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skink
04-29-2012, 03:07 AM
my WIP is set partially there, and I'd like to correspond with someone who could add some local colour

ThunderBoots
05-16-2012, 11:40 AM
I've been to Macau a few times, but years ago, so I'm afraid that I can't help you first-hand ... but since no one else has jumped in, I was wondering if you had pursued other means.

For example, have you used Google's blog search to see if anyone has a blog focusing on, or set in, Macau?

Just a thought ...

GradyHendrix
05-17-2012, 12:14 AM
There are also a TON of movies set in Macau:

THE LONGEST NITE - the hardest to find, but one of the best. All inky noir and humidity.

WHERE A GOOD MAN GOES - another hard to find one.

EXILED - I think it's on Netflix Instant

THE UNTOLD STORY - on DVD in the US

ISABELLA - it used to be on Netflix Instant

The problem with Macau is it changes so much. I used to go back in the 90's when it was a dinky, but fun, low key casino town. Then there were the big construction projects of the early 2000's, then those all shut down leaving tons of people stranded and broke, but now business seems to have picked up again.

The new ferry terminal is one of the most blasted, godforsaken cement hellholes on the planet, which is in keeping with the "new" Macau. And make sure to check out (if you haven't already) the tons of great stories about how insanely corrupt it is/was.

REMLIG
06-15-2012, 09:38 AM
Interesting thread.

Cath
06-15-2012, 03:41 PM
If you can give more specific information, skink, that would be appreciated. Is this set in the present or past? What aspects of Macau do you want to highlight in your story? What kind of places are your characters going to hang out?

REMLIG
06-16-2012, 12:49 AM
Is gambling big there? Is it like Vegas? How strict are the laws there?

skink
06-17-2012, 05:22 PM
being more specific, Cath

my WIP is set in present-day Macau. It involves an Australian protagonist chasing a fugitive fraudulent businessman who is laundering his illegal funds through a Macau casino.

I'm looking for background colour on the political situation in Macau, especially its relations with the PRC, political dissidents, the gaming industry, junkets, organized crime, local personalities and culture.

skink
06-17-2012, 05:47 PM
and thanks Gradyfix.
'Exiled' and 'Isabella' I have, the others I'll be looking for

Snitchcat
06-17-2012, 05:54 PM
Macau is quite the mix of cultures: Portuguese and Chinese mainly. Its major languages are Cantonese and Mandarin; Portuguese features, too.

Biggest casino (last I was there) was Wynn: grand, high ceilings, quiet but relaxed; warm colours (carpet, lighting, etc.). Well-lit. Sections are clear: Black Jack, Slots, etc. (Don't recall the rest of the names, sorry.)

Casinos still abound. Do a quick Google search for "Macau Casino" and "Macau industry".

The ferry port is still a mess; hasn't really improved at all. You either need to grab a taxi, have a friend there who drives, or get a hotel shuttle bus.

Most of the hotels are near the centre of Macau. Shopping is good, but, like any modernised city, you have to go through to the back streets to find the authentic stuff. Crime rate is low. Unless you deliberately invite it.

And the Venetian (newest, most expensive hotel) is worth exploring. It's large enough that you need a map. Also has a waterway in the middle; gondola ride if you're interested.

Relation with the PRC is good. Macau loves being back as part of China, although the place is still known as Macau SAR (Special Administrative Region).

Political dissidents: don't hear much about it.

Regarding organised crime, I'm guessing they stick mainly to the casinos -- make more money there than robbing people or whatever. But since Macau is on the Mainland, wouldn't surprise me that it's the Mainland triads that control the crime.

Local personalities: friendly, passionate people. They mind their own business, used to seeing tourists, relaxed. Most speak Cantonese, but can switch to Mandarin. Portuguese not so much these days. Else, it's business as usual.

Small, local family-owned shops, are the trend despite larger stores.

As far as getting chased through a casino, check out the following list: http://www.worldcasinodirectory.com/macau. Also http://macaucasinoguide.com/ may offer some ideas.

For a good chase, try Casino Lisboa -- hotel is round the corner / connected to it, and it's one of the more well-known establishments. Wynn (http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=13&sqi=2&ved=0CNsBEBYwDA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wynnmacau.com%2Fhomepage&ei=dsrdT_67HqeViAfGqpWOCg&usg=AFQjCNEPtogvwDcZVtGoinRbdMGhrMTSjQ) security is tighter than most. Venetian (hotel) is a vertiable maze (http://www.venetianmacao.com/).

This last link, http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_955.html, should provide an overview of the place. But beware, it may not contain the most updated information.

Hope this helps you get started.

skink
06-18-2012, 05:11 PM
many thanks - I think I've got most of that stuff from my research and background reading.
I was really looking for a resident that I could ask some more detailed questions for local colour before I travel there next year.