Biggest Weekend Market in the World ‘Luasempit’ to Land in Melaka Next Year!

When in Bangkok, Thailand, the massive Chatuchak Weekend Market is one of the must-visit attractions filled with everything you need from food to souvenirs. The same attraction (and bigger) will land in Kota Linggi, Melaka in September next year!

The developer of Malaysia Tourism City (MTC) Meridian Berhad today announced the Luasempit Weekend Market will occupy 100 acres, 40 of which features a massive lake.

The market will be filled with 3,000 stalls selling Malaysian-made goods and food. The name Luasempit comes from the mix of two Malay words luas (broad) and sempit (narrow), describing the market’s design – the broad al-fresco walkway and the narrower air-conditioned indoor facility.

With a massive market and other attractions on a 100-acre space, Luasempit is like Bangkok’s Chatuchak Weekend Market on steroids. Image: Getty

Every lane in the market will feature stalls selling goods from all 14 Malaysian states so visitors can have a taste of all the unique traditional food, among many other offerings like souvenirs, health and beauty products, antique goods, fashion and much more, without travelling the whole country.  

The best part is, the market doesn’t allow more than three stalls selling the same thing as well as a fixed price policy, so visitors will get to see a plethora of unique items on sale and avoid wasting time having to negotiate for that MYR5 discount.

Luasempit, together with the world’s first Hasbro water theme park and an adventure park, is part of the first phase of MTC’s 622-acre development based on four pillars: mass tourism, medical tourism, edu-tourism and eco-tourism.

Attractions Within the Market

Food operators on their boats at a floating market in Thailand.

Other than the whopping 3,000 stalls, Luasempit also features a floating market, a bee farm that harvests acacia honey, a massive event space enough to host festivals (events in the pipeline include My Little Pony Run, hot air balloon fests and Transformers shows), a street art section filled with murals and hanging arts commissioned to local artists, an aquaponics garden where plants grow without soil, a bamboo island filled with, well, towering bamboos just like the famous forest in Japan. The island will also double as a bird park where visitors can expect to spot hornbills, flamingos, flightless birds and more.

Luasempit will also feature a bird park.
The bamboo forest at Luasempit replicates the famous attraction in Kyoto, Japan.

To keep visitors from getting lost, the different sections of the streets will be filled with striking natural colours using plants like Japanese fern trees, royal Poinciana flamboyant trees, plumeria rubra trees and angsana trees. For that overseas holiday feel, the market will also feature Malaysian Sakura trees called Tabebuia.

The streets of Melaka, specifically Kota Linggi, will be filled with Malaysian Sakura trees called Tabebuia.

Crowd Puller

Spencer (left) and Yap holding the memorandum of understanding document during Luasempit’s launch in Kuala Lumpur today.

Meridian Berhad chief executive officer Datuk Seth Yap said Melaka recorded 4.79 million tourist arrivals in the first three months of 2019, an increase of 17% compared to last year. While Melaka Chief Minister Adly Zahari has set a target of 20 million tourists by the end of this year, MTC partner has committed to bringing in two million visitors to Melaka.

AirAsia BIG chief executive officer Spencer Lee said: “MTC will be a new shopping haven for Malaysians and tourists alike who are always on the lookout for great deals. With our extensive route network and large passenger base, we’re committed to working together with Meridian to bring in two million visitors to MTC and contribute to the social and economic growth of Melaka.”

Lee said BIG Members will be able to earn and pay with BIG Points for booking and retail purchases at MTC.

“This is part of our initiative and commitment towards extending the use of BIG Points outside of AirAsia ecosystem, giving BIG Members more freedom to choose how they use BIG Points. With this partnership, we’re one step closer to realising our vision of making BIG Points a digital currency for everyone,” he said.

Seamless Shopping and Building Business

Not only will the market feature cashless payments as well as delivery options so you don’t have to lug around the goods everywhere, you can also buy the goods online in case you don’t have the energy to visit all 3,000 stalls.

This is also good news for entrepreneurs interested to set shop at the market. Pricing for each outlet starts at MYR2,500 a month. From this amount, you will get a physical store with a footfall of two million tourists a year and access to the market’s omni channel of up to 20 online shopping platforms in the region namely Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam and the Philippines.

On opening up opportunities for entrepreneurs, Yap said this weekend market serves as a perfect ground for small merchants to build their name.

“Chasing a dream can be expensive that you can’t risk losing your dayjob. By setting your business at a weekend market, you can still keep your stable nine to five income and add more profit on the weekends,” he said.

“Once your business at the market and omni channel is stable, only then you can consider diving into business full time.” 

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Written by Asyraf Naqiuddin

Asyraf believes there’s a story anywhere you turn that could inspire readers around the world. With a penchant for high-powered motorcycles, he hopes to one day get back in the saddle and cover the globe on two wheels.

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