Friday, April 12, 2019

My Stopovers in Medan

In Medan, Indonesia – I had a “free and easy” morning yesterday and I took the opportunity to ride on a motorized “becak” (pedicab) which is a fun way to travel around the city:

I had been to Medan for work before – way back in 2001-2002 – but this time around, I found some me-time and checked out two places of interest that the hotel staff had recommended. 

I took up the suggestion only because they were not too far away from the hotel – and I can blog about the non-Toastmasters aspect of my Medan trip. 

My first stop was Istana Maimoon which was once the royal palace of the Sultanate of Deli and it now serves a museum:

It was designed by the Dutch architect Theodoor van Erp and built by Sultan Ma'mun Al Rashid Perkasa Alamyah in the years 1887–1891. 

The latter who ruled from 1873 to 1924, is regarded as the master developer of early Medan – and he did this in cooperation with Tjong A Fie and Tjong Yong Hian, two Chinese businessmen brothers as well as the Dutch. 

The second well-known landmark I went to was the Tjong A Fie Mansion built in 1895 and which has been referred to as "a historical jewel in Medan". Located along Jalan Ahmad Yani, the oldest street in Medan – it was a 35-room, 2-storey palatial home with Chinese, Malay and Art Deco influences in its architecture style and constructed observing feng-shui principles. 

A successful businessman and philanthropist, Tjong A Fie was a Hakka merchant who came to own much of Medan.

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