7 places to party like a local in Hong Kong this summer

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
totalITemsFound:
maxPaginationLinks: 10
maxPossiblePages:
startIndex:
endIndex:

Through the help of Hong Kong locals, we've put together a list of places to go to for a fun night out. Photo from DISCOVER HONG KONG/FACEBOOK

Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — With over 90 restaurants and bars that line the small square streets of Lan Kwai Fong, it’s easy to understand the appeal of a fun night out: dancing to an eclectic mix of music ranging from hiphop to deep house, taking selfies with complete strangers in a cramped comfort room, joining a pub crawl, or eating late night dim sum by the street. 

Julienne Raboca, a Filipina who moved to Hong Kong when she was 22, can attest to the vibrant nightlife of the city that she still enjoys at 29. “​I am showing no signs of stopping,” she says, implying that Hong Kong nightlife is ​that good it’s almost inescapable.

1.1.4.2-Tasting-Hong-Kong_03.jpg Lan Kwai Fong, an area in Old Town Central, is teeming with over 90 restaurants and bars. Photo from DISCOVER HONG KONG/WEBSITE

Old Town Central, where the ever-buzzing Lan Kwai Fong is in, was re-launched last year by the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) to bring together tourism spots in Central and Sheung Wan. The neighborhood is steeped in history and has retained its architectural heritage (it is home to the 171-year-old Man Mo Temple, a place of worship where students looking to pass civil examinations of Imperial China would go to) but at the same time it has also injected modern sensibilities into its spaces (street art and graffiti are tucked away in alleys, sometimes even intersecting with upscale galleries).

Further up north, the district of Sham Shui Po attracts both locals and tourists alike as it is teeming with fabric stores, restaurants, electronic outlets, and food vendors. Sham Shui Po also has an open-air street market in Apliu Street that offers a variety of goods that is as random as it is quirky — disco equipment, vintage radios, old coins, and relics, among others. 

If you suddenly crave a change of pace, you can opt to have a “soul cool” summer in Hong Kong as the island also boasts of coastlines and beaches where locals go to to unwind, and if you’re feeling adventurous, there are even water sports available try.

Apliu Street Flea Market.jpg The Apliu Street market sells a variety of goods — from bargain electronic equipment to vintage radio and coins. Photo courtesy of the HONG KONG TOURISM BOARD

There are innumerable things to do and sites to see in Hong Kong, but if you want to experience the city like a true local, Raboca suggests basking in what the nightlife has to offer, especially since going to certain nightspots has been inextricable from her memories. Cinry Lee, another local who’s a frequent nightspot hunter, also vouches for the rowdy Hong Kong nightlife. She cites places like Al’s Diner (they play 70s music), Picada (best for latin dancing), and Dudells’ (free flowing champagne, anyone?) as some of the must-visit places. “There’s just too many.”

Through the help of Raboca and Lee, we've put together a list for a fun night out that will make you feel like a real Hong Kongese as you dance on table tops and down those shots. 

Cassio

A lounge bar, Cassio has a terrace overlooking Wyndham Street in Old Town Central. The bar usually plays electronic and deep house music, and recently, they even brought in renowned Ibiza DJ, Solomun. “​I found a better suited hangout among the good-looking and sophisticated late 20s-30s crowd of Cassio, as pretentious as that sounds,” says Raboca. Lee also goes to Cassio for the ambience and the good food. 

The Iron Fairies

The Iron Fairies will make you feel like you’re in some alternate medieval universe. It is also sure to make you dance, what with them playing reggaeton latino music and Bollywood beats. During the weekend, there is often a funk band that hypes up the crowd. Some of the cocktails are also concocted by known mixologist J Boroski (Raboca’s top tip: order the “Smoke in a Bottle”). 

Dragon-i

“[This] place is good for first timers,” says Lee. It is an iconic club, “a decades-old Hong Kong institution” as Raboca puts it. You go to this place to dance — on the dance floor, on the table, on the ledge (wherever, really) while the DJ mixes pop, hip hop, and electronic music. “They even play the Narcos opening credits on occasion, to my screaming delight,” recalls Raboca. 

Lilya

Be transported to Morocco through this exotic, almost sensual bar. The music during the weekends usually leans towards pop or latino music but on Wednesdays, proper deep house music is in order. Best for when you’re more inclined to chill (they have shisha available) rather than dance. 

Lily & Bloom

A bar and grill restaurant with a cocktail bar, this place is made for hip hop lovers. If you ever get hungry after busting some moves, their very American menu (ribs, burgers, fries) will have you craving for more. The dance floor is quite narrow though, but it hasn’t stopped anyone from dominating the floor. 

Fab

If you’re into people watching, go to this French American bistro. Lee says it’s a great spot for relaxed socializing, for when maybe you’d prefer having a good chat with friends and maybe even strangers as the night unfurls. 

Sevva 

“[Sevva] is one of the best places to drink in HK for its spectacular view of the city,” says Lee. Pronounced ‘Savour,’ their vertical garden terrace does provide a 360-degree view of the Hong Kong skyline. It has also been named as one of the healthiest restaurants, so for the conscious eaters out there, this place could have just married a fun night out and healthy eating.

Event-based parties

Besides the typical pubs, bars, and lounges, Raboca also suggests following events-based parties hosted by Bunker Club HK, WM Records, Rewind, Secret Island Party, and Shi Fu Miz. Some of these Berlin-esque underground parties are so bizarre that they even invite people to remote destinations. “Think: you need to hike 15 to 30 minutes through the jungle or up the mountain and will end up at an outdoor rave overlooking the city.”

***

Bring the whole barkada to enjoy a “soul cool” summer in Hong Kong and book your next flight to Hong Kong via Philippine Airlines and Cathay Pacific as they offer special airfare deals starting from $152. Drop by the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) booth at the Travel Madness Expo held at the SMX Convention Center, Pasay City, from July 5 to July 8. Get discounted rates and amazing deals on fares, accommodations, tours, and more. Make a purchase at the HKTB booth and get yourself a limited edition customized drawstring bag.