The Hong Kong Unofficial Guide

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Restaurants - Wan Chai

R66 - revolving restaurant
Ingredients (mainly western)
Arun Rung (Thai)
Victoria Seafood (Cantonese)


Above: a rustic tram stopping at the crosswalk on Johnston Road, a main street going through the Wan Chai district.

hotels at HKCEC
Hotels at HKCEC

HK Convention & Exhibition Ctr
HK Convention & Exhibition Center .

Just east of the Admiralty & Central district and west of Causeway Bay, Wanchai is an interesting area.

It can roughly be divided into three sections: the new northern section along the harbor, the mid section, and the southern section at the foothill.

In the northern section, perched on the Wanchai harborfront, the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center is a prominent structure on the shore of the Victoria Harbor. Although it's not government owned, it is still practically the de facto venue for major state banquets. In other times, major exhibitions and trade shows fill its schedule.

Some exhibitions are so popular that people start waiting in line days ahead just to get the special deals. The comics and computer exhibitions are two of such. The annual book exhibition also draws quite a crowd - close to one million over the span of about a week.

Bauhinia Square, the square at the waterfront of the HK Convention and Exhibition Center, has a monument that commemorates the British rule of Hong Kong for over 150 years. Daily raising of the flag can be viewed there around 7:45am if the weather permits.

Known to the locals as the "blue house", this old building is a landmark in the southern part of Wan Chai.
Then in the southern section closest to the hillside, there is the more local residential area with some interesting side streets and rustic old buildings, but some of them have been or will be torn down. However at least one of them, home to an old pawn shop, has been preserved and renovated for fine dining (on Johnston Road near the MTR staton).

Another one, named Blue House by the locals, has been classified by the government as a "declared monument" - a grade I historical building. It is located on Stone Nullah Lane. It's blue because some years ago, when the government was revitalizing the area, they had an abundance of blue paint! The building is still being lived in. (2009.7.19)

And if you are in this section of Wan Chai, you can drop by the McLaren sports car show room to pick up a key for one - well, maybe not the keys but the keychain! (Address: 213 Queen's Road East)

A side street in Wan Chai with two glowing neon signs of restaurants.
The mid section in between has a street where stores related to renovation have congregated. You'll find interior design companies, raw material shops for tiles, kitchen and bathroom fixtures, etc.

Then in this section is also the bar district that's been around for decades.

Worth mentioning is the revolving restaurant in Hopewell Center where you can get a meal and a great view of the city. It's located in the southern section.

If you would like to see some local sights, the street market in Wan Chai is one place to check out. It may not be as big as the Ladies' Market in Mongkok, but this is less 'touristized'. Many locals come here to do their daily shopping. With the butcher shops and fish shops, you'll get a glimpse of Hong Kong life.

I won't want to miss mentioning the Wan Chai Computer Center located in the building right next to the Wan Chai MTR station. It has two floors of computer and consumer electronics stores. And then there's the 298 Computer shopping center a bit down the road.

If you like machines, go check out some fast ones: Italian sports cars. There's a concentration of high performance sports car showrooms on Gloucester Road. Lamborghini, Ferrari, Maserati, Aston-Martin, Lotus - they're there for you to admire.


Wan Chai is easily reached by tram, by Star Ferry from Tsim Sha Tsui (aka TST), Kowloon, or by MTR (just get off at the Wan Chai station on the blue line).

Wan Chai map

(updated 2011.6.18) -
Wanchi area viewed from Victoria Peak. Two clearly visible landmarks: the Central Plaza on the left and Hopewell Center on the right.

Mini Gallery

Old Faithful
A delivery vehicle parked in front of the to-be-demolished wet market.

Disappearing Acts
Older buildings like this are fast making way for skyscrapers in the fast-changing Hong Kong.

Sidewalk Shoesmith
Sidewalk shoesmiths are artisans less and less seen.

Convention Center
Officially known as HK Convention & Exhibition Center, this is a major icon of Victoria Harbor.


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