work here. While everyone is keen on economic and social progress, I thought that it was also good to balance the new Peggy presenting the giant mock-up of with the old and share about local heritage her book to guest-of-honour, Member in my stories. of Parliament for Johor Bahru, Tan Among the stories first published Sri Shahrir Abdul Samad at the book launch event in The Iskandarian that garnered a wide readership are my recollections of Old hen I started my book project Markets and Bus Terminals, and my in February 2017, I did not memories on Johor Bahru’s First Food Court. Many readers could identify with know that it was the start of an eventful journey where the details I described, and they wrote to my book, My Johor Stories: True Tales, Real me with comments and even shared their People, Rich Heritage, would end up at the own memories! Recently, I read that Iskandar No. 1 spot on the MPH Publishing, NonFiction Best-sellers list, for the week 14th Regional Development Authority (IRDA) is considering to rebuild the food court July to 20th July 2017. This was achieved only because at Jalan Ungku Puan as part of the Sungai readers were keen to have copies of my Segget rejuvenation project. While I like the idea of giving book and are happy to present it to others new generations the experience of an as a unique gift with a Johor flavour. Most readers are familiar with my upgraded version of JB’s first food court, a work, first published in The New Straits great deal must be done before they can Times, The Iskandarian and in my blog of even consider creating a modern food the same name, and are aware that I write, court near Sungai Segget. This includes not only about my family in ‘grandfather improving traffic control, public parking stories’ but also about interesting Johor habits and proper food sanitation and personalities as well as Johor-centric disposal facilities in the heart of the city. I wonder what IRDA’s Advisor and stories that encourage unity and increase Member of Parliament for Johor Bahru, Tan Sri Shahrir Abdul Samad, have to say about it? When he was elected to the role in 1978, his political career brought him to JB and the city is now his adopted home. Over the years, we met regularly at community events and he was familiar with how I was connecting people to Johor Bahru Guests responding spontaneously to my question about through my work. When I their partiality for dining at pasak-kia, JB’s first food court; My nephew, Aaron Loh [Standing] recording the event, approached Tan Sri live-streaming to share with our relatives in UK and Shahrir to invite him to Australia write the Foreword for


A display of items from a bygone era to set the mood for the launch of My Johor Stories: True Tales, Real People, Rich Heritage, a collection of best-loved stories on Johor’s social history

my book, his reply was spontaneous and “Dear Peggy, positive. When we met to talk about it, he My Johor Stories made it to the MPH also generously placed an advance order for weekly bestsellers list for last weekend! 500 copies of my books! Heartiest congratulations!!!” Then I learnt that he wanted to This was followed by the list of distribute my books to the libraries of all the book titles and authors, with my book secondary schools in his constituency to title and my name topping the list at No. encourage the reading habit. I was simply 1. stunned and humbled by his overwhelming It really didn’t matter if my support. book was a bestseller or not, but to be I was also pleased that Tan Sri added into the MPH Bestsellers’ list and Shahrir graciously agreed to be the guest-of- hitting the Non-Fiction, No. 1 spot, is honour to launch my book. undeniably, an added bonus! My book launch event was graced I received another message from by guests in a veritable Who’s Who in Johor MPH in August to inform me that my Bahru list and I was deeply honoured by book stayed on the MPH Bestsellers’ list their presence. It did not matter if they were for two consecutive weeks. titled or not because to me, it was particularly I share this humble achievement meaningful that everyone gathered for my with readers who appreciate how I enjoy event and wanted to be there. sharing my Johor stories. I couldn’t have I also appreciate the professional achieved it without you, the readers, and partnership of MPH Publishing and Think City, I thank you, ever so much! and their support to make my book, My Johor While I’m still receiving positive Stories: True Tales, Real People, Rich Heritage, feedback and comments about my a reality. book, one reader succinctly sums it up A MPH book sale table was set up by saying, “You’ve put all my fondest at the event and even before the event memories of JB into the book and more programme started, guests were buying that I wasn’t aware of!” the books. Early this year, I started the book Through social media, I see project with no expectations but I’m deeply photos of friends and family in KL, the grateful for the positive response to my book. UK and Australia, reading my book. It’s At the close of the event, Linda, who both heart-warming and amusing to see was in charge of the book sale, told me with how far – physically – my book has gone. amazement, that in her 20-year career with My Johor Stories: True Tales, Real MPH, she participated in many book launches People, Rich Heritage, is available at but never before were the books sold-out. MPH Bookstores nationwide or online All the books they brought for sale – not through TI counting the bulk preorders that were set aside – were sold! Later I was told that in the history of MPH book launches, never before, even in Kuala Lumpur, were all the books sold-out at a launch event. Not until my book launch on 15th July 2017 in Johor Bahru! On 24th July 2017, I received an email The queue to buy books from the MPH Publishing book from MPH Publishing table – and by the end of the event, all the books were sold-out! with the message:

SEPT 2017

E D I S iN taking th a e r B A n o i t a c y Sta ou Y s t i a Aw

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The Iskandarian | WAVES Lifestyle

editor’s H note

appy 5th Birthday the Iskandarian! As a token of appreciation, we have something special for our favourite readers. Follow our FB page- www. for more updates and how you can stand a chance to win exciting prizes. This time our Music column takes a double spread as I’d like to share about talented artists, Anggun and T’ang Quartet. Read on to learn more about them and what’s in store for their fans. We have a few dining options for you this month - Enjoy weekend high tea

Priya Manikam

buffet at a steal deal in Amaya Food Gallery at Amari Johor Bahru or venture to Nelayan Seafood by the Coast at Tunamaya Beach & Spa Resort, Desaru Coast for some seafood. As the mooncake festival is approaching, check out Renaissance Johor Bahru hotel’s creative and exquisite creations. Travelers alert! Don’t laze about and take advantage of the long weekend and head to Sand & Sandals Desaru Beach Resort & Spa at Desaru for the ultimate getaway for couples and families. Enjoy quality time together and embrace the spectacular views there.

As always, for those wishing to share their fashion collection, travel tales, or like us to review your restaurant/hotel for a staycation, drop me an e-mail at waves. and be featured. For more news, do access www.theiskandarian. com We’d like to wish all celebrants Selamat Raya Haji and Selamat Hari Malaysia!



Universal Music Singapore

Singapore’s first string quartet releases Trampled Souls, its first recording after 11 years

T’ang Quartet Celebrates its 25th Anniversary with New Album Singapore’s T’ang Quartet launched Trampled Souls on 28th July 2017, its first album in more than a decade. Trampled Souls showcases a diverse combination of styles, ranging from sheer darkness to fantasy and quirkiness. It is a huge contrast to the Quartet’s earlier releases in 2006 (Made In America c. 1893) and 2005 (The Art Of War), both of which were largely based on Czechoslovakian composers from very specific eras. Leoš Janáček’s Kreutzer Sonata, Aulis Sallinen’s Some Aspects of Peltoniemi Hintrik’s Funeral March and Marjan Mozetich’s Lament in the Trampled Garden are featured in Trampled Souls. The common theme of darkness, albeit in varying forms, running through all three pieces

gives rise to the album title. Jealousy, suppression and murder spice up the Kreutzer Sonata, while Some Aspects of Peltoniemi Hintrik’s Funeral March centres round the death of a mythical creature – Peltoniemi Hintrik – from the Finnish folk tune with which children are familiar. Rounding up Trampled Souls is Lament in the Trampled Garden. Unexpected, sublime moments of hope and beauty as well as a modern upbeat dance seamlessly break up the emotional pining that opens and ends the piece. “It’s an album where we play pieces which we played years ago. So, to approach those pieces again now, after so many years, we’ve given it a more mature take,” says Leslie Tan, the group’s cellist. An example is the Janáček

which the Quartet played at its second concert, shortly after the formation of the T’ang Quartet. On a personal level, Trampled Souls holds significant meaning for the Quartet. “Trampled Souls is akin to our lamenting over the loss of innocence – both of our times and ourselves,” says Leslie. Adds second violinist Ang Chek Meng, “Every album is a reflection of where we are as musicians. Produced more than a decade after our 2006 release, this is perhaps the most challenging album, physically and mentally.” Trampled Souls is now available for streaming on all major platforms and digital purchase on iTunes Store: TangQuartetTS CDs and limited edition vinyl records are already on sale.

