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HK: Near Luxe, Good Location Hotels for 1st Timer?

HK: Near Luxe, Good Location Hotels for 1st Timer?

Feb 29th, 2012, 06:06 PM
  #21  
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rkkwan, once more I truly appreciate your insight. Sofitel sounds like a good solution because I do want to get to the old Macau. (But now my husband is excited about the chance to lose some money, aka ''gambling)"
barefootbeach is offline  
Feb 29th, 2012, 06:25 PM
  #22  
 
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I've stayed at the Marco Polo Hong Kong Hotel for years, but I don't know that I'd recommend it. [By the way, there are 2 or 3 Marco Polo Hotels; the one with the best view is the Hong Kong Hotel.]

It's a good value in that the rooms are very large and the views of Hong Kong harbor and island are quite nice (except when the windows are fogged over). I've always found the service pleasant and the location convenient. The whole complex is full of restaurants and shops. The down side is that it's an older property, though it's gone through several renovations, and it's full of big tour groups.

For a first time visit, I'd keep trying to find something on Hong Kong island if I were you. I like the Admiralty area around Pacific Place and Hong Kong Park too.

Public transportation is excellent in Hong Kong and wherever you are you end up going somewhere else!

One new property that's intrigued me is the EAST Hotel. Kind of an out of the way location but a nice design and in your price point. I haven't been there yet, though.

PS, I'm so glad to hear that Fernando's has survived Macau's tranformation. I haven't been there for 20 years, but I still remember the food.
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Feb 29th, 2012, 09:47 PM
  #23  
 
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Forgot about another new hotel on Macau Peninsula. That's the new Mandarin Oriental. Nov rates are around HK$2100 weekday, again much less than say the MO in HK. It's adjacent to the MGM and Wynn. Not as close to the historic center as the Sofitel or Grand Lisboa.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 04:23 AM
  #24  
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marmot, thanks for the tips on Admiralty area around Pacific Place and Hong Kong Park. I'd prefer a newer property and less tour groups. (altho you probably never escape them entirely) I'll look into that area.

rkkwan, funny you mentioned the new MO because I just looked at them last night. I like the scale of it and it got good reviews. Sofitel's rooms got good reviews but many said the lobby and lower casino were crummy and smokey, and there wasn't a free airport shuttle.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 10:59 AM
  #25  
 
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Consider the YMCA in Hong Kong, adjacent to the Penninsula hotel and excellently sited for stunning harbor views. We took a harbor view suite (not cheap - around $300) but well worth the knock out view and location.

Carolll
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Mar 1st, 2012, 03:05 PM
  #26  
 
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Barefoot, Aside from the Peninsula and Mandarin, I like new in Hong Kong too. That's why I'm interested in the East Hotel, though I'm just not familiar with the development in the area.

Among the hotels in Pacific Place I always liked the Conrad best, but the others are good too. Access to the park is a nice respite from the unrelenting buzz of Hong Kong.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 03:47 PM
  #27  
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Thanks for naming a hotel in Pacific Place, marmot. because I don't know any yet.

carolll, "why" do I have a problem with considering staying at the "Y"? Wow, $300 at the YMCA! This clearly is not like the States versions.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 03:52 PM
  #28  
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One more thing....a neighbor of mine hates Macau and suggested that instead we take a day trip by Ferry (2 1/2 hrs) to Canton. Well, I'm looking this up in my "Insight" guidebook and there's no Canton....what the? So, I finally learn that Canton's name has been changed (probably back to the original) to Guangzhou. Show's my ignorance. Any thoughts on a ferry trip there? I'm not sure what we could accomplish in a day trip.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 03:56 PM
  #29  
 
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East is in the Taikoo Shing complex, connected to the Tai Koo MTR via one of the earlier massive malls in HK; and the Quarry Bay MTR through elevated walkways in an office building complex. All developed by Swire, same as Pacific Place.

There is little to offer in the surrounding areas, mainly residential areas and a few industrial building. It'll be about 12 minutes by MTR back to Causeway Bay or 20 to Central. Or you can take the bus or HK Tramway. Personally, I think if one's trying to save a little and try a new area on the Island, the area around the Courtyard Marriott is a lot more interesting.

BTW, I really don't feel the lack of an airport shuttle to the Sofitel in Macau is an issue. Taxis should be available, and the ride won't cost more than 100MOP, or US$13.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 04:14 PM
  #30  
 
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Pacific Place hotels = Island Shangri-la (most expensive), Conrad (biggest bathrooms) and the JW Marriott (small rooms).
Hanuman is offline  
Mar 1st, 2012, 04:30 PM
  #31  
 
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The YMCA Salisbury is a decent 3* hotel in Hong Kong. It is not accommodations for young backpackers, but a real hotel to generate revenues for the organization.

