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Hong Kong Trip

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Jul 2nd, 2010, 03:23 AM
  #1
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Hong Kong Trip

Beth and I are considering popping over to Hong Kong for a week in late September as a bonus trip. Will the rain have stoppped by then? Should we push it to early October? Any special hotel recommendations? Thanks in advance.
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 03:45 AM
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Yes, I have a special hotel recommendation. It's a room with the best view of the most spectacular cityscape on this planet.

The view if from Kowloon (Tsim Sha Tsui) to Hong Kong Island. In a way, the view exemplifies Hong Kong: non-stop morion, and a googol of lights competing for your attention, with a backdrop of Victoria Peak.

4 hotels have good views of this, and of those 4 2 have excellent views. The 2 with excellent views are the Peninsula and the InterContinental. The Peninsula is a bigger and maybe a bit more formal place (it has a totally different character than the BKK Peninsula). The IC is definitely more contemporary in its design. Both offer extraordinary service. (I've stayed in the Peninsula just once, in the IC a half-dozen times.)

The 2 with lesser views are the Sheraton and the YMCA (no, really). In the Sheraton, only the Towers rooms on the top 2 floors have acceptable harbor views, and that part of the hotel is a very good Sheraton hotel. Very good, but not nearly as exceptional as the IC or Peninsula. The POB has stayed in the Y and can comment on it.

If you're staying in HK for a week, or even >4 days, you might well want to consider splitting your stay between Kowloon and HK Island, but that's a different question.
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 04:12 AM
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It's a difficult decision between staying in Kowloon or on Hong Kong island. As rizzuto says, Kowloon has spectacular views of the HK skyline, but Hong Kong itself is, in my opinion, a lot more atmospheric.

If you're going for the view on Kowloon side, I like the Intercontinental, anc I certainly wouldn't turn down the Peninsula if offered. Another choice in the moderate price range, but with a view is the Marco Polo Hong Kong Hotel.

On Hong Kong side, a lot has changed since I last stayed there so I can't give a personal recommendation, but I'm very fond of the Mandarin just because it's so much a part of Hong Kong's history (as is the Peninsula).

Late September is still typhoon season. I don't know that you'd achieve much of an edge on avoiding a typhoon by pushing your trip into early October, but I guess statiscally the chance decreases as you get into October. They're just not predictable.
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 08:06 AM
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rizz has the views right. Have stayed at the Sheraton and the views are nice at the top of the hotel and not bad from the rest of the hotel. Get a towers room with a view with your SPG status and you should be ok. Our inlaws partners stayed at the IC and invited us over for cocktails and dinner two nights and we got to see their rooms. The rooms we saw were all suites with floor to ceiling picture windows and the most gorgeous views of Hong Kong and the peak but the price......
We also stayed at the Shangri-La Kowloon the first time there. I think we took Kathie's reco and also had a nice harbor view room but the view is more of the Causeway Bay side of HK with a little of the downtown skyline to the right side of the picture windows. Loved to watch the harbor come to life every morning.
Weather should be nice in late Sept early Oct. Cicerone should be up soon for the real scoop.

Aloha!
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 11:14 AM
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>>>Hong Kong Trip<<<


Warm greetings, and yes, would gently suggest waiting for others to offer more.

Until then, will give my shameless promo for the Hong Kong Peninsula (brief weekend pleasure stays, only), and four rather fine HK Peninsula hotel employees involved with her Rolls Royce transfer service: William, Billy, Tommy, and Leslie. (And don't forget a harbour view room/suite.)

No other personal HK hotel experiences, other than the Island Shangri-La (to date, work only); remain partial to the Peninsula, perhaps partly due to the companionship.

Finally, kindly consider a certain Singaporean airline; SQ 1/2, not so bad of late.

Have fun planning and warm weekend wishes to all.

macintosh (robert)


... Singapore Airlines, You're a Great Way to Fly ...
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:39 PM
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It sounds like a good bonus trip. Have you been to Hong Kong before? I'm thinking not.

My first trip to Hong Kong, I stayed at the Shangri La. The view is lovely, but as HT correctly points out, it's from a little different perspective than the classic view from the Pen or the IC. As lovely as the Pen is, I would tend to go for the IC, or alternately, the Sheraton Towers (which is the top few floors).

