Swire generally produces beautiful, thoughtfully serviced hotels. Taikoo is a historical heartland of some Swire businesses – to the point that in Chinese the names are the same – so I was not surprised that I found East to be a well-designed and enjoyable hotel in which to stay.
Address: 29 Tai Koo Shing Rd, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong
Phone: +852 3968 3968
The hotel is in a modern, high-rise building. It is a few minutes’ walk from the MTR station and tram stop. This is a fairly busy area of town, with some trendier restaurants and bars nestled amongst a lot of local shops. There is also a direct footbridge link from the hotel to the City Plaza, which shoppers may find convenient.
The main attraction of the room from my perspective was the stunning view, with almost floor to ceiling windows across the whole exterior part of the room. I was fortunate enough to have a corner view overlooking the harbour. However, the other side of the hotel looking onto the nearby Taikoo and hills of Hong Kong island is also fairly attractive (from Taikoo one can walk up and join the Hong Kong Trail, or stage two of the Wilson Trail, fairly quickly).
The room was well kitted out for its size with a comfortable bed, a good sized desk, a free loan mobile phone for use in Hong Kong and a good shower.
I missed a bath, which are available only in the suites.
The room was quiet and the view was mesmerising. I stayed on a Friday night with clear weather, and watched as the giant Genting Dream sailed into Kai Tak in the early evening, sailing out after dark under her blaze of lights. The following morning the berth was filled by the good ship RMS Queen Mary 2. It was easy to spend time simply looking down, enjoying this view.
The staff are courteous and efficient, although their uniform was a bit informal for my taste given the high end design executed well throughout the rest of the hotel. There is a well-known rooftop bar called Sugar on a high floor and a restaurant closer to ground which creates a sense of space and calm with its high ceiling. I had breakfast there, which was a standard though good buffet, and a small choice of a la carte options from which I had a steak and egg, which was impeccable. Again the small details come across well at East, for example they have their own branded orange juice at breakfast.
The hotel has a twenty four hour gym and an outdoor pool which is open from six in the morning until nine at night.
The pool area is well executed given the urban location: as well as the pool, there are loungers on the surrounding deck and a decently relaxing atmosphere despite being overlooked by nearby high-rise buildings. Beside the pool there is a rooftop garden where the hotel grows some herbs and the like which it uses in its restaurant – I thought that this was a good, localised touch.
The hotel tries to bring some art into its space, too. The suites contain art pieces but there are some in the rest of the property, too, whether it’s the larger pieces in the lobby area or the display by local artist Joanne Wu currently exhibited beside the restaurant.
East Hotel was relaxing, thoughtfully designed and aesthetically sophisticated. It would suit business travellers, but I could also imagine spending a happy weekend staycation there.
East Hotel provided the room during this stay. All content and opinions expressed are true and original to the author.