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Tatum Ancheta

Tatum Ancheta

Editor-in-Chief, Time Out Hong Kong

Tatum joined Time Out Hong Kong as Editor-in-Chief in 2020 and is currently responsible for the magazine's overall digital and print content. She loves to travel and learn about different cultures and what the local eats. A curious spirit who is obsessed with the colourful world of mixology, she enjoys checking out new bars in search of the best tipple in town. She loves to sing but often out of tune, she thinks she's a rockstar in another life.

Follow her misadventures on Instagram @tatumancheta or drop her a line at [email protected].

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Articles (155)

Asian travel destinations open to vaccinated Hong Kong travellers

Asian travel destinations open to vaccinated Hong Kong travellers

Hong Kong is experiencing a surge in coronavirus cases, and with the current infections at their peak, opening the borders might not happen in the foreseeable future. Our neighbouring Asian countries, on the other hand, despite the continued surge of Covid-19 infections, are reopening their borders for tourism. If you're contemplating escaping and giving in to your wanderlust or just want to plan next time you feel safe to travel, here's a roundup of Asian travel destinations (and each country's requirements for entry) now opening for Hong Kong tourists.  RECOMMENDED: Visit this guide for the latest social distancing measures in HK.

So, you’ve tested positive. Now what?

So, you’ve tested positive. Now what?

With cases soaring up to over 50,000 plus cases, the risk of catching Covid-19 is more real than ever as seen in Hong Kong since the pandemic began. But with the most stringent restrictions thus far, and an imminent fear of lockdown looming over us, aside from the safety precautions we know all too well, the next best thing is to be informed about what to do if in the case we do test positive.  The city has flocked to rapid antigen test (RAT) kits like how surgical masks, toilet rolls, and vegetables were once the cause of quite the frenzy. With the backlog of testing done by the Centre for Health and Protection (CHP), the government is now accepting home kit test results. So, how do you go about testing and reporting your case? Read below for the full information.  RECOMMENDED: 20 Things you should do in case there is a city-wide lockdown

Best home workouts and fitness programmes to follow online

Best home workouts and fitness programmes to follow online

Covid has really messed up a lot for us, fitness routines included. If the pandemic hasn’t demolished your motivation to exercise entirely, it certainly has affected the way you work out. With gyms still closed and masks are once again a must for any outdoor activity, the virus most certainly is shaping the evolution of fitness. With that, adrenaline junkies are getting their fix through virtual classes to get their sweat on, anytime. For those looking to emerge out of the restrictions with a rocking bod, we’ve scoured the internet to find the best online gyms to get your blood pumping and adrenaline running. RECOMMENDED: Wanna get out while keeping your distance? Check out the best Hong Kong jogging routes to pick up your pace.

The beginner's guide to setting up a bar at home

The beginner's guide to setting up a bar at home

With the city's bars temporarily closed and social distancing restrictions extended for a longer period, this might be the perfect time to build your own home bar so you can drink safely at home, especially if you need a little liquid courage to face the looming lockdown blues. There are a lot of sites with online delivery services that can accommodate your home bar needs, so you’ll be able to set it up in no time. To get you started, here are a few tips on how to set up your bar at home.  RECOMMENDED: Before boozing, make sure to get delicious food to go with your drink. Here's a list of the best takeaway and delivery from Hong Kong’s Michelin starred restaurants. 

9 DIY face mask recipes you can make with food at home

9 DIY face mask recipes you can make with food at home

With temporary closures of spas and beauty salons and the looming lockdown, most of us will be spending more time at home and going for the DIY route when it comes to beauty and pampering. While some find resolution in an easy sheet mask or ready-made face pack, there are other more creative, sustainable, and eco-friendly ways to give your face the TLC it deserves, and it’s as easy as opening up your kitchen cupboard. So here it is, nine face mask recipes that will need only two to three ingredients to make and suit many different skin types. Get ready for that at-home glow.   RECOMMENDED: In need of another DIY activity? Look at these cheap and easy ways to spice up your instant noodles.

