13 New Things You Shouldn't Miss on Your Next Hong Kong Trip

Secret bars you've never heard of, a Swedish visual artist making her Asian debut, a month-long film festival, and more.
IMAGE sharonang/ pixabay

Hong Kong is always happening and the city never stays the same for long. While its great to settle for tried-and-test favorites, why not dive into this dynamic city and sample something new? 

Watch This Space

Newly opened establishments worth your attention 

Tai Kwun

Those tired of the typical tourist spots in Hong Kong would be pleased to know about this new cultural playground. The newly opened Tai Kwun is a converted police station compound that now serves as a center for heritage and the arts. First-timers can discover the history of the compound through designated heritage storytelling activities, while visitors can also enjoy the contemporary art exhibits integral to the area. Tai Kwun will soon host art workshops and be a venue for performing arts.

10 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong, taikwun.hk

Little Tipsy

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This modern European diner is the smaller alternative to chef Kong Wai-sing’s Tipsy. The menu features contemporary takes on European recipes like crab risotto and miso salmon. A salad bar is on offer at lunchtime, while bar snacks are to be had in the afternoon. It’s the best place for a casual get-together with free-flowing drinks on Saturdays, plausibly to get you a little tipsy.

9/F Wong Tze building, 71 Hoi Yuen Road, Kwun Tong, Hong Kong,

The Secret Restaurant by Gough’s On Gough

Timothy Oulton and his culinary creations basked in the spotlight when Gough’s On Gough opened last year, so he's now lying low and enjoying more discreet attention. His gallery on Gough street now hosts private dining experiences at The Secret Restaurant, a 10-seater dining room that will serve intimate parties six courses off an exclusive chef’s menu. To make the experience more bespoke, the diners will get to meet the team before the dinner to plan the menu and the wines.


15 Gough Street, Central, Hong Kong, goughsongoughs.com


Nestled on the rooftop of The Murray is Popinjays, which comes with a great view of bird-filled Hong Kong Park, Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens, and Garden Road. Through Popinjays' kitchen doors will exit modern European-inspired fare conceptualized by food scene veteran chef Didier Quennouelle. As guests do some birdwatching, they may also enjoy avian-themed cocktails from Popinjays’ extensive bar menu. Beverages like Blue Macau or the Peacock Royale all come with design hints of their namesake birds. At the center of it all is The Aviary, a private dining room that seats 14 guests.

On Fridays and Saturdays, groups of four or more can look forward to the Birds of Feather offering, which features a selection of shared dishes plus free-flowing cocktails.

25/F, The Murray, 22 Cotton Tree Drive, Central, Hong Kong, niccolohotels.com


Now Showing

Upcoming events, concerts, exhibits, and exclusive screenings

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Movie Movie Festival: Life Is Art

In this year’s edition of the Movie Movie Life is Art Festival, art, music, fashion, and photography in films will be celebrated in a month-long affair. Fans of Vivienne Westwood or Yayoi Kusama will be pleased to find documentaries on these icons at the annual affair. A few films you can expect: Whitney, Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist, Kusama: Infinity, and Ritoma directed by Ruby Yang. Runs till September 30.

For more information, visit moviemovie.com.hk 

“Thresholds of Perception” by Catherine Christer Hennix

Swedish visual artist Catherine Christer Hennix makes her Asian debut with a surreal exhibition at The Empty Gallery. Also a composer and a poet, Hennix treads beyond her music and explores her other artistic side. The venue will showcase her work on waveforms, neon-lit symbols, as well as stainless steel sculptures. 

Until September 8, Empty Gallery, 18th and 19th floor, Grand Marine Center, 3 Yue Fung Street, Tin Wang, Hong Kong, emptygallery.com


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New York-based design studio has installed its first exhibition in the city and has chosen to do it at the high-foot traffic area on Harbour City. Entitled “Bounce,” the interactive installation gives visitors the chance to play in a stark white playground with—you guessed it—giant bouncy balls. These free sessions run for 20 minutes each. 

Ocean Terminal Forecourt, Harbour City 


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For 10 years now, Clockenflap has brought some the biggest names in music to perform on Hong Kong ground, and this year’s first round lineup already promises Khalid onstage. The next wave of performers over the three-day concert will soon be announced.


Clockenflap, November 9 to 11, clockenflap.com


Best Kept Secrets

Under-the-radar spots


Room 309

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Within The Pottinger, the supposedly discreet 22-seater Room 309 is begging to be found. To enter, guests have to pick up a keycard at the make-shift “Reception.” Once in, guests will notice that the space is filled with antique fixtures. The star of the speakeasy are its craft cocktails. One of its gimmicks includes an Invisible Menu, a selection of clear concoctions.

The Pottinger, 74 Queen’s Road, Central, Hong Kong, room309.hk

Sai Kung Volcanic Rocks

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Longing for something new, but one that doesn’t require the swiping of a credit card in Hong Kong? Away from the business districts and crowded shopping streets is the small but scenic village of Sai Kung. Just 30 minutes away from Central, the Hong Kong Global Geopark features the beautiful Sai Kung Peninsula, a picturesque set of volcanic rocks. Guided tours and buses have made it easier for visitors to come and witness the spot, which has become known for hiking, swimming, and wildlife-watching.


What’s Trending

Establishments receiving noteworthy buzz

The Murray


Once a place of business and politics, The Murray is the hottest new five-star hotel to grace the Central skyline. Designed by Forster + Partners, the former government office now consists of 336 guest rooms across 25 floors and five dining establishments. Built on a prime spot, the newest luxury hotel is right next to The Peak tram station and offers visitors a panoramic view of the metro and Hong Kong park.

The Murray, 22 Cotton Tree Drive, Central, Hong Kong, niccolohotel.com

Amber Coffee Brewery

To set itself apart from the pack, Amber has award-winning barista Dawn Chan steering the wheel (or in this case, grinding the coffee). Chan, twice a champion at the Hong Kong Barista Championship and fourth at the 2015 World Barista Championship, uses coffee beans sourced from Colombia and Brazil. The quaint, yet modern coffee shop turns into a wine bar at night.

140-142 Des Voeux Road, Central, Hong Kong

Yan Toh Heen

You can’t leave Hong Kong without some Cantonese food, and where better to get your fix than at the newly renovated Yan Toh Heen. Awarded two Michelin stars, the Chinese restaurant has recently been relocated to a new spot at the Harbourview-based Intercontinental Hotel. Just as the interiors have undergone a makeover, regulars will notice a change in the menu, too, as executive chef Lau Yiu Fai, who has been with the hotel for over 30 years, introduces new Cantonese dishes.

Lower Level, InterContinental Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Road, Kowloon, hongkong-ic.intercontinental.com

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