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The Iskandarian | WAVES Lifestyle

From Love to Unlove; What Can You Do? – Part 1


hat would you do when your relationship is entering the phase of unlove? Do you react towards it and project blame? Or do you embrace it and accept that it just a phase in duality?

Rose Osman has intuitive skills in hacking potentials in human energy for success and healing. She coaches through One-toOne sessions, group sessions and via E-courses on

yourpersonalmotivator BucketOfRoses

Long lasting relationship is not about being happy all the time. It is about accepting each other as they are and the differences, and understanding the energies that bring love and unlove into the relationship. Awareness towards these energies can help couples navigate their relationship with compassion through all the emotions. It all starts with a spark

Human love has many layers and expression. When we begin a relationship, it usually starts with love. On the energetic level, when two people are attracted to each other, their energies come together like a magnet. We then get a spark! This is where our bodies experience a biochemical process. It feels like electricity flows with lust and indescribable happiness. When sparks happen, we feel love; a love to connect with the differences, a love to experience the relationship. Then comes the opposite of sparks We are bound by the law of Duality. Each layer of love has its opposite momentum which is fear. And fear can trigger all types of emotions including

irritation, resentment, hatred and many more. Let’s sum all fears as unlove. Consider the process like a switch flipping from love to unlove and vice-versa. This process happens all the time in our relationship. Here’s what you can do when you reach the spectrum of unlove: Welcome to the other side of Love Be conscious when you feel unloved. Only through the state of consciousness you can face the unlove feelings without personalising it. When unlove emerge, ask out loud “Do you feel that?” Make this a relationship practise to recognise the presence of unlove before taking any reaction towards it.

An Energy Coach and A Personal Motivator. Rose Osman uses her knowledge and intuitive skills in energy to coach people to live a joyful life through her coaching programmes on personal & career growth, relationship, love and health.

Universal Music Asia Signs Renowned Asian Recording-Artist Anggun


niversal Music Asia has announced the signing of iconic female recordingartist Anggun to a oneof-a-kind pan-Asian recording deal. Anggun’s highly anticipated new English album is expected to be released by the end of 2017. World Music Award winner, United Nations Goodwill Ambassador and Asia’s Got Talent judge, Anggun has achieved global recognition. A n g g u n’s debut international album, Snow On The Sahara, sold over 2mil copies outside of Asia, including achieving Triple-Platinum status in Italy, Platinum in France and Gold in Switzerland alongside several other countries. Her song, “Snow On The Sahara”, charted in the Billboard Top 20 (Pop Songs & Dance Charts). Since then, Anggun’s songs have charted in numerous countries, she has performed hundreds of concerts

across Europe and now gained an extensive global audience. Last year, she had the privilege to enter the cast of famous wax figures at the legendary Madame Tussauds Bangkok museum in 2016. As one of the judges on the highly successful and record-breaking TV series, “Asia’s Got Talent”, Anggun is building another step in her incredible borderbreaking music career. George Ash, President, Universal Music, Asia Pacific said, “Anggun is without doubt an incredibly talented artist. Throughout her career, she has been lauded not only in Asia but around the world, proven by the fact that she is the best-selling female Southeast Asian artist outside of Asia. She has countless international accolades and her work on Asia’s Got Talent will lay the foundations for future generations of artists. We are very proud to

be working alongside her on her much-anticipated forthcoming English album and look forward to an exciting year ahead.” “I am so proud to partner with Universal Music Asia on this new album. The team is truly amazing and dedicated to both music and artists”, said Anggun. “I have been working very hard on my new English album, writing songs while having short breaks during my extensive tour across France & Belgium over the past few months. I’m really excited to showcase several collaborations with some of the most talented songwriters and producers I have ever met and worked with. This is probably my best album so far and I can’t wait to share it with the world,” she continued. Anggun’s new single is expected for release this fall and the album release date will be announced shortly.

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The Iskandarian | WAVES Lifestyle

Of Calendar


30th Aug – 3rd Sept Global Indian Fair @ EXPO Danga City Mall

1st – 2nd Sept Hari Raya Haji

1st – 19th Sept Hungry Ghost Festival @ S’pore

7th – 10th Sept S’pore International Indian Expo @ Suntec Centre

9th Sept


An Escape to Paradise – Part One Sun, Sand, Romance, Family Time – you name, you got it at Sand & Sandals Desaru Beach Resort and Spa

Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s Birthday

Complete relaxation at Sand & Sandals

9th – 10th Sept S’pore Toy Game & Comic Convention @ Sands Expo & Convention Centre

15th – 17th Sept Singapore F1 Grand Prix @ Marina Bay Street Circuit

16th Sept Hari Malaysia

Couple Deluxe Room with Private Garden

17th Sept – 8th Oct 14th Johor Bahru Arts Festival 2017 (*tbc)

21st Sept • Awal Muharam • Designing Future Education @ GEMS Academy, S’pore

23rd Sept Challenge Iskandar Puteri Race 29th Sept – 1st Oct HOMElove @ Persada Johor

30th Sept Charity Bazaar @ Tasek Central (Plaza Tasek) 30th Sept Mid-Autumn Festival Launch @ Sutera Mall

Block your dates for this month!

If you need more information on the above mentioned events, drop us an email at:


By Priya Manikam

ver wish you can go ‘missing’ into a world of paradise with all your needs taken care off? Sand & Sandals Desaru Beach Resort and Spa (Sand & Sandals) is one such place. Start your journey early and turn into Highway E22 to Desaru and be prepared to be wowed! Stepping inside the newly rebranded resort, you are greeted by an efficient bell boy who is ready to get your luggage for you; making the check in process swift. We were then escorted to our Couple Deluxe Room with Private Garden which has a swing and promises you a view of the tempting Tropical Pool and beach. The room itself is very spacious with a king size vintage four poster bed and modern furnishings. A unique factor about these rooms is that it comes with a private bathtub in the balcony! We were then treated to lunch at one of their restaurants, Spices & Herbs which is a fusion, all-day dining restaurant. We sampled some signature dishes such as the crispy “Traditional Chicken Chop”, “Vegetarian Thali Meal (Indian), “Vietnamese Prawn Rolls” and “Angry Birds” burger set from the Kids Menu. Everything was scrumptious and was of large portions. With a full stomach we explored the resort’s vast amenities such as the Kid’s Playroom which has brain simulating games, slides and a movie corner for the younger children. Teenagers and young adults are not left out as there is a huge games arcade centre near the Lobby to occupy your time. When you need a break, head to the pink Café for freshly made cakes

