Bukit Bintang, the Shibuya of Malaysia
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Bukit Bintang, the Shibuya of Malaysia

Bukit Bintang, also known as Bintang Walk or Starhill, is the vibrant shopping and entertainment district of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It encompasses Jalan Bukit Bintang (translated as Bukit Bintang Road) and its immediate surroundings. This bustling area has long been Kuala Lumpur’s premier retail hub, housing numerous landmark shopping centers, al-fresco cafés, bars, night markets, food streets, mamak stalls, and hawker-type eateries. Both tourists and locals, particularly the youth, flock to this lively district.

In a nod to the famous Shibuya crossing in Tokyo, the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) introduced a Shibuya-style pedestrian crossing at the junction of Bukit Bintang. This pedestrian-friendly addition, located in front of the iconic McDonald’s Bukit Bintang outlet, aims to enhance walkability in the area and create a dynamic urban experience.

The name Jalan Bukit Bintang originated from a hill approximately 50 meters high, which once stood near Kampung Dollah, a Malay village that no longer exists. The hill has since been replaced by Jalan Changkat Thambi Dollah and Jalan Barat. In the past, Bukit Bintang was primarily a residential area. However, it transformed over time into a vibrant entertainment hub. Notable landmarks include the Capitol Hotel (built by Low Yow Chuan in 1948, now known as the Malaysia Hotel) and the Bukit Bintang Amusement Park (established by Hong Kong media mogul Shaw, now the location of Sungai Wang Plaza).

Bintang Walk, situated along the main Bukit Bintang Road and Sultan Ismail Road, has undergone significant transformation in the past five years. It has evolved into one of the city’s trendiest and most bustling shopping hubs. The sidewalks are adorned with street furniture, while upscale cafes, restaurants, and clubs contribute to the vibrant atmosphere. On weekends, both locals and tourists flock to Bintang Walk and its shopping centers. Notably, this area hosts major nightlife events, including New Year’s countdowns, Merdeka eve celebrations, street concerts, and lively parties.

Team Mobiliti
June 11, 2024