For this week’s neighborhood guide, I am going to talk about a continually changing area; Wan Chai. Working so close to Wan Chai, I spend a good portion of my time in the neighborhood so I know where all the best places are! To describe Wan Chai in one word would be extremely difficult as this neighborhood is a little bit of everything fused into one.
The must knows
The Blue House – is a four-storey Lingnan-style house built in the 1920s with a mixture of Chinese and Western architectural features. My favourite! It is said that the blue colour was not intentional but was in fact because there was no other paint left for the decorators to use! The building also houses the Wan Chai Livelihood Museum, where you can visit the Blue House’s typical living quarters where it is one of the few buildings left in Hong Kong to have no flushing toilets – eeek.
Wan Chai Street Market – One of the oldest and biggest outdoor markets on Hong Kong island, this street market sells a variety of everything from sauces from Thailand, children’s toys to local clothes. It is a great place if you are looking for good value – a favorite local hotspot.
Wan Chai Computer Center – To be frank, this isn’t my favourite place in Wan Chai as I do tend to lose Chu San and Callum in this tardis! However, it is a necessity to know where this place is and you can shop for something simple like a new phone case, set up your home theater or even build your own PC (if you really fancy?!) Whatever electronic-related product you are looking for, they will have it.
Southorn Playground – Soccer and basketball enthusiasts, this place is your haven – this is where you bring your A-game and prove you are the king and queen of the courts. The best of the best come here to show off their skills. Even NBA players have shot a few hoops at Southorn!
The Pawn – British chef Tom Aikens gives The Pawn a culinary makeover. The pawn is a four-story building listed as a local heritage conversation site – the building itself looks nothing like the buildings around it! An excellent place to unwind, make sure you try out their Fish and Chips – another example of East meets West.
Madam Sixty Eight – Opened by husband-and-wife team Chris Woodyard and Bronwyn Cheung (I was lucky enough to go to school with Bronwyn) Madam Sixty Ate is a relaxed, modern restaurant offering a luxury food experience. There is also a sister restaurant Madam S’Ate on the darkside in Elements that I often frequent!
Sawali Club – A favorite amongst the JLL office. You won’t find a better place for Thai food in Hong Kong. Known for their rickety tables and authentic ingredients, this place is the epitome of cheap and cheerful. Their fresh raw shrimps are their #1 on the menu.
Accessories for your home
Tang Tang Tang Tang – David Tang’s shop in the same building as The Pawn. Everyone who knows me well knows that I love that East meets West design. I do love this shop so do pop in.
Eclectic Cool – Home accessories galore – I recently picked up a breadboard which everyone who joins me for bubbles comments on. This week I am off to find some candles!
There are lots of different types of buildings in Wan Chai to live in. There are the older buildings which tend to have mixed interior finishes or you can chose a brand spanking new building which has that new car smell! If you are family, there are buildings that are perfect for you. The buildings are not in the heart of Wan Chai but they are a stone’s throw and therefore walking distance.
Here are some of my favourites:
- Bamboo Grove – families find this building an easy choice.
- 150 Kennedy Road – is actually accessed by Shui Fai Terrace but you can walk down in 5 minutes.
- Starcrest – brilliant if you work in my building PP3!
- The Avenue – this is the new building and this is one of the penthouse units.
- Kin On Building – perfect example of the older properties available in Wan Chai.
As always, if you want to see what property looks like or are in the area and want to catch up about the property market then please feel free to contact me.
Have a great week everyone.