and coffee. In the evening, work out in the gym which is uniquely set in the middle of the pool, and cool off by taking a dip in the Tropical Pool. Children may head to the Kid’s pool for their swimming adventure with their parents. It was then time for me to indulge in some t-l-c which is my favourite part of any stay. I headed to the resort’s Senses Spa for some much needed pampering. The Spa is open daily from 10am – 10pm and what is worth raving is it comes with 4 outdoor spa pavilions exclusive for spa therapy packages. They specialise in Balinese and Swedish massages and the ambience there will totally transport you to Bali, Indonesia – guaranteed! I was taken care off by Selly the senior masseuses with 15 years of experience and was started off with the ritual foot spa with sea salt. Then I had a Balinese massage session which uses lavender oil coupled with natural sound of the waves! I then got ready for my back body scrub. Selly used Vanilla & Coconut scrub which smelled good. I ended the session with a Milk Bath where the love shape bathtub is filled with milk and lime slices, and I was “lost” in paradise. Feeling luxurious, I finally took a bath at the private open-air bamboo shower and concluded with a cuppa hot ginger tea for a complete rejuvenated feel. Spa treatments start from RM180 onwards, call 07–279 0020 or email: spa@ to make reservations especially during busy weekends. Take part in a simple contest to win a 2D1N stay with breakfast for 2 Plus 1hr of Couple Canoe session at Sand & Sandals Desaru Beach Resort and Spa via our FB:

Traditional Chicken Chop at Spices & Herbs Restaurant

Work out in the Gym uniquely set in the middle of the pool

Spa treatment at Senses Spa’s outdoor spa pavilion


The Iskandarian ISSUE 61 | SEPT 2017 Advertisement


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Segget Recap


We recapitulate the buzz around the Sungai Segget rejuvenation project


he Sungai Segget rejuvenation project is one of the significant initiatives under the Johor Bahru Transformation (JBT) Programme that aspires to position Johor Bahru city centre as a vibrant heritage and cultural city, however some conflicting reports and opinions seem to be casting an eye of doubt over the project. Basically, the Sungai Segget rejuvenation project involves the construction of an integrated water treatment plant, a flood mitigation system and a sewerage system that will improve the river’s water quality and air quality of its surrounding areas. The JBT programme was put into place with the objective of revitalising Johor Bahru by providing thriving economic activities, city living and amenities that are aligned with the vision of Johor Bahru City Council (MBJB) and Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) by the federal government. However, the project has been receiving a lot of flak from Pulai MP Datuk Nur Jazlan who called for an audit of the Sungai Segget rejuvenation project, adding that he had noticed several weaknesses in the planning and execution of the project. Nur Jazlan who is also the Deputy Home Minister voiced his concerns in January 2017 after Johor Bahru town was hit by floods over a short interval of time, calling for Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) to claim responsibility over it. In July 2017, Nur Jazlan renewed his

criticism by questioning the high consultation fee imposed on landscaping work for the Sungai Segget Project in Jalan Wong Ah Fook. He claimed IRDA which was given the mandate to complete the project, had charged RM20 million in consultation fee for the landscaping work from the overall development cost of RM57 million.

IRDA Head of Planning & Compliance Maimunah Jaffar (left) and PMO Mohd Zam Mustaman during a recent press conference

Pulai MP and Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan has been critical of the project In response, IRDA maintained that it strictly adheres to the policies and procedures of the Finance Ministry in running the RM240 million Sungai Segget beautification and rejuvenation project. IRDA’s Head of Planning and Compliance Maimunah Jaffar said that there will be an open tender for landscaping works for the project, which stretches 3.8km. Of this, 1.4km will be landscaped as a green lung for the city. Amidst all the brick batting, IRDA announced that it is considering to

reintroduce the Jalan Ungku Puan outdoor hawker centre as part of the Sungai Segget rejuvenation project. Dubbed “The Johor Bahru Hard Rock Café”, the Jalan Ungku Puan hawker centre located opposite a Hindu temple was closed when Sungai Segget was covered in 2005. This announcement seems to be getting mixed reactions on social media with some of the commenters voicing concern if the cleanliness of the river can be sustained once the hawkers move to Segget. Some comments were about how the initially closed river was dug up only to be closed again and the promise of marine life and Venice-like boats are not to be seen. Another concern highlighted on social media was the lack of signages’ restricting people from fishing or taking a bath in the beautification ponds.

The 1.3km long and 25m wide Sungai Segget, which flows along Jalan Wong Ah Fook The multi-million rehabilitation project was modelled after the successful Cheonggyecheon project in Seoul, South Korea. Cheonggyecheon, a 10.9 km-long creek that flows from west to east through downtown Seoul, initially drew public criticism but its opening in 2005 awed both South Koreans and tourists. The Sungai Segget rejuvenation project is now in its third phase involving landscaping and beautification works, aimed at making the river one of the major tourist destinations in Johor. There are three proposed concept zones in the landscape of Sungai Segget, which are the historical and heritage zone, cultural and art zone and fun and leisure zone. The 1.3km long and 25m wide Sungai Segget, which flows along Jalan Wong Ah Fok in downtown Johor Bahru, is said to be one of the dirtiest rivers in the country. It was covered in 2005 at a cost of RM6mil. - by Edey Suresh TI


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The Hotelier’s Story D

aniel Alcaraz is the General Manager of DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru who recently joined in late June. Being a ‘newbie’ in the Johorian scene, it is interesting to see his views of the industry and its future for would-be hoteliers from that perspective.

Brief background I have 20 years of experience as a hotelier, and had the privilege of seeing the world through this chosen career while absorbing the richness of the different cultures, where I learnt versatility. I started with the Disneyland Hotel in Paris, and then moved on to developing my hospitality knowledge with several F&B outlets in Madrid and Barcelona in Spain. Later I joined Hotel ARTS (Ritz Carlton) in Barcelona and AC Hotels in Madrid and moved up the ranks as an F&B Manager with Hilton Barcelona in 2007. That was the start of my career with the Hilton Group. As I was keen to explore Asia, I got a transfer to Hilton Namhae Golf and Spa Resort in South Korea, and finally to China where I was assigned to 4 different locations within 6 years. It was an enriching experience where I picked up the Chinese language. Including my current assignment in Johor Bahru, I have been 10 years with the Hilton brand. What inspired you to enter the hotel industry? Hospitality was and is in my blood. While

my family was running a Restaurant & Bar on the outskirts of Paris, I had worked part time jobs in hotels during my schooling years. Needless to say I had to help out in the family business as well – usually helping behind the bar or washing dishes! To me, it was never a chore. I enjoyed the company of our customers and enjoyed the camaraderie of working with my family. I also shone in the luxury hotel environment where I was working, and wanted to see the world and travel. I also wanted to challenge myself in chartering into unknown waters with my chosen career and did just that and never looked back.

