Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Organiser Ch'ng Huck Theng with top Hong Kong star Petrina Fung Bo Bo who was his celebrity guest.
Sharing a joke regardless of cameras
They could be Professor Higgins and Eliza Doolittle! Petrina Fung Bo Bo's Victorian inspired gown by Penang designer Richard Rivalli could have come straight from the movie 'My Fair Lady'!

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Petrina Fung Bo Bo thanking Ch'ng Huck Theng for giving her the coveted INPenang Award for Lifetime Achievement. She declared, "This is the first time I am accepting an award as previously I was too busy shooting or overseas to attend such ceremonies in person!"
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Glam guests at INPenang Awards at G Hotel Penang
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The Best Dressed Ladies; Ch'ng Huck Theng, Ch'ng Suat Ping, Datin Jenny Oon, Petrina Fung Bo Bo, Daniel Tang and Anne Lee
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Jonathan Main and Marcus Chye each won the bidding for the fabulous Fujifilm X-Pro 1 camera
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 The winners of the INPenang Awards
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Ch'ng Huck Theng thanking those who made it happened!

INPenang Awards 2012 organised by Ch'ng Huck Theng of CHTNetwork turned out to be Penang's most glamorous, happening and high-flying gala event that drew my breath away which is saying a lot as few things make me gasp and pant for breath unless I am having wild sex.

Most parties, including formal ones graced by high royalty or weddings, anniversaries and birthdays can dictate 'Black Tie', 'Tuxedo', 'Formal' or 'Long Gown' to high heaven but many still turn up in batek (which is fine as batek is our national fabric but even so...) or business suit or worse, long sleeved shirt. In olden days they would have been stopped at the gate and not even allowed to enter the premises let alone step inside the ballroom. 

So I was suitably impressed when I trotted into the G Hotel grand ballroom foyer for pre-party drinks to be confronted with a sea of penguins and birds of paradise in multi-hued gowns dripping with jewels, lace, fur and feathers! 

Ch'ng Huck Theng's guests really gave him face by dolling up to the nines and turning an award ceremony into a Penang version of the Academy Awards. The theme was 'A British Malaya Night' and only a few bucked the trend by not wearing tuxedos but these were members of the Lamborghini Club who drove their supercars from all over Malaysia. As far as I am concerned, they can turn up in their underwear to my party and are most welcomed as long as they park their Lamborghinis outside my house.

 Over 300 game changers from Penang, Ipoh, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur came in their finery and frippery to enjoy the 2nd INPenang Awards to honour individuals and organisations that contribute to Penang’s tourism industry. Considering this was only the second year and not as established as the CHT Awards which will be held in September or is it October, Ch'ng Huck Theng still managed to stun his peers by roping in some of the best names as sponsors. 

These include my favourite smart casual watch RADO which set up a mini showroom featuring larger than life photos of their ambassadors. Under Bernard Yong, RADO is now solidly entrenched in Malaysia as the watch to have on the way up and again once you reach the top! As a Kelantanese I am delighted to announce Kota Baru the state capital enjoyed the honour of being the first town in Malaysia to have a standalone RADO boutique! Only last year did Kuala Lumpur receive the honour of a similar RADO boutique and now there are 3.

Beams organiser par excellence Ch’ng Huck Theng, “Since George Town was awarded UNESCO World Heritage status in 2008, Penang has been listed as one of the ’44 Places to Go in 2009’ by New York Times and awarded the 8th Most Liveable City by ECA International in 2010. Last year, Yahoo listed Penang as among ‘the top 10 islands to visit before you die’! So we are maintaining the momentum!”

Come to think of it, attending a CHT event is also in the same league as one of those things you have to do before you enter heaven but alas, the INPenang Awards and CHT Awards are by invitation only which money cannot buy unless you become a sponsor of course.

Emcee Dato’ Leonard Tan was his usual affable self and the evening started with a spectacular bridal show by Anovia Bridal Concept designed by Daniel Tang, Leslie Lee and Anne Lee. 

I was in the loo when I thought I was hallucinating as I saw an apparition or doppelganger who looked like me, glittering with bling and replete with ruffles! As I was standing before an urinal and this vision was washing his hands at the sink behind me, he could not have been my reflection and had to be human. I mean, if he was not, I would have screamed the hotel down. So I demanded to know who he was and he turned out to be Daniel Tang the designer for Anovial Bridal. He certainly lived up to his image as top couturier as some designers I know wear what can only be described as rags. Of course everyone who does not know me assume I am a rock star, movie star, singer, actor or dancer. Grinned Daniel Tang, "I sing too". Hmmm, I don't so he is one up. 

Said Ch'ng Huck Theng, founder of INPenang Awards and Market Source Sdn Bhd, "It gives me great pleasureto honour individuals and organisations that have excelled in their field and contributed towards the growth of tourism in Penang. 

"For the past 6 years, MarketSource has printed over 2  illion copies of INPenang magazines, mainly distributed free to the public and visitors to Penang. I am proud to say today INPenang magazine is the top free tourist and society magazine in Penang. It is also the only magazine of its kind published in Japanese, Indonesian, Chinese and German to promote Penang in international markets."

Personally Ch'ng Huck Theng deserves an award himself and like me, deserves to be a Datuk at the very least. I wake every morning and wonder why I am not yet a Datuk but this is one of life's mysteries!

There were many categories covering the entire spectrum of the hotel, hospitality, food & beverage and tourism industries.

