WAN CHAI

Perhaps best known to international audiences as the world of Suzie Wong, Wan Chai may be a former red light district, but it’s so much more than that. Situated on the northwestern tip of Hong Kong Island, Wan Chai is sprawling and diverse, serving not only as a major commercial area, but also a hub for the arts – which is only fitting, seeing as it’s home to the Academy of Performing Arts! The neighbouring Lyric Theatre boasts the city’s biggest stage for both local and international productions, while the nearby Convention and Exhibition Centre plays host to the massive annual book fair, anime convention, and food expo. Steeped in history, Wan Chai houses some of the most prominent protected buildings in the city. The district has undergone something of a facelift in recent years as urban renewal projects seek to inject architecturally significant old tenement buildings – such as the classic old Blue House on Stone Nullah Lane – with new purpose. In Wan Chai, you’ll find comic artists’ studios nestled in carefully renovated pre-war buildings, an apartment block perched on top of a preserved market building, a 19th century pawn shop-turned restaurant, and more. Speaking of food, the district’s dining scene offers a rather literal smorgasbord ranging from traditional Cantonese roast meats, streetside dimsum and criminally underrated curries, to modern tapas bars, French bistros, and Italian trattorias. To get a feel for the daily life in Wan Chai, grab an egg tart or pineapple bun at a local cha chaan teng and wander around Tai Yuen Street, where the open-air market is heavy with local flavour. Vendors peddle everything from traditional Chinese sweets to fresh produce, clothes, flowers, knick-knacks and more. Just a short walk away is the Star Street Precinct, where artists’ galleries, carefully curated lifestyle stores, restaurants and coffee shops line some of the oldest streets in the city. At night, Wan Chai lives up to its reputation as a place for unpretentious fun as Lockhart Road and its surrounding streets are filled with merriment. If you’re averse to dress codes and bottle service, and prefer your nights out to end quality late-night snacking, this is the place for you.
RECENT ARTICLES IN Wan Chai
Five arrested over bloody Wan Chai street brawl with suspected extortion link

Five arrested over bloody Wan Chai street brawl with suspected extortion link

Police have arrested five suspects in relation to an armed attack yesterday that spilled out into a Wan Chai street and saw five people injured with metal bars and knives. Local...

The Hungry Lawyer: Seorae, a mid-range alternative for Korean barbecue in Hong Kong

The Hungry Lawyer: Seorae, a mid-range alternative for Korean barbecue in Hong Kong

Don’t take it from me — Seorae’s global website describes Seorae as an “authentic Korean BBQ restaurant where you can have valuable dining experiences with charcoal...

Police called to Wan Chai building to break up fight between prostitutes and Japanese tourist

Police called to Wan Chai building to break up fight between prostitutes and Japanese tourist

Police had to be called to a building in Wan Chai to settle a fight after three prostitutes took none too kindly to a Japanese tourist snooping around their building with a...

Woman arrested after window falls from height in Wan Chai

Woman arrested after window falls from height in Wan Chai

Police have arrested a woman in connection with a window that fell from a building onto a busy Hong Kong street yesterday afternoon. Headline Daily reported that about 2pm, police...

Intellectually disabled woman allegedly gouges out caregiver sister’s eye

Intellectually disabled woman allegedly gouges out caregiver sister’s eye

An elderly woman in Hong Kong was rushed to hospital in the early hours of Tuesday morning after her younger sister allegedly gouged her left eye out. Emergency services rushed to...

Teen seriously injured after being gouged in face with pen during fight

Teen seriously injured after being gouged in face with pen during fight

A student was seriously injured after having his face gouged with a pen during a fight with another pupil at a Hong Kong high school yesterday. Ming Pao reported police and an...

Four luxury cars hit in ‘paint bomb’ attack targeting HK executive

Four luxury cars hit in ‘paint bomb’ attack targeting HK executive

Splat: the sound we imagine two plastic bags full of red paint make when giving four luxury cars an unwanted new colour. It was a noise perhaps heard yesterday when three Mercedes...

First look: The new ‘wallet-friendly set lunch’ at Tipsy in Tai Hang

First look: The new ‘wallet-friendly set lunch’ at Tipsy in Tai Hang

Tai Hang is just a stone’s throw away from Causeway Bay’s busy shopping district, and the pleasantly quiet, laid-back neighborhood is already known to have a solid...

Activists remove Liu Xiaobo from Times Square after mall threatens legal action

Activists remove Liu Xiaobo from Times Square after mall threatens legal action

Threatened with legal action, pro-democracy activists yesterday removed a statute of Chinese Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo from outside the Times Square shopping mall in Causeway...

Wonton noodle shop honored in Michelin guide to close its doors in August after 68 years

Wonton noodle shop honored in Michelin guide to close its doors in August after 68 years

After more than half a century, a noodle restaurant named by the Michelin Guide as one of the best places to grab a cheap eat in the city has announced it will be shutting its...