Royal Plaza Hotel & Mongkok Locality Hong Kong 10-14Jan2016

royal plaza hotel

royal plaza hotel

for this hong kong trip 10-14.1.2016, we looked at hotels in tsimshatsui but they were expensive. the one i stayed often when traveling with wife was kowloon hotel, next to peninsula.

this time it was expensive though, & really the rooms were small & it’s 4 stars. so were other hotels at tsimshatsui, small & expensive.

the last time i traveled with sister, we stayed at royal park at shatin.

it was excellent 5 star hotel, & it was just HK$754+/night.

and you can take airport bus A41 direct to royal park hotel, just 2 stops, 50mins & HK$22.3,

but it was a little less convenient traveling tsimshatsui & hong kong island etc.

this time, after considering various options we decided on royal plaza at mongkok east, at HK$1260+/night.

one friend traveling with us had his family of 4 with him & they had a tsuishatsui airbnb apartment for 1 week. we decided not to stay at tsimshatsui but at least staying at royal plaza, it was easier to co-ordinate & meet.

the considerations for royal plaza-

  1. 5 stars, room is huge 33m2, 2 queenbeds, very comfortable.
  2. royal plaza located right at mongkok east mtr station on the east rail line, and is connected by covered walkway to mongkok mtr station on tseun wan line, and in between there is street markets, and many nice eating places.
  3. & since this time we were going mainly to tsimshatsui, central, central pier & dragon’s back, the mongkok location was quite perfect for our purpose.
  4. there were 6 of us so getting to royal plaza by taxi was quite fine, 2 taxis of 3pax, costing about HK$260, not much different from taking airport express.

must say that though royal plaza is located alongside sun hung kai property’s MOKO Mall, we did not bother to look around the mall itself.

view from our 9F hotel room

view from our 9F hotel room

the view from our royal plaza 9F hotel room, nothing much to talk about. 🙂

indo maids at covered walkway mongkok on a sunday 10.1.2016

indo maids at covered walkway mongkok on a sunday 10.1.2016

we arrived on a sunday 10.1.2016. after checking in, we went to look for fu kee congee 富记粥品 at fa yuen street 花园街.

first time we were there but we read about the roast goose & congee. we were NOT disappointed. in fact we went back 2 days later for another go. ^^

it was quite easy to look for fa yuen street 花园街, though the first time, we were quite lost trying just to get out of MOKO mall. once we saw the direction signs, everything was quite straightforward.

indo maids at covered walkway mongkok on a sunday 10.1.2016

indo maids at covered walkway mongkok on a sunday 10.1.2016

as it was a sunday, the covered walkways to mongkok mtr station & fa yuen street 花园街 enroute was filled with indo maids. i guess in the same way as filipino maids filled up kowloon park. anyway people do need a place to gather & socialise.

street food

street food

after our excellent dinner at fu kee congee 富记粥品, we walked around fa yuen street 花园街 & neighbouring streets.

first we past the fa yuen street market 花园街街市.

the we walked round the street night market.

street food

street food

we stopped by one of many skewer stalls.

street food

street food

actually we were attracted by stinking tofu臭豆腐aroma. 🙂

street food

street food

& we took out a beef offals too 牛杂. 🙂

selling ornamental fishes

selling ornamental fishes

they have the instant ready-packed way of selling guppies & other ornamental fishes. maybe they do that in singapore too these days? not sure.

we liked the royal plaza location. i think i will stay there again my next visit to hong kong, of course subject to price, other options & the convenient base to visit the places we want to go.

c.h.e.f andy

Royal Park Hotel at Shatin & Shatin Park 2-6Jun2015

royal park hotel at shatin

royal park hotel at shatin

i chose royal park on  a balance of cost & convenience.

also, i had been to hong kong so many times but always stayed at pacific place hotels when on business decades ago & at tsimshatsui with family. can’t really know hong kong that way. afterall, the overwhelming consideration is still to have a relaxing fun break so i would generally not go out of the way & incur great inconvenience to do something. if stayed at tsimshatsui every time, then most likely will always be moving around there & central & causeway bay.

still, i checked out our usual hotel, kowloon hotel at tsimshatsui. it’s really very convenient location. the price was HK$800/night a night weekdays & HK$1000/night fridays, saturdays. so for 4nights HK$3400+.

for royal park hotel, it was some strange breakdown averaged HK$754, and totalled HK$3017+.

for comparison & other considerations-

1. royal park has large 30m2 rooms whereas kowloon hotel’s rooms are 20m2

2. i can take airport bus A41 direct to royal park hotel, just 2 stops, 50mins & HK$22.3, whereas for kowloon hotel it is by airport express to kowloon station HK$90 single HK$160 return, then free airport bus to kowloon hotel, about 4th or 5th stop

3. for this trip i was not going to ngong ping 360 to take the cable car see the big buddha, but when having plans to visit lautau island including hong kong disneyland, shatin very convenient by bus.

