Well known for its modern, artful décor and contemporary design, Hotel ICON is a joy to explore. The vertical landscaped gardens, grand sweeping staircases and vibrant dining rooms offer a wonderful insight into the contemporary side of Hong Kong, with the standards of service equally well honed; it makes an ideal city base. Hotel ICON is a breath of fresh air amongst the rather detached nature of Hong Kong’s towering cityscape. For one it has some serious eco-credentials and a design built around a sophisticated naturalness, all in all giving it a youthful and affirming personality.
Standing tall, at 28-floors, this unique hotel is located in the heart of Tsim Sha Tsui East offering excellent access to the main sights and sounds of Kowloon as well as the option to retreat to a stunning spa, rooftop pool and panoramic bar once you’re ready to escape from the bustle of the city. Sky-high, open public spaces are filled with vibrant works of art and natural light, strikingly accessorized by the world’s largest vertical garden and a spectacular sweeping staircase.
There are 262 beautifully-appointed guest rooms (many with spectacular Harbor views) including 165 Rooms, 68 Above & Beyond Club Rooms, 26 Suites and 3 Prototype rooms. All the rooms are so perfectly insulated that you won’t hear a peep if the guests next door are busy celebrating whatever, which is just what we want while luxuriating in their signature bed. Around 80 percent of the bright, unfussy rooms have great views of the harbour and all of them have a complimentary minibar, Nespresso, free Wi-Fi and a Handy smartphone with free international calls to 25 countries.
This boutique property offers three restaurants, all designed by Terence Conran: GREEN, a café and tapas bar, Above & Beyond, which serves Cantonese cuisine and The Market, a super fun, authentic international buffet. There is also a wine bar, which is connected to three private dining rooms, one even offers a private kitchen, if you’d like to bring in your own chef.
The Angsana is their gem of a spa. Word is that the not-to-be- missed signature treatment here is the two-hour Bamboo Massage, which uses warm bamboo canes. It’s easy to stay with your work-out regime at the fantastic 24 hr. fitness center (filled with the state-if-the-art equipment and such killer views that before you know it you’ve run an extra mile on the treadmill) and the magnificent rooftop swimming pool is utterly magical.
Hotel ICON is located in Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, one of the city’s most convenient and exciting areas, at the hub of the highly efficient transportation network. Access is easy to key business addresses, glamorous shopping arcades, street markets, cultural heritage sites and entertainment complexes. Guests are never more than a few minutes away from the overwhelming majority of Hong Kong’s major attractions.
Finally this is a luxury Hong Kong hotel that takes a new look at hospitality. Hotel ICON is all about individuality and a celebration of Hong Kong’s finest. They’re passionate about local culture, art, design, fabulous food and a modern sparkle packaged up with perfect service. But they also have an undeniably international style and this is reflected throughout every aspect of service. It is what makes Hong Kong unique, the representation everywhere of different cultures. Yet, you’ll find the ambience here familiar and comfortable, the perfect balance of high style and traditional hospitality, exciting yet informal, responsive and passionate. This hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon reflects the true essence of Hong Kong.
Hotel ICON is located in Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, one of the city’s most convenient and exciting areas, at the hub of the highly efficient transportation network. Access is easy to key business addresses, glamorous shopping arcades, street markets, cultural heritage sites and entertainment complexes. Guests of this Kowloon, Hong Kong hotel are never more than a few minutes away from the overwhelming majority of Hong Kong’s major attractions.
Value for Money
Double rooms are from just HK$2,000 (Euro 210,00) plus 10 per cent, not including breakfast. These rates are per room and per day and include free Wi-Fi. Rates are subject to change without prior notice.
Access for guests with disabilities?
Yes, the hotel has four disabled rooms.
Yes, there are family-connecting rooms on every floor. Childen under three aren’t charged for breakfast.
