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1 City 5 Ways

Four Seasons Hotel

Photo by Ken Seet

Poolside at the Four Season Hotel.

There's more than one way to discover Hong Kong.


CULTURE VULTURE

       
Photo courtesy of Island Shangri-La.        

Where to Stay // Island Shangri-La
No matter what floor your opulent suite is on, don’t miss riding to the top to admire the 16-story silk mural—the largest Chinese landscape painting in the world—from the glass elevator.

Midmorning // Pedder Building
Catch an exhibit by the likes of Takashi Murakami or Ron Arad inside this prewar architectural gem, home to Gagosian, Ben Brown Fine Arts and galleries. 12 Pedder Street, Central

Afternoon // LockCha Tea Room
This lovely spot in Hong Kong Park offers tea appreciation classes that will have you sipping white, green, black and oolong teas as well as learning proper preparation and pouring techniques.

Late Evening // Star Ferry & Symphony of Lights
Time your harbor crossing for a spectacular view of the 8 p.m. light show, featuring 45 buildings beaming lasers and launching fireworks into the sky.

 

JET SETTER

       
Junk boat photo courtesy of Hong Kong Tourism Board.        

Where to Stay // Peninsula Hong Kong
Recently redesigned, this hotel fuses elegance with high-tech gadgetry—even the hotel’s Rolls-Royce is outfitted with Wi-Fi.

Late Morning // Happy Valley Racecourse
The Chinese take the ponies seriously, and there’s nothing like the fever-pitch atmosphere at Happy Valley Racecourse. Do as the locals do and dress up for a day at the races.

High Tea // SEVVA
This penthouse-level restaurant offers five unique areas for eating and drinking—from a tapas bar to a high tea lounge and a wraparound cocktail patio.

Evening // Junk Boat Cruise
Take in the city’s sights with a glass of bubbly aboard one of these iconic three-mast teak boats with red sails that are modeled after ancient Chinese vessels.

 

WITH THE KIDS

       
NP360 photo courtesy of Hong Kong Tourism Board.        

Where to Stay // Four Seasons Hotel
This luxe hotel chain has got you and your kid covered with complimentary diapers, tot toiletries and pint-sized robes.

Morning // Lantau Island & NP360
After a breathtaking gondola ride, you’ll arrive at a village that’s home to the giant Buddha, the world’s biggest outdoor statue of its kind.

Afternoon // Stanley Market
This beachside nabe features plenty of waterfront cafés and a popular flea market selling eclectic wares. 

Night // Temple Street Night Market
Fortune-tellers, opera troupes and street vendors vie for attention at this street market that’s popular with tourists and locals alike. Temple Street, Kowloon

 

FOODIE

       
Photo courtesy of Bo Innovation.        

Where to Stay // The Ritz-Carlton
Groove in the world’s highest nightclub? Check. Swim in the world’s highest pool? Check. Score bragging rights at this stunning hotel with guest rooms 1,600 feet up.

Midmorning // Tim Ho Wan
Touted as the world’s most affordable Michelin-starred restaurant, this hole-in-the-wall dim sum joint serves delish pork buns and vermicelli rolls. Just be prepared to wait in line for an hour (or two).

Afternoon // Ko Shing Street
One in five medical consultations here is with a traditional Chinese practitioner; buy traditional herbs along this street and take in the sights and smells of Asia’s distant past. Sheung Wan, Hong Kong Island

Evening // Bo Innovation
At this modern restaurant, chef Alvin Leung reinterprets traditional Chinese dishes with a molecular gastronomy touch. Sit at the chef’s table to watch the action in the kitchen.

 

HIPSTER

       
Photo courtesy of 208 Duecento Otto.        

Where to Stay // Hullett House
Art-inspired glamour (bathroom chandeliers, TVs hidden behind hand-painted panels) and high-concept dining meet in this 10-suite neoclassical hotel steps from Victoria Harbour.

