Chinese New Year! - The Crazy Night Out

Hey Guys,

I'll start off with my obligatory apology for not updating recently, but here's an update on what I've been doing for the past week/month/indeterminate amount of time.

We just finished the Chinese New Year break, which means I didn't have school. Most people took the opportunity to jump on a plane and go somewhere warm, like the Philippines or Thailand, but seeing how I've already done the beach thing - I decided to stay in Hong Kong and experience the local cultural traditions for the lunar break; I also didn't book my flights in time.

As much as I did this week, it was actually a pretty quiet week for me - which is sort of what I needed, since we had been going out as much as possible before. I did get up to a few things though.

The Crazy Night Out
We had been sitting in the residence cafeteria for a little while, trying to figure out  what we were going to do tonight, when we finally came up with it. We would dress fancy, and aimlessly wander around Kowloon until we found something that we liked. Perfect.

Fast forward a few hours later, and we're on our way out, drinking wine and coolers on the MTR and loving the exchange student life. Our first stop is TST. We arrive via the east rail line which we never take, so we're dead lost in the gargantuan underground station that is TST. Eventually we find our way (by my guidance) to what I thought was the correct exit, but an entirely different area of the city than where we wanted to go... but alas! There is a bar there.

We get into the elevator and it takes us to the 28th floor of this building. As the doors open we're greeted and rushed into a bar with an unparalleled view of the city through a giant glass window. The bar (Aqua) however has a crowd that we're not looking for (middle aged expats, all sitting down, despite club music being played so loud that we can't hear each other talk). Kelly makes up a story that we're waiting for a friend, as Alexis, Lou and I run back to the elevator in order to avoid being pressured to buy drinks.

Once we get to the bottom, we discover a rooftop with plenty of things to do, and a really beautiful view of Kowloon. There are also these horse drawn carriages (missing the horses) that look like they belong in the royal wedding (according to Lou) behind a velveted rope. Of course, we know that we have to get inside them, so that's what we do.

Moving on to the next bar, we eventually find it fighting through the crowds near Jordan, and once again board the elevator to the 18th floor of a building. We don't stay there long, as we don't have a reservation, but it has some amazing views of the HK island.

We wander downstairs, grab some pizza, hit up club7 (7/11 for the non-Hong Kongers - the best bar in the city) and meander down to avenue of the stars (the harbour boardwalk) where we find a dress rehearsal going on for the parade the next day. Kelly and Alexis hop the fence and go right into the stands to walk, while Lou and I are stopped by a security guard. After seeing a really cool cheerleading / I don't know what performance, we meet back up and catch the MTR across to Admiralty... This is where things get fun.

I insist on leading us to some bar that I heard about online called the Lawn at the upper house. Long story short, we're walking through a closed shopping centre, asking "where are we?" every 10 minutes. I collapse on the ground from laughter, from not knowing where we are, and we board this glass elevator. The elevator rockets us out onto the roof of a building, where we wander towards a hotel. They inform us that the upper house is next door, so we walk in and talk to reception.

As we walk in, there is fire coming out of the ground, there are these fancy glass boxes with fire inside to provide light for the room... insane right? The receptionist in a posh British accent informs us that the lawn is an outdoor terrace on the 2nd floor. Ascending an escalator that makes us think we're moving into the future, we find this wonderful outdoor terrace with comfy couches, beanbags, hedges, christmas lights and soothing music... with not a soul in sight.

We absolutely love this place, so we stay here for god knows how long, before all having to go to the bathroom. Mischievously I lead everyone into an elevator I randomly found, and hit the button for the 49th floor. The doors close, and before any of us clue in, we're committed to this.

As the doors open, we discover that we're not only on the 49th floor of a building on top of a mountain, but it's actually a fancy hotel. We quickly run into a corridor where the washrooms are, and after going through the door, I discover that it's the nicest washroom I've ever been in, in my life.

There are real towels first of all, cologne, and a V shaped window overlooking the entire city. Everything is made of mahogany, and despite being dressed fancy, I know I'm definitely out of place here... but that's never stopping before.

We must have spent 10 minutes alone in the bathrooms just looking at the view, before we went back outside and found a lounge overlooking the city. Naturally, we took some pictures, and pretended we were guests; played a little backgammon, I checked the NASDAQ index to be fancy, and repeatedly switched languages to try and convince the staff that I wasn't a broke student.

Long story short we get out of the hotel without any problems, and make our way over to our other friends in Wan Chai (the classiest place in HK - hardcore sarcasm here). Running the opposite way on moving walkways, and taking underground tunnels as much as possible.

Then the night gets a little weird. We stayed in Wan Chai for a little while, and took advantage of the 24/h MTR service, by catching a train to Central. We then went on a wild wandering adventure again, and ended up in a few parks (one looked like a jungle). We stayed out talking until 6AM when we decided to get some breakfast. Taking the MTR home while people were getting up for work, there was a sense of wrongness going through my head.

All and all though, an amazing night, but I need a break from going out for a while!

