New York has the Statue of Liberty and Central Park; London has Big Ben and Trafalgar Square; Paris has the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe; and Hong Kong has Victoria Harbour. Lots of my tips so far seem to feature the harbour in one way or another but that’s because it’s pretty spectacular.
Whenever I have visitors in town I always kick-off with some harbour view drinks on the Island side (mainly because I'm lazy and live on the island but also because I usually then do a set of light show drinks from the Kowloon side - see my Light Show tip). Whatever the time of day, it’s a great introduction to the city.
For the luxe drinks with a view option, head to Sevva in the Princes Building in Central. I've never eaten at Sevva but all reports seem to be along similar lines, disappointing and overpriced. I suggest sticking to liquid refreshments, sinking into one of the white-cushioned, comfy rattan sofas on the fabulous wrap-around terrace and imbibing while marvelling at the views across the harbour to Kowloon and back across the city on the island side. Service is erratic and the drinks are pricey, but with views like these, it's worth it.
For all the views without the hefty drinks bill, I have the perfect insider's tip for a budget option. Red Bar on the rooftop of the IFC mall is located on a big terrace facing onto spectacular harbour views. But here's the great bit - the rooftop is officially classed as public space, so although Red Bar has furnished the terrace, you're perfectly entitled to nab one of the tables even if you're not ordering drinks from the bar. I suggest popping into CitySuper, an international supermarket on level one of IFC mall, grabbing a bottle of wine and some nibbles from the delicatessen counter and then heading on up the escalators to bag your prime harbour view spot while smugly saving yourself enough cash to treat yourself to a smart dinner. My only caveat is that you need to grab paper cups while you're in the supermarket too, Red Bar are not particularly fond of people bringing their own wine and then asking to borrow glasses!
6-14A Chater Road, Hong Kong Island.
+(852) 2537 1388
Google map: bit.ly/J5DV93
Red Bar IFC
4/f, IFC Mall, 8 Finance Street, Central, Hong Kong Island.
+(852) 8129 8882
Google map: bit.ly/J5E5gN
* Natalie is our local for Hong Kong. You can read all about her here: www.ivebeenthere.co.uk/articles/hong-kong-local-natalie-robinson.jsp and follow her tips here: www.ivebeenthere.co.uk/travellers/natalierobinson
She also has her own blog at: www.3badmice.com/
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