Best 'hoods: SS15 - The niche hub for the hip
By Surekha Ragavan & Syarifah Syazana
Located within Subang Jaya, SS15 is a city within a neighbourhood. Its dense student population is contributed by the four main educational institutions in the area namely Taylor’s University College, Metropolitan College, Inti College and Sri Kuala Lumpur international school. On a typical weekday, the area is a buzzing scene of students, local food stalls disguised as ‘Western’ and budget shops. While its youthful vibe may not appeal to everyone, we’ve seen a mushrooming of niche cafés and hobby spots in the area. Some of which attract KLites too, as we discover. View more photos in the gallery
A place just for skaters, Wheel Love stocks up on a wide range of skateboards and inline skates including spare parts and accessories, as well as offering BMX bikes, clothing and shoes (brands like DC Shoes and Vans are a staple) and a small range of artsy collectibles. Typically ‘too cool for school’, lomo prints and graffiti deck the bare brick walls, while the alley overlooking the shop also operates as a small space for skaters to practice and hang out at.
28 Jalan SS15/4, Subang Jaya (012 296 1121/ wl33.com). Tue-Sun, 12noon-8pm.
The headphone store is located a floor up from the stretch of bubble tea stores and Taiwanese dessert joints opposite Asia Café. Its range of hard-to-access brands has proved popular not only among students in the area but also among sound engineers and musicians in the Klang Valley. Known by many in the forum sphere as an alternative headphone store, expect to see brands like Hippo, Audio-Technica, Beyerdynamic and EarSonic. Prices start from RM60 and go up to the thousands.
65A Jalan SS15/8A, Subang Jaya (03 5631 5055/www.jaben.com.my).
RC – short for remote control – is the key word here. Race cars, trucks, aeroplanes, helicopters and tanks line the shelves, with each group carrying a whole range of different brands and models offering different experiences. The catalogue of remote control land, sea and air units can get a little overwhelming to the curious visitor, but for RC enthusiasts this is heaven. Your remote control unit will never go without an upgrade.
Ground floor, Jalan SS15/8a, Subang Jaya (03 5637 7589/www.rcdreamz.com.my). Daily, 12noon-9.30pm.
Cham Bagel Bakery
From Pizza Hut, amble along towards Chatime and you’ll find this small joint on your way. A seemingly plain-looking food stall, we had to do a double take to confirm that yes, they sell bagels – freshly baked New York bagels to be exact. Here you’ll discover that there’s more to a bagel than just cream cheese (you can make yours a sandwich too with meatballs). Bagels don’t just come plain either; you can get yours in the usual plain or poppy seed to the more uncommon ones like honey wheat, multi-grain, chocolate and cinnamon raisin to name a few. On our visit, they had only been open for two weeks so it’ll be interesting to see where this place goes. One thing’s for sure though – their bagels are delicious.
41 Jalan SS15/8A, Subang Jaya. Mon-Sat, 7am-10pm; Sun, 10am-10pm.
Meeples European Boardgame Café
What’s a European boardgame? The people here are quick to point out that your usual boardgames like Monopoly are American-style; European boardgames typically have a different game play, with a lot of player interaction involved. Visitors who are probably tired of the usual cafe/bar/mamak scene flock here to just hang out and play games over some finger food, and we’re told that their busiest times are in the evenings especially on weekends. What’s most impressive about Meeples is its upstairs store carrying over 1,000 European boardgame titles for sale.
64-1 Jalan SS15/4D, Subang Jaya (03 5633 8033/www.meeples.com.my). Tue-Sun, 11am-1am.
While Wheel Love caters to the skaters, Grafa is just for the fixies. A fixed gear bike (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fixed-gear_bicycle) concept store and cafe (said to be the first of its kind in Asia), Grafa stocks fixed gear bikes and accessories (brands include Sugino, Focale44, Animal and Hold Fast, to name a few), and also features an adjoining design studio, second hand corner and bike assembly area. Skating was popular in the ’90s to the 2000s, but today it’s safe to say that fixies are taking over as a popular subculture among the youth.
55 Jalan S15/4B, Subang Jaya (03 5611 7600/www.grafa-design.com. Thu-Tue, 11.30am-9pm.
The Burger Shop Jalan SS15/8A, Subang Jaya (near Asia Café). Mon-Sat, 6pm-4am.
Residents and outsiders rave about this burger stall and we can see why. Offering an extensive menu of burgers and hotdogs including oblong burgers, the ‘special burger’ here is overshadowed by fancier items on the menu: double cheese, mushroom and lamb to name but a few. Prices start from RM2.50 per burger. Long queues are expected, especially late at night.
SS15 cendol and rojak Jalan SS15/3B, Subang Jaya. Open daily, 11.30am-7.30pm.
This roadside stall has been operating for close to 20 years, with the rojak being just as good as the cendol. The rojak stall is especially known for a long waiting line on weekends, so start early or go on a weekday.
Stellar boutique 66-2 Jalan SS15/4B, Subang Jaya (facebook.com/StellarStudio). Open daily, 10am-7pm.
This offbeat boutique and studio space belonging to graphic designer and fashion enthusiast Bono is also an art space and studio, stocking up on colourful vintage wear and accessories.
First Subang Mall SS15/4G, Subang Jaya.
Not to be confused with Subang Avenue and Subang Parade, this mall houses most of your regular retail and F&B outlets. It’s also home to Coffee Chemistry Signature and Edo Ichi, both suitably priced for students.
The Hungry Hog 71, Jalan SS15/4C, Subang Jaya (012 225 0877/hog.my). Tues-Sun, 12noon-2.30pm; 6pm-10pm.
Specialising in porcine dishes, the restaurant pulls in the crowd for its bangers and mash, siew yoke rice and crispy roast pork. The star though is the ‘three little pigs’ – a carnivorous combination of pork patty and streaky bacon in one messy burger.
Asia Cafe 57-59, SS15/8A, Subang Jaya (03 5636 4653).
Besides the SS15 wet market, Asia Café is possibly the most iconic landmark in the area. It’s not uncommon to use the food court as a marker for when giving directions ('I’m opposite Asia Café', 'My car is behind Asia Café'). Though the food isn’t revolutionary, the place still packs a crowd on football Saturdays, the best time to observe patterns of typical student life.
FTZ Asia.Net Cyber Café 57-59, SS15/8A, Subang Jaya.
Adjacent to Asia Café is FTZ Asia.Net Cyber Café, a gaming haven for the restless.
Gold Chilli Jalan SS15/8B, Subang Jaya.
A popular hangout for students and young yuppies, Gold Chilli has stood the test of time despite being located smack beside Restoran Darussalam, a staple in SS15. The place is known for their butter chicken rice, this being the creamy, buttery kind flecked with curry leaves – not the Indian, tomato kind.
For six more of the best neighbourhoods, get a copy of our June issue, RM6.90 at newsstands.