Nothing wrong going to Guangzhou, but I don't think it is worth the hassle and the cost of US$140 for a visa for US citizens if you're just going for a short trip. And you take a bus or train there, not a ferry. The ferry port is far away from Guangzhou proper.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 04:37 PM
  #32  
 
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There is also the 'boutique' Upper House at Pacific Place. 117 rooms run by Swire itself on the top floors of One Pacific Place.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 06:34 PM
  #33  
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Can you clarify why we would need a visa to go to Guangzhou (actually,we'll have one because we're visiting the mainland first) and clear customs in Macau from Hong Kong? I thought both countries are now part of China?
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Mar 1st, 2012, 07:00 PM
  #34  
 
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We stayed at the Salisbury Y last year, and I agree with rkkwan's assessment - a decent 3*, with fabulous views if you opt for a view room. I would not call it "near luxe".
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Mar 1st, 2012, 07:03 PM
  #35  
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Well, as of today, the Conrad, Upper House, Island Shangri La and Jw Marriott are well over $400/night. The YMCA Salisbury actually looked very nice but they don't have rates available for Nov. yet.
What about The Langham (Kowloon Tsim Sh Tsui) or Langham Place (Mong Kok)? Their rates are in the low-mid 200's. They look like decent hotels but I don't know anything about their neighborhoods?
No one's commented on the Jia Boutique either.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 07:13 PM
  #36  
 
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All the Pacific Place hotels will be in that price range hence I did not mention them earlier on. IMOl all of the Hong Kong side hotels will be more than the Kowloon side.
Hanuman is offline  
Mar 1st, 2012, 07:50 PM
  #37  
 
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There are quite a few acceptable mid-range hotels in the Tsim Sha Tsui and East Tsim Sha Tsui areas of Kowloon. It's convenient to transportation, full of shops, restaurants and you get a fair mix of group tours, independent upscale travelers and business travelers (plus those fake watch sellers). I always stayed in TST when I traveled on business, but when it's a personal trip I prefer Hong Kong island. It's hard to say exactly why as there's not a big tangible difference. Maybe a notch higher on the sophistication level?

The Langford TST is a serviceable business/tour group hotel, right in the thick of things. East TST is a little less convenient but the Intercontinental Grand Stanford is a very nice smallish hotel, with good views of the harbour.

And yes, Hong Kong, Macau and China have separate immigration departments. You will need a visa every time you go into China, even from Hong Kong, though you can get a multiple entry visa that allows you to enter more than one time.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 08:52 PM
  #38  
 
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Yeah, I forgot you're coming from China. As marmot says you'll be fine for a daytrip to Guangzhou if you have a mutliple-entry Chinese visa or you have a dual-entry visa and would have only used one. Still, Guangzhou won't be that different from many big Chinese cities, while Macau is unique. Many visitors hate Macau because they went to the wrong places there. There are some of the oldest churches and oldest lighthouse in all of Southern China, baroque and South European architecture and influence - not available in Hong Kong or anywhere in China.

The Langham in TST is in the same vicinity of the three Marco Polo hotels as well as the YMCA Salisbury and Peninsula. We already covered that. It is a more traditional and nice 4* or near 5* hotel. Only thing is it has no views. The Langham Place on the other hand is a tall tower in Mongkok, a crowded and downscale area of Hong Kong, but has its own mall and connection to the MTR. All the night markets are nearby, as well as the earlier-in-the-day bird, flower, goldfish, and jade markets. It's a much more interesting area to stay at, as long as you're okay with the crowds on the street, and the highend shops and restaurants are not in the vicinity. The hotel is very modern.
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Mar 1st, 2012, 09:06 PM
  #39  
 
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The rooms at the Y are standard-issue 1980s Holidy Inn-like rooms - same bathrooms, same furniture.
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Mar 2nd, 2012, 05:13 AM
  #40  
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I'm hoping that if I wait until summer to book...there may be some deals available for the nicest hotels. But, I'l like a fallback position in case there isn't. Maybe the Langham TST will work. Thanks to you all for providing the details of what these locations are like that I can't get from the guidebooks.

So, if I fly from Shanghai to Macau, do I still need a multiple visit visa? And, then ferry into Hong Kong, I don't need a visa, right? I'll skip Guanghzou.
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