Sunday, April 4, 2010

Hong Kong, Part One

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Our first day in Hong Kong, we made it a point to get up early and hit the city. We only had one "free day" scheduled for our entire trip, so we wanted to make sure to make the most of it. Looking out our window, we could see the fog in VICTORIA HARBOUR...in the pool below us, people got in some swimming and a few were practicing TAI CHI. We made our way up to the Executive Lounge and ate breakfast while overlooking the harbor...

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In the lobby, Missy posed with a giant stuffed BUNNY KING, who was there to promote the hotel's upcoming Easter events...the weird juxtaposition of the Alice In Wonderland-inspired outfit along with the skull at the end of the scepter, didn't exactly scream EASTER to us, but we could appreciate the surrealism mixed with the cuteness...

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Our main goal was to hit up the CTMA Center in Kowloon, a.k.a. the TOY MART - a multi-floored shopping mall filled with nothing but tiny little toy stores. Unlucky for us, it turned out that the mall, like most of the other shops in the area, didn't open until late in the afternoon. We decided to walk around Kowloon for a bit, exploring the different blocks, scoping out the shops we'd like to visit later in the day...

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One street was lined with dozens of NO-TELL MOTELS, where unscrupulous tourists could rent rooms by the hour. The names of the hotels were terrific, our favorite being the "ROMANCE HIGHCLASS HOTEL":

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We really liked this ice cream-shaped trash can and graphic wallpaper that they had at this one little cafe:

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We got kicked out of this florist shop for taking pictures of their HELLO KITTY bouquets...I guess they thought we were gonna steal their idea or something:

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We ended up hopping onto the subway system and took a train under Victoria Harbour to CENTRAL, on the HONG KONG island. In Central, the gap between the "Haves" and "Have Nots" was as obvious as the Grand Canyon. The world of high finance and high fashion clashed sharply with the world of the less fortunate...

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We climbed the steep steps and hills of Central, exploring the crowded alleyways filled with little shops, restaurants, and street vendor booths. Splashes of bright color jumped out at us from the gray cityscape background...

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We eventually discovered FRINGE CLUB, located in one of the main art districts in Hong Kong. We had only recently learned about Fringe Club and we were excited to happen upon it on accident...

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From there, we found the streetwear boutique run by the Japanese hipster lifestyle brand A BATHING APE, or BAPE for short. We weren't allowed to take photos inside, so we shot a few before going in to gawk at super cool clothing and sneakers that were well beyond our price range:

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We stopped at this little cafe for some drinks and a snack...Missy treated us to a box of fancy french MACARONS. We snacked as we sorted thru the few things we bought during the morning's excursion. Missy got this little LE SPORTSAC carrying case for her iTouch...she was especially excited because it featured artwork by FIFI LAPIN. We also got a fashion magazine from one of the many newstands on the street and it came with these cute little ZIPPER POUCHES from X-GIRL, the clothing brand established in the 90's by KIM GORDON of SONIC YOUTH. We thought the pouches would come in handy someday...in our opinion, you can never have too many zippered pouches or cases...they help keep things kinda organized...

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2 comments:

hamsterguppies said...

gosh! i took a photo of 'romance high class hotel' too!!! hahaha. http://www.flickr.com/photos/hamsterguppies/4483143325/

RANCHO COCOA said...

Haha! It really is THE BEST hotel name ever!