In what position did you get started? I started officially as a restaurant waiter and served drinks and took orders at simple casual dining eateries to fine dining serviced restaurants hosted by reputable chefs. I made my way up through F&B but it was a rough climb. Unlike how it is today, for me it was the traditional hotelier way. Before I was allowed to serve at dinners by my superiors, I had to do a lot of crystal polishing and cleaning, but I enjoyed every minute of it. In what sections have you worked in within the hotel? Always in F&B, until I became the Director of Operations. That was the start of my training as a General Manager where I had to

venture into other areas such as Finance, HR and most importantly the commercial side of the business. It is about taking care of the business on the overall. That is the wonderful part of the hotel, where many roles exist and it is all very exciting. What are your strengths? My key strength is my sense of humour, being creative and resilient. Like the popular Chinese parlance – “When the sky falls on you, treat it like a blanket to cover you.” I also love to share with the team and with my guests. Relate ONE example of an incident that made you feel that being a hotelier is the right job for you? During my time in Europe and later in China, I had to perform under great pressure. I told myself that if I could make it happen under those circumstances and still keep a smile on my face, then without a doubt it’s the right job for me. I am proud to say that I managed to achieve some great commercial success. It was a process and not a simple encounter and I grew with the challenge. What do you see as the future for a career in hospitality and in Johor? The future is bright! As far as Hilton Worldwide is concerned, we already operate over 4000 hotels and now have the largest number in the pipeline for development in our history. For every hotel opening we need Managers, Directors and General Managers.

I am excited with the development in Johor and the appeal that we have as a strategic location near Singapore and in the heart of Asia. With the supply of hotel rooms ever on the increase, this will only benefit the region. Johor will become a fantastic destination for both business and leisure. What are the opportunities open to them within your own hotel? We are always looking for new talents in our industry. For a start we offer programmes for Management Trainees in which we groom top talents to get to the manager level within 18 months. Joining Hilton in Johor can take you to Bali, Beijing or anywhere in the world if you want to. Under Hilton Worldwide and under the Bright Blue Future programme, we are committed to positively impact 1 million youths worldwide by 2019, providing career opportunities across the world. What are your personal words of encouragement for new entrants into the industry? If you are passionate about delivering exceptional guest experiences, then this is the line of business you are looking for. If you are imaginative, spirited, dynamic and hungry for success, this is the job for you. It does not apply only to men but women too are welcome for a leadership role, as Hilton strongly promotes diversity in the workplace. Finally, I encourage you to choose a company with a real CARE culture. This will make your daily life much more rewarding. I should know. I am the product of one. TI

How Should Employers Treat Public Holidays? David Koh Consultant, Meca Employers Consulting Agency Sdn Bhd


henever you think of a public holiday, you will dream of beautiful beaches and the sunset or even embark on a road trip with your loved ones. Holidays make everyone happy including the employers. Happiness aside, what’s stirring the employers’ mind is, when it comes to employee’s entitlement to public holidays, how should they treat it? Basically, employers can categorise the public holidays in 3 ways, namely: non-replaceable

holidays; replaceable holidays and sudden declared holidays. Below are the differences of the 3 types of holidays. Firstly, there are 5 nonreplaceable holidays under s.60D(1) (a) of the Employment Act 1955 which are the National Day, the Birthday of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the Birthday of the Ruler of the State or the Federal Territory Day, the Workers’ Day, and Malaysia Day. These 5 holidays are non-replaceable unless it falls on a rest day. The working day following immediately the rest day shall then be recognised as the substituted public holiday. For example, the Birthday of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong which falls on 9th September 2017 (Saturday) is a rest day therefore, the working day following immediately

the rest day which is 10th September 2017 (Sunday) shall be recognised as the substituted public holiday. The other types of holidays are replaceable holidays. Any day declared as a public holiday under s.8 and s.9 of the Holidays Act 1951 can be replaceable, provided it is with the consent from the employees. Pursuant to the First Schedule of the Holiday Act 1951, there are several days listed in the schedule which is observed throughout Malaysia such as Hari Raya Haji which is happening on 1st September 2017 (Friday). The question is, can this holiday be replaced? The following are some points for employers to take note: 1. Employers who observe only specific public holidays in a year and NOT ALL public holidays will not

be obliged to observe 1st September 2017 as a public holiday. However, the opposite applies for employers who in their handbook/policies have stated that they observe ALL public holidays in a year. In other words, employers should either declare 1st September 2017 as a public holiday; or treat 1st September 2017 as a normal working day and replace the holiday to another day. S.60D (1A) of the Employment Act 1955 provides for this right to replace provided, the employer gets the consent from the employees for such replacement. 2. What if the government or the State has suddenly declared a holiday? The government recently announced that every employer must observe the Agong’s installation which was held on

24th April 2017 as a compulsory public holiday. The question is, how would the employers treat these unforeseen declared holidays? The employers should either declare 24th April 2017 as a public holiday; or treat 24th April 2017 as a normal working day and replace the holiday to another day. S.60D(1A) of the Employment Act 1955 provides for this right to replace provided the employer gets the consent from the employees. In conclusion, whenever it comes to holidays, companies can either declare that day as a holiday or treat it as a normal working day and replace it with another day with the consent from the employees. Remember to return to work after a long holiday or else you won’t get paid. Have a great holiday!! TI


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Accumulating Wealth Tips & Tricks

Profit from the Panic as during crisis or perceived crisis, as it’s the only time people will panic sell. Second, get ready of some cash. Not matter how good the market is, always have spare cash as opportunities may arise when you least expect it. Third, aim for the right price. You may derive the right price based on valuation, such as PE ratio or PEG ratio, or strong support level based on technical analysis. In our case, Comfort (2127) has been in our watch list, and if it drops to 0.915, it is sitting at a strong technical support. For valuation, we find 0.9 is attractive for the company’s promising expansion plans, net cash position and bright global gloves outlook.

Tey Bin Yuen Binyuen is the founder of BY Enrich Resources and the author of ‘Life beyond the Comfort Zone’ and ‘Profit from Share Investment’. His books are available in major bookstores in Malaysia, Singapore or online profitfromshareinvestment


fter a few peaceful months, one incident has added some spice to the market. On 10th August 2017, the rising geopolitical tension rattled the global financial markets after U.S. President Donald Trump intensified his warnings towards North Korea’s missile threat, sending U.S. stocks to the biggest loss since May. Many experts claimed that if the war happens, it would have ‘big consequences’ around the world. Interestingly, the threat subsided after a few days, the US Dollar rallied and companies’ shares that were panic sold bounced back quickly. So, did they profit from the panic, or panicked to lose profit? Let’s discuss about how to face an imminent crisis but before that, let’s see how our portfolio fared on 16th August 2017. By referring to the table, since its inception in November 2015, we have gained 285% returns until 16th August 2017, which is an improvement compared to last month. So, if there is another geopolitical tension happening, how do we handle it? Let me share with you how I handled it this time, so that you

Disclaimer: The companies or strategies mentioned in this article are meant for study purpose only. It doesn’t constitute any ‘buy’ or ‘sell’ recommendation. Please consult your financial professional if you want to make any decision.

may consider using it to your advantage: 1) Realise that any uncertainty is an opportunity While the market is always jittery due to geopolitical tensions, it is the best time to buy valuable companies at discounted price. So long as it is a one-time event (terrorist attack, air crash, epidemic and so forth) and does not affect the company’s fundamentals, the panicky reaction is always temporary. Once the market becomes sober, investors will rush in to buy.

