Destination: China: Hong Kong
Swire (the empire that includes Cathay Pacific and enormous real estate holdings throughout Hong Kong) stepped a toe into the hotel business when it opened the sleek and sexy Upper House. East is the first of their lower-budget business hotels. Located on the east side of Hong Kong in an area that combines many residential apartment complexes and multinational business offices, East has 345 rooms, all of which feature a minimalist aesthetic. The glass and steel structure borrows some design details from its more luxurious big sister hotel; the room and floor numbers are etched into bamboo panels and lit up from behind. There’s a happening rooftop bar called Sugar with a long outdoor deck strewn with day beds and views of the harbor; a bustling canteen-style restaurant called Feast and an attractive outdoor pool of the fitness center. The entry level rooms are simple and stylish, but feature only showers, no tubs. Among the companies who regularly house employees here are Royal Bank of Scotland and WPP. Rooms from $1,400HK (about $200 US.)
Tip: The best regular rooms are the ones on the corners of each floor. They have king beds, instead of queens, and great harbor views with two walls of floor to ceiling glass. The 30th floor is the suite floor. The six suites, range from 44 to 60 square meters, and feature bubble chairs and in-room bathtubs.
Set just back from the main Nathan Road tourist drag, this was one of the first boutique hotels, with just sixty-four rooms. The lobby and public areas display some of the owner’s extensive collection of Chinese antique paintings, furniture and sculptures. Rooms from $102.
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