Tai Kwun Arts Centre has another dining and drinking destination to offer Hong Kong. The heritage building in Central is the home of the latest Ashley Sutton design, just out of its soft opening phase of several weeks.
A “bohemian-style cocktail lounge,” the spot uses Art Nouveau-inspired pieces to create a dark glamour and otherworldly vibe.
On the western side of the complex and up a set of stone stairs, the 70-seat bar, with outdoor lounge running the length, is the former Superintendent’s House from when Tai Kwun was the Central Police Station.
Inside, try a Madam Marie (HKD140), their take on a Bloody Mary with pickled carrot and an oyster, or Paloma Wilde (HKD120), the bar’s tribute to Oscar Wilde, which is strangely served with a side of guacamole.
For nibbles, they have snacks like Foie Gras Terrine with Quince Paste and Brioche (HKD178) and Black Truffle Polenta Bites with Parmesan (HKD88).
By turns boho saloon and Moulin Rouge pretender, the decor is rich greens and blues, like the translucent wings of the creature it’s named after. Think theatrical emerald velvet drapes and never-ending homages to stained glass artist Louis Tiffany, including an entire ceiling covered in 120 glass shard globes that evoke classic Tiffany lamps.
To lend extra mystery to the decor and vibe, the lamps are lit by flickering yellow Edison bulbs.
Much like Sutton’s Iron Fairies bars in Bangkok, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and most recently, in Kuala Lumpur, this one has over 500 iron dragonfly statuettes around the lounge. As in Iron Fairies, we assume there is also a sign somewhere warning you of impending doom if you choose to pocket any of them.
Because Sutton is known for his extra-ness, 120 lamps and 500 statues is not enough to make the impression he hopes to make. The lounge’s centerpiece hangs above the bar and spans its entire length — a human-esque bronze dragonfly statue with blue and green mosaic wings inspired by a Lalique brooch.
Dragonfly is at 10-G1 Tai Kwun, 10 Hollywood Road
Open daily, 5pm-late