2) Be prepared As a human being, we tend to have fear when facing uncertainties. A good way to overcome fear is to be prepared, especially when the event could possibly happen only one-time. So, how do we prepare? It consists of three steps. First, put all the good quality companies in a watch list. Once the market is panic, you will know which one to buy. Since good companies are normally not cheap, the best time to buy is during unusual time, such

More Job Opportunities in 2019


erde Palm Plant had announced at Astana Expo 2017 in Kazakhstan that it will be offering 400 jobs here in Johor after its initial operation commencing in 2019. “The plant uses crude palm oil and palm by-products to produce diacid as an alternative to petroleum-derived chemicals which is commonly used in automotive, cosmetics, and fragrances,” said Zainal Azman Abu Kassim, Senior Vice President of BioIndustrials, Bioeconomy Corporaton during the p re s s conference at the expo. Zainal continued, that this announcement exhibit M a l a y s i a’s readiness of becoming one of the leading bioeconomy nations, and targets biotechnology sector to drive the economy of the country. The plant received


(from left): Chad Waite, Chairman of Verdezyne Sdn Bhd, Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir, American Ambassador to Malaysia, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, Johor Menteri Besar, Panglima Wilfred Madius Tangau, Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation and Prof Tan Sri Zakri Abdul Hamid, Chairman of Bioeconomy Corporation during the Groundbreaking ceremony

its groundbreak ing ceremony on 30th July 2017, co-hosted by Verdezyne and Bio-Xcell Malaysia. Attendees included Chad Waite, Chairman of the Verdezyne Board of Directors, His Excellency Datuk Seri Panglima Wilfred Madius Tangau, Minister of Science, Technology & Innovation,

Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir, US Ambassador to Malaysia, other Malaysian dignitaries and representatives from Verdezyne’s partners and guest of honour, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, Johor Menteri Besar presented the officiating speech. Construction will begin within 18 to 24

months’ period at BioXCell Park in Nusajaya. Once completed, VerdePalm will be the world’s first bio-based plant for dodecanedioic acid (DDDA) production, a 12-carbon diacid that is a component of many consumer produc ts currently made from petroleum. - by Maressa Esa TI

3) Act and Monitor If the price falls to your desired level, buy, even though you may feel uncomfortable. To continue Comfort’s case, it has hit our desired entry price and we sold 12000 shares of Kawan at RM4.75 and switched to 60,000 shares of Comfort (2127) at RM0.92. The new cash level is now RM26,225. But this is not the end, for we don’t know if it’ll continue falling. Therefore, we need to know how much we can afford to lose and set a loss-cutting point accordingly. In this case, we set a loss-cutting point at RM0.87. If it doesn’t hit this point, we will hold it. Conclusion As you can see, untoward events do not happen every day. When it happens, it’s best to remain calm and profit from the panic. As Warren Buffet says, “Be fearful when others are greedy; be greedy when others are fearful.” TI

Bilateral Agreement on Rapid Transit System


n conjunction of the 13th Meeting of Malaysia-Singapore Joint Ministerial Committee (JMC) for Iskandar Malaysia, both countries are set to endorse a bilateral agreement on Rapid Transit System (RTS) by this December after several technical matters were discussed. The JMC meeting was cochaired by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan and Singapore’s Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, H.E Minister Khaw Boon Wan. Also present at the meeting were Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin and Singapore’s Minister for National Development, H.E Minister Lawrence Wong. “Issues that were discussed earlier were the split of the concession fee for RTS and request of Malaysia being the dominant shareholder in RTS operation. Both governments have agreed to split the percentage of 61:39 with Singapore accepting majority of the

concession fee. The majority fee was given to our neighbouring country as the cost of development is higher prior to building underground stations,” said Abdul Rahman to the media. Rahman continued that both countries will receive a fair fee split of 50:50 after overall development costs are recovered. “As for shareholding matters, Malaysia has requested to become a dominant shareholder in the RTS operation with 51% stake prior to end KTM Tebrau shuttle service once RTS commenced its operation. Singapore will need to discuss the matter with SMRT Corp Ltd first for a better decision making,” Rahman added. The upcoming RTS service that can cater up to 100,000 passengers daily is targeted to start its operation by December 2024, easing congestion and helping commuters travelling between Johor Bahru and Singapore. - by Maressa Esa TI


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SJKC Pulai Bags USD1000 Regional Award Gadgets Taking Over Schools

SJKC Pulai placed second at the 2016 SEAMEO-Japan Energy Saving Device Award

Laptops and tablets to be allowed in schools but not mobile phones


he bold move to allow school students to bring mobile gadgets to school starting from next year is being accepted with mixed feelings. The motion permits the use of devices such as laptops and tablets, excluding mobile phones. Education Minister, Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid said the decision to allow the use of portable devices at more than 10,000 schools in the country is in the final stage of discussion. The current education policy forbids students from bringing electronic gadgets to school. “Phones are more distracting compared to devices that depend on WiFi or a local area network to connect to the Internet,” said Mahdzir, adding that there will be a time limit on the usage of electronic devices depending on the subject being taught. A parent from Bandar Baru Uda when met supported the move wholly, relating how technology will assist and facilitate the new generation of learning. “No more heavy text books when my child can now refer to his laptop for more information available online,” said Norfarhan,

a father of two school children aged 8 and 10. It’s a different story for Siti Noor Aminah of Kampung Pasir, a mother of four school-going kids aged 10 to 16 years old. She questions the monitoring aspects of it and the cost she needs to bear to prepare the gadgets for her four schooling children. Various parent action groups have expressed support for the plan, though some concerns were raised. Not all students will be able to afford additional electronics for classroom use, and some believe that the government should intervene to ensure that all have equal access to the learning aids. According to Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye, Senior Vice-Chairman of Malaysia Crime Prevention Foundation, other issues that might arise include an increase of theft and cyberbullying in schools. “A statistic compiled by CyberSecurity Malaysia indicated that cyberbullying among students is quite serious with 338 cases reported last year compared to 250 in 2012,” he said, adding that a guideline should be placed to ensure students do not abuse the technology by accessing unapproved sites that could affect their minds. - by Hakim Malik TI

Community Service Project at SJK Tamil Ladang Kulai Oil Palm Contribution of a water filter system to provide clean drinking water to students


The school currently gets its water supply pumped from the ground which is then treated onsite for general use. If the onsite treatment facility is not working, the school will get water from the oil palm estate. Now, with the newly installed water filter system and 3 new wash basins, the school can provide clean and safe drinking water for the students’ use which is important for their health. RCJB also donated 36 units of hand-held white board (18”x 12’) to the school and 170 pencil cases to the school’s students. We are happy that we can help make a difference to the school and the students with our contributions. The project may be small but is a meaningful one. Providing clean drinking water to students is our priority as well as education. SJK Tamil Ladang Kulai Oil Palm in Kulai is a Tamil primary school with RCJB President Datuk Teo Shiok Fu JP (left) with the 162 students. - by The school’s headmaster, Mandiwanan Iskandarian TI

otary Club of Johor Bahru (“RCJB”) visited SJK Tamil Ladang Kulai Oil Palm, Johor to attend a ceremony to hand over the newly installed water filter system to the Headmaster, Mandiwanan. RCJB President Datuk Teo Shiok Fu JP and 12 RCJB members toured the school to look at the existing water supply facility, and met the teachers and students.


