Occupying a modern tower between Hong Kong Park and the Pacific Place shopping center, Island Shangri-La is an earthly paradise on the edge of Hong Kong’s Wan Chai district. Floor-to-ceiling glass walls in the lobby face a 130-year-old banyan tree; the outdoor swimming pool is set amid grass and trees as well as skyscrapers; and the Roof Garden on the 56th floor is enveloped in the misty greenery of Victoria Peak.
The hotel’s interiors are equally inspiring, with more than 900 works of art on display, including a 16-story silk landscape painting called Great Motherland of China cascading down the atrium. Accommodations combine Asian silks, floral wall paintings, and Chinese tea sets with European antiques and crystal chandeliers. In 2009, the Horizon Club Lounge became the highest executive lounge on Hong Kong Island, offering sweeping views of Victoria Harbour. Dark wood, black marble, jewel-tone leather, Austrian chandeliers, and traditional qi pao staff uniforms create an elegant setting for complimentary breakfast, evening cocktails and canapés, or an afternoon work session.
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Surrounded by all the conveniences of the Central and Wan Chai districts as well as direct access to the Admiralty MTR station, Island Shangri-La is popular among business and leisure travelers. But the hotel’s proximity to Hong Kong Park, the Hong Kong Zoo and Botanic Gardens, and Victoria Peak also attracts guests who appreciate greenery and the opportunity to get lost in nature. Across the street from the hotel, Hong Kong Park delights travelers with fountains and lily ponds, an arts center, the 1846 Flagstaff House Museum, an aviary home to 80 bird species, and the Lock Cha Tea House, which sources some of the finest leaf teas from around the globe. For those who want to rise above the skyscrapers, Victoria Peak is crisscrossed with walking and hiking trails, and the Peak Experience funicular and lookout are the best ways to take it all in.
Need to Know
Rooms: 531 rooms, 34 suites; from $451. Check-in: 2 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options:The hotel has eight restaurants. Petrus and Summer Palace each boast a Michelin star. Petrus offers impressive views and fine French cuisine as well as a wine list with more than 1,500 vintages. Impressionist paintings, sculptures, and dome ceilings with surrealist cloud and horse images were modeled after the grand dining rooms of Europe. Summer Palace serves Cantonese specialties such as steamed crab claw with winter melon. The hotel also offers poolside Thai food at the Waterside terrace, refined Japanese fare at Kaiseki, market seafood and live jazz at the Lobster Bar and Grill, and 10 open kitchens whipping up everything from Wagyu beef to xiao long bao (soup dumplings) at Café TOO. Spa and gym details:The hotel features all the health and wellness options one would expect at Shangri-La, including a 24-hour gymnasium, outdoor pool, Jacuzzis, sauna, steam room, solarium, and five spa treatment rooms, plus free hatha yoga classes.
Who's it best for: Luxury travelers who expect top-notch service, high-end amenities (from pillow menus to 24-hour butler service), and the best views in town. Our favorite rooms: Horizon Club Harbour View Rooms come with sophisticated appointments such as padded leather walls and headboards, a vintage-style entertainment cabinet, and framed artwork. A glass wall affords panoramic views of Victoria Harbour and the Kowloon Peninsula. Horizon guests also have such privileges as complimentary breakfast at the club lounge or Restaurant Petrus, cocktails and canapés in the evening, daily newspaper delivery, and a 24-hour butler button. A dinner symphony: Guests should make advance reservations at Restaurant Petrus, and reserve a window seat to experience the Symphony of Lights over dinner: Every night at 8 p.m., colorful laser lights dance off the Hong Kong skyscrapers.