Sunday, August 24, 2014

Penang Food and Watches - Potent Combo

Us bunch of watch enthusiasts meet every now and then and once a year, we invite the ladies from the brands. This year is no difference as we meet for our annual event. Last year it was at Immigrants Gastrobar at Joo Chiat. This time around, we had it at Penang Place at Fusionopolis.

Penang Place serves authentic Penang food - favorites like char kway teow, Penang assam laksa, prawn noodle soup, lor bak and more. The buffet we had that night had a wonderful spread - so much so that I really don't know where to start - so I shall forgo the food and blog about it another day. The restaurant can accommodate more than 300 in one sitting and for week days, they serve a buffet as well as from the ala carte menu.
 photo GTGPenangPlace08_zps490b2f8d.jpg

We had taken a corner at the back of the restaurant - all of five tables. We were expecting 45 for the night.
 photo GTGPenangPlace09_zpsc42a7a0f.jpg

As usual, we have some early birds and by the time I got there, they were already on their first jug!
 photo GTGPenangPlace10_zps87f102c0.jpg

Then the crowd started to come in.
 photo GTGPenangPlace12_zpsccb789e1.jpg

And the dinner began.
 photo GTGPenangPlace13_zps3d7de449.jpg

Larry was especially popular… See all the ladies crowding around him?
 photo GTGPenangPlace11_zpsf8dd0087.jpg

Then it was time for the "real" event of the night! Watch Time!!! The most anticipated time of the evening is when we all display our watches.
 photo GTGPenangPlace15_zps9b8fb882.jpg

We normally have two themes for every gathering and this time around we wanted watches with special dials (other than black and white) and dress watches. So we argued what the definition of a "dress" watch is - well its about any watch you will wear out for a night event. So theoretically speaking, even a Casio G Shock will qualify. That is if you will wear a tux with a G Shock. Top half of the table are watches with special dials while the bottom half are dress watches.
 photo GTGPenangPlace16_zps2b06de35.jpg

Right side of the table are where the dress watches are located. See any familiar pieces? Swatch, Eone, pair of VC, Urwerk 103, an IWC pocket watch, a pair of Patek Calatrava, De Bethune, a pair of iWC Portuguese Jubilees in rose gold, a pair of Grand Seiko SBGM003, Chopard Lunar One, Laurent Ferrier micro rotor with a specially customized dial, an FP Journe and many more.
 photo GTGPenangPlace17_zps23d9338e.jpg

Mid table and the collection becomes more clear. A pair of HYTs which marks the area for special dials to the left. PAM with a brown dial, Movas bronze with a green dial, a vintage Omega, Lange One Soiree with MOP dial, three very nice JLCs, a Hamilton, a Parmigiani Hebdomadaire with blue dial, a Seiko Monster with orange dial and the list goes on...
 photo GTGPenangPlace18_zps43d35c33.jpg

Three JLCs - Rendezvous, the Reverso Ultra Thin rose gold with brown dial and the ladies Reverso Duoface. Pardon the poor quality of the picture - everyone crowding around the watches.
 photo GTGPenangPlace21_zpsd5804889.jpg

At the left side of the table, the watches with special dials. To the extreme left of the pic are a pair of Grand Seiko GMT with blue dial - a special edition to mark 100th anniversary of Seiko watchmaking.
 photo GTGPenangPlace19_zps05519f71.jpg

Two watches in this group that really appeal to me - the Lange One Soiree with a mother-of-pearl dial and the Vulcain Cricket Aviator GMT "The Dragon".
 photo GTGPenangPlace22_zpsf44f5514.jpg

The Vulcain "Dragon" is a special limited edition - why special? Well, the original Dragon is a limited edition of 30 pieces while this is an LE of 18 pieces. Done with the cloissone enamel technique and the black dial is truly eye catching.
 photo GTGPenangPlace14_zpsad727918.jpg

And to make the occasion even more special, we had a pair of birthday boys.
 photo GTGPenangPlace23_zpsaeb89a63.jpg
 photo GTGPenangPlace24_zps0852a968.jpg

Forever 21!
 photo GTGPenangPlace01_zps357572ea.jpg

The birthday boys posing with all the ladies. Brands present were Cartier, Chopard, Glashutte Original, IWC, JLC, Omega, Roger Dubuis, Swatch and Vacheron Constantin. A few ladies from the industry were also there representing the magazines, collectors and events management companies.
 photo GTGPenangPlace02_zpsf02c62dc.jpg

Then it was the men's turn.
 photo GTGPenangPlace04_zpsdc28f9f9.jpg

And now for the group photo.
 photo GTGPenangPlace05_zpsc52db728.jpg

All hands up for watch collectors!
 photo GTGPenangPlace06_zps034e8906.jpg

All in all, we had 43 people who turned up. Some last minute withdrawals but the crowd was still bigger then the usual 30 odd. Some had to leave earlier hence the fewer number of watches.

I do apologize to some who could not find the place - somehow, even taxi drivers can't get the place correct. Penang Place is at Fusionopolis and with the amount of new buildings coming up, can be quite confusing. Better road directions the next time.