The Co-Founder and Executive Director of hedge fund Malayan Traders Capital, shares insider tips for Melbourne and London
What do you love most about this city?
Having lived here for over 12 years, I feel that this city is the epitome of art, culture and food all blended together in a melting pot. I love the fact that we have four seasons in a day which is quite uncommon in most places. The uniqueness and diversity of the people of Melbourne make it so easy to fall in love with. And the brunch scene in this city is to die for!
Where would you take a first-timer to in this city?
It’ll probably be a few different places within the city area. I would certainly start with a good cup of coffee at Padres, then walk and get lost around the magical laneways, then brunch at Hardware Societe, hop on a tram ride, then a stroll around the Botanical Gardens and even a little picnic there if the weather permits, and end by the beach in either Port Melbourne or St Kilda to admire the sunset.
What is the one thing that the first-timer must do in this city?
I think getting out of the city to visit the coastal towns around the Great Ocean Road would be something most first-timers should do. Staying a few nights going between Lorne to Apollo Bay and back and just enjoying the ice-cool breeze and nature is something uniquely Melbourne.
Your favourite dish from here and where might we find it?
Probably one of the hardest questions to answer! There are so many great dishes to choose from in Melbourne but if I had to choose a dish, it’ll be pad see ew. Strange I know, but we really do get some good Thai restaurants in this city! My favourite would be the six-hour-cooked wagyu beef pad see ew at Chin Chin restaurant on Flinders Lane.
The best place to have dinner with:
a. family – Ecco in South Yarra serves the most humbling Italian cuisine. Authentic wood oven pizzas to lobster ravioli – all of it is very simple and down to earth.
b. friends – Cumulus Inc on Flinders Lane is where I would go with mates. Modern Australian cuisine with a very good wine selection!
The best thing about the locals.
I think the fact that Australians are so laidback, it makes them a very friendly bunch.
Name one souvenir to bring home.
A footy ball! It’s the ball they use for Australian Rules Football.
Five words that sum up this city.
Sophisticated, Delicious, Creative, Artsy, Beautiful.
Where might we find you at 1 am in this city?
Most probably at a bar with a pinot or a cab sav either at the Arbory Bar or Garden State Hotel. If the weather is great, then the Arbory Bar by the Yarra River next to Flinders St Station. This place serves Shiraz and Pinot Gris on tap! Otherwise something more distinctively Melbourne, the Garden State Hotel on Flinders Lane. A beautiful indoor garden decked with trees inside a pretty historical old building.
London, United Kingdom
One thing about the locals.
The British accent! Can’t stop appreciating the locals who speak the Queen’s English. The English have a very good sense of dry humour which makes them awkwardly funny and entertaining. Generally, a bunch that enjoys the random conversation with strangers!
What do you find most refreshing about this city?
The fact that day and night can be so completely different. There are so many old traditional landmarks and museums to visit during the day, and by night, it changes into a bustling city of bars and pubs. You can never get bored in this very cosmopolitan city, but if you do, you’re an hour’s flight out to Paris, Rome and other culturally beautiful cities around Europe.
The one experience that everyone must try.
Most people would say the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace but I’d prefer to walk, run or just hang out around Hyde Park. You could easily spend an entire day walking this place and lazing around in the park with a good book!
The one local dish that’s not to be missed.
Indian food here is absolutely amazing! Therefore, a Chicken Tikka Masala would be a must try!
The best thing you can do here for free.
The land of free museums! Unlike NYC or other big cities, most of the great museums in London are free of charge! The British Museum and the Natural History Museum are worth spending the entire day at.
Your favourite memory of this city.
Having dinner at 10 pm at this very dodgy Indian joint in Vauxhall. Even the cab driver was afraid to drop us off!
A lesson learnt from this city:
Being able to live creatively and not be judged.
What was the best piece of souvenir you took home from here?
Tickets to a Man Utd match against West Ham that was cancelled at the very last minute due to heavy snow in London.
Name something they have here that you wished you had at home:
An international star-studded football league!