This is not so much about searching for a location, as it was for the experience. Seeing is one thing, but experiencing a different culture, and what it might have been like back in another era made that visit all the more worthwhile.
Not that I’m about to be writing about Hong Kong in the early 20th century, but you never know.
I’ve seen in many times when we visited Hong Kong, but never quite made it to stay at the Peninsula Hotel, not until I decided to put it on my bucket list, and, having just turned 65, we decided to spend my birthday there.
Of course, arriving in a green Rolls Royce helps to enhance the experience. and is, if you are going to stay at the Penisula, a mandatory extra.
It is rather difficult to imagine what the hotel would have been like in 1928 when it was built. Without the central tower behind the old hotel building, the tall buildings around it, and all the buildings between the hotel and the waterfront, it would be easy to say it had a prime position.
It’s not far from the Star Ferry terminal, the main transport from Kowloon to Hong Kong Island. Since then, there is the MTR and the underground tunnel for vehicles, but back then it was the ferry or nothing.
Outside, the centerpiece to the driveway is a fountain. Around the edges are the cars, the Tesla’s, the Mercedes, the Audi’s and a Rolls Royce or two. There was even a Lamborghini. I could see myself doing a tour of the island by Lamborghini.
Or not. The traffic would be very unkind to such a machine.
Inside the front door, the main part of the ground floor foyer stretches from one side of the building to the other, save for arcades of shops at the ends. High priced goods can be bought here by the rich and famous.
What is interesting is that they have a very smartly dressed porter at the front door to open it for you. It seemed very appropriate for a hotel steeped in old world charm.
Either side of the entrance walkway that leads to reception and the concierge desk, and two magnificent staircases. It is all marble floor, marble columns with sculptures at the top and ornate ceilings.
And the endless cacophony of sounds you would expect in such a large space. Either side of the central walkway is the cafe, elegantly set tables, each with its own flower.
People coming and going, people meeting other people, people arriving, people departing. Hotel staff bustling from place to place and serving staff moving among the guests dining in the Foyer cafe.
The staircase leads to the mezzanine floor where there are more shops, and then up to the first floor where the veranda cafe and the Spring Moon restaurant is located. The Spring Moon is where we will be having dinner tonight.