China Club is a private members club owned by Sir David Tang housed over three floors in the former Bank of China Building (the new Bank of China Building towers sleek and angular across the road - you can’t miss it, look for the glossy black building with criss-crossing white lights). Although you usually have to be or know a member to get a reservation, most hotels should be able to get you a booking with enough notice and Black Amex Card holders can get Amex to book for them. The grey, brightly-lit street level entrance appears unimpressive but ride the Old Master Q cartoon lined lift up to the thirteenth floor and prepare to be wowed.
As the lift doors open you’re greeted by a lobby crammed with striking modern art, dark wooden floors and a wrought iron Art Deco staircase curving upwards to your left. The extensive Chinese art collection deserves a mention in its own right, and alone justifies a visit to the China Club. From Yu Youhan’s diptych of Whitney Houston next to Chairman Mao hanging on the stairs to Liu Jianhua’s porcelain fish bowl in the lobby - home to five pairs of protruding, disembodied legs as well as several live goldfish who casually swim around the scattered limbs. The restaurant is designed to resemble a decadent 1930s Shanghai club and everything from the ceiling fans to the lamps conjure a bygone colonial era.
Start with aperitifs up on the 14th floor in the Long March Bar, a glamorous slice of art deco opulence. After you gin & tonic, head back past the shoe-shiners and an enormous pair of wooden shoes to the main dining room. Slip into one of the red leather and dark wood booths and get your chopsticks at the ready for the Cantonese feast to follow. Be sure to order the Peking duck, I think it’s the best in Hong Kong. While you eat, if the people watching doesn't keep you entertained enough (Victoria Beckham visited on her recent trip to Hong Kong), prepare to be wowed by the chef who spins ribbons of noodles right in front of your table and the waiter with the watering-can-like teapots who serves your tea with a side of drama. After dinner, decamp upstairs to the elegant terrace for nightcaps under the stars overlooking the city lights.
12/F, The Old Bank of China Building, Bank Street, Central, Hong Kong Island.
+(852) 2521 8888
Google map: bit.ly/IQcv85
* 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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