Hong Kong can truly be called ‘Asia’s World City’. It is bustling, vibrant and dynamic, with a unique blend of eastern and western influences. It is only five hours from half the world’s population and is a buzzing centre of international trade and business.
The city is one of the most competitive markets for hotels, which means an abundance of great places to stay, from Kowloon’s hip W Hotel to the historic elegance of The Peninsula. The Upper House in Admiralty has recently raised the city’s hotel stakes with an inimitably stylish offering in the heart of the city’s business district.
The city is a gastronomic heaven, with highlights being Chinese, Japanese, and Thai cuisine. Head to Maxim’s at City Hall for a waterfront view while enjoying the cacophony of a Sunday morning dim sum outing. Little-known Shek O Village, on the south-eastern tip of Hong Kong Island, not only plays host to a beautiful beach, but also one of the city’s best Thai eateries, Shek O Chinese Thai Seafood.
Hedonists beware: Hong Kong takes no prisoners, and the choice of bars can be overwhelming. A memorable spot is Sugar, a roof-top lounge on the thirty-second floor of East Hotel in Quarry Bay, with jaw-dropping views across the harbour.
Hong Kong has some fantastic beaches. Most are within very easy reach of the city and, depending on the time of year, you can get a kilometre-long stretch of pristine sands all to yourself. Sai Kung Country Park in the eastern New Territories and the south coast of Lantau Island are a beach lover’s paradise. Those with a taste for the wild can explore coral reefs, or observe a bewildering array of migratory birds at Mai Po nature reserve near Yuen Long.
For first-timers, taking in a harbour view from the decks of a Star Ferry is a must, as is a stroll around Victoria Peak. The unique combination of mountains, ocean, and incredible architecture is guaranteed to take your breath away. (Co-ordinated by Jasodhara Banerjee)
(This story appears in the 07 October, 2011 issue of Forbes India. You can buy our tablet version from Magzter.com. To visit our Archives, click here.)