Inner Circle

Fall for Hong Kong

Autumn is the best time of the year to visit Hong Kong, Yeoh Siew Hoon discovers.

Fall for Hong Kong
My days in Hong Kong were blessed with fine weather. While temperatures were still high, you can feel the cool breeze ushering in autumn.

While on a flight to Hong Kong, I found myself reading about a study linking weather to visitor activities. The survey by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University showed that tourists are most resilient to weather changes when visiting Hong Kong. Researchers found that the study participants were “very active regardless of the weather conditions encountered”, concluding that the vagaries of nature seldom affect their plans.

They spent an average of seven hours outside the hotel, during which time they generally visited or passed through about eight of the mapped areas. Overall, the weather had little effect on the likelihood of the tourists visiting particular places.

As reassuring as I found the results of the study, I couldn’t help but hope the weather would be nice for the next three days – very few places in the world can beat Hong Kong on a clear autumn day.

And sure enough, my days in Hong Kong were blessed with fine weather. While temperatures were still high, you can feel the cool breeze ushering in autumn – indeed, one of the things I missed most after moving to Singapore from Hong Kong is the changing of the seasons. 

When you live in the tropics, everyday feels much the same - just a matter of rain or shine. Without nature’s reminder, somehow you don’t mark time and seasons as much. The clothes in the stores, the shop window displays, the seasonality on the menus – they all add to a flavour of a place, and autumn remains my favourite time to visit Hong Kong. 

Weather has an obvious influence on the city’s general mood, and in autumn people seem more cheerful; even passengers on a packed train show more conviviality.

Or maybe it was just me. It is said that if you’re a happy traveller, happy things happen to you – it’s perhaps a tad too simplistic but maybe there’s some truth to it. 

At FoFo by el Willy, a Spanish restaurant in Central, we requested the chef to prepare a menu for us – we didn’t feel like making decisions – and what he produced made me and my friend very happy indeed.

At China Tang, not only was the food exceptional, but the service was also friendly. We had clearly ordered too much – a gastronomic hazard when I dine with my friends who always believe hospitality is about having more on the table – and the manager offered to pack it all up for us. 

At Island Shangri-La, Hong Kong, General Manager Franz Donhauser happily informed us how busy the hotel was, and will be for the rest of autumn.

My meeting with an investment analyst at Café TOO proved his point – at 8am, the restaurant was packed full of business professionals ready to shake hands and make deals at the breakfast table. Apparently there was a big meeting of investors and financial analysts in town that week.

These visitors pay no attention to the weather outside. Typhoon or sunshine, money still makes Hong Kong go round and this is why I love this city, but especially in autumn.


 Make a booking at Island Shangri-La, Hong Kong Back to Heart Talk 

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