Hong Kong is of particular significance to us as it’s the place where our design ideas come to life and so we make multiple trips throughout the year, working with some of the oldest craftsmen in the industry. Hong Kong quite quickly became one of our favourite cities in Asia and it has so much to offer for anyone after the best in fashion, food or culture. Hong Kong is a unique blend of both East and West, both modern & high tech with an enduring traditional flair and is home to such a diverse mix of people. With a suitcase full of dreams and our Octopus cards at the ready (if you know, you know), we pack our days with work, whilst the evenings get spent getting tottally immersed into the hustle and bustle of HK city life.
We hope you enjoy it,
K, R & D x
Where to go:
16-18 Queen's Road Central (NB: multiple locations)
Founded in 1971, Joyce continues to represent the best, most creative and most extraordinary designers worldwide. Hong Kong may have a reputation for its monotone dull grey buildings, however the Joyce store breaks this stereotype completely. The store designer Paola Navone (a self-described artistic nomad) designed the store ‘with the same approach you have when you want to renovate your apartment. You do not want to forget your past, but you want to update the space using new elements, new things, new colours’. With an abundance of personality, Joyce has profoundly influenced fashion in Asia, introducing avant garde collections to the region - including Izaak Azanei come Fall 17. It’s one of our favourite stores in the world and is the first place we like to visit once we’ve touched down in HK.
Shop 252, Level 2, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Hong Kong (NB: multiple locations)
Filled with the trendiest, edgiest and coolest clothes, IT is the perfect place to discover new brands as well as revisit your all-time favourites. This store combines both local and international brands and with a total of 8 stores in Hong Kong, you’ll easily find one close to wherever you are. We highly recommend a visit as you’re unlikely to find some of these brands stocked elsewhere!
The Peak is the highest point in Hong Kong and seeing this should be on everybody’s to do list when in town. We recommend hiking up to The Peak as it provides you with the opportunity to experience Hong Kong’s lesser known but equally breath-taking natural side. Beware: check the weather forecast before making your way up as it must be a clear day in order to see the view in all its splendour.
9 First St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong | +852 3483 795
Above Second is an art gallery in Hong Kong, directed by May Wong, which focuses on urban art. After having opened its doors in 2010, Above Second has shed light to the more contemporary art movement featuring graffiti, street art, pop culture and much more. The gallery continues to introduce local talent as well as exhibiting the works of well-established international artists such as Pure Evil and Alec Monopoly. This gallery is nothing you’d imagine amongst its quiet surrounding and retains its street cred by retaining its consistently well-curated selection of art.
10 Feet Tall
20th and 21st floor , L Place, 139 Queen's Road, Central, Hong Kong | +852 2971 1010
So this one's an unusual one for us, but it is a real treat and definitely worth a visit if you have time. 10 Feet Tall has become somewhat of an institution, offering the most famous foot massage in Hong Kong. The treatment list is extensive, but they're known for their foot massage, and if you feel tired after a long day of running around the city, it is the ultimate indulgence. Set in the heart of Hong Kong, it is the brain child of Gilbert Yeung, the man behind one of Hong Kong's most famous night clubs, Dragon-I. You can tell by that fact alone that this is no ordinary massage parlour. The vibe is laid-back and relaxing, the staff are friendly but non-assuming and get straight to work. You can also rent out rooms within the spa for a group party, watch movies and more.
Soho is a pretty cool part of town. One that's filled to the brim with tiny cafes, restaurants, desert spots, galleries, bars...the list is endless. It's a wanderer's paradise, with hidden gems at every corner. Spend an afternoon climbing up the steps of Lan Kwai Fong and fully immerse yourself in the Hong Kong ethos of hopping from spot to spot. And before the day draws to a close, head to Emack & Bolio's for the most instagram-able ice cream that ever was.
Where to stay
The Landmark, Mandarin Oriental
5 Connaught Rd Central, Central, Hong Kong
The Landmark Mandarin Oriental opened it's doors in 2005, marking the second Mandarin Oriental in Hong Kong. Unlike Hong Kong's other Mandarin Oriental, the Landmark MO offers guests a unique luxury experience right in the heart of Central, offering quite possibly the best location in town. The hotel, unlike traditional Mandarin Orientals, is boutique consisting of 113 rooms. It also gets its name from its attachment to The Landmark Mall, which guests have a private entrance to via the hotel lobby. The Landmark mall consists of all your typical high-end luxury brands, but also offers a fine selection of chic cafes and coffee spots as well as a great Harvey Nichols, where we often discover lots of new cool contemporary brands on the third floor. True to its ‘urban sanctuary’ status, the Mandarin has a spa spanning over 2 floors, making it easy to forget that just downstairs is one of the busiest districts of Hong Kong.
