Hong Kong's first boutique hotel is still among the city's coolest, but what else would you expect from a hotel designed by Philippe Starck? With a discreet entrance (so discreet, in fact, you may have to search for it) and only 56 rooms, it has long been a hidden gem for people in the know and those in the fashion business. The staff is fashionably decked out in Shanghai-Tang designed uniforms, the lobby is suitably laid-back yet playful, and there are enough perks here that it's hard to imagine wanting to stay anywhere else. These perks include special access to private clubs (like Dragon-i) and discounts to a few select shops, restaurants, and beauty salons. There are also in-house freebies, including complimentary use of laundry facilities, continental breakfast, afternoon cake and evening wine, and 24-hour service in the lobby for coffee, soft drinks, and more. Guests can also order food from a number of area restaurants and have it delivered directly to their room. Unsurprisingly, rooms, too, show artistic expression, with sheer curtains dividing them into living, sleeping, and work areas and outfitted with about everything one might need to move in, including a kitchen and home theater units complete with surround sound, iPod docking stations, and DVD players (its free DVD library is probably the best of any hotel in the city and includes not only the latest Hollywood blockbusters but also indie and mega films from local directors). Otherwise, there isn't much in the way of facilities aside from a second-floor outdoor terrace where you can relax with drinks, and bustling Causeway Bay provides more than enough diversion.
- Beth Reiber