Lockdown fears strip supermarket shelves bare

Lockdown fears strip supermarket shelves bare

With no clarity and certainty about Hong Kong’s first-ever wide-scale lockdown, residents resorted to stripping basic goods from supermarkets to stockpile at home. Some venues have already suspended their operations, while others have closed their doors permanently. We are not really sure what rules will be in place and what will remain open, but the first thing we should all do is keep calm and do not panic.  Related stories: Authorities say no plans for a citywide lockdownTips on what to prep and do before lockdown actually happens  

How Hong Kong is looking at the moment

How Hong Kong is looking at the moment

To help curb Hong Kong's worsening fifth wave of Covid-19 infections, the government decided to extend existing social distancing measures until April 20. Restrictions include a ban on dine-in services after 6 pm and temporary venue closures. With no nightlife and recreational spaces to unwind, people are heading outdoors to avoid cabin fever and get some fresh air. Related stories: Social distancing measures in HKAuthorities say no plans for a citywide lockdownTips on what to prep and do before lockdown actually happens

7 kitchen ingredients you can use to make cocktails

7 kitchen ingredients you can use to make cocktails

If you're in the mood for a cocktail and don't have any idea on what to make out of all the half-empty bottles of liquor you have lying around, let's turn to your kitchen for inspiration as you might have perfect ingredients already available within your reach.  RECOMMENDED: Learn fun and easy cocktail recipes to make at home. If you need to stock up on supplies, here's a list of online grocery stores and online liquor stores that will deliver to your door. 

20 Things you should do in case there is a city-wide lockdown

20 Things you should do in case there is a city-wide lockdown

News about Hong Kong’s first-ever wide-scale lockdown is looming, and everyone is on their toes. We are not really sure what rules will be in place and what will remain open, but the first thing we should all do is keep calm, and do not panic. Based on experiences from our neighbouring cities that have gone into lockdown, we've listed down a few tips for you to prep and do before it actually happens to make sure you’re ready for those lockdown blues.  RECOMMENDED: Keep updated with the latest social distancing rules in the city.  Watch the video below:

A ‘washout’ guide for returning Hongkongers

A ‘washout’ guide for returning Hongkongers

Are you one of the many Hong Kong residents who went on a costly 2021 holiday trip abroad and have been stranded due to the flight suspension imposed on Covid-19 high-risk countries (Australia, Canada, France, India, Pakistan, and the Philippines, Nepal, the UK, and the US)? With no assurance on when you’ll be able to enter Hong Kong, there are only two options to get back into the SAR: wait for the city to lift the flight ban on April 20, or ‘wash out’ for 15 days in a non-restricted city.  While the current situation in Hong Kong is a bit dire, there are still a lot of Hongkongers who need to get back to the city. Unless you have that extra holiday leave to stay where you currently are, we’ve compiled a list of cities/countries that you can transfer to so you can wait out 15 days before entering Hong Kong.  Read below for a guide on what you need to prepare and some pros and cons based on the numerous experiences of returning Hong Kong residents. We also linked some available sites for entry requirements.   RECOMMENDED: Want to get out of Hong Kong instead? Here’s a list of Asian travel destinations open to vaccinated Hong Kong residents.

The best podcasts to get you through pandemic time In

The best podcasts to get you through pandemic time In

We are just going through the motions as we patiently wait for things to resume back to 'normal'. And while we were itching for that months ago, little did we know that February would be the pit of pandemic thus far. Whether you're stuck grinding out work from your living room, putting yourself in self-isolation, or quarantining in a hotel after a trip abroad, the extra me-time can be put to good use. Switch off the telly and swap in a podcast for entertainment instead. From a gut-splitting comedy talk show to an off-your-seat mystery crime story, or even some local productions to get in touch with your local side, here are the podcasts to tune in to. RECOMMENDED: Moving pictures more your thing? Here's our pick of the most binge-worthy shows to help get you through the day.

Winter Olympics 2022: What to know about the closing ceremony

Winter Olympics 2022: What to know about the closing ceremony

Following a two-week global competition in 15 different sports, the Closing Ceremony for the 2022 Winter Games will begin at Beijing’s National Stadium (also known as the Bird’s Nest) on February 20, 8 pm (HKT). Hong Kong sent its largest winter delegation to the Beijing games this year, and though our Hong Kong athletes gave it their all during the Games, they weren’t able to nab medals. Norway broke the record for most gold medals at a single Olympic Winter Games, followed by Germany and China. Beijing is the first city to host both Summer (2008) and Winter (2022) editions of the Olympics. This year, events were held in 15 disciplines across seven sports, including new events bobsleigh, short track, freestyle skiing, ski jumping, and snowboarding. During the competition, global athletes compete for 109 sets of medals. RECOMMENDED: Relive the moments from Tokyo Olympics 2021

