The Great Mosque of Medan

December 2015 I got to visit Medan, which is located in North Sumatra, Indonesia. Beside tasting the endless delicious street food, whether you’re a tourist or not, when you come to Medan, visiting or at least having had a glimpse of the Maimun Castle and The Grand Mosque of Medan is mandatory! Then again, they’re only 200 meters apart.

The Grand Mosque Al-Mashun is one of the many significant historical buildings in Medan. This mosque marks a history of the relation between the East-Indies and The Sultanate of Deli. Sultan Ma’moen Al Rasyid Perkasa Alamsyah was the one who initiated the building of this mosque. This mosque took three years to build (1906-1909). The first prayer was a friday prayer in 1906 and it has never stopped operating ever since. This mosque can get up to 1500 person btw.

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When you visit big cities in Indonesia, it is likely that you will come across colonial buildings from the East-Indies era. One of the many typical of colonial buildings are that the architecture has been modified to adapt to tropical weather i.e. high ceilings, big opening for ventilation, etc. And since we were colonized by the Dutch (for 350 years) the form of architecture were also mainly influenced by Dutch architecture. However this mosque is quite different. The  Dutch architect behind this glorious building, took a different style for the design. Using Middle East, Morocco, India and Spain elements within the style. According to the guide that I had interviewed, this mosque is in Moorish style.

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The mosque has 5 domes as a symbol of 5 prayer times and 8 pillars to symbolize 8 cardinal directions. Now, let’s talk about the colors! The colors you see within the interior, exterior patterns are mostly yellow/gold, green, red and blue. Each color also has their own philosophy. Yellow is the color of Melayu. It is usually accompanied with the color green. If you pay attention the Maimun Castle you will see that those colors are dominantly used in the palace. Red is for tobacco. Tobacco and mosque? Does it make sense? Actually it does. The Deli area was one of the biggest tobacco producers in the world. Even in those years, according to the guide, Deli had exported tobacco to places such as Cuba.They are proud of their tobacco, so they put in that red color for the sake of local touch to the mosque. Last but not least, blue, which is the color for peace.

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There is definitely a lot going on in the design itself. The carving, the details are mesmerizing! The carrara marble are sent from Italy, The chandelier is from France, the stained glass are from China, there is a longcase clock which was a gift from Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands.

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Honestly, how can we not love this?

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It is amazing on how very detailed the work and ornaments are! Very well preserved! One of the door to get into the praying hall seen from the corridor. Moroccan shape door with colors!

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The patterns are also unique, using elements such as nature, even symbolic of people! If you take a close look at the pattern above, it is a symbol of person sitting. And by the repetition, it creates the impression of people sitting next to each other, like in prayer. That, is deep!

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Deep? Yes! I’ve always loved philosophy behind details! Because it’s soulful and beautiful. Have you ever imagined how much time and thought the designer has put into that pattern? Juggling between philosophy, art, technical work to finally achieve the final design of the pattern that now lasts more than a century!

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Tiles on the corridor ceiling. The tiles are all still original from a century ago. Just amazing!

In conclusion, Check this place out! Especially if you’re into history and design. It’s quite interesting to see a ‘colonial building’ that is not typical and has other traits. The ornaments, every inch of detail is worth to be appreciated.

The pictures are all taken by me. If you happen to use them for either private or academic purposes, kindly link them to this blog. Thank you very much and I hope you enjoyed this post.

Hola Mexicola!

DSC09213  I love Bali! Not only for its beaches and culture. It is an island full of inspiration! Especially for people such as myself who chose to drown themselves in the industry of the creative. Of course credit goes to the renowned tourism! Bali offers variety of hospitality, arts and crafts heaven and oh not to forget, food. All of it done for the sake of pleasure! It’s not a secret that tourism has long been one of the vital economical source and growth of Bali. But inside those businesses, it’s competition! So one way to win is to stand out.

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My friend introduced me to this motel and restaurant in Jl Kayu Jati Seminyak, which I thought was quite fascinating. Instead of going with the mainstream natural style, contemporary, modern or luxurious, it chooses to go with… Mexico!

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Hexagonal tiles, flowers, the contrast of blue and orange, dim lights, reflective small ornaments on the ceiling

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Must love the candle!

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The open space area. I kinda get a little bit of a Middle Eastern feeling looking at the architectural shape on the back.

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Uses vintage (not in a West European or American kind of way) looking furniture and gets the hip out of it! Using bright colors for the seat. It compliments the chair. Brilliant!

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The walls are illustrated also in bright colors, even the pillars!

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Le ceiling

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It’s laid back and outdoorsy.

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The design of the partitions are also nice

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This is the area outside, like a porch. It is visible from the street. The tiles are gorgeous! It’s got fruits!

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Another decorative element! The partition, flowers, bench, green decks and pineapple wall tiles! Perfect!

Unfortunately I didn’t get to see the interior of the motel which is probably as cool.

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Oh, and of course I tried their delicious food! It’s Calamole with Mexican tortilla chips!

Grand Inna Kuta Bali’s Breeze Resto and Lobby Interior Design

I have always find it exciting to go to new places, experience the atmosphere and learn as well! So my visit to Bali around the mid of November brought me to get a look at Grand Inna’s interior. Grand Inna Hotel is located right next to the famous Kuta beach. Just fyi. Anyway, the Breeze Resto is quite interesting to review. I guess the interior design concept is about the intimacy with nature while adding industrial touches to it. Since it has a straight view to the beach, the interior tries to put a lot of industrial style.

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This idea is to create a creative lamp installation. This is obviously industrial! The hanging shelve construction is made out of metal (painted black) and it is hung to the ceiling. Whereas jars are put with light bulbs in it. So whenever the light is turned on, results in illuminating jars!

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Now these lamps are interesting. I find the shape very simple yet beautiful! It’s ethnic (I think it looks like a traditional something) and the finishing of the material, which is bronze and rusty adds that industrial sphere to it. Vintage!

The ceiling of the room is kept raw without finishing. It reminds me a bit to the ceiling design of Beachwalk Kuta by the way. A modification is done as well at this part. At some distances, an up ceiling is present. Creating this geometrical shape cut. Though that cut, they allow a little bit of sun in, just a little bit.

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Again to add the industrial style, a pillar is designed in a geometric way with a synthetic material reminiscing rattan. Look how the color is a contrast to the side columns which are simply white with a wooden touch. The color resembles the floor though.

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At the entrance of the restaurant, an installation of a semi-partition is present. It is made out of a synthetic material reminiscing rattan. Also in a geometrical shape. It gives the first impression of getting into a cave before going into the restaurant, but the ‘cave’ is seen through enough. Thanks to the arrangement of the design.

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Now that the interior colors are mostly dark and earthy I’d say, the chairs enhances the interior with its bright appealing colors. Orange, happy green! Green plants are also put it in not only for the natural feel but also for color.

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At the other side of the wall, wooden solids are put together, and behind it there is an insulation I guess, it is ripped a little in an ordered manner for texture. Very industrial!

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Now at the lobby, I also found an interesting feature! They have this up ceiling with traditional woven fabrics in it for decoration. The fabrics consisted of different colors and the combination is gorgeous making me wanna stare at it all day LOL. To make it even more pretty, a hidden lamp is set on the sides to light up those details of the woven fabric. I’m in love!