Cultural and culinary creativity reach great heights in the heart of Hong Kong.
Eclectic, bohemian and laid-back, but perfectly located in the heart of Hong Kong Island, Gough Street is a magnet for those seeking hip boutiques, funky homewares and great restaurant options. A beguiling mix of history and architecture only adds to its charm, as do two cool pedestrian-only streets running off it. Here are some of the neighborhood highlights.
This beef brisket soup restaurant started life as a dai pai dong — essentially a street food stall — almost 90 years ago. Today it’s an incredibly popular destination with a constant line outside of lifelong fans and curious tourists. It’s no-frills, cramped and you won’t get any time to hang around after eating, but at just HK$30/US$4 a bowl, no one is complaining. 21 Gough St.
It may have an odd name for a homewares store, but this shop has few rivals when it comes to quirky, beautifully designed gifts. Whether you’re looking to eat or bathe, play or sleep, it will have something that catches your eye and you quickly can’t live without. 29 Gough St.
The memorably named coffee specialists and micro-roasters have a number of spots around town, but this is arguably the coolest. It’s tiny, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in style — not least in its funky interior and gentle hip-hop soundtrack. Prime seats overlook the street below as you sip on great flat whites or salted caramel lattes. 11 Gough St., elephantgrounds.com
This repository of eclectic and cool things from around the world was formed by a group of friends in the design community who love to travel and shop; the result is a range of products guaranteed to raise a reaction. Brands such as Macon & Lesquoy or Crash Baggage (the cheeky pre-dented luggage whose tagline is “Handle Without Care”) show a welcome sense of humor. 26 Gough St., visionaire.hk
Located on Shin Hing Street, one of two pedestrian-only streets off Gough Street full of brilliant distractions on each side of 19th-century stone staircases, this contemporary gallery specializes in emerging talent from around the world. Works in ink and sculptures are especially of note. 7 Shin Hing St., ora-ora.com