Reviews (12)

LCSD cancels Cheung Chau Bun Festival 2022

LCSD cancels Cheung Chau Bun Festival 2022

The current situation in the city has forced a lot of venues to temporarily or permanently shut and multiple events to cancel. Following all these cancellations, the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) have also decided to cancel the much-awaited 2022 Bun Festival – the biggest and busiest festival in Cheung Chau – to avoid large gatherings and reduce the risk of infections in the community. The Bun Festival originally started as a celebration for the end of the plague in Cheng Chau but was eventually transformed into one of Hong Kong's most famous festivals and an important celebration of the city's cultural heritage. Thousands of people descend to the tiny island for the festival annually to join the celebrations. The festival usually lasts a week-long and features a carnival, a lively and colourful traditional parade, and the iconic Bun Scrambling Competition, where participants climb giant bamboo towers covered with buns and try to grab as many buns as possible.  Originally scheduled from April to May at the soccer pitch of Pak Tai Temple Playground on Cheung Chau, cancelled activities for the 2022 Bun Festival includes training on bun tower climbing, selections for bun scrambling competition and the actual contest, and the climbing carnival.  However, the ongoing 2022 Bun Carnival's Student Colouring and Drawing Competitions will continue. Representatives from LCSD will notify the winners individually, and awards will be sent to the respective schools.  For e

Brooklyn Yakuza

Brooklyn Yakuza

Watch our first look video of Brooklyn Yakuza: Brooklyn Yakuza is the third restaurant from chef-entrepreneurs Arron Rhodes and Chris Grare, owners of Showmen Group, the company behind Kinship and Smoke and Barrel. The new venue houses two concepts under one roof. On the ground floor, guests can enjoy drinks at Oyabun (which translates to the supreme leader of the Yakuza clan), a spacious Japanese-American-inspired cocktail lounge bar. On the second floor, customers can take their seats at Brooklyn Yakuza, a late-night restaurant serving Japanese American cuisine with an interactive sake bar. The restaurant can seat around 90 people, and the downstairs cocktail lounge can accommodate 80 seated guests. The new venue is located just across Smoke and Barrel; if you are by the terrace, look across you'll see Brooklyn Yakuza's silver signage on the left side. Expect sharing-style tasting plates of westernized Japanese food, including cold dishes like the NYC spicy tuna ($150) as well hot dishes that include black cod in bean sprout risotto with edamame ($198), salmon in red and white miso served on seasoned rice ($188), and Wagyu beef cheek glazed in orange and roast garlic ($268). For dessert, enjoy a delicious Ishigaki pineapple souffle served with gelato and compote ($88). Customers are encouraged to drop by the sake bar in between meals to enjoy servings of sake from their selection of fruity, floral, or umami sakes, which can be served in glass-blown cups, handcraft

Brooklyn Yakuza

Brooklyn Yakuza

中環開設全新美日式居酒屋 Brooklyn Yakuza,打造全新飲食概念。餐廳將分為上下兩層,地下的雞尾酒吧以美國日式酒吧作構思,名字以 Oyabun(おやぶん)來命名,Oyabun 就是日本社團手下對大佬的稱呼,非常有氣勢,而最令人印象深刻的更是牆上的 graffiti 畫有日本黑社會身上的魔鬼紋身對著紐約布魯克林大橋,融合了美國與日本文化。客人可先來淺嚐雞尾酒,再移師至二樓居酒屋 Brooklyn Yakuza,品嚐一系列美日 fusion 美食,餐廳總廚 Lorcan Tang 以往一直於 Rosewood’s Bayfare Social 工作,今次首次擔任餐廳總廚的要職:「今次我們主要以家庭式分享菜為主,希望客人能吃到簡單的美式日本美食,同時能吃得舒適,而且吃完也不會覺得很昂貴!」

Le Magasin

Le Magasin

If you are in Sai Kung, be sure to drop by at Le Magasin store and get your shopping cart filled with authentic French products. They have everything from packed appetizers, condiments, cold cuts, cheese, and even soaps. Peruse their selection of organic and biodynamic wines and if you happen to catch the owner, Jean Charles, in the store, he'll be happy to assist you with the best wine recommendations.

