Let our expert concierge show you why Hong Kong is a vacation destination in its own right.
Brilliant, bustling Hong Kong is jammed with great food, museums, and scenery. But unpacking the riches of this former British colony is best left to a concierge like the InterContinental Hong Kong’s Louis Baleros, an HK native who followed in the footsteps of his father, the first concierge at the hotel back when it was known as the Regent. Here’s where Baleros sends his guests.
Best new restaurant: Qi–Nine Dragons
Szechuan restaurant Qi–Nine Dragons opened late last year on the top floor of a new commercial building and earned a recommendation from the Michelin Guide. No meal is complete here without the braised Mandarin fish in chili-oil soup.
Emerging neighborhood: Sheung Wan district
Whenever I’m on Hong Kong Island, I always make time to walk down to Po Hing Fong and its surrounding area in Sheung Wan district to explore the tiny shops and businesses showcasing art, fashion, and design and the charming small cafés created by young entrepreneurs.
Cocktail spot: Sevva
Located on the 25th floor of the Prince’s Building, Sevva is a stylish restaurant and lounge whose rooftop bar has views of some of Hong Kong’s most iconic skyscrapers. The clientele here is usually an eclectic blend of the hip and trendy and young banker types. A great place to people watch.
Dumplings: Din Tai Fung
When locals talk about dumplings, they talk about Din Tai Fung, a restaurant originating in Taiwan that specializes in xiao long bao (steamed pork soup dumplings). This restaurant does not accept reservations, and there is always a queue outside the entrance.
Under-the-radar museum: Hong Kong Heritage Museum
I personally like the Hong Kong Heritage Museum in the New Territories. The museum’s galleries feature collections ranging from Shang Dynasty bronze-work to Cantonese opera costumes to manuscripts from influential martial arts novelist Jin Yong. It reminds me of what Hong Kong used to be when I was growing up.
Shopping spree: Jade Market
For a local market experience, check out the Jade Market, which is chock-full of stalls selling reasonably priced jade and semiprecious stone jewelry, knickknacks, pearls, and Chinese-inspired jewelry.
On the harbor: Aqua Luna
The Aqua Luna is an authentic Chinese junk boat offering short cruises around Victoria Harbor. I recommend one of the evening cocktail cruises during the “Symphony of Lights,” a nightly spectacular.
Locals’ secret: Sai Kung
For an enjoyable trip outside the city, follow the locals to the Sai Kung waterfront seafood market for a casual fresh-seafood meal.
A version of this article appears in the June 1, 2017 issue of Fortune with the headline “City on the Harbor.” We’ve included affiliate links in this article. Click here to learn what those are.