24 Hours in Hong Kong – The Pearl of the Orient

Famously known as the Pearl of The Orient, Hong Kong is a heady mix of traditional and modern Asian cultures, combined in a loud, bright and intoxicating city that goes all day and night. We love visiting this city that never stops and have gathered together our picks of the best this city has to offer in a 24-hour stopover.

Stay in Style:

The Peninsula Hotel is the classic choice to stay when in Hong Kong. Established in 1928, this Grand Old Lady is still one of the top hotels in this former British Colony. With a helipad on the roof and a tea-time orchestra in the lobby, this hotel gracefully spans the divide between Hong Kong’s regal past and high-paced present. Known as the ‘Grande Dame of the Far East’ the Peninsula combines classical grandeur and timeless grace with modern amenities and exquisite service. Filled with artefacts and antiques you will be reminded of a time when travelling to the Orient was a glamorous adventure. Immaculate attention to detail and luxury rooms which can include a ‘flight-seeing’ helicopter tour of the city make this our pick for your stay in Hong Kong.

Shop In Luxury:

Hong Kong is one of the most exclusive shopping destinations in the world. With most of the world’s most exclusive and premium fashion brands claiming their spot in the best of the city’s luxury malls. Our pick of the best mall in town is the Landmark Mall at the base of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. The Landmark houses more than 120 top brands stores including Gucci, Mark Jacobs, PRADA, BVLGARI and Cartier and let’s not forget Hong Kong’s own Vivienne Tam.

If you are looking for something more authentic to the region, the famous Hollywood Road in Soho is where you will find high-quality Chinese antiques. With everything from Ming vases to jade artefacts, these dealers are known for their excellence in sourcing and certifying genuine antiques from China. Our favourites are Oi Ling   for their Chinese terracotta pieces and KY Fine Art who are experts in Chinese art and ink prints.

Indulge in Five Star Cuisine:

Grab a traditional Hong Kong Breakfast or Lunch at Hong Kong’s most famous Dim Sim Restaurant, Tim Ho Wan. Famous for their world-renowned traditional Dim Sim menu, Tim Ho Wan is also known for being the world’s cheapest Michelin star restaurant, after stubbornly refusing to raise their prices despite the accolade. Making this little Dim Sim house one of the busiest little places in town, so get there early if you do not want to be disappointed. We love the steamed shrimp dumplings (ha jiao) that have been steamed with ginger and garlic. And, you cannot leave without trying the fresh Turnip cakes and the deep-fried glutinous rice dumplings (ham siu gok).

For a more sedate dinner in the city, we suggest 8½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana.

Chef Umberto Bombana is known as the best Italian Chef in Asia and his Hong Kong restaurant is the only 3 Michelin Star Italian restaurant outside of Italy. Otto e Mezzo is an unforgettable experience and celebration of Italian lifestyle, art and life’s pleasures where Chef Bombana promises to please using the best ingredients from local and international markets. The regularly changing a-la-Carte ‘Lunch 8 ½’ and ‘Dinner 8 ½’ Menus are filled with fantastic dishes that will delight all.

See The City Sights:

No trip to Hong Kong would be complete without a trip across Victoria Harbour on the retro Star Ferry. A 30-minute ride across the remarkable harbour will land you on Hong Kong Island and at the base of the Peak. Ride the Peak Tram up to the top of the Peak for views out across the Harbour to the stunning skyline of this modern city. The Peak Tram was famously featured in the 1955 movie Soldier of Fortune starring Clark Gable (Clark rendezvoused with Susan Hayward at The Peak just before the film’s closing credits).

As the evening falls on Hong Kong a spectacular harbour-side event begins; The Symphony of Lights. A multimedia light show that sets the harbour ablaze every evening to a soundtrack provided by the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. Iconic buildings on both sides of the Harbour are lit up with thousands of lights, searchlights, LED screens and lasers all working together to make a city-scape symphony. You can see this sight anywhere along the water’s edge and the soundtrack is played from loudspeakers for the 7 minutes of the show. It begins at 8 pm sharp every evening and is well worth pausing to see.

Enjoy the Night:

As night falls on this city don’t think this slows down a beat. The Temple Street Night Markets begin as the sun goes down. Filled with traders selling everything from Chinese tea and treasures to touristic trinkets and knock-off brands, this vibrant and busy marketplace fills with locals and tourists alike coming out to shop while enjoying the live music, and treats from the many street food vendors.

If, after the buzz of the night market, you are still not ready to retire to your hotel, head to Lan Kwai Fong the popular late night street. Bars, clubs and restaurants turn this street into Hong Kong’s party central every night. Enjoy some live music, late night food and cocktails in the humming atmosphere that is Hong Kong after hours; in the city that never stops.