A.P.E (A Perfect Escape)

A.P.E (A Perfect Escape)

A.P.E (A Perfect Escape) is a small hidden whisky bar tucked inside Esc coffeeshop in Tin Hau. The venue is brought to you by the same people behind InterContinental Grand Stanford's 1920s-style Tiffany's New York Bar. But compared to Tiffany's posh and classic gentleman's bar interior, A.P.E is more relaxed with a raw industrial design made for the younger crowd. The menu features over 30 bottles of Scotch from Speyside, Highland, Islay, and Lowland regions which can be tasted in three flight selections or as 30ml single drams (from $80 to $520 depending on the bottle. You can find whiskies from Independent Bottlers Douglas Laing, Thompson Bros, Elixir Distillers, Asta Morris, among others, as well as Original Bottlings from Ardbeg, Clynelish, Lagavulin, Bruichladdich, and Auchentoshan distilleries. Those who want to drink cocktails can also choose from six classic whisky cocktails, including highball, Old Fashioned, Boulevardier, and whisky sour ($90 per glass). Complimenting the drinks are sweet and savoury dishes that include cold cuts, nachos, fish and chips, creamy kimchi carbonara, and other desserts like churros and a whisky-infused raisin trifle (tip: order an extra shot of smoky whisky and drizzle it on the trifle for added depth).  Learn more about A.P.E from this feature. 

Barcode

Barcode

Barcode – bar, coffee, dessert – is a new hip coffee shop on Glenealy in Central. The shop serves snacks, desserts, and hand drip coffee in the morning, but once the clock strikes six, a hidden room will welcome you for some after-work drinks. Helmed by tea-cocktail connoisseur and Tell Camellia's co-founder Gagan Gurung together with bar manager and London Essence Co's brand ambassador Natalie Lau, this intimate after dark spot serves classic cocktails – Old Fashioned, Bees Knees, negroni, margarita, daiquiri, and martini – and signature mixes crafted to pair well with desserts. Those with a sweet tooth will enjoy the gin-based Rest of the Time ($100) – blended with rooibos tea, coconut, and fresh raspberry – and Peanut Butter Whiskey Sour ($100) – made with chamomile honey, lemon juice, egg white, peanut butter fat-washed whisky.    

Argo

Argo

Four Seasons Hotel's new innovative bar Argo – the latest project from Four Season's beverage manager and Time Out's 2020 Bartender of the Year, Lorenzo Antinori – just docked in Hong Kong, and it's here to challenge the way we think about drinks. Officially opening its doors on July 15, the new bar replaces the former Blue Bar located in the hotel's lobby and marks the second phase of the hotel's renovation.  Compared to Caprice bar, located on the sixth floor of the hotel, which has a more formal setting and focuses on seasonal ingredients, Argo is more relaxed and highlights innovative spirits and offers a cocktail menu with ingredients at risk of becoming endangered in the future. The 'Here Today, Gone Tomorrow' menu celebrates six staple ingredients – coffee, honey, rice, cacao, vanilla, and apples – that face an uncertain future because of climate change or the way it is being cultivated. Spirit aficionados can explore new bottles – available in 50ml shots, tasting flights, or as a classic cocktail – with the help of the bar's spirit bible, 'Field Guide to the World's Innovative Spirits', that highlights each bottle's unique story and origin. Interesting bottlings include the world's first AI-created gin Monker's Garkel, lab-made whisky Glyph, Argo's very own signature gin crafted with Never Never Distilling Co ($880 a bottle; or with a martini glass at $1020), and other quirky spirits that break away from traditional production. I enjoyed so many cocktails from the men

Lung Fu Pao

Lung Fu Pao

Does the name sound familiar? Yep, this new resto-bar takes its name from the Hong Kong adult magazine, Lung Fu Pao. Located on Elgin Street, this new hangout is a raunchy-themed yakitori-sushi restaurant and bar from the group behind the eatery Holy Eats. Staying true to its namesake, the venue is peppered with racy images and sexual innuendos – from the series of bananas hanging by the entrance to its hentai-themed menu and toilet walls filled with porn magazine tear sheets. Expect modern servings of sushi, kushiyaki, and maki served on plates printed with risqué images. Try the snapper carpaccio ($148) and any of the sushi boats ($228 to $458) but do watch out for the uni if it's fresh. For drinks, you can pair their dishes with highballs, Chuhai cocktails (shochu, soda, and fruit juice), or any of their naughty-named drinks like mezcal based Kitty Juice, refreshing Kabuki Mule, or the fizzy Pornstar. They also provide a great selection of Japanese whisky or sake, so you’ll have plenty of options for your libation. Space is a bit tight, so the place is mostly packed during dinner time. Make sure to book a reservation to secure seats.    

