Hong Kong Highlights: Top 9 Must-See Places

PLAY IN HONG KONG

Diamante recommends these top nine places as must-see when you’re in Hong Kong.

Avenue of Stars

The ‘Avenue of Stars’ pays tribute to the names that helped make Hong Kong the ‘Hollywood of the East’, with more than a hundred celebrity hand prints along the path, this is a beautiful walk along the Harbor and just steps away from the Rosewood Hong Kong, featured in this diary entry.

Star Ferry

The Star Ferry Harbour Cruise has been faithfully carrying passengers from Hong Kong Island to Kowloon and back since 1888. The Star Ferry and the Tram are the two favorite public transportation options for locals in Hong Kong, not just because of their affordable prices but they also represent the local culture. 

Sky 100

The Sky 100 observation deck is located on the 100th floor of Hong Kong’s tallest building, the International Commerce Center (ICC), the highest indoor observation deck in the city with remarkable 360-degree views of Victoria Harbour. 

Ladies Market

A well-known local market that provides a one-kilometer stretch with over 100 stalls of bargain clothing, accessories and souvenirs. The Ladies Market gets its name from the large amount of clothing and accessories for women of all ages, along with watches, cosmetics, bags, home furnishings, CD’s and trinkets. 

Temple Street Night Market

The Temple Street Night Market is a popular street bazaar, named after a Tin Hau temple located in the center of its main drag, and a place filled with local atmosphere. Trinkets, tea ware, electronics, watches, menswear, jade and antiques are all haggled over here, while clay-pot rice, seafood, noodles and many other varieties of cuisine are available on every corner. 

The Peak

The highest point on Hong Kong island, this area has been the city’s most exclusive neighborhood since colonial times, with panoramic views of the city’s spectacular skyline.  The Peak Tower has a large viewing platform, along with shopping and a variety of dining options. It’s about a 30 minute taxi from central Hong Kong, or a 10 minute walk from the Rosewood Hotel to access the Peak Tram.

Hollywood Road

The oldest road ever built in the history of Hong Kong, Hollywood Road is the best place to visit for art lovers, particularly for Chinese antiques. Sellers are happy to assist buyers in transporting large items internationally. 

Stanley Market

Located in the quaint village of Stanley on Hong Kong Island’s south coast, this is a popular destination for locals, expats, and tourists, known for its enormous selection of brand name clothing items, accessories, jewelry, home furnishings, and souvenirs sold at reasonable prices. 

Big Buddha

Sitting 34 meters high and facing north to look over the Chinese people, the Big Buddha is one of Hong Kong’s most majestic sites to visit. Located at the remote Po Lin Monastery, and hidden away by lush mountains, this incredible bronze Buddha attracts visitors from all over Asia. Be sure to climb the 268 steps to the top for a closer look at this remarkable statue, with views to the mountain and sea that can be seen from its base. The right hand of the Buddha is raised to deliver a blessing to all. The best way to get there is to take the tram, and make sure to request the glass bottom for amazing views all the way to the top until you are greeted by the Buddha.

If you’d like help booking any of these activities during your visit to Hong Kong, let us help you make plans and reservations.

Nomad Neighborhood NYC

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Nomad Neighborhood (North Of Madison Square Park)

Planning a trip to New York City? With all of the hustle and bustle in the city that never sleeps; it can be overwhelming to decide where to stay and what to do. Arianna, our newest addition to Diamante Advisor Team, gives us a run down on one of her favorite neighborhoods in her hometown. With new restaurants, hotels, and bars popping up everywhere, Nomad’s central location and laid back cool vibe is a great place to start!

From Arianna:

“While the Nomad neighborhood has been around forever, lately it seems that every corner I turn we find a new spot that I NEED to try. Expanding from 31st street down to 25th street, and from Park Avenue to 6th avenue, this neighborhood is surrounded by Chelsea, Flatiron, Midtown South and Kips Bay. With its central location, Nomad presents a golden opportunity for established restaurateurs with downtown or uptown locations to expand into the location and for new startup concepts to garner a client base quickly. Not only does the neighborhood host many fantastic restaurants, it features gorgeous hotels and an unparalleled “chic-chill” vibe that is almost impossible to find anywhere else in Manhattan. “

Logistics / Getting There

The easiest way to get to Nomad for out of towners is to fly into one of New York’s major airports. While LaGuardia airport is about a twenty five minute drive to Nomad without traffic, JFK is closer and offers more flight options, especially to the international traveler. Diamante is able to arrange any airport transfers or private chauffeurs around the city to make your trip as stress-free as possible.

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Accommodations

While there is an endless amount of hotels in New York City, Nomad happens to house a few of my favorites.

