By Hans Ebert
The food is brilliant. The interior design is spectacular.
Basement, Standard Chartered Bank Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Road Central, Central
8/F, Conrad Hong Kong, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty
(Northern Indian and Nepalese)
G/F, 13 Elgin Street, SOHO, Central
G/F, 40A Tak Ku Ling Road, Kowloon City
The most famous Chinese restaurant for Roast Goose. But get here fast. The battle for control by the two brothers who inherited the iconic restaurant has almost reached the point of no return with lawsuits flying all over the place and matriarch Mother Goose getting involved.
32-40 Wellington Street, Central
G/F , 7 Elgin Street, SOHO, Central
Of course, it’s Japanese. With a name like that you were expecting French??? Small, exclusive and a bit hard to find, but for around HK$5,700- really good Japanese food is never inexpensive- one can enjoy a great dinner for three including sake guaranteed not to give you a hangover.
Our Favourite Meeting Places
The Blue Bar at the Four Seasons
Lobby level, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, 8 Finance Street, Central
G/F., 32 Wyndham St., Central
The Mo Bar at the Mandarin Landmark
The Landmark, 15 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong
TOP THREE JOCKEYS TO FOLLOW
EXOTIC BETS THAT SHOULD BE ATTACKED WITH RELISH…
The Triple Trio
Objective: To find the top three place getters in three designated races. At Shatin, on a ten race programme, these are always races 4,5 and 6. At Happy Valley on December 9, the Triple Trio will consist of races, 5,6 and 7.
The Six Up
Objective: To pick the winner of the last six races.
Objective: To pick the winners of the last three races.
PLACE TO VISIT: SAI KUNG
A former fishing village and longtime home for expats who came to Hong Kong several decades ago to start a new life- most have succeeded brilliantly and today own some of the largest restaurant groups etc- Sai Kung is a bit like getting out of the city and Uptown Funk and finding yourself out in a very chilled out country area. There are some very good restaurants here- Chinese, Thai, Italian and the only Sri Lankan restaurant in Hong Kong- and people almost from the village where time stood still.
G/F, 14 Sai Kung Hoi Pong Street, Sai Kung
Forget taking the Underground to get to Sai Kung. Grab a cab and head out there for a long lunch. It’s about an hour taxi ride that will cost you around HK$200 for an extremely pleasant day out and take in a very different aspect of Hong Kong life, where it’s not all about making more and more money and living a faked-out life of superficiality, yakkety yak, posturing, and Lamborghinis with personalised number plates that should read WNKR. Or TSSR.
WHICH HKJC VENUES MUST BE CHECKED OUT
The Beer Garden
It has the best singer- Jennifer Palor- and band in town
WHERE TO SHOP
For the most creative memorabilia of Hong Kong.
Must purchase: A Delay No More t-shirt. In Cantonese, these three words in English mean something or another to do with one’s mother. And not in a nice way.
No. 146-152, Fuk Wah Street, Sham Shui Po, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Temple Street, Yau Ma Tai, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Be prepared to haggle by saying you’re only prepared to pay half of anything asked.
The side stalls down the alley ways offer some great bargains. Again, be prepared to bargain for bargains.
WHEN IN NEED OF SOME CLUBBING
Podium, The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central
Still the most popular Club in town. Meeting place for locally based and visiting trendies, long-legged models- ever seen models with short legs?- different Deejays including owner Gilbert Yeung with the Ladies said to have inspired Pharrell Williams and N.E.R.D to record “Everyone Nose (All The Girls Standing In Line For The Bathroom)”.
Shop A-B, G/F, Beverly House, 93-107 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai
Strictly for those wanting a walk on the wild side. Definitely cheap and nasty, but when the joint only starts revving up at 4am, you’re surprised? Keeps going on and on and until around noon.
Propaganda, the most popular gay club in Hong Kong.
1 Hollywood Road,Basement, SOHO, Central
Dust Till Dawn
G/F., 76-84 Jaffe Rd., Wanchai, Wan Chai
Now that Spicy Fingers is being renovated, Dusk Till Dawn really is the best club down Jaffe Road in Wanchai. The two covers bands are excellent copyists, the place is more jam packed than Robert Plant’s tight jeans, and, believe it or not, the place serves up a damn good Thai Chicken Curry when hunger pangs strike around 2am. Note: Spicy Fingers was bought by the owners of Dusk Till Dawn.
*Shopping down Nathan Road’s “Golden Mile”.
All that glitters is not gold, and gone are the former well-known bargains. These have been replaced by pesky touts from the sub-continent and Africa offering you everything from cheap suits and fake brand watches and iPhones to all manner of other cons.
* Hong Kong Disneyland
* The Champagne Bar at the Grand Hyatt
A sad shadow of what it used to be when the meeting place during HKIR Week. Blame it on the invisible management. A very different vibe to when the outgoing Gordon Fuller and Mr Barker managed the hotel and it wasn’t Le Rue Morgue of hotel lounges.
Getting around Hong Kong is beyond easy- if there is such a term. The Mass Transit Railway (MTR) system is one of the finest and easiest- and cleanest- in the world to get you anywhere to anywhere in Hong Kong.
For a leisurely way to get from Hong Kong side to Kowloon, there’s the world famous Star Ferry whereas taxis are always around- except from 11am to noon and then from 4pm to 5pm when the drivers change shift- and with no fear of seeing the meter clicking away as if possessed by a poltergeist. An average taxi fare is around HK$40.
There are also buses, mini buses and the old world charm of a tram, which, one “progressive thinker” in local politics was recently trying to have banned. The buffoon was, quite rightly, sent packing with his tail between his legs.
What’s most important is that you’ll soon be in this fascinating city of contrasts for a week of the very best and most international horse racing event- a celebration of horse racing, where we’ll raise our glasses to the United Nations Of Racing against the most cosmopolitan backdrop in the world.
It doesn’t get any better. Enjoy the ride