Malaysian entrepreneur turns Christmas tree upside-down to symbolise the tough year so far

The upside-down Christmas tree symbolises the difficult 2020 hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. ― Pictures by Yusof Mat Isa
The upside-down Christmas tree symbolises the difficult 2020 hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. ― Pictures by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 20 ― Malaysian entrepreneur and restaurateur Ernest Ong can’t wait for the challenging 2020 to end.

He is all set to usher in the New Year with an extravagant Christmas decoration at his residence.

The 40-year-old, who was born and raised in Taman Tun Dr Ismail (TTDI), has turned his house in a relatively quiet neighbourhood into an “attraction” with glitzy decorations and over 12,000 LED lights.

But the most unique and eye-catching feature in the deco is a Christmas tree with Santa Claus, a deer and snowman, which are all hanging upside down.

According to Ong, the upside-down Christmas tree symbolises the difficult year most people faced due to the Covid-19 pandemic and its economic challenges.

Entrepreneur Ernest Ong has turned his house into a Christmas ‘attraction’ with a glitzy decoration.
Entrepreneur Ernest Ong has turned his house into a Christmas ‘attraction’ with a glitzy decoration.

Ong, who owns Ali, Muthu & Ah Hock as well as Tom, Dick & Harry’s restaurant chain, admitted that 2020 has been the most unprecedented year in business for him.

However, he hoped that his early Christmas decorations would bring positive vibes to his community despite the gloomy year.

“I just hope these lights would remind us of the good times before the pandemic and unite us all again to pass through these trying times.”

As people nowadays tend to stay at home, Ong said he noticed that many have started to treasure community initiatives.

“The pandemic has taught people to co-exist and strengthen their bond with each other.

“It’s nice to lighten the mood for everyone and bring joy to the community by a simple thing like a Christmas decoration,” he said.

The decoration work, which took about five days, was completed last night and immediately caught the attention of every car that passed through Jalan Datuk Sulaiman.

Some of the cars even pulled over to get down and take some photos of the flashy “Christmas house”.

Neighbours pose against Ong’s house for a photo.
Neighbours pose against Ong’s house for a photo.

Moving forward, Ong hoped that 2021 would be a better year for everyone.

“Historically, after any recession, things will get even better. So, we are very hopeful.”

For now, Ong ― who also owns a boat and runs a sailing business ― said they are very cautious and try to stay afloat until the situation subsides.  

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