ho would have thought that the intention to participate in an international competition for fun would lead to SJK (C) Pulai getting second place at the 2016 SEAMEOJapan Energy Saving Device (ESD) Award organised by the Southeast Asian Education Ministers of Education (SEAMEO). Kulai District Education Officer, Ishak Mahbob announced the victory at a ceremony held in conjunction with the 49th Southeast Asian Education Ministerial Council (SEAMEC) Conference. Their science project ‘Energy Saving

through the Preservation and Programme of Low Carbon Culture at the School’ allowed them to bag the USD1,000 (RM4,280) cash prize along with the award and certificates. The grand prize for the competition was however awarded to SMK Negeri 1 Bandung of Indonesia, while Bintawan National High School of the Philippines won the third place. Also in attendance was the principal of SJK (C) Pulai, Lee Boh Dan, whilst Ishak, on behalf of every school within the district, thanked everyone for supporting their efforts thus far. “It has been more than 10 years since the school introduced the energy saving project 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) following a trip to Taiwan after noting that the schools in the country managed to convert waste into money through the sale of recyclable items,” said Boh Dan. - by The Iskandarian TI

The Booming Increase of International Schools in Johor How is it different from any other public school?


he recent years have seen an increase in the number of international schools in Johor Bahru. Despite the gargantuan amount the fees may come up to, the number of international schools are still rising, being a popular choice among parents, with there being more than 10 international schools in Johor. Despite the big-talk of the impressive features and aspects offered to students by these schools, there has been discussion and debate over whether they actually differ from normal public schools, and my answer to that is yes, they do. Over the years, cases of bullying have become more frequent, controversial and more endangering. Most of these cases usually occur in public schools, with only a tiny percentage of it occurring in international schools, prompting the question why? I opine that the stricter rules at public schools may prompt students to go against the school’s rules in a rebellious manner. Whereas, international schools are more reasonable with their rulings, despite remaining mildly strict, which is preferred by the students, resulting into a

better understanding. In the long term, this means that more students tend to obey their teachers and elders, leading to fewer cases, and a safer and more comfortable working and studying environment for teachers and students. International schools may even be described as being more open than public schools, ensuring more freedom for their students and teachers. Certain schools embrace the option to freely dress on certain days, as long as it’s appropriate, something not available in public schools. The students’ social life doesn’t differ much between public and international schools, but they do differ in their school life. Students in international schools tend to be more vocal in giving their feedback to the school, and getting the opportunity to play sports during their free periods or break times. Strategically, the sudden booming of international schools has been well placed in Johor Bahru. A bridge away from Singapore and with an airport close by in Senai, it allows Singaporeans and foreigners to join the schools easily. However, financially, these schools require huge funds and investments

for development. The fees may be a downside as only the middle or upper class families can afford it. However, many feel that the fees are worth it as the syllabus taken in certain British international schools here are more recognisable worldwide compared to our local SPM examinations. Studying at international schools is also better in terms of quality and quantity. It offers more subjects than SPM with a conducive learning experience such as the IGCSE examinations that offers a wholesome education and help students to be more vocal, open and achieve a smarter mindset. The booming increase of the growth and development of international schools in Johor Bahru has been caused by the success of these schools being able to nurture students into future leaders, offering them a better education, along with a more advanced and accommodating learning experience for the students, making international schools a better option for parents wanting to give their kids a primary and secondary education. - by Ashvin Sivakumar *This article is solely the writer’s point of view. TI


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International High Tea, Anyone? Take your pick from Thai to French cuisines


ining woes on the weekends always end with ‘Where to eat?’ questions. Worry no more and head down to Amaya Food Gallery at Amari Johor Bahru for their new High Tea Buffet promotion on Saturdays and Sundays! From Thai to French cuisine, you can indulge in up to 85 different dishes with weekly rotation and start your dining experience with Seafood on Ice spread of prawns, mussels, flower crabs, and crayfish, complemented with variety of sauces. Don’t miss Amaya’s signature Thai dishes such as Tom Yum Pizza with a generous

Sous Chef Theerawut Kanyavimon and team. If Asian gourmet pops in your mind, scoop up their Kampung Fried rice peppered with chili flakes for traditional kampung flavours coupled with Chicken Rendang or enjoy a plate of fried Kuey Teow and pair it with Mamak-style Fried Chicken Wings. Noodle station can definitely make you go back and forth from your seat with over 5 different noodles selection prepared with condiments and rotated broth of Chicken Herbal Soup, Tom Yam and more. Enjoy chicken rice with three different styles of chicken or have steamed Dim Sum, Seafood Dumplings and Thai Fish Cake which are readily available in steamy hot temperature for a fresh Chinese tang. Alternatively, go for Indian flavours of Chicken Curry and Naan. As for Western spread, chow down on their rich and tender Grilled Marinated Lamb Shoulder with black pepper sauce or enjoy a bowl of Beef Goulash or Beef Meatballs Baked

Seafood on Ice

sprinkle of prawns, mushrooms and tomyam flavours and Thai Laksa, Stir-Fried Chicken with Thai Chili Paste and Thai Style Steamed Sea Bass in Chili and Lime sauce with an authentic touch prepared by Thai Executive

Noodle station

in Tomato Sauce to fill your stomach. As for lighter options, turn to its Salad Bar which

Orange Fountain Steamed Pau

also has Mediterranean and local Rojak Buah options. Go creative and make your own Som Tam (Papaya Salad) or customise your sandwich at the DIY Bread Corner. Finish your meal with a wide spread of dessert especially the eye-catching Orange Fountain to dip with a range of biscuits and fruits. The usual suspects; French pastries line up of cakes, brownies, puddings and traditional kuih are there for the sweet tooth. Heads up for squares of sweetness, as they serve thick, fat and creamy Waffles with Ice Cream with your own choice of toppings and syrups! Quench your thirst with a free flow of coffee/tea and selected soft drinks. If your belly is bloated after a big meal, we recommend trying Amaya’s Detox drinks of Spiced Orchard, Banane et’ Orange or Wake Me Up priced at RM20 per glass to refresh your system. The High Tea Buffet is from 12.30pm

to 3.30pm and is priced at RM68 nett per person while children below 12 years old and senior citizens aged 60 and above can enjoy 50% off discounted price. For reservations, call 07-2668888. - by Maressa Esa TI

Amaya Detox drinks

Renaissance’s Snowskin Mooncakes are Back to Tantalise Your Tastebuds

Renaissance Johor Bahru’s signature Snowskin Mooncakes

Y * Image is for illustration only

ou know that Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival is around the corner when mooncakes are appearing in every store shelves and Renaissance Johor Bahru’s signature Snowskin Mooncakes are back to make you drool with its handcrafted filling varieties. Snowskin Mooncake series are handcrafted with nine different flavours including Dark Chocolate Crunchy Pearl, Coffee Truffle, Taro Paste Truffle, Mango Paste Truffle, Green Tea Matcha Truffle, Passionfruit Truffle, Peppermint Chocolate Truffle, Strawberry Truffle and all-time favourite Durian Madness! “Our Snowskin Mooncakes are made fresh and free from preservatives. As for Durian Madness, we still produce with real Musang King Durian paste for a full satisfaction,” said Gagan Singh, General Manager of Renaissance Johor Bahru. Traditional flavours are also available

comprising of Lotus Paste, Lotus Paste with Single Yolk, Lotus Paste with Double Yolk, Green Tea Paste with Single Yolk, Jade Custard, and Assorted Fruits & Nuts. The hotel’s Dim Sum Sous Chef, Go Yong Jia and team are capable of producing up to 400 pieces of mooncakes for orders. Purchase your set of eight Snowskin Mooncakes, or a set of four traditional Baked Mooncakes or a box of eight Durian Madness Mooncakes at RM108, RM98 and RM168 respectively. Early bird purchases before 15th September are entitled to a 10% off on a single receipt while 15% discount applies for more than 25 boxes, and 25% less for bulk purchases of over 100 boxes. Purchase your mooncakes now until 4th October 2017 at Wan Li Chinese Restaurant via 07-3813388 or email to m u h a m m a d z a c h a r y. c h e wa b d u l l a h @ - by Maressa Esa TI