Thinking Green by Hotel ICON:
Hotel ICON is reducing its carbon footprint even further with the introduction of a fully electric transportation fleet, consisting of Hong Kong’s first electric hotel shuttle bus, two Tesla Model S and a BMW i3. The 100%-electric, silent, smooth and emission-free vehicles deliver exhilarating yet eco-friendly rides and add to the hotel’s relentless pursuit of sustainable operations. The luxuriously-appointed eBus is equipped with leather seats with seatbelts, air purifiers and individual passenger lights. It whisks guests from Hotel ICON to Tsim Sha Tsui area on a half hourly basis from the hotel. Guests staying for two nights or more in an Above & Beyond ‘Club’ guestroom or suite can enjoy complimentary ICON’s Tesla airport transfers, while it also serves as a paid transfer option for other guests – a world class ride to a world class hotel, zero emissions with zero compromises. Charging stations will also be accessible for individual drivers of electric cars to recharge at the hotel. These groundbreaking electric vehicle initiatives further complement ‘Thinking Green’, Hotel ICON’s commitment to doing everything possible to benefit the planet and the community through sustainable operations. They join ongoing programs including:
Asia’s largest vertical garden
Designed by French botanist Patrick Blanc, Hotel ICON Is home to Asia’s largest indoor vertical garden. The garden is the most natural and eco-friendly way to produce and circulate fresh, pure oxygen. Located in the hotel lobby as the backdrop to the hotel’s casual café and bar, GREEN, the 18-metre tall vertical garden provides an unexpected respite from Hong Kong’s iconic concrete jungle. 8,603 plants across 71 species grow in the garden which is maintained by a team of green-fingered experts. Not restricted within the indoor vertical garden, greenery will soon extend to outdoor walls of restaurant outlet as part of another growing campaign. In addition, a green roof and landscaped garden further help to clean the air for guests and reduce energy for heating and cooling
Recycling and Food Donation
Recycling and looking for ways to reduce energy and product consumption are critical for Hotel ICON. Check-in is now paperless, which not only makes for a speedier and more efficient guest experience, but last year alone saved 2.39 tons of paper – equivalent to 40 trees. All waste, including glass and plastic bottles, aluminum cans and paper are recycled throughout the hotel and guests are given linen and towel change options. Even excess food doesn’t go to waste at Hotel ICON, as all surplus edible food from the kitchens is donated to Food Angels, an organisation that provides healthy food for local families in need.
Technology to save energy
As a leading hotel in the field of energy saving, Hotel ICON has been awarded the CarbonCare® Label by Carbon Care Asia Ltd which recognises the hotel’s work on reducing its carbon footprint. Hotel ICON cut C0² emissions and saved between 25-28% on energy consumption. This was achieved from the mass of plants housed within the indoor garden as well as by converting waste energy into cool or warm air (depending on the season) to heat the outdoor swimming pool year-round and the use of solar energy. The hotel’s design also allows for maximum use of natural ventilation and lighting. All electric lights use highly-efficient, LED light bulbs and when a space isn’t in use, sensors switch off all lights and other electrical functions to save as much energy as possible. Guests are also provided with a complimentary Hotel ICON tote bag, so that when shopping in and around Hong Kong, there’s no need to use plastic or non-recyclable bags. From simply saving a piece of paper to minimizing carbon footprint, it’s the little things at Hotel ICON that mean a lot when taken together. The hotel is fully-resourced as an international live lab to share experience and knowledge to benefit the hotel industry and consequently the community.
Our Special Readings
New trip, new stage, new vibrant soul: Hong Kong
New trip, new stage and always Asia. This time, I am totally focused to learn more about Hong Kong. This stop was an intense and exciting experience, exactly as the city presents itself to its millions of visitors that every year landing on the main island, the peninsula and the various islands that belong to it (Kowloon, the island of Hong Kong and New Territories).
Located in the southeast of China, under the name “Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China” the city stands out as one of the most modern and densely populated in the world (over 7 million inhabitants). The city, full of attractions to visit, allows you to go from the typical shopping centers to night markets, passing through the temples and neighborhoods famous for their architecture made by huge skyscrapers. There is no reason to get bored, the city is fun and there is something that goes beyond the typical Asian destination.
Hong Kong is a concentration of Chinese tradition and culture along with a British influence by virtue of its past domination. In my experience I tried to follow a path made up of well-known places also looking for contacts with local people, since in Hong Kong they speak English quite enough.
5 easy day trips from Hong Kong
With its colorful markets, bustling tea houses, stratospheric skyscrapers, and multicultural cuisine, Hong Kong is one of Asia’s most exciting cities. But after a few days of crowded streets (like in picture on top) and frenetic MTR rides, you might need a break. Luckily, some 230 outlying islands and a high-speed link to the mainland provide a surplus of nearby locales ripe for exploration. Whether you are ready for a change of pace or simply keen to venture beyond the city limits, these easy day trips should do the trick.
Just a 40-minute ferry ride from Central, Cheung Chau is a world away from the hustle-bustle. Though beloved by locals for its open-air seafood restaurants, travelers will also want to explore the age-old temples, Mini Great Wall and Cheung Po Tsai Cave. Catch a glimpse of Hong Kong’s past with a ramble through the quiet, car-free streets or head to Kwun Yam Wan Beach for a day of sand and sun. You can easily cover the island on foot or rent a bike from one of the many stores peppering Praya Road, with hourly rates starting at HK$10. Leave time to devour seafood by the pier; the colorful harbor, brimming with junk boats, houseboats, and fishing trawlers, is a landmark in itself.
