Hong Kong for 36 hours – Mandarin Oriental / China

Categories Destinations, Hotels2 Comments

I love Hong Kong, we checked in @ the Mandarin Oriental which is probably the most famous upmarket hotel in Hong Kong. It’s smack-bang in the middle of everything, hasn’t lost any of its 1960s-era glam, has a couple of Michelin-starred restaurants and I can’t say enough good things about the beds.

You want central Hong Kong? You’ve got central Hong Kong. The “old Mandarin” to distinguish from the smaller, boutiquey younger sister The Landmark Mandarin Oriental next door looks out on just about every Hong Kong banking tower you can think of.

It’s practically on top of the Central MTR station if you want to go to the Kowloon side too, and connected to much of the Hong Kong side via the network of elevated pedestrian bridges.

We arrived at Hong Kong airport, the Mandarin collected us from the door of the plane. Ok, that was special I am not a HON Circle traveller. An golf cart gave us a lift through Hong Kong Airport to the immigration/passport control, and then the staffer handed me through customs to the Mandarin’s airport liaison.

Hong Kong

We went through the airport and then straight escorted into the Mandarin’s car.
Despite the excellent Airport Express service, there’s not a better way to arrive in Hong Kong.
The Mandarin’s lobby is remarkably understated for such a grande dame of a hotel. As you walk in, the Clipper bar is up and to the left, with reception in a low-ceilinged area ahead of you.
We had been upgraded to a deluxe suite and had a fantastic view through the harbour.

The deluxe suite was eopulently decorated but without the predominant bling that blights so many hotels. The door opened onto the living room, with the bedroom to the far left and the bathroom to the near left.

The warm wood-panelled living room was supremely comfortable, and featured a leather sofa facing a large flatscreen TV over a coffee table, with a separate leather armchair and ottoman as an alternative. The room looked out over Statue Square, with the Bank of China building and several other landmarks in plain view.

Nobody will be surprised that the Mandarin Oriental beds and bed-linen are fantastic, but I can confirm that they’re seriously excellent.
The bathroom, too, was amazing: a full freestanding tub in the middle of the room, with sinks on two walls and one of the best walk-in showers I’ve ever experienced. Double adjustable shower head to wash the jetlag away? Yes please, and a morning soak in the massive bathtub to boot.
Toiletries were the super-luxe Acqua di Parma, some of the best I’ve ever come across, and in decently-sized containers that actually squeeze properly into your hands, which is remarkably unusual.

If your budget stretches to the suite, ask especially for the utterly incredible Lichfield Suite, a red-and-monochrome homage to the legendary photographer.
Beautiful, great to be here.

It is located in the heart of Tsimshatsui

just a one minute walk to Hong Kong underground station (MTR) and just a short walk to the Star Ferry, the Hong Kong Museum of Art, the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, the Hong Kong Space Museum and the Avenue of Stars.
Furthermore we enjoyed the fantastic gala for the 50th anniversary.
Just amazing.

Mandarin Oriental 50th Gala Party

Resto tip in HK : St Betty

On the second floor of the IFC shopping mall in Central Hong Kong is St Betty, a slightly unlikely location for the latest venture of Alan Yau, the CEO of Wagamama and Hakkasan. The formula for St Betty is not entirely obvious: vaguely European food with Asian touches, with a shopping centre location, 130 cover size and lack of tablecloths hinting at a quite casual format, but the level of work in the dishes and the pricing suggesting otherwise.

The dining room has a large display of fruit at the entrance, a stone floor and a white wall on one side, a view out from the mall through picture windows on the other. There is a short wine list, with wines such as Te Mania Sauvignon Blanc 2010.

The “21st century egg” took chopped century egg (a Chinese preserved egg) with black truffle, poached and rolled with Parmesan and then deep fried and garnished with a sliver of truffle. This was served with asparagus that had been cooked on the Josper grill (an enclosed grill that keeps the flavour in) and topped with Parmesan, served with lemon mayonnaise. This had been made using whole eggs rather than just the yolks in order to make it lighter. The dish was dressed with hazelnut in vinaigrette. The overall creation was fantastic.

Followed by a beef carpaccio which was served with capers and rocket with pumpkin seeds and a red wine vinaigrette. The beef had good flavour, the capers lifting the dish. Yummy.

No dessert for us.

It was a nice evening and a breathtaking start with scenery of Victoria Harbour at 8pm.

Living in style.

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