A June 2006 trip
to Hong Kong by nmagann
Quote: Unique architecture of skyscrapers and accommodations is the norm for Hong Kong. Spectacular temples and panoramic views are icing on the cake.
I had been living or rather existing in China for a while and was ready to head home. Converting my remaining colorful monopoly money back into US dollars seemed impossible in mainland China.Since I would prefer to go out with a bang anyway, Hong Kong beckoned. Considering my funds, my current living conditions and the expense of accommodations in HK, guesthouses would be the obvious choice.I began searching several websites for a place to stay and started to notice something odd. All the places listed had one of three addresses! How could that be?With a little research, I discovered the Chunking Mansion, for example, built in 1961 was originally a 17-story apartment complex spread over 5 blocks. It now houses 90 guesthouses. Do the math. That means one floor is <_>not dedicated to a single guesthouse. What was an individual apartment is now a dorm or guest room.Whether it was curiosity or sadistic thoughts, I decided this would be an exciting experience----until I learned more. I discovered the first two floors housed very pungent Indian restaurants with over zealous fake Rolex hawkers and known for raids on the illegal workers who lived on the floors above. Furthermore, Chunking Mansions were synonymous with prostitution, drugs, and crime.Rooms were efficient though. You could sit on the toilet, brush your teeth, and take a shower at the same time. The beds were compact and could easily sleep anyone under 5 feet tall. You didn’t need an alarm or a cup of coffee to wake up because the neon lights shining through your window, if you had a window, and the noise from the traffic were enough to keep you going.Apparently the Mirador Mansions, just 2 blocks away enjoyed similar features minus the Indian influence and notorious reputation.Nonetheless, the whole idea of experiencing this still appealed to me. So at which one did I stay? I chose the Sincere House located just off Nathan Road a mile away. I would get the experience I wanted without the----options I didn’t need.
I made reservations for a single room with shared bathroom at the Dragon Hostel located on the 7th floor of the Sincere House for about $30 a night.The location was excellent for everything. I was ½ block away from the ladies market where there is a lot more than what the name implies, 1 block from the MTR station, 3 blocks from KCR station, 2 blocks from the airport shuttle and on the same block as a 7-11. The room was small with bed, TV and some shelves, but it was quite and clean.A dining table, refrigerator and microwave enabled me to enjoy microwave popcorn that I had been craving along with a bowl of noodles when it was just a little too late to be heading out.Mirador Mansion 58-60 Nathan RdChungking Mansion 36-44 Nathan RdSincere House 83 Argyle
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 27, 2006
83 Argyle Street
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 26, 2006
+852 2807 6543
Attraction | "HK Architecture"
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 26, 2006
Between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Peninsula
Attraction | "Big Buddha"
Big Buddha-Tian Tan Buddha
Near Po Lin Monastery
Ngong Ping, Lantau Island