While at first glance Macau may seem like one big gambling den, there’s more than meets the eye in this Chinese-Portuguese enclave. Unless you’re keen to hit the slots in an over-the-top casino, skip straight to the spellbinding Ruins of St. Paul’s Church, A-Ma Temple, Guia Hill, Taipa Food Street, and the charming, cobblestoned village of Coloane in the southern tip of the Taipa peninsula. You can easily flood an itinerary with cultural sites, entertainment, and top-notch Portuguese cuisine, so consider staying overnight.
Hong Kong: 7 off-the-tourist-paths
So you’re heading in Hong Kong, you’ve mapped out your must-see galleries and chosen which parties to attend over your stay but have you considered what to do during down times? With a city as big and exciting as Hong Kong, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when trying to navigate your way through it. Instead of relying on typical guidebooks, we put together a list of seven off-the-tourist-path attractions, restaurants and activities to experience while in the Pearl of the Orient.
Hiking – Tai Long Wan Beach and Waterfalls
Tai Long Wan Beach (picture above) is one of Hong Kong’s best kept secrets and can only be reached by foot. It is located in what is known as the New Territories and is a beautiful break from the city’s concrete jungle. To get there, take a taxi from Sai Kung to the Sai Wan pavilion (about 30 minutes), and from there, it’s about a strenuous one-hour hike to the beach. If hiking isn’t your cup of tea, the area can also be reached during weekends and some weekdays by speedboat from Sai Kung Pier for around Euro 176,00. There are four beach towns within the area, the southernmost is called Sai Wan and from there you can reach a picturesque waterfall and rock pool. Travelers Digest has great turn-by-turn directions. Once there, enjoy the fruits of your labor and swim in the fresh water pools or go cliff diving. Otherwise, head to Ham Tin which has two restaurants and surfboards for rent. Either way, you won’t be disappointed.
Music – Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Many visitors to Hong Kong will make time to check out the Cantonese opera. The traditional and much-loved art form is definitely one to include in your travels, however, for something new, check out the Hong Kong Philharmonic. The group puts on more than 150 performances a year and over the weekend will be offering Pictures at an Exhibition during the Swire Maestro Series. Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky’s much-loved piano piece arranged by French composer Ravel, depicts Russian fairy tales in 10 movements. Conducted by Hans Graf, Russian star violinist Dmitri Makhtin will join the league of exceptional performers to bring to life this orchestral work of art.
Special City Guide: Hong Kong
Hong Kong is such a feast for the senses, it reminds me of a movie set. Maybe we are too romantic, but when we stand at the railing of the famous Star Ferry as it glides across the harbor, ride a rickety old tram as it winds its way across Hong Kong Island, or marvel at the stunning views afforded from atop Victoria Peak, we can’t help but think we must have somehow landed in the middle of an epic drama where the past has melted into the present. So many images float by, wooden boats bobbing up and down in the harbor beside huge ocean liners; crumbling tenements next to ultramodern high-rises; squalid alleys behind luxury hotels; elderly people pushing wheelbarrows as Rolls-Royces glide by; market vendors selling chicken feet and dried squid while talking on cellphones.
In fact, one of the most striking characteristics of Hong Kong is this interweaving of seeming contradictions and the interplay of the exotic and the technically advanced. There are as many skyscrapers here as you’re likely to see anywhere, but they’re built with bamboo scaffolding and in accordance with the principles of feng shui. Historic trams rumble through Central, while below ground is one of the most efficient subways in the world, complete with the world’s first “contactless” tickets, cards that can be waved over a scanner without even taking them out of your purse or wallet. The city has some of the best and most sophisticated restaurants in the world, but it also has dai pai dong, street-side food stalls. Hong Kong is home to one of the world’s largest shopping malls, but lively makeshift street markets are virtually everywhere.
A bit of history
With a population of seven million and a total land area less than half the size of Luxembourg, Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated areas in the world. The best place to appreciate this is atop Victoria Peak, where you can feast your eyes on Hong Kong’s famous harbor and, as far as the eye can see, high-rise apartments and office buildings. If Hong Kong were a vast plain, it would be as ugly as Tokyo. But it’s saved by undulating mountain peaks, which cover virtually all of Hong Kong and provide dramatic background to the cityscape and coastal areas. Indeed, viewed from Victoria Peak or the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, Hong Kong is one of the most beautiful cities in the world.