TST for the whole family…
Tsim Sha Tsui is arguably the most popular tourist and shopping destination in Hong Kong, so it’s difficult to imagine the origins that once inspired the name, which translates to ‘sharp, sandy point’. But with the swapping of sandy bays for shopping bags and local eateries, TST has developed to offer a little something for every member of the family. From the most family-friendly restaurants to the best play areas, we’ve hand-picked our favourite spots in this bustling part of Hong Kong…
This spot is a coffee-lover’s haven. The company globally sources the best quality coffee beans before roasting them onsite. Started by global entrepreneur, Jennifer Liu, the brand set out to redefine the coffee house experience in Hong Kong. It all began as a dedicated training and ideas space for a growing community of like-minded coffee addicts! When you’re in TST, it’s worth checking out its first coffee kiosk (opened in 2014) in Harbour City. Pop in for a quick caffeine run, with or without the rest of the family! You can expect top quality coffee, grab-and-go food and a relaxing ambience.
The Coffee Academics, Level 2, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 8am to 9pm; Saturday and Sunday: 10am to 8pm, www.the-coffeeacademics.com
Whether you’re after a staycation or a relaxing family lunch, Hotel ICON has got your family covered. Home to Asia’s largest vertical garden, chic interiors, spacious guest rooms, a harbor-facing swimming pool and award winning restaurants – this really is a haven in TST. Mums are guaranteed to love the relaxing Angsana Spa by Banyan Tree – complete with rejuvenating treatments. The whole family can make the most of the outdoor swimming pool and fitness centre, boasting an incredible view! And for food, pick between Chinese food at Above & Beyond or Asian and International delicacies at The Market. Experience a hotel unlike any other at this upscale, family friendly spot!
Hotel ICON, 17 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.hotel-icon.com
The newest branch of Nude Boutique opened in the middle of last year, right in the heart of TST! As the third location in Hong Kong, it’s a quick and convenient spot for stress-free beauty treatments. Though it’s most famous for brazilian and body waxing, it also offers Laser Hair Removal and luxurious facials (such as the ultra-exclusive Elemis Biotec Facials). Bookings can be made online, over telephone, email, SMS, Whatsapp, FB, or Live Chat – easy! Located opposite Harbour City, and just a of couple minute’s walk from the MTR station, it’s an easy place to book in for any last minute beauty needs.
As a special perk for Sassy Mama readers, Nude Boutique is offering 20% off Waxing, and 35% off for Elemis Facials. Simply mention this Sassy Perk when you make your booking to redeem. Valid until 31 May 2018 and for the TST branch only. The waxing promotion can be used on 1 area only and only one promotion can be used per individual.
Conveniently located in The ONE, Cafe Deco offers a striking panoramic skyline view, overlooking the skyscrapers of our beloved Victoria Harbour. This stylish high-table restaurant offers a private area, a welcoming dining area, and an elevated (literally) dining experience. Think: art deco decorations, and a casual yet classy vibe. Check out the set lunch, letting you buy one and get your second meal 50% off. Or, for a relaxed afternoon, the afternoon tea runs everyday. And for some family time, the Sunday Brunch Buffet has special offers like buy-3-get-1-free and FREE sparkling wine. Stay tuned for various offers running around the clock.
Cafe Deco, 20/F The ONE, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, 2849 5111, WhatsApp Reservations: 69277788, www.cafedecogroup.com
Where to Eat
You’ve probably seen some of ATUM’s creations around. This restaurant serves signature artistic dessert platters as well as lunch, afternoon tea and dinner, all with a pinch of creativity and a sprinkling of innovation. This is art on a plate.
ATUM Restaurant, Shop 101B, 1/F, K11 Art Mall, 18 Hanoi Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3586 1959, www.atumhk.com
This tiny kiosk sells some seriously good sandwiches and slow cooked meats. The short ribs are a favourite – with tender meat coming effortlessly off the bone. The staff even hand you plastic gloves, a nice bonus for messy kids. For a grab-and-go sandwich, opt for the signature Angus beef steak and cheese sandwich, the meat ratio won’t disappoint you. The seafood (crab or shrimps) are equally divine. For a lighter, healthier option, salads are also available. With the prices not exceeding $60, this is a great fix for a lunch on the run!