Dim Sum Sous Chef, Go Yong Jia (left) and General Manager of Renaissance Johor Bahru Gagan Singh (middle) presenting their mooncake selections


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A New Seafood Diner in Desaru Nelayan Seafood by the Coast is now open

Crabs in Black Pepper sauce


nother spot for seafood lovers to indulge in a spread of fresh local catch is now open at Nelayan Seafood by the Coast at Tunamaya Beach & Spa Resort, Desaru Coast. As the fourth F&B outlet in the resort, Nelayan Seafood by the Coast is able to accommodate up to 400 persons with 8000 square feet area, promising sea breeze for guests to enjoy apart from indulging in tasty seafood. At Nelayan Seafood, diners can enjoy variety of fish, cockles,

and local crustaceans served in over 50 styles in the menu with a Chinese touch prepared by their Head Chef, Chef Fatt to meet a healthy and delicious meal on the plate. One of the main highlights was a generous portion of Baby Lobster Baked with Superior Stock for the lobster fans. If you are longing for spicy delicacies, chow down on Yam Basket with Sambal Squid and get sloppy with Crabs in Black Pepper Sauce. All-time classics are also available such as Salted Egg Yolk Crab; Steamed White Clams

with Garlic, King Prawns cooked in Creamy Butter Sauce and not forgetting Braised Abalone in Superior Brown Sauce, Chilled Sliced Abalone with Hot and Sour Sauce, Seafood Tom Yam Soup, Hot Plate Bean Curd and more. Dining at Nelayan Seafood by the Coast comes in small and large portions which are convenient as an ala carte option or for guests bringing large groups. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner from 11.30am to 10.00pm and free parking lots are available. For reservations, call 607 – 8333 8888 or email info.dtbsr@careluxuryhotels. com - by Maressa Esa TI

Salted Egg Yolk Crab

Baked Local lobster

Grand opening of Nelayan Seafood by the Coast


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The Iskandarian ISSUE 61 | SEPT 2017

As many as 444 units of affordable homes under the Rumah Mampu Milik Johor (RMMJ) in the form of two-storey townhouse will be built in Zone 2B4, Taman Impian pg 24 PROPERTY


@ home






Tropicana Danga Cove (TDC) Launched its last phase development of commercial shop offices, three-storey and four-storey Oasis 3 with 62 units

pg 24

Read this article on our website

PropertyGuru Asia Property Awards


UMLand Seri Austin bagged two awards for Aster 2

Selling like hot cakes despite market sentiments

Connect with us on Facebook


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S P Setia Delivers 490 Units of RMMJ


High Takeup During Launch

I & P Group’s Laman Beringin gets positive response

N Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin (middle) and Chairman of S P Setia, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Wan Mohd Zahid Mohd Noordin (3rd from left) overlooking at the scale model of the two-storey cluster terrace homes namely Sri Senja and Sri Embun


total of 490 units of twostorey cluster terrace homes under the Rumah Mampu Milik Johor (RMMJ) initiative will be delivered to its new owners in December 2017 by S P Setia Berhad at Setia Business Park 2. The balloting and keys’ handover ceremony was graced by Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin and Chairman of S P Setia, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Wan Mohd Zahid Mohd Noordin for 236 units of Sri Senja

and 254 units of Sri Embun which were priced between RM150,000 to RM209,000. “This joint initiative by S P Setia together with the state government is an excellent example to other developers to step up and do the same. The state government is also targeting to deliver 5490 housing units under RMMJ by end of this year,” said Khaled at the press conference. Out of the 5490 units, Khaled continued that there will be 621

units from Perumahan Komuniti Johor A and 1444 units from Perumahan Komuniti Johor B with 3425 homes to be completed under RMMJ. In a separate news, Khaled said that the state government aims to achieve providing homes totaling 60,000 units by the year 2020 and will be taking stern actions such as freezing development operations if developers fail to deliver the houses within given time frame. - by Maressa Esa TI

No Plans to Increase Affordable Homes Price


s many as 444 units of affordable homes under the Rumah Mampu Milik Johor (RMMJ) in the form of two-storey townhouse will be built in Zone 2B4, Taman Impian Emas as part of the state government’s target to deliver 60,000 units by the year 2020. The upcoming affordable homes received its groundbreaking ceremony officiated by Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, Director of Gunung Impian Development Sdn Bhd, Tan Sri A. Razak Ramli and Chairman of Johor’s Housing and Local Authority Committee, Dato’ Md Jais Sarday. “As I have mentioned earlier, we are targeting to complete 5490 affordable homes this year and 14,742 units more for next year. We will try to accommodate the high demand from the rakyat from time to time. The state government is aware of the importance of homes for every person albeit that we need to face challenges such as the downturn of economy,” said Khaled during the groundbreaking ceremony.

ot a new name when it comes to top notch development, I&P Group recently launched two types of products at Laman Beringin which is nestled in the mature development of Taman Rinting. With all the needed amenities being minutes away, Laman Beringin is an easy sell with 2-Storey Terrace Houses in Type A offering 24 x 75 land area on 1900 sq ft built up area and Type B giving a built up area of 1975 sq ft. “This is the expansion of the earlier phase of Beringin. We are only offering 37 units so it’s quite sought after. The access roads are good and the Pasir Gudang Highway is mostly done up so the connectivity makes the property even more attractive,” said Dato’

Muhamad Zaili Muhammad Yusof, Senior Manager of Sales and Marketing. “Our next phase will be more terrace and Semi-D houses but similarly, it will be very limited units as well so it remains exclusive,” he added. On speaking about the overall market, Zaili commented that regardless of market sentiments, buying a house is actually a necessity and purchases are bound to happen. “Most importantly, we must offer a good price and package to our buyers and of course in a good location as well. These factors are key,” added Zaili. As of print date, only 11 out of the 37 units launched are available at Laman Beringin. - by Edey Suresh TI

Laman Beringin launch at Taman Rinting

Oasis 3 Launched with 62 units

14,742 RMMJ will be delivered in 2018

Proposed Oasis 3 shop office units scale model along Jalan Kota

A Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin (middle), Director of Gunung Impian Development Sdn Bhd, Tan Sri A. Razak Ramli (2nd from left) and Chairman of Johor’s Housing and Local Authority Committee, Dato’ Md Jais Sarday officiated the groundbreaking ceremony of RMMJ Impian Emas