The Upper House
Pacific Place, 88, Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong
Designed by architect Andre Fu, Upperhouse boasts a contemporary Asian décor. This makes for the perfect setting where technology rules – your check-in experience is all done via an iPad making it perfect for the technologically savvy demographic. As there isn’t a spa at this hotel, the real game changer is the rooms. Even the smallest standard room is an incredible 730 square feet and the views are magnificent. Warning: the sign in the bathroom indicating that the window ‘may be two-way’ should not be missed. The hotel is famed for its hotel bar, a must go-to when in Hong Kong!
Where to eat:
9th Floor, 33 Wyndham St, Central, Hong Kong | +852 2593 2593
When we heard our favourite New York eatery was making its way to the Asian capital, we couldn’t be happier. Carbone doesn’t stray far from its sister restaurant in NYC – you will find the same brass chandeliers, old-school maroon tuxedos for the waiters and walls filled with contemporary artwork. This is New York Italian cuisine done right and is located right in the heart of Lan Kwai Fong (LKF). We recommend the Spicy Rigatoni Vodka (creamy, chilli & utterly delicious), Corn Tartufato and the incredible lemon cheesecake for dessert (if the cheesecake from Friends were to exist, this would be it). Beware: this isn’t for the carb conscious!
Standard Chartered Bank Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Rd Central, Central, Hong Kong | +852 2885 8688
Named after the first Chinese grocery store to open in New York, Mott 32 is the perfect blend of classic NYC style and timeless Chinese décor. Mysteriously hidden within the basement of Standard Chartered Bank, this restaurant is the perfect blend of great atmosphere and great food with an East meets West kind of vibe. Our top tips: make a reservation in advance and order the Iberico Pork Dim Sum, the Peking Duck and the Rose Panacotta for dessert.
UG, California Tower, 32 D'Aguilar Street, Central, Hong Kong | +852 3755 4868
Opened by ex-Morgan Stanley trader, Judy Joo, Jinjuu offers its diners a modern take on Korean food within an inside / outside setting in the heart of LKF. With an impressive drinks list (our favourite was the lychee lover), this is the perfect place to meet friends and begin your night, bar hopping within LKF. Pro tip: order the Sae Woo Pops (aka a crispy fried prawn cake smothered in mayo served on a stick), the Fried Chicken and the Pork Tacos.
Car Po Commercial Building, G/F, 18-20 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central, Hong Kong | +852 2811 1152
Right in the heart of Central, TokyoLima brings the best of Japanese and Peruvian cuisine to the forefront of Hong Kong. Our favourite dishes include the ‘Ki-Mo-Chi’ fried chicken, the soft shell crab cut rolls and the ‘Oye Papi’ for dessert. Open until the early hours of the morning, this can easily be your one stop destination for the evening with great cocktails and a great playlist.
6 Pound Ln, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong | +852 3426 3949
Yes, it looks like a traditional Chinese stamp shop on the outside – don’t worry, you’re in the right place. Disclaimer: Mrs. Pound is a quirky spin on Asian street food, so go with an open mind and do not leave without ordering the Avocado Fries. It’s a cool and cozy spot with interesting artwork and a speakeasy vibe. We’ll admit, it’s not for everyone, but we loved it.
King Street, Causeway Bay| no reservations
Located in Causeway Bay, this has to be the best ramen in Hong Kong (sorry Ichiran lovers, but this tops it). For those of you who have never heard of the Ramen Nagi chain, let us be the ones who show you the way. They offer a ‘customisation’ card so that your ramen is perfect for you – our favourite base every time has to be the ‘Red King’ (for those who like spicy food, its a must). It’s small (capacity for around 12 eaters tops), it’s a hole in the wall that doesn't look inviting by any means, it’s not somewhere you’d think to go – but trust us, just do it. Pro-tip: it only opens at 6pm so go on time.
IFC Mall (NB: multiple locations) | no reservations
Centrally located within IFC Mall, this restaurant is every foodies delight. The portions are big, the service is fast and the food is delicious – what more could you want? This is our first meal when we land and our last meal before we leave every single time. Especially because the Airport Express is conveniently directly two floors below. It's consistent, easy and a meal you cannot do without. If you go around peak lunch time hours, be warned you most likely will be waiting for around 45 minutes to be seated, but don't fret, they have the most professional queuing system in place, where everyone is assigned tickets (just like a deli counter!). This placed is famed for its Xiao Long Bao - little balls of heaven aka small dumplings filled with meat and soup. We recommend the original xiao long bao, the truffle xiao long bao, the green beans with minced pork and the pan fried pork dumplings. Enjoy!
7 Old Bailey St, Central, Hong Kong | +852 2796 6866
Ma, La & Tang (aka numbing, burning & neutral) – you’d better remember these 3 little words or else you could be in for a rough ride. Chilli Fagara is the ultimate spot for Sichuan food. The food is spicy, hence the name, and packed full of flavour and is really not for the faint hearted - the numbing really stays true to it's name. For spicy food lovers out there, this should be at the top of your list in Hong Kong. Our favourites are the crispy chicken, the crispy tofu and the truffle rice.
