Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Chin Heng just paid me a visit. I had spent my recent March holidays with him and his buddies, Yong Sheng and Poh Xiang and now, he had brought along photos which his friends had taken when we were there in Macao. I think the pictures of the four of us in a little park just opposite the famed Hotel and Casino Lisboa were just fabulous. The park is not very big and does not catch the eye during daytime but come night, the park or more accurately the city centre becomes a fairyland in its own right. I remembered our plane from Kuala Lumpur had been delayed that day and instead of reaching Macao at 5pm, we reached there one or two hours later when the sky had turned dark. Taking a bus to our hotel, the only thing that had attracted me then was the big dome that dazzled a million colourful lights. The dome reminded me of domed city from the America TV series, Logan's Run but this is not a city of the future. This is Macao, the former Portuguese enclave at the estuary of Pearl River in South East China and now a special administrative region in China famous for casinos. The dome is actually egg-shaped and spectacular LED lighting display had been build around it. The structure incidentally is also part of th Grand Lisboa Hotel which was responsible for installing the intelligent lighting system, using LED technology from Daktronics, that combines outdoor lighting effects with the ability to create and display custom text messages, graphics, animations, and video images. Grand Lisboa Hotel is undeniably one of the best five-star hotel with a 24 hour casino. The building of the Grand Lisboa which is shaped like a giant bright yellow lotus plant, the official emblem of Macao Special Adminitrative Region was still being constructed when we were there. Under the glare of daylight, the latter was an ugly sight and the magic of the night wore off.