Midmorning // Asia Society Hong Kong Center
East meets West inside this heritage building (once a British explosives magazine) where well-heeled visitors take in art shows and film screenings before dining on Med-Asian dishes at AMMO restaurant.

Late Afternoon // Sheung Wan
Explore the small winding streets and alleys lined with indie boutiques, chic cafés and art galleries in this trendy Central neighborhood popular with expat movers and shakers.

Evening // 208 Duecento Otto
Sit at the lively street-level bar or the intimate dining room upstairs and choose from a menu of delicious thin-crust pizzas and rustic Italian dishes.

1 City 5 Ways: Hong Kong

Hong Kong Trail

Hong Kong is about dizzying heights, the buzz, the bustle, the luxury brands, unparalleled hotels and restaurants—and the bigger and bolder, the better. But it is also home to a wonderful history, verdant peaks and quiet islands, relaxed beach towns and hiking trails that open onto dramatic vistas. Once you have a feel for the city, go from Kowloon to Hong Kong Island via the historic Star Ferry, visit the sleek malls and shop for the latest fashion must-haves. Then dine on French or Italian or Chinese cuisine before winding down in a see-and-be-seen speakeasy with an artisanal cocktail. Culture? There’s some. But HK is really about the views, so settle in and watch the movie unfold before you.


STYLE SETTER

       
Causeway Bay.        

Where to Stay: The Upper House
This hotel in the Admiralty district is all about luxe, spare style paired with residential-style service. Venture downstairs to shop Pacific Place or up to dine chez celeb chef Gray Kunz at Café Gray Deluxe.

Breakfast: Café Culture
Head to Café Deadend or Po’s Atelier. Café Deadend is a western-style diner with outdoor seating; Po’s is great for freshly baked pastries in a sleek, modern setting.

Morning: Shopping
Get your retail fix at Causeway Bay, the shopping mecca of Hong Kong. Dive into unique specialty brands such as Taiwanese and Korean designers in smaller malls such as Island Beverly and Laforet. Keep your energy up at one of the many local dessert shops.

Lunch: Duddell’s
Join the power set for steamed barbecue pork buns and mushroom dumplings with black truffle at this chic restaurant with its stunning array of contemporary art. After lunch, take in the wares at the Shanghai Tang boutique. 

Dinner: Ho Lee Fook
Stop for a drink at Bibo, then get your fix of modern Chinese fare at this bustling, funky spot: roast Wagyu short ribs and Mom’s “mostly cabbage, a little bit of pork” dumplings with a round of nostalgic cocktails. 


FOODIE

       
         

Where to Stay: Island Shangri-La
The 56-story Shangri-La is perfectly situated in the mixed-use Pacific Place complex and offers many dining options. Dive into Peruvian ceviche at the Lobster Bar and Grill, Cantonese cooking at the Michelin-two-star Summer Palace or Japanese kaiseki at Nadaman. 

Morning: Traditional Teahouse
Head to a cha chaan teng, a Hong Kong-style teahouse, and enjoy the set menu—perhaps fried eggs on toast—paired with milk tea. Favorites include Cheung Heung Tea Restaurant in Kennedy Town, Kam Wah Cafe in Prince Edward and Mrs. Tang Cafe in Yuen Long and Kwun Tong.

Lunch: Dim Sum
Hong Kong dim sum is perhaps the best in the world. Try one of the few restaurants that still delivers freshly made dim sum to diners on a traditional rolling cart. Top choices include Lin Heung Kui in Sheung Wan, The China Club in Central and Jade Garden in Causeway Bay.

Dinner: Restaurant Petrus
Offering breathtaking views of Victoria Harbour, Petrus in the Shangri-La offers top-flight French cooking (think pigeon with pak choi and black truffle essence) and a world-class wine cellar.

Late Night: The Woods
This cocktail bar pairs market-driven ingredients with innovative techniques. Example: The four-pepper margarita, with pepper-infused Ocho blanco tequila, lime juice and agave nectar. 