Under Vacuum Deli, Kiosk, Centemony Garden, 63 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Hong Kong, 93256625, www.undervacuum.hk/the-deli
Friendly service, a casual and welcoming atmosphere, simple but hearty food – Jamie’s restaurants will always be a good place to come with the whole fam. This one is full of colourful street art and cosy booth tables, and curious kids can take a peek into the buzzing open kitchen.
Jamie’s Italian, Shop 412, Level 4, Ocean Centre, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3758 3333, www.jamieoliver.com/italian/hongkong/restaurants/tsim-sha-tsui/
Tucked away from the hustle and bustle of downtown TST, this area offers a variety of restaurants (everything from homemade spaghetti at Spasso to the traditional Bratwurst and Brezn at Brotzeit) with outdoor seating. And look, just across from Salisbury Road is the stunning Victoria Harbour.
Alfresco Lane, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, Hong Kong
We love the Kitchen at the W Hotel for many reasons. First, every Saturday is family day, and kids eat free. Second, every Sunday is free-flow brunch day, which is so impressive it’ll set the bar for all Sunday brunches to come. Third, every first Sunday of the month, that impressive brunch receives a free-flow Veuve Cliquot Rosé upgrade. Your next weekend sorted.
Kitchen, W Hotel, 1 Austin Road West, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3717 2299, www.w-hongkong.com/kitchen
Whether you’re super hungry or a super fussy eater, this Mongolian buffet makes everyone happy. It’s all DIY here, and kids will get a kick out of creating rice bowls, pasta dishes or personalised pizzas – and watching their food being cooked in minutes!
Nomads, 55 Kimberley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2722 0733, www.cafedecogroup.com/outlet.php
Din Tai Fung really needs no introduction. Who doesn’t love a good xiao long bao? This popular chain of restaurants serves up arguably the best in Hong Kong, alongside a mouthwatering list of all your dim sum favourites.
This vegetarian restaurant is famed for its authentic and delicious Indian cuisine. We love that it also provides flavour-bursting Jain food (for those who don’t eat garlic or onion).
Branto, 9 Lock Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.facebook.com/Branto-Pure-Veg-Indian-Restaurant-HONG-KONG-196318713713111
A longtime family favourite, Pizza Express in Ocean Terminal celebrates its harbour location with impressive views. Dough balls and decadent desserts combine to make this a solid option. Chances are, the kids will get to see one of the absolutely enormous cruise ships coming in, or heading out, directly outside the restaurant.
Pizza Express, Shop OT G53, Ground Floor, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2167 8782, www.pizzaexpress.com.hk/restaurant/ocean-terminal/
For a special date night, head to Nobu. Stunning views, conversation starting decor (think “undulating sea urchin ceiling” – their words, not ours) and some of the freshest Japanese food you’ll ever have. It’s not the most acclaimed Japanese restaurant in the world for nothing. Enjoy!
Nobu, 2/F, InterContinental Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2313 2323, www.noburestaurants.com/hong-kong/
With a breathtaking view of our skyline and a contemporary twist on all our local favourites, Hutong is ideal for special occasion brunches, especially with slightly older kids. All dim sum here is made fresh, on site, and you’ll be tempted to try everything on the menu. Make sure to order the gloriously fluffy mushroom bao. Though there’s no kids menu, kids under 12 years old get to eat brunch for free, so make the most of it!
Hutong, 28/F, One Peking, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, 3428 8342, hutong.com.hk
The Insta-worthy pick on our list, Dim Sum Icon serves all your favourite dumplings as kawaii characters. Whilst it’s not the most amazing dim sum you’ll ever have, it is a whole lot of fun – and a real treat for cartoon-loving kids.
