Sunday, February 12, 2012

Atkinson Clock Tower Exhibition pulls crowds, extended 13th – 14th February 2012


The Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition at Hotel Sixty3, Gaya Street in conjunction with the recent ‘Bonding With Gaya Street’ event held on 10th-12th February 2012 has proven to be such a hit among locals and tourists that the exhibition has been extended until 14th February 2012 to give visitors a better chance to come to the exhibition. The exhibition venue is located at the hotel’s 1st floor Atrium, situated just opposite of the Sabah Tourism Board building.

Among the highlights of the exhibition is a 48-foot long graphic mural of the Atkinson Clock Tower, sponsored by Hotel Sixty3 as well as numerous images and information of Kota Kinabalu’s oldest and most popular city landmark.

According to Richard Nelson Sokial, a local heritage advocator involved with the exhibition, “the public response to the Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition has been very, very good…and by popular demand, the hotel’s management has kindly extended their goodwill and hospitality to host the exhibition for another two more days”.

Curious members of the public have come steadily since Saturday to view the exhibition, which is one of the activities organized by the North Borneo History Enthusiasts (NBHE) for the recent ‘Bonding With Gaya Street’ event. The exhibition was put together by members of the Heritage Sabah group with the help of NBHE volunteers and the cooperation of Sabah Museum, Sabah State Archives, Jabatan Penerangan Sabah, town planning studies by AIA Consortium as well as photo contributions from private individuals.

Besides displaying of rare photos showcasing the importance of the Atkinson Clock Tower as a city marker for more than 100 years, the exhibit features a 100-year old original railway sleeper used by the North Borneo Railways (now known as Sabah Railways), courtesy of Cap Kuda Coffee Company.

A visual multimedia display by various supporters of Heritage Sabah group’s Save Our Heritage Atkinson Clock Tower campaign is also on display which shows the younger generations appreciation of the clock tower as a legacy for their own generation in Sabah.

“Many members of the public are not even aware that the clock tower built in 1905, still works in 2012 – and still emits chimes from its bell tower – despite its melodious sound being drowned by the busy traffic on Jalan Balai Polis”, Sokial said.

He added that, “members of the public should definitely come to see this exhibit, as a way of learning more about the heritage value of the Atkinson Clock Tower and why it is so important to preserve it in a pristine site. It is a chance to learn about KK city’s history and how this clock tower continues to contribute to the enrichment of Kota Kinabalu’s local community in these modern times”.


Friday, February 10, 2012

Hotel Sixty3 to unveil Sabah’s biggest graphic mural of historical Clock Tower for KK city day celebrations.


The newly-opened Hotel Sixty3 on Gaya Street, Kota Kinabalu will be unveiling a Sabah’s biggest graphic mural of the Atkinson Clock Tower for a 2-day exhibition to be held in conjunction with the “Bonding with Gaya Street” event on the 11th & 12th February 2012.

The 8’ x 48’ graphic mural, depicting KK city’s oldest landmark, the Atkinson Clock Tower will be the highlight of the exhibition that will be placed in the atrium of the hotel. The mural will be an artwork collage of various old photographs of Jesselton township combined to create an image of the clock tower. It will be the largest graphic bunting ever produced of the 107-year-old historical clock tower that has now become the most important historical marker for the city of Kota Kinabalu.

The Atkinson Clock Tower (ACT) exhibition will showcase the importance of the Atkinson Clock Tower as KK city’s historic landmark with old photos taken over the past 107 years of its existence by the past and present residents of Kota Kinabalu (then known as Jesselton).

Richard Nelson Sokial, a local heritage advocate who is assisting in curating the ACT exhibition together with Sabah Museum praised the hotel management for its interest and support in promoting the event. Sokial is also a member of the “Bonding with Gaya Street” organizing committee under the North Borneo History Enthusiasts (NBHE) group that is aiming to bring the local community together in rediscovering the history of KK city’s early town centered around the activities of Gaya Street - then known as Bond Street.

“The graphic mural of the Atkinson Clock Tower is a huge and generous gesture by Hotel Sixty3 in support of promoting our local history”, he said. Sokial is confident that with ongoing efforts to create awareness of the importance to preserve heritage in the city, more and more local business establishments are seeing the potential of heritage as a branding and tourism product by supporting the preservation of existing historical structures and their immediate surroundings.

Lisa Sabrina Ambrose, General Manager of Hotel Sixty3 said that “ the hotel is excited to be involved with a project that is so close to the heart of the Gaya Street community. We hope that this exhibition will encourage the public to learn more about the city, so that when they walk along Gaya Street they can retrace the history of Kota Kinabalu”.

Formerly known as Nosmal Court, the premise of Hotel Sixty3 was renovated and completed early last year and is one of the few examples of architectural readaptation projects in Kota Kinabalu that have mostly kept the character of the original building’s Modernist architecture from the early 1960s.

Apart from rare old photos and information about the Atkinson Clock Tower and heritage preservation efforts, a multimedia presentation will also be shown about the Atkinson Clock Tower as an effort by Sabah’s younger generation to preserve their local history. In support of the Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition, Hotel Sixty3 will also display its own private collection of old photos taken during North Borneo’s colonial era along its hotel’s corridors.

The Atkinson Clock Tower exhibition will be held at the 1st floor atrium of Hotel Sixty3, located in front of the Sabah Tourism Corporation building on Gaya Street. The 2-day exhibition will be open from 8.30am – 6.30pm as part of the “Bonding with Gaya Street” event organized by NBHE and DBKK.

Early birds visiting the “Atkinson Clock Tower” exhibition will also be able to redeem free cups of coffee sponsored by Cap Kuda Coffee Company at the 1st floor atrium. The coupons will be distributed along Gaya Street during the 2-day event.

A coffee table book titled “Colonial Towns in Sabah: West Coast” by PAM Sabah Chapter will also be on sale at the exhibition featuring 12 colonial townships in Sabah’s West Coast.