Cover Photo: Courtesy of Shawna Yap

The ever fashionable South Korea-born jetsetter shares five Chinese New Year traditions and memories she cherishes

Born and raised in South Korea, Shawna Yap often celebrated Chinese New Year with family before living abroad, first to Africa for a year or two and then California. Moving to Kuala Lumpur years ago after marrying her husband Yap Teak Sing, she continues to embrace Chinese New Year rituals and traditions that are close to her heart. 

Related: Chinese New Year 2022 in Malaysia: Reunion Dinner & Other SOPs

Amidst the flurry of planning and excitement leading up to this year's celebrations, Tatler caught up with Yap to learn her best-loved memories, favourite traditions and go-to spots for reunion dinner. 

Cherished Memories

"Chinese New Year (Seollal) in Korea was memorable for me," Yap says. "We would wear hanbok and visit our friends and family. Children often received money from their elders after performing a formal bow. I loved it. This year, I look forward to catching up with old friends and family in KL, and sharing good food, joy and laughter." 

See also: Capsule Collections to Celebrate Chinese New Year 2022 in Style

Family Feasts

"My top restaurants in Kuala Lumpur for CNY reunion dinners or festive lunches with friends are: Yu, Ruyi & Lyn, Lai Po Heen at Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur, and Yun House at The Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur."

Related: 15 Hotel Dining Promotions for a Memorable Reunion Feast This Chinese New Year

Flower Power

"Flower arrangements are everywhere in my home during Chinese New Year. I love to decorate the house with flowers that I buy from Lee Wah Florist. Doing my own flower arrangements is my passion and hobby. I'm into dry flowers as well, it's fun to create different looks with them."

See also: Chinese New Year 2022: Where to Order Flowers Online In Malaysia

Gift Baskets Galore

"In the last two years, we've tried to order from hotels or restaurants that offer door-to-door delivery for hygiene and safety reasons," Yap shares. "We love ordering Chinese New Year cakes and yee sang from Ruyi & Lyn and the Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur."

See also: Chinese New Year 2022: The Best Food Gifts and Hampers

Snack Time

"I like to get the traditional Chinese New Year cookies from Chinatown where my wonderful late mother-in-law used to buy from."

Related: Where & What To Eat: 7 Places To Explore In Chinatown, Kuala Lumpur

"It's been an incredibly challenging two years for everyone. It's taught me to appreciate the small things."
Shawna Yap
© 2022 Tatler Asia Limited. All rights reserved.