The awards were; Best Business Hotel (Eastin), Top Heritage Hotel (E & O), Preferred Hotel (G Hotel), Best F & B Pub (Auto City), Best F & B Hub (Penang Times Square), Best Interior Design House (Splendid Interior D├ęcor), Top Developers (E & O Berhad, Island LandCorp Property Group and Ivory Properties Group), Top Hospitals (Gleneagles Penang, Island Hospital and Loh Guan Lye Specialists Centre), Top Travel Agents (Discovery Overland Holidays and BMC Travel) and Best University (Universiti Sains).

The star of the night was famous Hong Kong actress Petrina Fung Bo Bo aka ‘Shirley Temple of the East’ who stunned the audience with her charm, witty remarks and spectacular gown by Penang couturier Richard Rivalli that outshone Scarlett O’Hara’s ballgown in ‘Gone with the Wind’. 

The diva insisted her designer accompanied her on stage to receive INPenang Honorary Award for Life Achievements presented by Ch’ng Huck Theng though it took a while to ascend the stage due to her voluminous frock.

“It has been nearly 2 years since I moved to Penang under the ‘Malaysia My Second Home’ programme and I have been loving every minute of it!” announced the 58 year old former child star who appeared in over 100 movies before she turned 10. “I am writing my memoirs so I need a place that is peaceful, serene and inspiring but not too dull! I have appeared in nearly 200 movies over the last five decades so there is plenty to write!”

Amazingly, this was the first time she had received an award in person since retiring in 1995. “I had always been too busy and could not accept in person so I am delighted to be able to do so tonight.”
Few are aware Petrina Fung had been living quietly on and off with her two adult sons in Kuala Lumpur. She married Malaysian architect in 1999 after being introduced to him by an ardent fan who eventually ended as her step-daughter!

Again, I was floored to see Petrina Fung, one of Hong Kong's most famous and successful actresses live in person. So I take my hat off to Ch'ng Huck Theng for getting her to attend. It is not everyday a superstar like Fung Bo Bo can turn up at your party! 

Petrina Fung is 58 but of course like all superstars manage to look a decade younger. 

A lavish, hardcover coffee table book ‘Penang Elite; Faces of Tourism’ was also launched, featuring the movers and shakers of Penang including Datuk Seri Wong Chun Wai, Group Chief Editor of The Star. In addition to personalities, it highlights the history, icons and attractions of Pearl of the Orient with lavish photographs and sells for RM 120. 

The evening ended with 4 Best Dressed Ladies won by Anne Lee, Datin Jenny Oon, Ch’ng Suat Ping and Fung Bo Bo who declared “This is the first time I am getting 2 awards in one night!”. Ch'ng Suat Ping happened to be Ch'ng Huck Theng's sister who happened to be the host and organiser but he vowed he was not responsible for the judges' decisions so nepotism was not involved. He said on stage,"Yes, she is my sister but I had nothing to do with the judges' decisions!" 

Ch’ng vowed to have Best Dressed Men next year after I complained he was being sexist and could be sued for favoring women only while men were left out in the cold for the wolves to eat.

 Sponsors were Rado, Anovia Bridal Concept, Fujifilm, G Hotel, Focal Concepts, UOB, 1East Museum and Nasim Carpets. 


L1320603.JPG Ch'ng Hung, son of Ch'ng Huck Theng and Ch'ng Suat Fing who greeted me at the entrance
L1320603.JPG Bernard Yong, country manager of RADO Malaysia with friends
L1320603.JPG I love Hrithik Roshan...don't we all?
L1320603.JPG So I felt compelled to join
More of the same
Matching couple
Dato' Wenddi-Ann Chong showing sexy legs in stunning couture gown. She is the Ambassador for Lamborghini Malaysia and the first woman to own a Lamborghini as she paid for the car and not her husband or lover as she is single.
Stunning quartet
Six of the best!
Beau Kee Hua Chee with the Belles of the Ball!
Dato Wenddi-Ann Chong, Kee Hua Chee, Datin Yong Maylene and Winnie Loo
He is young and handsome so he did not need a tux
I said my ruffles were the biggest but Ch'ng declared his was bigger and he was not referring to his ruffles
Nice couple
L1320603.JPG Elegance was the word
L1320603.JPG RADO rules OK
L1320603.JPG Ch'ng Suat Ping looks stunning in purple
L1320603.JPG Tall and lovely, no wonder she was one of the Best Dressed!
L1320603.JPG The superstar of the night---Petrina Fung Bo Bo in elaborate gown with train by Penang based designer Richard Rivalli
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Datin Maylene and Petrina Fung Bo Bo
Ch'ng Suat Ping, Datin Maylene, Petrina Fung Bo Bo and Dato Wenddi-Ann Chong
The bigger the better! Ch'ng Suat Ping, Datin Maylene Yong, Kee Hua Chee, Petrina Fung Bo Bo and Dato Wenddi-Ann Chong



mc2casey said...

Definitely awesome blog here....enjoyed reading it as well as the great photos (am one of the six with my wife, yourself, Winnie, Maylene and Wenddi)

And hey, you are from Kota Baru am I! Delighted and proud to know a person of your calibre and standing is from the same hometown as I am!

Cheers, Kee!!

Michael Chua

MK dreamx said...

Hello Hua Chee,
Enjoyed reading your account of this "glam-slam" event and viewing the beautiful photos.

It's great that event organiser Ch'ng Huck Theng managed to get HK actress Fung Bo Bo as the celebrity guest.

I found out that Fung Bo Bo has started a new official fans' page to post updates of her new movies and interviews. Such a lovely person!

Great work!