Dim Sum Icon, L308, 3/f, The ONE, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2885 1345, www.facebook.com/DIMSUMICON
This underground food fest is the best place to come when you and the family are hungry and indecisive (usually a lethal combination – here, an excuse to go nuts). Food from all across Asia is on offer, plus there’s a great juice bar slap-bang in the middle of it all. Everyone’s a winner.
Food Republic, B01, Silvercord Mall, 20 Canton Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 211111961, www.foodrepublic.hk/outlets_details.php?ol_id=14
Where to Drink
It wouldn’t be a Tsim Sha Tsui guide without mentioning one of the area’s most famous bars, Aqua. With unbeatable views of the harbour and an eclectic cocktail menu featuring drinks like the #Nofilter (which comes “dressed in a kimono”) and the Charcoal Fizz, this is an impressive place to take guests.
Aqua, 29, 30/ F, 1 Peking Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3427 2288, https://aqua.com.hk/experience
A bit of an oldie (but a goodie), Ned Kelly’s Last Stand has been around since what feels like the beginning of time. This grungy Australian joint is known for its casual and cosy atmosphere, and for playing some of Hong Kong’s best live jazz.
Ned Kelly’s Last Stand, 11A Ashley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2376 0562, www.facebook.com/pages/Ned-Kellys-Last-Stand
If your journey to TST includes a ride on the star ferry, don’t miss this artisanal coffee shop located on TST pier. Targeting coffee lovers on the go, it serves all your favourite classic coffees, perfectly made. Note: if you’re into sweet and syrupy creations, this probably isn’t the place for you.
% Arabica, Shop KP-41, Tsim Sha Tsui Star Ferry Pier, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.arabica.coffee
For a fun group date night or some pre-dinner drinks, Tequila Jacks is the place to come – especially if you’re in the mood for margaritas or Mexican beers. This cantina also has a pretty great Taco Tuesdays deal, when tacos are just HK$10 each!
Tequila Jack’s, 33-35 Chatham Road South, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3428 5133, elgrande.com.hk/restaurant/tequila-jacks
Created by a dietitian and a nutritionist, Bless’ cold-pressed juices will nourish your body from the inside out. When the noise and crowds of TST get to be a bit much, a cold bottle of the sweet Strawberry dream or punchy Immune Warrior is sure to hit the spot.
Bless, Shop 25, G/F, New Mandarin Plaza, 14 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2412 1008, www.blessbalance.com/en
Where secret garden meets shisha… This lush courtyard terrace offers bamboo groves, cosy sofas, a treasure trove of drinks and lotus-shaped open fires. For a really special evening, go all-out and book a cabana.
Vibes, 5/F, The Mira, 118 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2315 5599, www.themirahotel.com
Situated on bustling Mody road, this cosy little store is busy pretty much all day, and for good reason. The top-notch brews receive great reviews – even from the pickiest coffee connoisseurs. Go early and enjoy one of the delicious breakfast options with your cup of joe.
N1 Coffee & Co, Shop G, 34 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3528 4726, www.facebook.com/N1-Coffee-Co-473097382816950/
Casablanca fans will enjoy this sophisticated spot, where excellent cocktail concoctions are inspired by the classic film starring Bergman and Bogart, with names like As Time Goes By.
J’s Bar Bistro, 2/F, The Royal Garden, 69 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2733 2088, www.rghk.com.hk/en/dining/js-bar-bistro.php
Tsim Sha Tsui, as much as we love it, can get overwhelming pretty quickly. Kowloon Park is the place to be when you’re seeking refuge. Kids can explore the playground (which features part of a restored fort and cannon fortifications!), there’s an aviary (hello, flamingos!), two public pools, and a Maze Garden Sculpture Walk.
Kowloon Park, MTR exit A1, www.tsimshatsui.hk/kowloon-park.html#.WlhhNqiWY2w
Middle Road Children’s Playground
This small and relatively quiet playground not only boasts views of the harbour, but is conveniently located directly above the MTR. Yes, it can get a little hectic on weekends, but during the week, it’s a hidden gem with shaded seating and picnic spots.
