Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Staying in HK : Yiu Fai, Yesinn, Island Pacific

During my two trips to Hong Kong this year, I was able to try 3 hostel/hotel options. The first one was in Yiu Fai Guesthouse at Golden Crown Court in TST, which houses other hostels as well. My family got 2 triple rooms with room rate of HK$ 550/night, which is not bad due to its prime location, plus its very near the MTR and A21 bus stations.

We were assigned in rooms 131 & 133 on the fifth floor, near their reception desk. They offer free hot & cold purified water for use by their guests, aside from room amenities that include dental kits. 

Reservation was handled by Raymond Tran who asked me to pay 1 night guarantee through Paypal. They employ a Filipina housekeeper who can translate our conversation with Raymond's parents, who have difficulty speaking in English.

They sell Disney, Ocean Park, and NP 360 tickets, cheaper than the theme parks' gate prices, though we got ours from CTS where its cheapest. Their rooms are clean enough, has spacious bathroom, despite a cramped space on room 133 and on their lifts. Since there are seven of us, we availed of their airport pick-up  transfer for HK$ 350.

A week after bringing my family back to the Philippines, I was back in HK to attend the HOFEX event and company meetings. I tried to scrimp and also try less touristy places, so I stayed at Yesinn Hostel in Fortress Hill, for HK$ 348 per night. I booked via Hostelworld which asked for 10% deposit thru credit card. Below it is a 7-11 store, and its also near the MTR and A11 bus stations.

When I arrived at past midnight, their reception was being manned by a Filipino who hails from Tarlac. I paid HK$ 10 for borrowing a thick bath towel, plus HK$ 20 as refundable deposit. There is no soap nor shampoo as amenity, just a roll of toilet paper. There are many shops on the ground floor, yet the place seems secure with ving card and passcodes on the lift and main doors.

The room and corridors are very basic, no decor, although the flat TV is bigger than Yiu Fai's. I stayed there for only 2 nights, because I don't like to take their shower with the toilet bowl almost underneath it. Besides, my coat-and-tie outfit seems out of place whenever I step out there every morning. This place is recommended for backpackers, who would like to share a HK$ 350 room and spend like HK$ 175 a night per person.
My last three nights was spent on more luxurious Island Pacific Hotel, with the usual amenities. Its a 3-star hotel with nice views of Victoria Harbor, yet very cheap at HK$ 680/night despite a last minute booking. 

Its on Connaught West Road, about 10-15 minutes walk from MTR Sheung Wan station. Staying on this place made me more familiar with their public bus and "ding ding" tram routes, which I used often. 

Walking from Island Pacific Hotel to the MTR station along Des Voueux Road, there are lots of dried food shops here. I think this is the wholesale area of dried scallop, abalone, shark's fins, mushrooms, etc. Which is why I try to avoid the long walk between Sheung Wan station and the hotel, because I feel that the smell of dried seafood sticks to my clothing.

The A11 airport bus also pass this area, which has plenty of cheap eateries, particularly along Centre St. With my 23rd floor room's nice view and luxurious feel, plus inexpensive rate in HK standards, I will consider staying on this hotel if on leisure trip to HK. 

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