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La Promenade to host Sarawak Open — Bonsai & Suiseki Championship again this year

KUCHING: La Promenade will once again host the Sarawak Open — Bonsai & Suiseki Championship, which this year will be on July 20-29.

MAJESTIC: The 2023 championship is even bigger than last year's, which was already the largest at that time.

The Sarawak Bonsai Association (SBA) is promising an even larger show than 2022’s, which was already the largest at the time.

“We aim to be better every year. On behalf of SBA members, we are glad HSL is just as ambitious as we are. When we asked to make it bigger, HSL immediately responded, yes,” SBA president Johnson Jong said, referring to Hock Seng Lee.

“A bigger event means more trees, more variety, more categories, more participants, more demos, more competition. It’s going to be the best Sarawak Open. The public is in for a super treat.”

To accommodate a larger show, 2023’s championship was shifted to July, allowing local bonsai enthusiasts more time to cultivate plants.

Jong said the show will feature the most beautiful trees ever entered a competition in the region.

“Changing it to mid-year means trees will be in full bloom. Usually, after the wet season, the bonsai will not be at its best. Now that it’s the dry season, the trees are at peak prettiness,” Jong said.

Organising chairman Hayes Teo said there would be four grand awards and 18 categories.

THRILLED: Sarawak Open organising chairman Hayes Teo.

Participating plants would be coming from as far as Sabah.

“Last year, we had plants from Miri, and this year, I’m just so happy that there will be plants from Sabah as well. The plant owners will be driving all the way from Sabah to Kuching for the Sarawak Open.”

HSL executive director Tony Yu expressed delight, adding La Promenade was the perfect venue.

“La Promenade is best known for its landscaping. Inside La Promenade, we have tree-lined boulevards with over 1,500 trees of various species. We have a landscape team of almost 30 people.

HSL supports the Sarawak Open because it is in line with our flagship property’s signature element. We are proud to be associated with such a beautiful and environmentally friendly event. It’s so great to see growing interests and genuine appreciation for greens from the community,” Yu said.

Judging the championship will be a mix of specialists from the Malaysia Bonsai and Suiseki Society (MBSS) and the Sarawak association.

The word “Bon-sai” is a Japanese loanword from Chinese, translated meaning “planted in a small container”. This art form is derived from an ancient Chinese horticultural practice since the Tang dynasty, part of which was then redeveloped under the influence of Japanese Zen.

It has been around for over a thousand years.

“Suiseki” is a Japanese term meaning “water stone”. Suiseki is a generic term for naturally shaped stone or rocks collected and appreciated for aesthetic qualities.

TIMELESS: Among winning entries from last year’s championship. The 2023 edition will have 185 participating plants.

MASTERFUL: Last year's 'Sarawak Open — Bonsai & Suiseki Championship’ winners.

ENTHUSIASTIC: Sarawak Bonsai Association president Johnson Jong with one of his plants.

YU: HSL supports the Sarawak Open because it is in line with our flagship property’s signature element, landscaping.

GREEN: La Promenade Mall is famous for its beautiful landscaping, it is located at KuchingSamarahan, along with the HSL Tower.

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