4. my sis is buddhist, and 10,000 buddha monastery is right at shatin.

royal park hotel at shatin

royal park hotel at shatin

we were happy with the room -big, bright & airy.

royal park hotel toilet

royal park hotel toilet

toilet was pretty ok too!

the other very satisfying things for me during this trip-

1. went to keung kee chicken porridge 强记鸡粥 which is at tai wei, just 1 stop from shatin

2. explore & found 富记大排档tai wai, which is also at tai wei.

3. explore & found chan kun kee 陈根记大排档, located at wo che estate, about 20mins walk from royal park hotel via the esplanade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河.

4. on the last day before departure, explore & found shing kee noodles at lek yuen sstate market, about 10mins from royal park hotel via covered walkway.

connecting area to shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

connecting area to shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

on 4.6.2015, we decided to take a walk along the esplanade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河.

shatin public library

shatin public library

after exiting the hotel from the bar area at the lobby level, we walked along the connecting area to shatin park. the shatin public area was on our left.

across river view from shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

across river view from shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

hong kong is densely populated. across the river is another estate.

bridge at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

bridge at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

bridge at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

bridge at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

we took some photos of the bridge.

promenade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

promenade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

promenade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

promenade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

promenade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

promenade at shatin park 沙田公园by the river 城门河

and walked along the esplanade.

there were many joggers & cyclists traversing the riverside promenade.

for me, shatin is quite suited for my hong kong trip as a base. tsimshatsui, central & causeway bay areas i can always go when already out for visits in the day, e.g. when traveling to the islands.

this trip, i have found several new daipaidongs & took dim sums at 4 different restaurants. for next trip, i can also explore from base at shatin or research a bit to see which other location & hotel may be more convenient.

c.h.e.f andy

Hong Kong Air Ticket, Hotel & Transport Planning 2-6Jun2015

fried carrot cake at asia treasure T2

fried carrot cake at asia treasure T2

jetstar had a SG50 promotion. it was like S$50 to HK & about S$100pax including fees & taxes. it seems lame to go hong kong just because of cheap air tickets, but i like hong kong, it’s a place i like to go for eating & hiking anyway. i can live in hong kong actually just for the colder months. haha!^^

i wanted to go in nov. actually but sis is busy after oct, and i was already travelling with wife to cornwall 7-18may2015.

so i am back hong kong 2-6jun2015. our 2pax jetstar return singapore to hong kong was S$210.^^

even though it was just 2 months after my last hong kong trip with wife & son on 3-6Apr2015.

asia treasure T2 lounge

asia treasure T2 lounge

jetstar check in was at terminal 1. it was quite convenient that departure gate was next to the sky train to T2. so it was no hassle to get to asia treasure lounge at T2.

asia treasure T2 nasi lemak

asia treasure T2 nasi lemak

no food provided on jetstar, or rather good money for not so good food. so grab what we could at the lounge.

asia treasure T2 nasi lemak

asia treasure T2 nasi lemak

the nasi lemak was pretty good. egg, otah, perkedel, rice all good. for me though, nasi lemak is first ikan kuning, second chicken wing. 🙂

congee at asia treasure T2

congee at asia treasure T2

congee was ok, good.

roti prata at asia treasure T2

roti prata at asia treasure T2

prata was freshly prepared, crispy, hot, dough was tasty.

roti prata curry at asia treasure T2

roti prata curry at asia treasure T2

curry too was good.

fried carrot cake & roti prata at asia treasure T2

fried carrot cake & roti prata at asia treasure T2

fried carrot cake was for me the best! & prata was next. 🙂

hong kong airport tower

hong kong airport tower

low cost carrier mostly remote bay (using bus ferry to plane) for both departure from changi & arrival at hong kong. though it was using aerobridge for both departure from hong kong & arrival at singapore.

jetstar passenger disembarking at hong kong airport

jetstar passenger disembarking at hong kong airport

jetstar passenger (meaning us) deplaning at hong kong airport.

remote bay bus ferry at hong kong airport

remote bay bus ferry at hong kong airport

aircrafts taxiing.

remote bay bus ferry at hong kong airport

remote bay bus ferry at hong kong airport

our bus ferry waiting for aircrafts to taxi past.

hong kong airport terminal towards bus bay

hong kong airport terminal towards bus bay

there was a MTR counter after customs & even before getting out to the arrival hall, which had almost no queue so i got 2 octopus cards (HK$50 deposit & HK$100 stored-value) within minutes.

we walked out of the arrival terminal & towards bus bay.

queue for A41 airport bus

queue for A41 airport bus

i booked 4 nights at royal park hotel at shatin. so it was really very convenient commuting from the airport.

hong kong airport bus A41 goes direct from airport to shatin and stopped right in front of royal park hotel, which was only the second stop after shatin bus interchange.

flight was late so we arrived 2.15pm & was at the A41 bus bay around 2.50pm.

