Streetscapes: Hidden gems in a quiet corner of a busy township 

This article first appeared in City & Country, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on April 13, 2020 - April 19, 2020.

The businesses in IP5 Business Centre are thriving, although it is away from the town centre. Photo by Ethel Khoo/The Edge

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Tucked in a corner of Kota Kemuning are two rows of 2 and 3-storey shopoffices. The shops, located in Jalan Anggerik Aranda BG 31/BG and Jalan Anggerik Aranda BH 31/BH, are also known as IP5 Business Centre, says Laurelcap Sdn Bhd executive director Stanley Toh.

Although this group of shopoffices is away from the town centre, the businesses there still thrive. In addition, it is close to an Indian temple, Kuil Sri Maha Mariamman, and two churches – Shah Alam Chinese Methodist Chapel and Immanuel Church.

Along these two streets, there are kindergartens, art studios and tuition centres.

Other businesses include convenience stores, health and beauty shops, a clinic, various small companies, a gym, an electrical shop and eateries.

Shanti, a resident of Kota Kemuning, has passed by these shoplots but had never patronised them until she noticed the Indian restaurant there: Vedha’s Indian Cuisine.

“The shoplots are a bit out of the way, you see. I usually go to the town centre and I go to that area only when I need to go to the Indian temple. But, I have to say, the food at Vedha’s is quite delicious,” she says.

Her favourite is the Chicken Briyani, which she finds flavourful. “It kind of reminds me of my grandmother’s briyani. Even though it is a bit too salty, I still find it delicious because they did not cheat on the spices.”

Meanwhile, Kim visits the area for coffee. Her destination is Frespresso, a café located away from the main road. To her, that café is a hidden gem.

“I don’t live in Kota Kemuning. I only work there. But my colleague, who is a resident, told me about this café. I have not stopped going there after my first visit,” she says.

She enjoys a cup of good coffee and affordable breakfast in the morning at the café before heading to work. The environment is quiet and peaceful.

“You don’t find a lot of places like this in Kota Kemuning. Sometimes, I will pop in during the weekends just to do some quiet reading. I like the ambience there. It’s like a solitary, quiet place within a massive busy township,” she adds.

Timothy is a frequent customer at Gula Cakery, which is adjacent to Vedha’s. He goes there to buy pastries as well as attend group baking classes.

“Arieni, the owner and teacher, is a friendly lady. She is so passionate about baking. Not only are her cakes delicious, but her classes are so much fun too!” he says.

The bakery caters for dine-in customers and serves hot meals prepared by Arieni’s mother, he says. As it is a children-friendly place, he often brings his family there for meals during the weekends.

According to Laurelcap’s Toh, transactions for the 2-storey shopoffices are between RM1.8 million and RM2 million. Monthly rents are RM5,000 to RM5,500 for the ground floor and between RM1,000 and RM2,000 for the first and second floors.

“Rental rates will come under pressure from many other similar shops in the vicinity. The shops facing Persiaran Anggerik Vanilla and Persiaran Anggerik Mokara, which is the main road, would probably be easier to rent out because of the road exposure. However, rental rates over the next few years will be flattish,” he says.