Aqua Spirit Hong Kong

Hong Kong offers visitors the opportunity to experience a unique fusion of cultures where east meets west; a vibrant place where the modern blends seamlessly with tradition, therein creating a global city which is dynamic and cosmopolitan. Sublime aromas emanate from the streets, thousands hailing from all corners of the globe whirl around you, gleaming modern skyscrapers are juxtaposed against traditional, cramped Chinese alleyways and designer retail shops selling haute couture are setting the trends while a vast variety of restaurants are busy vying for prestigious Michelin stars. These rewards and thrills await you in Asia’s World City.

The last time I stepped foot in this bustling city was to visit my older sister in 2008. Since then I have always wanted to return to my favorite Asian destination, but between work commitments and a hectic travel schedule, I haven’t found the time to travel back to Hong Kong. Lucky for me, I don’t have to go very far to experience Hong Kong. Instead, I can experience the best of Hong Kong at my doorstep right here in London.

Last week the UK Hong Kong Tourism Board invited me to a treasure hunt to promote the upcoming street festival “Hong Kong – Live in London”, a celebration of Hong Kong’s vibrant culture. Our objective was to use the clues provided to us to uncover Hong Kong’s intimate ties and long history with London.

The first clue took us to landmark hotels such as The Langham, where the hotel’s signature fragrance - a lovely fresh ginger flower scent – greeted us along with the concierge staff who presented us with pink roses, the signature colour of the luxury hospitality group who also maintain several properties in Hong Kong. Continuing on to the iconic Dorchester Hotel on Park Lane, we were escorted through the exquisite hotel lobby to the much applauded China Tang Restaurant. Hong Kong-born Sir David Tang, the force behind China Club and lifestyle brand Shanghai Tang, designed this gorgeous restaurant with strong influences of 1930s Shanghai, serving up authentic Cantonese food, indeed the perfect blend and ultimate example of how east and west are combined to give birth to the epitome of Hong Kong style.

The next clue brought us to South Molton Street, which will stage “Hong Kong – Live in London”, the week-long street festival running from the 12 - 18 September 2011. To celebrate the upcoming Year of the Dragon in 2012, an auspicious year in the lunar calendar in which the dragon symbolizes prosperity and energy, itself encapsulating the spirit of Hong Kong, the UK Hong Kong Tourism Board will be displaying the Molton Street Dragons installation. A collection of five interactive dragons aptly named Cosmopolitan, Fusion, Variety, Trends, and Vibrancy will give visitors a flavour of the different elements that make Hong Kong the most exciting and exotic metropolis in Asia.
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