Maduro
 
 

MEET MR. P

The Power of P

 
 
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If you’ve been to Maduro, chances are – you’ve seen him roaming up and down the hallway, perhaps even exchanged a polite pleasantry or two. Perhaps you saw the messy silver mop and disarming grin and gave him no second thought. Little did you know, that every inch, nook and cranny of Maduro is undeniably, Mr. P.

To truly understand the inner workings of Maduro, you’ll first have to get acquainted with the three P’s. Piano, property and private clubs. Somewhere out in the universe is a plump, three-ringed venn diagram with all three P’s accounted for and in its intersection would be one fully realised Mr. P.

 
 
 
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Fr0m one ‘P’ to another

Both a classically trained pianist and a dogged realist since young, P taught himself the ways of jazz and pop through pure experimentation, and—at the mere age of 18—started earning his keep by making his way around the local gig circuit. Within a decade, he found himself playing in some of Singapore’s top live music institutions, from the iconic Tiara Supper Club in Shangri-La Hotel to the Westin’s prestigious Palm Grill outpost, alongside the likes of Frances Yip and Anita Sarawak.

Fresh in his thirties, P was amongst the most sought-after first call pianists in Singapore. At the same time, he was also on the verge of making a name for himself as a real estate broker. Tired of living from gig to gig, P made the choice to let go of his first love and focus entirely on his second. With passion to a zenith degree invested in everything he does—unfazed by a city obsessed with building up—P soon carved a niche for himself in the dealings of Singapore’s stodgy, storied shophouses in the historic districts of Telok Ayer and Emerald Hill.

Eager for a larger slice of the pie, P broadened his horizons by travelling around the world, assessing some of the continent’s most promising developments, before ending up in London. Arriving in London in the early nineties—an opportune time with a market ripe for picking —and a few solid deals later, P was soon known as the trusted go-to guy for London property dealings amongst some of Singapore’s elite, a reputation that has only soared in the last seven years as he naturally moved on to larger commercial and investment deals; as well as deals beyond London – most notably the brokerage and conceptualisation of one JIA hotel in Hong Kong—Asia’s first Philippe Starck-designed boutique hotel—which went on to form the stepping stones of Singaporean restaurateur Yenn Wong’s legacy.

 
 
 
A young P performing at The Westin’s Palm Grill in the late 80s.

A young P performing at The Westin’s Palm Grill in the late 80s.

 

 

The inevitable road to Maduro

As P found success, it started getting harder to ignore the tugging of the heartstrings from an old flame. P decided to devote some of his passion back to rekindling his love for music, and pursuing newfound indulgences with panache. Armed with an antique Steinway & Sons he bought from London, P enlisted the help of Montenegrin maestro pianist Boris Kraljevic, who reintroduced him to the warm embrace of classical music. At the same time, P sponsored several pianos for gifted children from needy families, in hopes that a little act of kindness could go a long way in shaping the future generation of classical musicians.

On newfound indulgences, P’s time spent enjoying a fine cigar or two in some of London’s finest private members’ clubs the likes of 5 Hertford Street and The Arts Club left him with an insatiable hunger for recreating a similar experience in Singapore – an unpretentious atmosphere with just the right amount of exclusivity, where deals are made, secrets traded and cigars and fine whisky can be indulged in spades. This led him to set up Robusto, a private cigar bar tucked and shrouded in the bustle of Singapore’s world-famous shopping belt, now in its first decade mark.

In 2019, P was presented with the opportunity to take over the top floor above all-day French bistro atout. Faced with a blank canvas and Dempsey’s lush, leafy tranquil as his backdrop—and only at the age of 64—P, inspired by a lifetime of achievements in circles that couldn’t be worlds apart, created Maduro.

To some, Maduro is a wine and whisky connoisseur’s dream come true. To others, a listening lounge devoted to preserving the virtuosity of the classics – both genres and libations alike. To the select few, Maduro is their own secret slice of heaven on earth. According to old Spanish etymology, Maduro depicts an act “to ripen, mature”.

But for those who know him, Maduro is, without a doubt, the sum of all the best parts that maketh a man none other than Mr. P

 
 
 
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The line of music

In September 2019, and almost a decade-in-the-making, Mr. P finally released his personal album, Journey with my Friends, in which contains seven of his favourite tunes to play, each reflective of a time and place in his life—and the people who have played a part each time—that he has lovingly rescored to honour each memory. Composed and produced by his good friend and Golden Horse award-winning producer Ricky Ho, the album is Mr. P’s way of thanking his friends who have blessed him through the years—neither with riches nor fame—but with options. Options that have been presented through the line of music, from people he’d met throughout his colourful career. Available as collectible CDs and vinyls that he’s gifted to his friends, requesting for nothing in return but a donation to the National Cancer Centre Singapore, in hopes that the line of music will do to those in need as it did to him.

 
 
 
 
 

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I liken the emotions to that of the many “first steps” I have taken in life – never just dipping my feet in but nose diving into uncharted territories, driven by what some may call momentary madness, but to me – an illusion of beauty. As the first phase progresses, I picture the different landscapes I have been subject of, each crescendo a new challenge that ends in its own climax. Then, when all is said and done, the original first note as Desplat would have it begins on the second phase, with newfound sensibility and calmness. This is how I have entered each phase in my life, the next stronger than the former. This is my waltz.

"

/  MR. P, ON WHY HE CHOSE TO BEGIN Alexandre Desplat's Dinner WaltzS WITH An UNCONVENTIONAL G SHARP – the OPENING TRACK ON ‘JOURNEY WITH MY FRIENDS’  /