Middle Road Children’s Playground, East Tsim Sha Tsui MTR station (exit K) or access via Chatham Road South, www.lcsd.gov.hk/en/facilities/facilitieslist
The Little Gym
This popular global brand is all about creating a fun learning environment for the little ones. It’s a great place to make new friends, build self-confidence, enjoy a huge variety of classes, throw your child’s next birthday bash or participate in one of the day camps.
The Little Gym, Suite 601, 6th Floor, World Commerce Centre, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2368 8777, www.thelittlegym.com/HongKong/
A Disney-themed 4D photo studio with 12 cartoon zones, 70 photography spots and a 10,000 square foot space featuring statues, paintings, props, sound effects, music, lighting, and even smells – it may be the opposite of relaxing, but needless to say, this place is a magical experience. Ideal for kids who love Disney and taking photos! Have fun joining Olaf in a giant sow globe, battling with Darth Vader and flying on Aladdin’s carpet!
Magical World, 1F, Hilton Place, 96 Granville Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Hong Kong, 2721 9318, www.facebook.com/magicalworldhk/
Escape reality for a few hours in one of Hong Kong’s most popular cinemas. The IMAX theatre in iSquare boasts enormous screens and great sound, making this the ideal rainy-day activity – just don’t get lost in the mall’s confusing system of escalators.
IMAX at UA iSquare, 7/F, iSQUARE, 63 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3918 5888, www.uacinemas.com.hk/eng/cinema/6
You’re never too old for the Science Museum. Located in the heart of TST, visitors can easily spend a few happy hours exploring the many floors of fascinating exhibitions (we love the world of mirrors!), not to mention the 22-meter high Energy Machine. It’s the largest of its kind in the world and we challenge you not to turn into an instant physics nerd once it’s set in motion.
Hong Kong Science Museum, 2 Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2732 3232, http://hk.science.museum/en_US/web/scm/index.html
We’ve heard plenty about Goji Studios recently, but did you know that the gym also offers something for the little ones? It’s called Generation Goji, and it’s a well-rounded sports and movement program that includes yoga, martial arts, ball games, dance, and obstacles. Couple this with an encouraging, dynamic and fun environment – what’s not to love?
Goji Studios, L9, The ONE, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 3184 2722, https://gojistudios.com.hk/generation-goji/
This 120 year-old historical development used to be the Marine Police Headquarters, and is a great place to discover a bit of Hong Kong’s history. Yes, it features luxury shops, fine dining establishments and a heritage hotel, but there’s also the Time Ball, which was raised manually every day for ships in the port, and the Typhoon Gun. It was fired once when a gale was approaching and twice for a typhoon (let’s be honest, this sounds far more exciting than checking the Observatory website).
1881 Heritage, 2A Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2926 8000, http://www.1881heritage.com/index.php?lang=en
This internationally awarded learning centre offers something for the every age range. There’s a host of baby and toddler classes to choose from, a brand-new Drama program, the popular ‘Kindermusik’ music program, a coffee lounge and, of course, the chance to book special events and birthday parties.
Baumhaus, Suite 614–615, World Commerce Centre, 11 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2321 5898, www.baumhaus.com.hk
This recognisable domed structure houses the museum of astronomy, a hall of space science, and the space theatre. After exploring, ejoy one of the multi-lingual shows at the Stanley Ho Space Theatre, which is a cinema experience unlike any other. Don’t learn the hard way: it’s closed on Tuesdays.
Hong Kong Space Museum, 10 salisbury road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.lcsd.gov.hk/CE/Museum/Space/en_US/web/spm/whatsnew.html
Where to Shop
We’re falling fast for Edgar. This store is all about zero waste: you can buy unpackaged foods, shop in bulk, bring your own bags and containers and feel good about yourself as it’s full of organic, natural and healthy goodies. Soon, fans will be able to order in bulk online, too.
Edgar, Shop 201, L2, K11 Art Mall, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.edgar.hk/
Harbour City is where fashion, food and coffee come together. Pop up to the Ocean Terminal Deck which boasts beautiful views of the harbour if you need a break from the shopping madness below, or check out the Gallery by the Harbour for some local art.