The Nomad Hotel - Truly one of my favorite hotels in all of Manhattan this French Bohemian inspired hotel has so much to offer. From their award winning bar to the rooms that are decorated with vintage photographs and bright rugs atop wooden floors to their exclusive weekend Magic Show starring Dan White. This chic luxe hotel has everything to offer!

Royalton (previously The Gansevoort) - Previously the Gansevoort Park Avenue, this hotel is now under new management and the service is better than ever. It is not only centrally located on Park Avenue South and 29th street but has a beautiful rooftop pool, Exhale Spa and Gym, as well as a summer time Sundeck restaurant and a Juice Press in the lobby.

Restaurants

Aside from the incredible dining options in the hotels above Nomad has recently expanded its dining options making it easy to satisfy both quick take out bites as well as fine dining experiences.

Cha Cha Matcha 1158 Broadway New York 10001

I absolutely love stopping by this bright pink and green hip coffee shop for my early morning caffeine fix! While they are known for their unique spin on traditional (super trendy) Matcha tea they also offer soft-serve Matcha ice cream. Their seasonal menu is delicious too including white chocolate and coconut matcha latte options. Don’t worry you don’t have to love Matcha to come here- they also serve delicious La Colombie Coffee and pastries.

Pecora Bianca 1133 Broadway New York 10001

This one is a definite must try! Whether it is brunch, lunch, dinner or a quick coffee and pastry in the morning this chic rustic Italian eatery offers both delicious hearty and healthy options for every meal. What I love about this spot is that it offers so many local farm to table options along with their pasta that is handmade in house. Some of my favorites- For breakfast/brunch: the Lemon Ricotta Pancakes or the Baked Eggs in Spicy Tomato Sauce, For Lunch: I always typical opt for either the Chopped Salad or Toscano Salads and for Dinner: I can never say no to their Gramngia- a curly pasta dish with house made sausages, broccolini and chilli flakes!

Kazunori 15 West 28th Street New York 10001

This is one of my favorite go-to spots for lunch or dinner. This is the first restaurant of its kind offering a no reservation, tip included hand roll bar. Do not let the line here shy you away, it moves quickly. The menu offers a simple yet delicious handrolls- toro, yellowtail, scallop, crab and lobster. They even offer a six roll option for only $29. My personal favorite? The bay scallops and warm lobster hand roll!

Marta 20 East 29th Street New York 10016

Marta, located in the lobby of the Redbury Hotel, serves a variety of delicious extra crispy thin crust style pizzas. This is definitely not your local corner pizza shop, the pies are anything but ordinary ranging from my personal favorites the Carbonara pie and a Clams Casino to a delicious margherita option that can be customized with any toppings of your choice. It is not only the pie’s that have my heart but their Grilled Baby Artichokes and Chicken Meatballs are out of this world!

Nomad Hotel Bar 10 West 28th Street New York

If I haven’t already made a point of how much I love the Nomad Hotel vibes I can further validify my point by insisting you grab a drink at the Nomad Hotel Bar. They offer everything from unique large format drinks, “Cocktail Explosions” to rare wines and over 20 different types of beer. It gets pretty packed here so try to come early to grab a seat and fully enjoy this pub inspired tavern like atmosphere paired with bar snacks by famous chef Daniel Humm.

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Experiences / Activities

Visit Eataly- This Italian market by day, is also home to five unique restaurants, different food and beverage counters and a large selection of hard to come by Italian pastries. Come here to pick up fresh meat or fish to grill for dinner or stop by to taking a cooking class at their in house cooking school. On lunch break? Grab a hot panini or my favorite the Prime Rib Sandwich and a gelato to go!

Madison Square Park- This beautiful seven acre park is more than just what feels like a quick escape from the daily hustle and bustle of NYC. The park showcases art exhibitions, a variety of culinary feasts throughout the year, serves burgers at  New York’s famous Shake Shack, and has weekly events for families and children. My favorite event? Madison Square Eats- a pop-up food and beverage market that allows vendors from all over Manhattan to bring the best of New York’s food to Worth Square located on the West side of the park.

Other activities include the Museum of Sex or taking in one the many Comedy Shows. Talk to one of our Diamante representatives to get tickets!

Skiing in Hokkaido, Japan

Are you looking to combine skiing and international travel?

Check out this article from “Snow” Magazine, written by Diamante, featuring Hokkaido, Japan to see how you can combine the best of skiing with an international getaway.

“While Japan is known as the Land of the Rising Sun, it should be known as Land of the Deepest Snow.  Hokkaido, the northernmost island of the Japanese Archipelago, has long been known by deep powder aficionados as the global record holder for snowfall. When cold Siberian air from the Asian Continent mixes with the moisture of the Pacific, it creates epic snowfall, leading to amazing skiing opportunities.  Combine these world class skiing conditions with a growing ski infrastructure, unique cultural experiences and Japanese hospitality and you have …read the full article.”