I'll post pictures on here soon!
Life's too short... Travel the World!: Chinese New Year! - The Crazy Night Out

Friday, 15 February 2013

Chinese New Year! - The Crazy Night Out

Hey Guys,

I'll start off with my obligatory apology for not updating recently, but here's an update on what I've been doing for the past week/month/indeterminate amount of time.

We just finished the Chinese New Year break, which means I didn't have school. Most people took the opportunity to jump on a plane and go somewhere warm, like the Philippines or Thailand, but seeing how I've already done the beach thing - I decided to stay in Hong Kong and experience the local cultural traditions for the lunar break; I also didn't book my flights in time.

As much as I did this week, it was actually a pretty quiet week for me - which is sort of what I needed, since we had been going out as much as possible before. I did get up to a few things though.

The Crazy Night Out
We had been sitting in the residence cafeteria for a little while, trying to figure out  what we were going to do tonight, when we finally came up with it. We would dress fancy, and aimlessly wander around Kowloon until we found something that we liked. Perfect.

Fast forward a few hours later, and we're on our way out, drinking wine and coolers on the MTR and loving the exchange student life. Our first stop is TST. We arrive via the east rail line which we never take, so we're dead lost in the gargantuan underground station that is TST. Eventually we find our way (by my guidance) to what I thought was the correct exit, but an entirely different area of the city than where we wanted to go... but alas! There is a bar there.

We get into the elevator and it takes us to the 28th floor of this building. As the doors open we're greeted and rushed into a bar with an unparalleled view of the city through a giant glass window. The bar (Aqua) however has a crowd that we're not looking for (middle aged expats, all sitting down, despite club music being played so loud that we can't hear each other talk). Kelly makes up a story that we're waiting for a friend, as Alexis, Lou and I run back to the elevator in order to avoid being pressured to buy drinks.

Once we get to the bottom, we discover a rooftop with plenty of things to do, and a really beautiful view of Kowloon. There are also these horse drawn carriages (missing the horses) that look like they belong in the royal wedding (according to Lou) behind a velveted rope. Of course, we know that we have to get inside them, so that's what we do.

Moving on to the next bar, we eventually find it fighting through the crowds near Jordan, and once again board the elevator to the 18th floor of a building. We don't stay there long, as we don't have a reservation, but it has some amazing views of the HK island.

We wander downstairs, grab some pizza, hit up club7 (7/11 for the non-Hong Kongers - the best bar in the city) and meander down to avenue of the stars (the harbour boardwalk) where we find a dress rehearsal going on for the parade the next day. Kelly and Alexis hop the fence and go right into the stands to walk, while Lou and I are stopped by a security guard. After seeing a really cool cheerleading / I don't know what performance, we meet back up and catch the MTR across to Admiralty... This is where things get fun.

I insist on leading us to some bar that I heard about online called the Lawn at the upper house. Long story short, we're walking through a closed shopping centre, asking "where are we?" every 10 minutes. I collapse on the ground from laughter, from not knowing where we are, and we board this glass elevator. The elevator rockets us out onto the roof of a building, where we wander towards a hotel. They inform us that the upper house is next door, so we walk in and talk to reception.

As we walk in, there is fire coming out of the ground, there are these fancy glass boxes with fire inside to provide light for the room... insane right? The receptionist in a posh British accent informs us that the lawn is an outdoor terrace on the 2nd floor. Ascending an escalator that makes us think we're moving into the future, we find this wonderful outdoor terrace with comfy couches, beanbags, hedges, christmas lights and soothing music... with not a soul in sight.

We absolutely love this place, so we stay here for god knows how long, before all having to go to the bathroom. Mischievously I lead everyone into an elevator I randomly found, and hit the button for the 49th floor. The doors close, and before any of us clue in, we're committed to this.

As the doors open, we discover that we're not only on the 49th floor of a building on top of a mountain, but it's actually a fancy hotel. We quickly run into a corridor where the washrooms are, and after going through the door, I discover that it's the nicest washroom I've ever been in, in my life.

There are real towels first of all, cologne, and a V shaped window overlooking the entire city. Everything is made of mahogany, and despite being dressed fancy, I know I'm definitely out of place here... but that's never stopping before.

We must have spent 10 minutes alone in the bathrooms just looking at the view, before we went back outside and found a lounge overlooking the city. Naturally, we took some pictures, and pretended we were guests; played a little backgammon, I checked the NASDAQ index to be fancy, and repeatedly switched languages to try and convince the staff that I wasn't a broke student.

Long story short we get out of the hotel without any problems, and make our way over to our other friends in Wan Chai (the classiest place in HK - hardcore sarcasm here). Running the opposite way on moving walkways, and taking underground tunnels as much as possible.

Then the night gets a little weird. We stayed in Wan Chai for a little while, and took advantage of the 24/h MTR service, by catching a train to Central. We then went on a wild wandering adventure again, and ended up in a few parks (one looked like a jungle). We stayed out talking until 6AM when we decided to get some breakfast. Taking the MTR home while people were getting up for work, there was a sense of wrongness going through my head.

All and all though, an amazing night, but I need a break from going out for a while!

I'll post pictures on here soon!