When business took a big dip around this time last year, the Hotel
Inter-Continental Hong Kong made the most of the lull by sprucing
up the property just in time for the surge in U.S. business this
“October is one of our strongest months,” said spokesperson
Carole Klein. “The U.S., especially the West and East coasts,
continues to be our strongest market, representing close to 50% of
Featuring the most spectacular harbor views of any hotel in Hong
Kong, an unforgettable waterfront lobby, a feng shui-inspired spa
with private saunas, and the innovative seafood restaurant Yu, it’s
no wonder the hotel is frequently highly ranked in surveys by Conde
Naste Traveler, Travel & Leisure, and other publications.
The 17-story contemporary-style, red-and-black granite building
has three-story, plate-glass windows showcasing the sweeping harbor
views from the lobby, restaurants and guest rooms.
A huge, outdoor swimming pool is surrounded by gardens, a
terrace with a bar and three spa pools set in granite with glass
Yu restaurant serving such entrees as Yu drunken prawn on
crystal pastry cannelloni and lobster bisque cappuccino features a
unique undulating bubble wall with two fish tanks inside.
Two-thirds of the 422 guest rooms and all of the 92 suites
overlook the harbor. Large Italian-marble bathrooms with sunken
tubs and separate showers highlight rooms and suites.
All units offer air-conditioning, air-purification systems,
safes, minibars, refrigerators remote-controlled televisions,
Internet and e-mail access, and two-line speakerphones with voice
Inter-Continental has made significant changes since it took
over the property last year:
The lobby is lighter and brighter with shades of off-white,
celery and eggplant, modern furniture and sycamore paneling.
The new, mezzanine-level Club Inter-Continental, a
technology-equipped lounge for business guests, was designed with
the pale colors and sycamore paneling of the lobby, plus
translucent glass walls and checkerboard floors. Of course, the
backdrop of the room is the hotel’s signature panoramic harbor
Cocktails, champagne, wine, hors d’oeuvres, afternoon tea,
pastries and a variety of soft beverages are served throughout the
Unveiled Oct. 1 was the expanded 2,345-square-foot spa and
fitness center. Additions include three massage rooms with teak
floors and sycamore and blackwood walls, each with its own
Japanese-style garden. The spa is known for its feng-shui design
and its green-granite rooms with private saunas, steam-showers,
whirlpools and jet-lag treatments. The amount of cardiovascular and
resistance equipment in the fitness center has doubled.
Plume, the famed European fine-dining restaurant, which closed
in January, is scheduled to reopen in September 2003 with a
world-renowned chef and a new dining concept, Klein said.
On my two-day, jet-lagged stay last winter, I was struck by the
elegant Asian decor that accentuated the harbor views. The lobby
cafe, opening onto the waterfront, gives the impression of the
lobby and water overlapping.
The suite accommodations were the perfect antidote for my foggy
mind and tired body: A mirrored entry led to a living room with
recessed lighting, Asian art, grass-cloth walls, raw-silk
accessories, bamboo furniture and views of Victoria Harbor and Hong
The bedroom included a walk-in closet with built-in drawers, a
sitting alcove with a sofa, and a king-size bed sporting a silk
The unit featured a marble powder room with a pedestal sink, a
dressing room with a vanity and a huge marble bathroom with a
separate shower and a whirlpool tub from which I savored white wine
and harbor views.
The butler provided service with a capital S, appearing within
minutes every time I pushed a button (once accidentally in the
middle of the night).
The hotel is located on Salisbury Road in Kowloon, in the center
of the shopping, dining and entertainment district. Chek Lap Kok
airport is accessible via public transportation, and the hotel
offers Mercedes limousine service.
Hits: Views, ambience, location, service, food,
Misses: In a state of flux due to new ownership
when I was there, but now settling down.
Clientele: Mostly business, 50% from the
Be aware: Too many shopping temptations
Rates: Rooms $250-$326; suites $634-$1,442.
Contacts: 800-327-0200; www.intercontinental.com.