I love Hong Kong, its a big statement and one I tend to bang out regularly as I seem to find great things about every place I go to. I haven’t found a place yet that I haven’t liked. The first time I went to Hong Kong was on a girls trip in 2013 with my mum and my sister. The best thing (and possibly the worst) it started my love affair with all things Shangri La.
Now that we are a family of 5, staying in hotels is rarely an affordable option for us when travelling. Its more of a special treat or when we are travelling for a special occasion. But when we do, if there’s a Shangri La in town that’s where my heart will be set.
Needless to say, on my first visit to Hong Kong I stayed at the Shangri La Kowloon. We arrived early evening and my sister being the 5*star queen, requested if there might be a free upgrade, cant help to ask right! Well, we got it! An upgrade to a Harbour front room, I was ecstatic!
When we went into our room on the 7th floor, our curtains were closed. They were remote control so we opened the windows and I was speechless. The view was amazing. It was my first view of the amazing sight that is Victoria Harbour across to Hong Kong Island. The view I had seen in many a Getaway episode, the envy of plenty of travel brochures I’ve drooled over & it was just as beautiful and breath taking as I had imagined it would, be if not more. I stood in that window for for about 30 mins just taking it all in.
I sat in that window every morning and had my cup of tea, there was always something different to look at. We were there in May and it was pretty foggy most days. You couldn’t see to the top of the buildings across on Hong Kong Island. It added a mysterious element to it but certainly didn’t take away any of the beauty.
The room was standard for what you would expect in a 5* hotel, the beds were comfortable and the bathroom spacious, clean and bright. The room service was efficient and the standard of house keeping high. Its the small things that make a difference.
In particular the concierge service. These guys they can’t do enough for you. Upon arrival we met the Head of Concierge, Ringo. I can not speak more highly of his attention to detail and impeccable service. There wasn’t a thing he could do to make our stay any better.
He knew just the right restaurants to send us to, he organised taxi’s every time we went to leave for the day, he took the time to ask us each night how our day was and what we got up to. He organised our trip to Macau, including ferry tickets, private driver and tickets to the House of Dancing Water. I have since used those contacts on our visit to Hong Kong last year and have passed the details of our private driver to friends visiting Macau.
The Shangri La is perfectly located on Mody Rd, a 50 metre walk to East TST station to get the train, this then gets you pretty much anywhere in town. Its also a 10 minute walk to Nathan Rd, the main road of Kowloon and were most of the major shopping places are.
The facilities at the hotel are great, there is a day spa, a health and fitness centre. We had to check out in the morning but our flight was late that night. The concierge organised storing our bags for the day while were went out exploring. We returned that afternoon and collected our bags and went to the health and fitness centre and got showered and cleaned up for our flights.
Ringo was on duty when we were leaving and he organised a limousine to take us to the airport. He even called ahead to the airport and had porters waiting for us so that we didn’t have to wheel our own bags. He really did make us feel like royalty. I suppose thats why its a 5*star hotel.
When I went back to Hong Kong last year, I took my family to the Shangri La to meet Ringo. If he didn’t remember me he sure didn’t show it! We spent 5 days at the Shangri La Tanjung Aru in Kota Kinabalu last year, you can read about it here. While it was beautiful and the staff were amazing it wasn’t quite like my visit Shangri La experience and I think that was because of Ringo.
Our next trip overseas is to Vietnam in September, unfortunately they don’t have a Shangri La there, better for my bank balance! I hope my next visit to a Shangri La isn’t to far away.