We land in Hong Kong but choose to visit Kowloon
this time after deciding against finding a hotel for the day. A short sleep and a refreshing shower would have been nice but we should have organized it in advance to ensure an early check-in time and a good price. The Ramada had a room on wotif for HK$850 a couple of days earlier but when we ask the hotel desk in the airport they quote us HK$1300 minimum.
After dropping a couple of bags at Terminal 1 on level 3 (where they charge HK$10 per hour per piece with a maximum of HK$120 per day) we catch the airport express into Kowloon. We have been told the area around the Gateway Hotel is good for shopping and the girls are keen to see what there is to offer.
A free shuttle bus service gets us the last few blocks however once again we find ourselves in the area that caters for the big spenders. The likes of Chanel, Prada and Louis Vuitton are doing a brisk trade in this vibrant city of commerce. So keen are the shoppers that they are made to queue outside as you would a nightclub on a Saturday night.
What’s more fascinating is how the the opulence of these big-ticket retailers stand in such stark contrast with the small-end of town; the countless sole traders spruiking their wares in tiny shops that are like holes in the wall. The Indian tailors are especially keen and are on every street corner handing out business cards, eager to get your clientele.
Look up and you’ll see apartment buildings towering high above, some with laundry hanging out to dry in the shadow of an enormous billboard. This place is intense and despite being a small island, is much too big to see in one day.
Whilst the girls are off shopping, the boys do a lap of the local area and then find a place to eat. A Japanese restaurant, HIP Katsu looks a good bet.
When we hook up with the girls a couple of hours later we are starting to feel the effects of jet-lag and so after they have a quick bite in one of the food courts we return to the airport for an hour or two of shut-eye.