Staycations

Staycations

15 January, 2016
Don't Go Anywhere
Five picks for a perfect Chinese New Year escape - right here in HK!
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Often when we think of a vacation, our minds immediately daydream about the many countries that are waiting to be ticked off on our bucket list... but rarely do we think about vacationing in our own country, especially in a small nation like Hong Kong.
 
This Chinese New Year, try a little something different and opt for a staycation during your few days off from work! Ecozine has curated a list of great stays right here in town for a mini escape. Read on.
 
1. Luxury – The Peninsula Hotel, TST 
Established in 1928, Hong Kong's oldest hotel offers a blend of the best Eastern and Western hospitality in an atmosphere of timeless grandeur and elegance. There's no question of the pleasure of staying in such plush surroundings - and with its unparalleled views of Victoria Harbour, the Peninsula also remains one of the city’s best spots to take in the annual Chinese New Year fireworks display.
 
This year as always, the Peninsula’s famous selection of signature Chinese New Year cakes and confections add to the celebration. Their renowned restaurant, Spring Moon, offers an array of Chinese New Year puddings – turnip, taro, water chestnut and of course, sweet and sticky “leen goh” - for an auspicious addition to any Lunar New Year gathering.
 
On the eco side, The Peninsula is well known for its sustainability efforts, not only undertaking conventional initiatives like donating to charity and doing community work, but also being one of the first hotels in Asia to boldly ban shark fin from its menus across the board, in 2012. Hurrah!
 
2. Budget – Hotel Icon, East Tsim Sha Tsui
If you don't want CNY to burn a hole in your wallet, you can always consider a more budget friendly hotel without compromising on the quality of your stay. Hotel ICON in Tsim Sha Tsui is all about individuality. They are passionate about local culture, art, design, and food - and this is reflected throughout every aspect of the property. Plus, with the hotel serving as a showcase for Hong Kong Polytechnic University's School of Hotel and Tourism Management, guests can be certain that they are receiving quality service from its proudly professional staff.
 
Hotel ICON also has a proven track record for being eco-friendly; their green commitment can be sensed the moment you walk into its airy lobby dominated by a huge, lush, scupltural green wall. The recipient of a Carbon Care award, the hotel maximizes use of natural ventilation and lighting, uses high efficiency LED lighting and sensors, offers paperless check-in... and excess edible food from the kitchen is donated to Food Angels for local families in need. 
 
Speaking of food, the ICON's three limited edition Lunar New Year Puddings in Brown Sugar, Turnip and Taro, all created by Executive Chef Philip Leung, are on our yes list for the season! Don't want to break your new year’s resolution of eating healthy? Rather thanworking your way through a pudding, you can always celebrate the year of the monkey at their Chinese New Year Fireworks Champagne Party by the harbour!
 
 
3. Coastal – Auberge Discovery Bay, Lantau Island
Located on a quiet part of picturesque Lantau Island, Auberge Discovery Bay invites visitors to explore another side to Hong Kong. Its 325 rooms and suites are surrounded by ocean views, greenery and natural beauty. It's the best of both worlds - the peacefulness of an island oasis, yet with Hong Kong only 25 minutes away by ferry. 
 
The resort's Café bord de Mer & Lounge, with its open-plan layout, interactive cooking stations and timber finishes, reflects a relaxed island lifestyle. We could sit all day in the sunny full-length windows with views over the South China Sea. Outside, there's a terrace where guests can enjoy a cocktail in the evening, sample snacks under a starry sky or simply listen to the waves lapping at the shore. It's away... but it's not! Perfection.
 
4. Heritage – Tai O Heritage Hotel, Lantau Island 
Looking for something with a little culture and history to it? The Tai O Heritage Hotel is in a beautifully restored colonial building in Lantau Island's Tai O fishing village. It was built under British  rule in 1902 as a police station to guard the shore against bandits, but due to declining crime rates, the police station ceased to operate in 1996 - and Hong Kong's hotel scene is all the better for it.
 
The hotel enjoys spectacular views of the South China Sea and the tranquil village adjacent. Its nine uniquely appointed rooms all retain a sense of the property's history and architecture; sitting on a porch or in a window, one can daydream about bygone days, and imagine the police force protecting the fishing village from this high point.
 
A modern glass-roofed restaurant atop the hotel offers stunning views that change througout the day and with the weather. There's also a Heritage Interpretation Centre onsite where history buffs can discover historical tales of Tai O. And the village itself offers numerous quaint cafes, shops and picturesque scenes for idle wandering over the quiet holiday week.
 
5. Newcomer – Cordis Hotel at Langham Place, Mong Kok 
Been there, done all that? Then check out the NEW branch of Cordis Hong Kong at Langham Place. The best thing about this new kid on the block is their fliexibility and attention to service; from couples' treats to specially designed family rooms, their aim is to offer a tailored experience suited exactly to your needs.
 
The property offers excellent fitness facilities, relaxing spas, comfortable modern rooms, and plenty of dining options - and that's just inside the hotel. On the doorstep is the food and shopping extravaganza that is Mong Kok! Cordis takes pride in share with their guests the local beat around their hotels and, with the help of specialist guides, can guide you on insightful neighbourhood journeys. 
 
Cordis is also devoted to the well being of the environment, making them the proud recipient of an ‘Earth Check' award. Wherever possible, their restaurants source fresh ingredients from nearby organic farms. They also recognise that hotels use large amounts of energy and natural resources, so in addition to back-of-house efforts, their "Guests of the Earth" programme shares with visitors their commitment to building sustainable communities. In case you are wondering, their limousines are also fuel efficient, and each property works with local charities.

By: Ecozine Staff
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