Khaled added that the government received almost 70% of demand from the Iskandar Malaysia region and there are no plans to increase the price of the affordable homes. The development of RMMJ will take 36 months to complete and will be facilitated with a surau,

multi-purpose hall, kindergarten, recreational park, parking lots, and more. Each home that will be developed by Gunung Impian Development Sdn Bhd comes with 1000 square feet build-up area and is priced at RM150000. by Maressa Esa TI

f te r i t s s u cce s s f u l predecessor Oasis and Oasis 2, Tropicana Danga Cove (TDC) launched its last phase development of commercial shop offices, threestorey and four-storey Oasis 3 with 62 units expected to be ready by 2020. TDC opened its public launch and received a warm response with about 30% from the total units sold and some were repeat purchasers from the previous projects which sit on over 30 acres of land spread. “As our project land is strategically located between the rapid growth township in Pengerang and Johor Bahru, all three Oasis projects complement the available

surrounding population of 500,000 people. We are also targeting to attract well-known F&B outlets in Oasis 2 so that the traffic can mature faster in time,” said Tropicana Danga Bay Sdn Bhd Senior Manager of Sales and Marketing, Russell Lim. The three-storey units’ builtup areas are from 5040 square feet to 6720 square feet while the fourstorey units will accommodate up to 9627 square feet equipped with private elevators and ample of street parking. All 112 shop office units in Oasis are fully sold out while there are 10% remaining from a total of 180 units in Oasis 2 and Oasis 3 with unit prices starting from RM1.69 million. - by Maressa Esa TI


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Opal Residenz Section 2 Launched

Executive Director of UMLand Seri Alam, Freddie Lee (middle) with the winners of the colouring contest


creams and laughter were in the air during the launch of Opal Residenz Section 2 at Gravity Green, Bandar Seri Alam when families and visitors were treated to a series of ‘Dinosaurs Return Alive’ shows throughout the day. The launch commenced with a colouring competition for children aged between 6 and 12

years old together with children from Kindness Johor at the Seri Alam Properties sales gallery followed by a series of ‘Dinosaur Return Alive’ shows that thrilled spectators. A movie screening of ‘Jurassic World’ was also showcased at night for the closing ceremony. Due to its previous successful project of Opal Residenz, United Malayan Land Bhd (UMLand)

continued for Phase 2 over a spread respectively. The Amethyst semiof 6.45 acres of freehold land with a detached house is built up with gross development value of RM66.4 2443 square feet of size and is million that offers a choice of Zircon priced from RM894,800. Opal Residenz Section 2 and Ruby double-storey cluster homes or Amethyst semi-detached groundwork will start in November this year and is expected to meet houses. “For Section 2 offerings, completion by third quarter of there are only 82 units available 2019. TI in a gated and guarded precinct. Amenities include a children’s playground and jogging track apart from being surrounded by abundance of schools, colleges and universities,” said Executive Director of UMLand Seri Alam, Freddie Lee. The deluxe homes come in four bedrooms and five bathrooms. Zircon is offered with 2228 square feet area while Ruby comes in 2361 square feet area Scale model of Ruby double-storey cluster with prices starting from homes RM784,800 and RM851,800

Winning More Awards


ultiple-award township, UMLand Seri Austin again bagged two awards for Aster 2 - Double-Storey Semi-Detached House with Best Housing Development both in Iskandar and Malaysia during the PropertyGuru Asia Property Awards (Malaysia) 2017 Gala Dinner held in InterContinental Kuala Lumpur. Selected among hundreds of entries, Seri Austin has once again strengthened its 12-year track record in building developments that feature conducive healthy and sustainable township. This achievement also marks another milestone in continuing journey towards excellence.

“It is extremely challenging but it’s satisfying to receive industry acknowledgment and recognition for our achievements and we are immensely proud for the great works that our team has contributed,” CEO KK Wong said. UMLand took the stage twice for winning the special awards in Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development. Meanwhile, it’s subsidiary project, Suasana Iskandar Malaysia won the Best Condo Development (Iskandar). The fourth annual event was once again graced by Guest of Honour Yang Amat Mulia Tunku Seri Menanti Tunku Ali Redhauddin Ibni Tuanku Muhriz, Chairman of PropertyGuru Malaysia.

UMLand Seri Austin UMLand Seri Austin (right) receiving the award

“Location, Location, Location” – Part 1

Sr Khaidzir A Rasip Senior VP at IRDA

Sr Khaidzir A Rasip has been assigned to various positions in Social Development, Flagship Development, Economics & Investment, Strategic Communications and now, Urban Observatory divisions whilst maintaining a specific role as the subject matter expert in property for Iskandar Malaysia at Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA)


o most people, those three words are just a mantra that dictates location as the most important factor in buying a property, and it is repeated three times as a way to emphasise it beyond any doubt. Home is a basic necessity

and houses are more likely than not, the most popular property product and the most active sub sector in the property industry. Its correlation with the number of population is greater than that of other sub sectors. Therefore, most individuals would be in the market for a residential property at one point or another in their lives. Even before they have the means to buy, at least, they will need to rent. Majority of developers are housing suppliers, whether they are private companies or public bodies. Government at federal, state and local levels all put housing needs as a priority agenda and allocate as much resources as possible towards the formulation and implementation of housing policies. H o w e v e r, as the commonality of property brings forth the above mantra to the knowledge of most people, it is the heterogeneous nature of property that brings about these three repetitive words in the first place.

In fact, this phrase is so popular that some marketers within the industry have redefined and even rephrased it to suit prevalent market conditions and their own interpretations of market trends. Some even claim there are other factors that have come to the forefront of being the top three most important factors in the property business and others claim location as no longer a relevant factor due to current circumstances and logic. Certain quarters of us came across this phrase through formal education. We were taught it as a basis of what contributes towards the value of a property and not as a marketing mantra to sell properties. This knowledge is carried through for those who continue to become practitioners and professionals in the property line. To the others who know anything about property valuation, it is not the value that dictates the market but instead, the market that dictates the value. Meaning,

property values are derived from observing and analysing the current market conditions in the form of actual transactions that have taken place as well as market movements that are taking place. Location is always relative and can be a positive or negative factor. That is why it is important and even crucial to look at location from various perspectives. Not just once or twice but at least, thrice. Therefore, first consider location, second look at the location and third define location. Just like the same being a mantra, as a basis, the application of it is also subject to various interpretations and opinions. It all comes back to the fact that property is heterogeneous, that no two properties are exactly the same but you can still easily find a lot of properties with exactly the same design, facade, layout and even price. An edited version of this article appeared in the May/June 2016 edition of Homefinder Malaysia.

@home Quick Reads

World’s Largest IBS Factory in Johor It was reported that Country Garden Pacific View Sdn Bhd is set to build the world’s largest industrialised building system (IBS) facility at Forest City in Johor. According to International Trade and Industry Minister, Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed, the RM2.6 billion project will feature technologies from Germany, Italy and China. Once the factory is completed, Mustapa said it would help the nation reduce dependenc y on foreign labour, besides becoming more productive and efficient, and shortening the project completion project. “ C u r r e n t l y, three lines are in operations. For example, if a project takes two to three years to complete, with IBS, it can be done at a much faster pace. We will also have a more productive, efficient, sustainable and safer construction industry in Malaysia,” said Mustapa at a press conference at Forest City.

IWCity Revises Agreement Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd (IWCity) had revised its agreement with China-based Greenland Holdings Group Ltd, its partner in a waterfront city project in Johor with an estimated gross development value of RM18.4bil. IWCity’s unit Tebrau Bay Sdn Bhd inked a supplemental agreement with Greenland Tebrau Sdn Bhd (GTSB), undertaking the mixed development, on the disposal of its 128-acre partially-submerged land in Plentong, Johor Bahru, to GTSB for RM2.4bil. GTSB is 20% owned by IWCity (through unit Southern Crest Development Sdn Bhd) and 80% by the Greenland group (via Greenland Malaysia Real Estate Operator Sdn Bhd).


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