No one does fireworks quite like Hong Kong. Apart from the usual pyrotechnics spectacular at midnight, this year’s Countdown to 2012 also includes multi-coloured ‘shooting stars’ fireworks that will launch from the rooftops of ten buildings every 15 minutes from 11-11.45pm, the words ‘Happy New Year’ will be spelled above Victoria Harbour and a ‘golden dragon’ will circle around Two ifc to accompany the specially-composed theme song ‘Soaring Dragons With A Happy Heart’! There will be extensive road closures so check your bus/driving routes and arrive early to secure a good spot.
Best viewing points: TST waterfront (between Avenue of Stars and HKCC); West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade; Golden Bauhinia Square promenade, Wan Chai; Central Piers
Dine with a view at Wooloomooloo Prime
Look forward to some stunning views at Wooloomooloo Prime – and the menu doesn’t sound too shabby either! It’s a decadent five-course feast, including scallops, venison and cognac crème brulee, plus a complimentary champagne cocktail and a live band after 10pm too. Make sure you make your meal last until the fireworks get going, as you’re certain to get a prime (geddit?!) view!
Where: Wooloomooloo Prime, Level 21, The One, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
When: 31 December
How much:$1600 (plus 10% service charge), phone 2870 0087 to book
New York, New York Black & White Party
Don your best black and white for this New York, New York-themed bash at BLT Steak and Al Molo, including a buffet, open bar, indoor or outdoor dining, jazz classics, a DJ flown in direct from New York itself – and a fabulous harbour-side view. Start spreading the news!
Where: Al Molo & BLT Steak, G62-63, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, 17 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
When: 31 December
How much: Gala buffet $888; buffet plus open bar $1288; countdown, fireworks and open bar $488 (from 11pm); RSVP to email@example.com phone 2730 7900 or 2730 3508
La Dolce Vita 2012 at Vero and Halo
Yet another view to remember at La Dolce Vita at Vero Lounge and Halo! The views from Fenwick Pier are some of the finest around so count down to 2012 at Vero with free-flow bubbly and Peroni, savoury Italian canapés and… we’re licking our lips already… a chocolate buffet. If all that cocoa gives you a sugar rush, head to the after-party at Halo (there’s a free personal concierge pick-up service to take you straight to LKF!), which includes free-flow standard drinks and Peroni, live DJ music and revelry well into the morning hours.
Where: Vero Lounge, 1/F Fenwick Pier, 1 Lung King Street, Wan Chai; Halo, LG/F 10-12 Stanley Street, Central
When: 31 December; Vero 9pm-12.30am, Halo 12.30-3am
How much: Vero countdown $500; Halo after-party $350; both $800 (buy 6 tickets and get 1 free); RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com buy tickets at Halo (2810 1460) or Vero Landmark (Shop 236, The Landmark, Central, 2559 5810)
Fancy something a bit different to see in the New Year… and a guaranteed great view of the fireworks? Well, how about a Countdown Cruise spent bobbing on the waves and under the stars? A trip on the triple-decker Harbour Cruise – Bauhinia includes a dinner buffet, music from a live band, gift and New Year’s Eve Lucky Draw, whilst a cruise on the iconic Star Ferry includes one non-alcoholic drink and snack, plus a New Year gift set.
When: 31 December, 11pm
How much:Bauhinia $520 adult, $370 child (2802 2886); Star Ferry $170 (2118 6208)
And to keep you entertained the rest of the fortnight…
All-singing, all-dancing penguin power hits the cinemas once again! All your kids’ favourite characters from the first film are back for Happy Feet 2 for another heart-warming action-packed family adventure – but this time it’s in 3D… or even IMAX! Arctic animals just got even cuter…
Where: Cinemas everywhere
Don’t play with your food?
We admit, this is a weird one… but it sounds intriguing. Austria’s Vegetable Orchestra (yes, you heard right) are presenting Onionoise, their latest symphony played entirely on… you guessed it… instruments made from vegetables! Together with projections and wonderful smells of all your favourite veggies, we imagine this has to be seen to be believed – but does it count towards one of our five a day? Either way, maybe it’ll get our little ones eating their greens!
Where: Ngau Chi Wan Civic Centre, 11 Clear Water Bay Road; Sha Tin Town Hall, 1 Yuen Wo Road; Yuen Long Theatre, 9 Yuen Long Tai Yuk Road
When: 30 December-1 January, 8pm
How much: $140-220, www.urbtix.hk, 2111 5999Skating under the Stars
Let your kids take to the ice on Hong Kong’s first ever open-air ice-rink. With Tsim Sha Tsui’s Christmas lights twinkling away in the background, Ice Wonderland should give you a dose of festive spirit in spades!
When: 25 November-1 January, see opening hours here
How much:Skate rental $15 afternoon session, $30 evening session
We’re expecting to be wow-ed by this stunning circus show from the Guangzhou Acrobatic Troupe of China (plus a family workshop on 27 December) – expect plenty of death-defying stunts, breath-taking acrobatics and aerial gymnastics… we’re out of breath just thinking about it!
Where: Tuen Mun Town Hall, 3 Tuen Hi Road; Sha Tin Town Hall, 1 Yuen Wo Road; Yuen Long Theatre, 9 Yuen Long Tai Yuk Road
When: 24-26 December, 7.30pm; 27 December, 3pm
How much: $100-220, www.urbtix.hk, 2111 5999Dragon & Lion Dance Extravaganza
If you’re not feeling the excesses of the night before, the traditional Dragon & Lion Dance would make a great family day out to celebrate the start of the new year! It features 88 dragons and 50 lions dancing their way their way through Central and Wan Chai in a spectacular parade – we dare you to keep up!
When: 1 January, 2-5pm
How much: Free