Let me recommend a side trip to Macau. We had one of our best meals (and one of the least expensive) at Fernando's.
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 12:44 PM
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sheraton and Y are almost next door to each other... Y is like a holiday inn.

shangri-la is nice too...

i would not worry about the view as you will be out all the time...

you can see it from the star ferries and from the promenarde...
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Jul 2nd, 2010, 01:14 PM
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We just booked the air tickets on Continental. $990 per person. Only 20 hours. Following Cicerone's suggestion, we wullprobably stay at Bei Lei for four nights. Any reccos for another spot to compliment?

Excited about this trip. We have not been there, only the airport. It's 7 days and 8 nights. 9/17-9/25. Perfect bonus trip.
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 06:10 AM
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A perfect bonus trip, and glad to hear that you're back to traveling! We're going to be in HK (first time) as part of our Vietnam trip in February, so eager to read your trip report -- you'll have to assess yourself penalties if it's not prompt and full of details. What is Bei Lei?
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 06:13 AM
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Good for you, Andy and Beth! Enjoy!!! HK is beautiful!
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 06:24 AM
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Wonderful news!

Is Bei Lei the Bishop Lei House or something else?
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 06:46 AM
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If Bei Lei is Bishop Lei I'll be more than usually interested in your report - I've just booked there for November. But I booked a standard room - did you book a view room?
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 06:46 AM
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One of the great things about staying in a place like Hong Kong is that anywhere you stay is a good area, and Bishop Lei in the Mid-levels is no exception. You can spend hours and hours in the nearby Hong Kong Park -- watching or joining the morning crowd do their Tai Chi, having a great run (with no shortage of hills), and being struck by the contrasting harmonies of the non-stop frenzy of HK side-by-side with the serenity of the park.

Off-beat suggestion for a morning: the Yuen Po Bird Street. Birds are common pets in HK (many apartments are far too small for a dog or even cat), and the Yuen Po Bird Street is where many men take their pet birds for a daily outing. It's a social thing for the men as well as an few hours outside for the tweeters. Sounds odd, I suppose, but I found it to be amazingly interesting.
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 06:55 AM
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Of course Bei Lei is really Bishop Lei. We are giving it due consideration. I love the term "Mid levels". It's like an exam.

Maybe Bob would benefit from a daily walk like the birds. A little fresh air might loosen up those frozen brain celss. All three of them.
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 07:32 AM
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I will try to get a move on so you can read the Hong Kong chapter of my trip report before you leave! So glad you are planning (another) jaunt....I will give you some eating tips. That is, unless you plan to gorge on lasagna.
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 08:33 AM
  #16
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Zero chance of EKS getting to the HK portion of her trip report in the next week or so, out timetable for booking hotels. Zero, Nada, Nil. Even pandas are quicker than glaciers.
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 09:55 AM
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Bishop Lei is a great hotel when we stayed there in '98 for a few days. Bedroom with a queen-sized bed, small office-sitting room adjacent. Our last trip in '08 we stayed in a private residence in Western on somebody else's nickel.

Central has escalators so it's easy to go up and down, but there are lots of steps and hills in HK.

Do try the eating clubs (info in the Fodor's HK guide). We went to the Golden Door in Central in '08, entered through a little old office building door, up six floors in a rickety elevator, for a multi-course fixed menu of Schechuan food. When we left, the elevator got dodgy, so we walked down the stairs.
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 09:56 AM
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"Szechuan"
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 12:13 PM
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indianapearl - was the restaurant you mention perhaps Yellow Door? Near the escalator? Sounds just like the one we went to on Cicerone's list which we highly recommend Andy (as well as their sister restaurant - pics and menu description on our blog)

http://lizandrichardsa.typepad.com/2..._in_hong_.html

http://lizandrichardsa.typepad.com/2...n_hong__1.html
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Jul 3rd, 2010, 12:35 PM
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Elizabeth_S: You're right! (I can't remember what I had for breakfast this morning.) You have to reserve in advance and there are only about 10-12 tables.

I also spent a day at Martha Sherpa's Cooking School in Mong Kok on the Kowloon side -- [marthasherpa.com]. It was exceptionally good. We cooked (and ate) three dishes, then she demonstrated (and we ate) three more dishes. After that she took us on an hour-long tour of the Mong Kok wet market. I met my husband at the Mandarin for dinner after and was unable to eat another bite. I'd contacted a couple of other cooking schools, but they wanted a class of ten minimum.
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