Otto e Mezzo
Shop 202, Landmark Alexandra, 18 Chater Road, Central, Hong Kong | +852 2537 8859
From Italy to Hong Kong, Otto e Mezzo is arguably one of the best Italian restaurants in Hong Kong. Head chef Umberto Bombona, aka ‘The King of White Truffles’ no less, has created the most indulgent menu effortlessly earning 3 Michelin stars for his outstanding cuisine. Dubbed as one of the best restaurants in both Asia and the world this is a must try for everyone visiting Hong Kong. Top tip: book in advance and order the truffle eggs.
33 Bridges St, Tai Ping Shan, Hong Kong | no reservations
Situated in Soho, Yardbird is everything you expect from a restaurant – great food, atmosphere and service. The food is simple yet delicious, and as the name implies, everything is centered around the bird (chicken). This is a great place for a fun dinner with friends, the vibe is fun and unpretentious, the service is friendly and the drinks menu is extensive. The only 'negative' here is no reservations, which means you can be waiting for awhile if you're in a big group. Don’t leave without trying the sweetcorn tempura, the Korean fried cauliflower and the fried chicken. Our top tip: go around 6:30pm to beat the queue.
66 Staunton St, Central, Hong Kong | no reservations
May Chow’s Little Bao is indeed a little revalation in Soho bringing fresh perspective to Asian cuisine. This tiny 20 seater restaurant has some of the best baos we’ve ever tried – both sweet and savoury. Our favourite was the pork belly bao with the truffle fries (not to be missed!). Dessert at this place was an experience – a deep fried bao drenched in condensed milk and filled with ice cream - unbelievable. The dessert menu does change quite frequently but our all time favourite has to be the salted caramel. Top tip: beat the queue and go early, or just got for desert and you'll miss the queue as they serve desert to you outside.
206 Hollywood Road, Hong Kong
ChaChaWan is all about Thai street food, in an atmosphere that is equally as 'street' and laid-back. The setting is rustic and hip in a raw East-meets-West kind of way or 'ghetto-chic' as it's commonly referred to, a theme quite prevalent in the Hong Kong restaurant scene. The cuisine emanates from the North Eastern region of Thailand, and the restaurant is a collaboration between restauranteur Yenn Wong and the infamous Nahm (from Bangkok) protégé Adam Cliff (Nahm is a must-try for anyone going to Bangkok). The dishes are simply delicious and full of flavour without the typical heaviness or overwhelming-ness of flavour that is often inherent with Thai food. A must try for any Thai food or Asian food lover.
Where to play
Café Gray Bar
Pacific Place, 88, Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong
With its 14-metre stone bar and it’s self-proclaimed ‘exceptionally handsome view’ of Hong Kong up top on the 49th floor of the Upperhouse Hotel, this is easily one of the most aesthetically pleasing bars in Hong Kong. We didn’t love the food here but the drinks more than make up for that. The cocktail list is amongst the best we’ve seen – our favourite is the Earl Grey Martini. Take a seat inside or take a seat outside – either way, once here the world can wait.
Princes Building, 25/F, 10 Chater Rd, Central, Hong Kong
Situated on 25th floor of one of the most iconic buildings in Hong Kong is SEVVA. With an incredible view of Hong Kong’s skyline, you can definitely spend a few hours here without even realising it. The vibe is great, the people who frequent are cool and it’s definitely somewhere you should check out on your visits to the city. Although we don’t recommend SEVVA for dinner, we ought to mention that they’re actually quite famous for their Mary Antoinette cake – something you should check out if you’re heading there for drinks. Although the view is somewhat similar in nature to Café Grey –we still recommend a visit as every bar in Hong Kong has something unique to offer for its guests.
LG, 1 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong
Following Ophelia and J Boroski you will find Iron Fairies – Ashley Sutton's third creation. Following the success stories in Bangkok and Tokyo, this installment was bound to be a success. Iron Fairies has been a great addition to Hong Kong’s bar scene with great drinks, great music and a lively atmosphere. The place is beautifully decorate, with a rustic and hip charm. The ceiling has a pretty fascinating preserved butterfly installation that fills the room with mystical charm, one definitely worth going into just to see it.
Lan Kwai Fong, Central, Hong Kong
Almost every good night in Hong Kong either begins or ends in LKF. This area comes alive after 11pm and continues to buzz until the early hours of the morning. With a ton of indoor / outdoor bars including popular spots such as Levels, Hyde & Dragon-I, and restaurants concentrated in this little area, there is something for everyone and is best experienced during the Rugby 7s.
Shop F39A & F41A, 1/F, Lee Tung Avenue, 200 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Ophelia was Ashley Sutton's first creation in Hong Kong. For those of you unfamiliar with Ashley Sutton, he is the mastermind behind some of the coolest bars and clubs across Asia, including Iron Fairies, Maggie Choos and Sing Sing Theatre. In line with Sutton's signature aesthetic, the vibe and colours are electric, the furniture is opulent, and muses hang from the ceilings, whilst the waitresses are dressed in cheogsams. The main influence here is the opium dens from the nineteenth century. The cocktail list is equally as tantalising!