LCX, Level Three, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, 5 Canton Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2118 8666, http://www.harbourcity.com.hk/en/
This stretch of road isn’t for the faint-hearted, but it is a must for any serious shoppers. The boutiques here are piled high with young and playful street labels, while the outlet stores offer endless budget items to pick through.
Granville Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, http://www.granville-road.hk/
If you’re strolling through Harbour City with kids in tow, pop into this fun book shop that offers the largest selection of children’s books in Hong Kong. Even if the little ones aren’t big into Harry Potter, there’s lots to explore here: think puzzles, games, toys, arts and crafts and novelty items.
Book Castle, Shop OT G45, Ground Floor, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.facebook.com/BookCastleHK/
For a little creative inspiration, head to our very first Art Mall, where shopping and art come together in a space dotted with interesting decor and housing an exhibition area.
K11 Art Mall, 18 Hanoi Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, http://hk.k11.com/
While it’s entirely possible to get hopelessly lost in the vast expanse that is Elements (those ‘zones’ don’t help), the mall itself actually offers a pretty great selection of stores, not to mention a variety of delicious dining options. We love checking out the different restaurants in Civic Square before settling in a cosy spot in the sunshine.
Elements, 1 Austin Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.elementshk.com
This store is chockablock full of furniture, home accessories and plenty of quirky decorative items. The ideal place to go for fun housewarming gifts, it also carries niche European brands, offering a few items that would be otherwise hard to find.
Homeless, Shop L602 – L605, TheOne, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 9309 7120, homeless.hk
For Mama-Only Time
Welcome to the home of afternoon tea (since 1865!). Yes, the Peninsula is pretty spectacular, but so are the queues, so head over to the Langham Hotel for an alternative. The Palm Court pays tribute to its London namesake and serves up a wholly delicious pastry feast consisting of both sweet and savoury bites.
Palm Court at The Langham, 8 Peking Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2132 7898, http://www.langhamhotels.com/en/the-langham/hong-kong/dining/palm-court
Don’t let the office-y address fool you; the Thann Sanctuary is a haven of tranquility that will make you feel worlds away from the all-too-real hustle and bustle of Tsim Sha Tsui. This is where to come for proper pampering, Thai-style, in Hong Kong.
Thann Sanctuary, Room 1010-11, 10/F, World Commerce Centre, Harbour City, 11 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, www.thann.com.hk
Get your sweat on at this exclusive training studio. Yes, the individual programs – highly tailored just for you – sound effective, but we like the thought of knocking out your frustrations in one of the small group muay thai or boxing sessions.
V2 sports, 4/f, 27 Ashley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 9011 1790, v2sports.com.hk
With over 18,000 square feet of sophisticated, luxurious wellness, the MiraSpa is the ultimate treat-yourself serenity getaway. The wet zone includes a hydro pool, sauna, steam room, experience showers and waterbeds, complete with a calming soundtrack.
MiraSpa, Mira Hotel, Mira Place, 118-130 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2315 5500, www.themirahotel.com/facility/spa-zone/
With a focus on mind-body workouts, In Motion offers seven (!) different types of Pilates, and 3 types of pre-natal Pilates. A smaller student-to-teacher ratio means individualized attention and personalized workouts, while TRX training is a great option for those looking for a higher-intensity workout.
In Motion, 14/F, VIP Commercial Centre, 120 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2376 0033, www.in-motion.hk
Feature image courtesy of Getty Images. Featured article images courtesy of The Coffee Academïcs, Hotel Icon, Nude Boutique, Cafe Deco. Image #1 courtesy of ATUM Restaurant;, image #2 courtesy of The Kitchen; image #3 courtesy of Unsplash; image #4 courtesy of Unsplash; image #5 courtesy of Hong Kong Science Museum; image #6 courtesy via Unsplash; image #7 courtesy of Aqua; image #8 courtesy of Vibes; image #9 courtesy of Pixabay; image #10 courtesy of Homeless; image #11 courtesy of Palm Court; image #12 courtesy of Mira Spa.