South of Port Klang is Pulau Carey, a combination of oil palm plantations and Orang Asli outpost. The island is home to the indigenous Mah Meri people, who are known for their intricate wood carvings of spirit animals, which are sometimes used for spiritual healing. Made from nyireh batu, a rare mangrove hardwood found on the island, the sculptures have been known to fetch pretty prices in the art world. For a different day out, drive over and seek out the wood carvers.
Modernist architect Ng Seksan has left his stamp all over Malaysia, but his hotels rule the cool roost. Bare brick walls and cool cement floors meet interesting art installations and a private gallery, open only to hotel guests. If your street cred needs a boost, this is where you’ll get it.
You’d easily look past the imposing Sasana Kijang – gleaming with glass and steel that resemble songket motifs – and not realise there’s a hidden art gallery inside. Here lies the famous works by familiar names like Abdullah Ariff, Khalil Ibrahim, Redza Piyadasa and Chang Fee Ming. The bank’s art collection is a good summary of local art from the last few decades.