Travel + Leisure Luxury Awards Asia Pacific 2023 reveals our readers’ picks of the best hotels, pools, spas and even general managers in Hong Kong. The city is back, baby, and the hotels are ready.
HELLO, HONG KONG! Asia’s world city flirted with isolation during the pandemic, only to realize that obscurity doesn’t suit it. You can’t keep a great city down, however, and when restrictions were fully lifted earlier this year, it bounced back with brio. Major events such as Art Basel and the rugby Sevens showed the city to be in fine form, with international travellers slowly returning (clumsy tourism campaigns notwithstanding).
There have been important political changes, but for visitors, what you’ll notice is the high-octane energy, humming streets, sparkling harbor, spectacular skyline, enhanced cultural cred, and top-notch hospitality as downtime became an opportunity for the sector to up its game.
Hotels such as the Four Seasons and Island Shangri-La underwent extensive overhauls, while the Regent is the year’s big (re)opening, reclaiming its original harbourfront position from the InterContinental after a 20-year absence.
Restaurants have never been better, with an abundance of superb eateries to choose from, especially if you have cash to splash. Talented chef-owners are a thing, drawing on their heritage and fine dining skills to create outstanding cuisine that reflects Hong Kong’s global flavour. Think contemporary Latin American at Mono, Japanese-Spanish at Ando, modern Singaporean at Whey, new Nordic at Embla, avant-garde Thai at Niras, the list goes on…
Making the biggest splash in 2023, however, is Forty-Five in Landmark, a glamorous culinary, art and lifestyle destination in Central. Already open is The Merchants for Shanghainese fare, Kaen Teppanyaki, and Cardinal Point, the hottest rooftop bar in town. Due in September: Cristal Room by French ultra-chef Anne-Sophie Pic.
You’re in Hong Kong, which means some of the best Chinese food on the planet, including affordable dim sum, Cantonese roast meats, noodle soups, and more alongside heavy hitters such as The Chairman, now in a stylish new location, Yong Fu, Hong Kong Cuisine, and Wing.
Now to the winners. No surprise that Rosewood took out the Best Hotel in Hong Kong award. Its mix of prime Kowloon-side location, stunning views, strong F&B lineup including Chaat for Indian, Legacy House for Chinese, and Darkside bar, along with divine Asaya spa village make it very appealing indeed. Best Hotel Spa winner The Oriental Spa at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental is a blissful sanctuary in the heart of the city with great facilities including an indulgent couple’s suite.
The sun-drenched rooftop pool with wraparound views at K11 Artus takes the prize for Best Hotel Pool, though if you’re on Hong Kong Island, dive into the two pools at the Four Seasons. And winning the back-to-back Best General Manager in Hong Kong award is Jill Goh at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, who clearly knows what it takes to deliver a top-notch hotel experience.
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