A41 airport bus to royal park hotel

A41 airport bus to royal park hotel

journey took 50minutes & just HK$22.30 using the octopus card. it’s fixed one fare only so you only required to tap once with octopus card when boarding the bus. 🙂

it’s double-decker. there was a luggage rack both in the lower & upper deck. i always took the upper deck & put on seat belt. strangely though on return from hotel to airport, the bus we took did not have safety belt!

hong kong mtr map

shatin is in new territory so a bit far from action (well depends on what action you are looking for). when i travel with wife, we would stay at tsimsahtsui & not shatin.

while royal park is “in theory” next to shatin station (& shatin bus interchange for that matter), it was a 5-10minutes walk from hotel through newtown plaza to the station, covered & aircon-ed of course.

from shatin, one needs to change train twice to get to shamshuipo, tsimshatsui, & to central. so it’s slightly inconvenient.

also shatin station is actually not underground line but the east rail line 东铁线that goes to罗湖 for entering into shenzhen深圳. & so the inter-change at 九龙塘that connects the MTR to the rail is a rather long walk.

taking the east rail line 东铁线 at shatin going to shamshuipo

taking the east rail line 东铁线 at shatin going to shamshuipo

we checked into royal park hotel about 4pm. nice hotel. i stayed here once before 5 years back. quite happy with it now as then. 🙂

we decided we could not miss timhowan, so went to the usual shamshuipo outlet after checking in to the hotel, & got there about 4.40pm, zero queue.

since we had a very late dimsum at 5pm. we decided to go much later in the evening for dinner, which we did at keung kee chicken porridge 强记鸡粥 my usual daipaidong 大排档 past 9pm.

c.h.e.f andy

Shing Kee Noodles, Lek Yuen Estate, Shatin & Congee Lunch at Tak Hin德兴粥面on 6Jun2015

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

we were checkin out at 1pm on 6.6.2015. that was the latest royal park hotel allowed. after that it was HK$110/hr. we planned to take A41 to airport round about 5pm so had some time to kill. i had earlier checked out shing kee noodles on internet. it sounded like an interesting place & had like 100% good reviews. it is quite a go to place for hotpot dinners in the evening but for lunch there are noodles & also set lunches with fish & minced pork dishes.

way to Shing Kee Noodles

way to Shing Kee Noodles

we had dimsum at taoheung pier 88 稻香超級漁港 in mong kok earlier so was not particularly hungry. still, not sure how far was shing kee noodles so might as well start walking. good thing about hong kong is that many buildings are connected by covered walkways. good when raining of course but even for the very hot sun. ^^ just like my adventure thrill (trail) to富记大排档 tai wai, i followed the google map. we walked over the overhead bridge linkway to lek yuen estate.

way to Shing Kee Noodles

way to Shing Kee Noodles

parknshop superstore was at the right of the entrance to the overhead bridge.

way to Shing Kee Noodles

way to Shing Kee Noodles

looking down from the covered walkway, i saw a block. we later walked further & asked around before finding the restaurant shing kee noodles at the basement of the block. 🙂

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

the place was quite chic really, like a cool cafe place in singapore like carpenters & cook, or like aeiou.

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

haha, it’s a mental switch, can’t really associate it with a beef brisket or hotpot restaurant. 🙂

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

Shing Kee Noodles Shop 5, Lek Yuen Estate Market, Sha Tin

unfortunately for us, there were 4 rice sets with different fish including a veg & soup for HK$37, but all were sold out (it was about 2pm). we were not planning to have beef brisket noodles & the other rice sets were all steamed minced pork蒸肉饼 so we decided to bail out.

tuk hing porridge & noodles

tak hing congee & noodles

we returned to tak hing 德兴粥面店, which we past on the way to shing kee noodles.

chicken innards porride 鸡杂粥

chicken innards congee 鸡杂粥

the braises including braised goose were only served in the evening from 5pm.

chicken innards porride 鸡杂粥

chicken innards congee 鸡杂粥

we had to settle for the congee. i had the chicken innards congee 鸡杂粥. it was so good! congee was very sweet & great. & the chicken innards were great too.

chicken innards porride 鸡杂粥

chicken innards congee 鸡杂粥

sis had a 艇仔粥. did not take photo, but it was very good too. & both were HK$24!^^

一田 yata supermart

一田 yata supermart

after 德兴粥面店, we walked back to newtown plaza adjacent to royal park hotel.

dried oysters HK$168:斤 (600g)= S$50:kg

dried oysters HK$168:斤 (600g)= S$50:kg

we walked round 一田 yata supermart. there was a promo – dried oysters HK$168:斤 (600g)= S$50/kg. the promo price was same as those i saw at the provision shop on the way to shing kee noodle.

turbot HK$118 at supermarket

turbot HK$118 at supermarket

also saw a raw turbot for HK$118 at supermarket. we had a steamed turbot last evening from 富记大排档tai wai for just HK$98! ^^ this hong kong trip was immensely enjoyable & successful as we got to see cheung chau island (including the very beautiful shorelines from the mini great wall) and lamma island, and the 10,000 buddha monastery.we had 4 dimsum lunches, and lots of exciting daipaidong food at newfound places. & it didn’t rain. about the only negative point was the scorching sun.

c.h.e.f andy