MY HONG KONG AFFAIR
Hong Kong seriously means business when it comes to shopping and nightlife. Dubbed as “east meets west”, it’s truly a mecca of designer brands, affordable fashion, traditional Chinese eats and international influences. Whether it’s a stop over on your way to Europe or a long weekend with the girls, it is a buzzing city and an experience you will never forget.
I often have to travel to Hong Kong for both work and pleasure. It’s one of those city’s you’ll either love or hate. Some people find the bright lights, electrifying hustle bustle and constant noise too much..But personally, I feel alive in Hong Kong. It’s one of those places you can get lost in…but be completely engaged with the excess and success. It’s a mecca of vibrant bars and restaurants and the shopping in between meetings can be too tempting! But where does a Sydney Femme go in Hong Kong if you don’t know the ins and outs?
Whether I’m there for work, pleasure or with the girls – I try to find places that are still high end and more on the luxe side. That’s just how this femme prefers to do it in Asia… When you’re going from meeting to meeting, you want to know what bar order a vodka martini in, what restaurant has high-quality food (and dumplings!) and if you have limited time – which shopping hotspots to go straight to!
BEST PLACES TO EAT – BRUNCH
With a cool Meatpacking District vibe, this 2 story venue is a hive of activity and atmosphere. Come for brunch on the weekend and enjoy traditional items including eggs any way or try one of their famed pizza’s – to die for!
BEST PLACES TO EAT – LUNCH
Yum cha fans – listen up. This one Michelin star joint guarantees you melt in the mouth goodies (that won’t cost an arm and a leg!), and we guarantee that you’ll come back again, even if you’re visiting for a short time. It’s that good.
Look no further if you’re after dumplings, xiao long bao, and other small pickled dishes, this is where you need to hit up for authentic food, great service, and good value for money.
You can’t come to Hong Kong and not have roast duck or goose – and this institution serves it up best. Have it on its own, with rice or noodles – you can’t go wrong with whatever you pick.
BEST PLACES TO EAT – DINNER
Nordic Fine Diner, NUR is one of the best new restaurants to hit this city. It’s mod and nordic aesthetic is reflected in its clean presentation and pretty interiors. Its Scandinavian paddock to plate at its best and if you have overdone it on the dumplings, this is refreshingly contemporary. This “Nourishing Gastronomy” is a must. Head to Hollywood Road, Lyndhurst Terrace.
This two-floor Cantonese restaurant could quite possibly be some of the best food you have ever tried, and has been awarded the Michelin honour. But such quality comes with a price tag. Be sure to think ahead and make a reservation.
It’s old school Hong Kong tea cafe meets 1960’s late night Chinatown in New York. Eats are super tasty but are served in small portions, which are best shared.
BEST PLACES FOR DRINKS
This dark bar is certainly slicker than your average. These guys use a food-science approach when it comes to carefully-crafted cocktails, so expect to be surprised with flavours and textures. You won’t be able to stop at one, either.
Beginning in the 80s, this dining and entertainment complex is Hong Kong’s party central. The district has over 100 restaurants, bars, clubs and shops, providing lots of choice to hop between for a great night out in the city.
SHOPPING – HIGH END
They mean business when it comes to shopping here. Get lost in each section and level with the array of luxury and fast fashion stores located here, conveniently on top of Kowloon train station. It’s relatively quiet too, compared to bustling Central and Tsim Sha Tsui.
This department store has it all: beauty, men’s and women’s fashion, home wares… and before you know it, it’ll be after dark. Top tip: go during the day (as early as possible), as this becomes a hot spot for those finishing work around 6pm.
SHOPPING – LOW END
Head to bustling Mong Kok to experience bustling crowds and super cheap prices. You’ll find sneakers, hair accessories, makeup and souvenirs for super cheap, but beware of fakes.
EXPERIENCE – FUN THINGS TO DO WITH GIRLFRIENDS
Get up extra early and make the most of your day at this magical wonderland. It’s not as big as its counterparts in Japan or California but it’s a nice way to get your fantasy fix without going to another country.
EXPERIENCE – FUN THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR PARTNER
Pick the Double Serenity package, which is perfect to wind down with your lover. Enjoy a full body scrub, massage and time in a bubble bath – it’s a great way to get away from the big city for a while.
Learn how to recreate traditional Chinese dishes in an intimate setting, and best of all, you get to enjoy your creation’s at the end.
EXPERIENCE – FUN THINGS TO DO ON YOUR OWN
Lovers of contemporary art usually head straight here, as they’re known to host well-known artists for a limited time. We’ve caught the works of Jeff Koons and Takashi Murakami here before – we wonder what you’ll come across when you visit?
Definitely one for the flower lover! Take a walk down Flower Market Road and take in the beautiful orchids and cut flowers on offer. Slightly different to our market opening times, general hours are 8.30am-7.30pm. A delightful way to spend a few hours.
LEARN – COOL WORKSHOPS AND CLASSES
Pick from either the pom-pom wreath and tassel making workshop, or the dreamcatcher and pom-pom garland to satisfy your DIY streak.
This one hour class gets you one on one time with an in-house chef to taste-test four different caviars, along with pairings with the world’s finest vodkas and Champagnes. It doesn’t get more luxurious than that.
BEST PLACE TO STAY
I almost always stay at The Langham in Australia, so it’s my first call when I get to Hong Kong. Why? It has that old school elegance and service. It’s also right at the heart of Hong Kong’s prime shopping district of Tsimshatsui, and is surrounded by delectable dining, shopping and entertainment options. Their service is always attentive and it just has that sophisticated feel that gives it a luxe edge after a long flight…
Look, if it’s good enough for GP (our friend Gwyneth Paltrow) then we really can’t look past this classic, luxe hotel. If you prefer a more boutique-style accommodation, the landmark is significantly smaller than it’s flagship hotel. The 113 rooms and suites are contemporary and peaceful and are among the largest in Hong Kong. Make sure you check out the 2 level spa where you can actually book a suite – heaven!