Hong Kong by Delphine Chaneac

We decided to set up a quick interview with my friend Olivier, who is a die-hard Hong Kong fan…

What a feat of organisation! There was absolutely no question of getting bored in this city where each passing season delivers another raft of fairs and exhibitions.

From the Hong Kong Flower Show to the Brands and Products Exhibition, not to mention racehorse meetings galore…it’s truly fabulous. As for the golf tournaments, I’m afraid they will have to manage without me, but I have no doubt the true fans will be in their element.

The city of energy. I will try and take in the Festival of Lights, which is a huge light and sound extravaganza taking place every year in the harbour, and providing yet another great opportunity to crack open a bottle of City Spirit.

Good morning Olivier, so, you know the score, I ask you really long, complicated questions and you answer me as briefly as possible.

So, let’s get started. And don’t forget by the way, you are talking to a Chief Editor, just in case you had forgotten. So, my first question is:

City?

A British Colony for 99 years until one morning in July 1997, when the Queen shut the door, boarded a boat, and left the keys to the Chinese. The return to Chinese control has not changed much; the city remains totally unique, it’s Hong Kong.

Unique?

Yes, Macau is not international as yet, and its economy is limited to just a few specific sectors.

Culture?

In all shapes and sizes…every culture has its place in this melting pot. Whether it’s cinema, live music or restaurants that rock your boat, it’s all here ripe for the picking in Hong Kong.

Restaurants?

So, if I had to name but 3, it would be Alain Ducasse’s Spoon, and its spectacular vistas across the bay and the trademark stamp of an established name.

Tim Ho Wan, for its 3-star take on Dim Sum and fine dining Chinese style. My mouth is already starting to water.

And Wooloomooloo, an incredible steak house with an upstairs terrace inviting views across Hong Kong, and a great bar to boot.

Bar?

Boudoir, a cosy and discrete address situated in a basement, serving outstanding Champagne cocktails.

Aqua, with its stunning views from Tsim Sha Tsui, where you can savour a glass of Champagne, while admiring Hong Kong’s magnificent harbour.

Ozone, at the top of the Ritz Carlton, quite literally the highest bar in the whole of Asia. So a word of warning if you are afraid of heights. A great evening in view!

Evening?

July 12th, Saint Olivier’s Day, organised by none other than local Frenchy, Olivier Pierson. It’s all about managing to get all the resident Oliviers and Olivias in Hong Kong together on July 12th and introducing people who only have their names in common. Quite an original approach don’t you think? “No need to introduce yourself as you come in, we know your name already”.

Then we all end up in a club.

Club?

The Dragon 1, a legendary establishment, especially on Wednesday nights for its incredibly hip parties.

The Drop, with its unlikely secret entry and electric atmosphere, making this an unforgettable evening.

Kee Club, more classic in style, but a well-established, reputed venue, still cutting it among the in-crowd, whose Champagne cocktails command quite a reputation.

And most definitely the way to end an evening, with an obligatory rest at the end of it!

Rest?

Sunday morning, charter a “junk” to visit some of the islands skirting Hong Kong. Once on board, indulge in brunch…with Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte, of course.

Thanks Olivier, no time to lose.

Finished, thanks Delphine for the complex, well-researched questions; I tried to keep it brief.

I feel I know all there is to know about Hong Kong. A half-empty suitcase is an absolute must…amazing markets, and shops, young designers in every street… I am fully briefed. Watch out for counterfeits!

Journey of discovery | Published on: 10 December 2012
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