Royal Regalia attracts 1.6k visitors amid wedding festivities
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE Royal Regalia museum recorded more than 1,600 visitors since it extended opening hours for the royal wedding from April 5-12, said its chief attendant.
In an interview with The Brunei Times, Dk Nurkhirunnisa Pg Hj Metussin said more Bruneians visited the museum during the royal wedding celebrations for His Royal Highness Prince ‘Abdul Malik and YAM Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Raabi’atul ‘Adawiyyah Pg Hj Bolkiah.
“Only a few of tourists visited the building. They usually come in the morning,” she said.
The museum extended its opening hours from 9am to 10pm during the royal wedding festivities period. It normally operates from 9am to 5pm.
She said media dissemination on the extended opening hours had attracted first-timers to learn more about the royal exhibition galleries.
Dk Nurkhirunnisa said most visitors comprised family members who were interested to learn more about the artefacts used during royal wedding ceremonies and to educate their children about Brunei’s cultural heritage.
Abd Wahab Jahat, who works for the Public Works Department, said the extended operating hours gave him the opportunity to bring his family to visit the exhibition galleries.
Abd Wahab and his wife brought their four children to visit the exhibition as a way of educating them about Brunei’s royal customs.
The children would have a better idea on what to write for their essay homework, such as attractive places to visit in the country, he said.
Halfa Kahdzierin, a resident from Kg Berakas, said most of the artefacts in the building have not been replaced or moved since he first visited when he was still a student in 1991.
He said items that accompanied the royal chariot during the royal procession such as changkah (a two-pronged spear) and sinipit (decorated spears) were among the regalia which are still on the same spot more than 20 years ago.
“I still remember when I was in primary school when my teacher brought the pupils to visit this building. The replicas are still on the same spot. It is amazing. It brings back memories,” said Halfa.
He said photographs of His Majesty with the late Sultan showed the loving relationship between father and son, who together brought prosperity to the country.
“It shows companionship. You need to look at it yourself. Only then can you understand,” said Halfa.
Asnan Gani, a resident from Kg Saba Darat ‘B’, visited the royal galleries for the first time after he was asked by his eight-year-old son.
“My son asked me and my wife to visit the building because his school teacher told him about the interesting exhibits. I think Bruneians should appreciate more about the cultural artefacts of Brunei. I only learned about the royal regalia when I’m 50,” he said.
His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, launched the Royal Regalia museum in 1992.
It was designed to incorporate various characteristics of the Malay Islamic Monarchy ideology and house royal regalia items used in coronation ceremonies or weddings.
The exhibition galleries consist of the Royal Regalia Exhibition (Coronation 1968), Royal Exhibition Gallery, Silver Jubilee Exhibition Gallery, and the History and the Development of Constitution of Brunei Darussalam Exhibition Gallery.
The Brunei Times