 

HISTORY BUFF

       
View of Hong Kong Harbour from the pool at The Peninsula.        

Where to Stay: The Peninsula
This classic grand dame rises above Hong Kong Harbour on the Kowloon side. Take tea in the bustling lobby, dine at Swiss eatery Chesa or book a Rolls-Royce for an afternoon tour. 

Morning: Explore Kowloon
Visit the Jade Market, the Bird Garden, Flower Garden and Goldfish Market. Phew! Then tour Wong Tai Sin Temple, where Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism are practiced. Stop to have your fortune told, too!

Lunch: Lei Yue Mun Village
Enjoy fresh fish at one of the restaurants in colorful Lei Yue Mun village, with its stilt houses and vintage vibe. Select prawns, crab, fish and more, then have them cooked before lunching al fresco.

Afternoon: Police Married Quarters
Once home to married officers and their families, the PMQ complex has been transformed into a bohemian shopping and dining destination. Find wares crafted in HK at Kapok, G.O.D. (Goods of Desire) or Vivienne Tam. 

Dinner: Hutong
Sitting high above the city, Hutong mixes high-style Chinese fare with drop-dead vistas. Try the spicy bang bang chicken or more adventurous crispy white eel with black fungus. 


ARTS AFICIONADO

       
The Popsy Room.        

Where to Stay: The Landmark Mandarin Oriental
Located in the heart of the city, the sleek Mandarin houses only 96 rooms and 13 suites. The rooms are wonderfully spacious and luxe, while the hotel’s amenities include a decadent hammam tucked into the spa. 

Morning: Pedder Building
Visit the 1920s-era Pedder Building that houses a slew of cutting-edge galleries, including Pearl Lam Galleries, Ben Brown Fine Arts and Gagosian (shows have included everyone from Roy Lichtenstein to Andreas Gursky).

Lunch: Bibo
After surveying art from the likes of Jeff Koons, Banksy and Jean-Michel Basquiat, enjoy dishes from a prix fixe menu such as slow-cooked Japanese pork belly with baby artichokes and truffled mashed potatoes. 

Dinner: The Popsy Room
A gallery by day, this sleek space just off busy Cat Alley morphs into a dining-world darling. Take in the cutting-edge art as you dine on colorful, high-concept fare that relates back to the art at hand. 

Evening: Sunbeam Theatre
Visit the vintage Sunbeam Theatre for a nighttime performance of traditional Cantonese opera. 


OUTDOORS ENTHUSIAST

       
Aqua Luna Harbour Discovery Tour.        

Where to Stay: The Pottinger
Situated on stone-slabbed Pottinger Street, this boutique-styled hotel is located near the buzzy Lan Kwai Fong district. The 68 rooms and seven suites are smart and chic and are the perfect oasis after a day in the steamy great outdoors. 

Morning Activity: Hong Kong Trail
Climb onboard Hong Kong’s venerable Peak Tram on Garden Road and enjoy the stunning vistas of the city while it carries you to The Peak— go early or brave the crowds! From there, embark on the 50-minute or so Hong Kong Trail walk winding around the island’s highest point.

Lunch: Sohofama
Enjoy modern Chinese comfort food crafted from locally sourced ingredients at this restaurant, which features a rustic wood table and pots overflowing with growing herbs and vegetables. 

Afternoon: Aqua Luna Harbour Discovery Tour
Cruise around Hong Kong Harbour aboard the Aqua Luna junk. Enjoy the flapping red sails as you hop on/hop off to see sites such as the golden Bauhinia and bustling Hung Hom neighborhood. 

Dinner: Isola Bar + Grill
Located on level three of the International Finance Centre, this modern eatery pairs relaxed Italian cooking (pizzas, pastas) with unparalleled views of the harbor and surrounding skyscrapers. A DJ spins Friday through Sunday.

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