KUALA LUMPUR, July 31 — The MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) line whose first phase was launched in December last year and second phase became operational on July 17 offered relief to many who rely on public transportation. At last, there is connectivity to areas that previously had no rail connection and where the bus services are irregular.
For instance, the Bandar Utama MRT now benefits the dense residential and commercial areas of Bandar Utama, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Damansara Uptown and even Tropicana, all of which previously depended on the Kelana Jaya LRT.
Once it is 100 per cent completed, an elevated pedestrian walkway will link the station to 1 Utama Shopping Centre. For now, commuters can board 1 Utama’s free shuttles from 10.40am to 11pm daily or opt for the MRT feeder buses which run at 10–15 minute intervals.
If you choose to walk, it is merely 300-500m from the station to One World Hotel, First Avenue and 1 Utama Shopping Centre. These three buildings house hundreds of food outlets with cuisine from almost every part of the world.
The Roof at First Avenue
The Roof is a premium gastro and entertainment hub with seven outlets on the top floors of First Avenue. Signature by The Hill offers Asian and international fusion cuisine with an expansive view of Petaling Jaya, while Yezi is the first of its kind concept steamboat outlet in the country that serves coconut-based broth. Its strict emphasis on premium, fresh and mostly homemade ingredients sealed its reputation as one of the best steamboat restaurants in Malaysia. Even its dipping sauces are excellent.
As one of the largest malls in the country, 1 Utama houses a mind-boggling number of food outlets. The food street over at the Lower Ground Floor of the Old Wing is where most of the non-halal hawker delights are. One of the more unique outlets here is Teo Chew Lor where traditional braised Teochew style meals are possible for below RM12. If you are a seafood fan, check out Sekinchan Catch for the freshest daily catch from a local fishing village. There is also The Fish Bowl which serves great, full-hearted poke bowls.
Over at the Arena Court Food in Aeon is a mix of local and international food at wallet-friendly prices albeit in a basic dining environment.
Food Republic is a pork-free food court on the 2nd floor of the New Wing with almost 15 tenants offering a wide range of cuisine ranging from Malay, Chinese, and Japanese to Middle Eastern and Western.
Fans of Penang and Melaka favourites should check out Melaka Corner, Nyonya Colors, Penang Flavours, Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul, Little Cravings and Peranakan Place whose menus are delightfully diverse.
Fancy some Michelin-starred fare? Putien and Mak’s Chee Authentic Wonton offer dishes from the original stores.
Putien serves Heng Hwa (or Xing Hua) cuisine, a regional specialty that has its roots traced to Putian, a beautiful coastal town located in the Fujian province of China. I find the food a nice deviation from your average Cantonese fare.
Mak’s Chee offers authentic Hong Kong style wonton noodles.
For Vietnamese food buffs, there are Pho Viet, Obanhmi and Vietnam Kitchen to satisfy your pho, banh mi and Vietnamese coffee cravings.
My picks for excellent Thai cuisine are Thai Hou Sek and Ngam. The latter’s Tom Yum Super Bowl is a glorious portion of salmon, giant prawns, fish balls, mussels and eggs.
If Japanese food is your passion, 1 Utama is the place to be. There are stand-alone outlets like Hokkaido Sushi, Sushi and Pasta Zanmai, Eat Paradise at Isetan 1 Utama. Savour the freshest sushi at Ichiro Sushi while air-flown ingredients from Japan are available over at Robataya.
Health buffs can go organic at Opika and BMS Organics. The former offers largely Western, hearty fares while the latter is more inclined to Asian fare.
In addition to the above, almost all the fast food chains in Malaysia are available within 1 Utama!
There is an abundance of bakeries too namely Sun Moulin, Komugi, Lavender, La Boheme, Roti Boy or Châteraisé.
1. The Roof, 1 First Avenue, 3 Lebuh Bandar Utama, Bandar Utama, Petaling Jaya, Selangor
From the station: Once you exit the fare gates, head towards 1 Utama Shopping Centre. Once inside, look for Grand Imperial Restaurant on the ground floor. There is a connecting corridor that takes you into One World Hotel. Exit the hotel and make your way towards the entrance of First Avenue.
2. One World Hotel
Address and directions as per above.
3. 1 Utama Shopping Centre
Address as per above.
From the station: Once you exit the fare gates, head towards 1 Utama Shopping Centre. Once inside, look for the information counter on the ground floor.