House Welley Bar

House Welley Bar

4 out of 5 stars

Hong Kong is a city that is never short on places to explore a dram of whisky, but there has never been a bar that solely serves the spirit in its pure form. At House Welley Whisky Bar, there are no bartenders in sight stirring up an Old Fashioned or highballs, only three convivial whisky enthusiasts and a few servers going to and from the shelves serving up drams upon drams of liquid gold.  Created by three whisky enthusiasts Vincent Leung, Eric Ho, Jason Ngai, the trio aims to give whisky the attention it deserves. They have been long time whisky collectors and decided to open a bar to make their whisky hobby sustainable. Since they like to taste, and discover various expressions, and move on to the next bottle, by having a bar, they can buy bottles that they like and share it with the guests.   The place is located on the second floor of the Welley Building, and if you are not 'in the know', it's likely that you will not have even seen the place on your usual bar crawl. Veering away from the typical gentleman's leather den, House Welley Bar exudes a modern vibe that appeals to a young crowd, including both whisky noobs and enthusiasts. The atmosphere is easy going and chilled, with plenty of areas to sit down and relax. Behind the bar is a backdrop of over 200 whiskies served here, divided by style and region offering selections from Islay, Speyside, Japan, America, among others. Expect to find single cask, limited edition, hard to find independent bottlings (IB), and dist

Dr Fern’s month-long gin celebration

Dr Fern’s month-long gin celebration

On June 13, people all around the globe who are fans of the botanical spirit will celebrate all things gin. But, the doctors at Dr Fern’s Gin Parlour figured why celebrate gin for a day when you can make it a month-long event. So, for the entire month of June, Dr Fern’s is celebrating the festivity by giving highlight to Hong Kong gins – Two Moons Distillery Gin, Perfume Trees Gin, Gweilo Gin, Bauhinia Gin, N.I.P. Gin, and Porcelain Shanghai Mandarin Gin. Starting on June 1, drop by at their gin parlour and take advantage of their gin flight promotion highlighting these local gins.  Order three from any of the six bottles and avail a gin flight for only $250. The flights will come with tonics and botanicals should you want to enjoy it as a gin and tonic. The local gins are also available by the glass. Choose any G&T from the various pairings: citrusy Two Moons Distillery Gin paired with London Essence Indian Tonic ($145) with lemon peel, pink pepper, and cardamom for garnish; herbaceous Perfume Trees Gin paired with 1724 Tonic ($190) with orange peel, grapefruit peel, and edible flowers for garnish; citrusy Gweilo Gin paired with Goldberg Yuzu Tonic ($120) with a lemon wheel and juniper berries for garnish; floral Bauhinia Gin paired with Folkington’s Indian Tonic ($155) with a grapefruit peel, juniper berries, and edible flowers for garnish; piney and citrusy N.I.P. Gin paired with London Essence Indian Tonic ($160) with lemon peel, Dr Fern's tea bag, and juniper berries for

The Diplomat

The Diplomat

4 out of 5 stars

Updated October 15, 2020 One of the recent additions to Soho's hip and happening high rise, H Code, The Diplomat has since become a watering hole for people hankering for after-work drinks. The bar is the brainchild of award-winning mixologist John Nugent (formerly of Lily & Bloom) who is known for his innovative twists on old classics. True to the nature of a diplomat, you’ll see Nugent being friendly to his customers, helping them decide on orders, and chatting with them at every opportunity.  At first glance, the exterior of the bar looks stiff and corporate; this all changes as you enter the premises and become immersed in the bar’s light and welcoming atmosphere. The interior is replete with leather seats and brass finishings, and while taking these in, it’s easy to miss the intricately detailed ceiling tiles that bear the bar’s logo. Should your inner diplomat have important business to attend to, a lavish hallway with shades of pink and copper will lead you to the posh washroom. Behind the bar hides a secret pink VIP room that you can only enter through a referral from regular patrons.  The bar’s menu is easy to navigate and reasonably priced compared to neighbouring bars. We started with the signature Diplo Daiquiri; house rum blend, pineapple, anise, and salt ($95) followed by Pearl, made with vodka, Campari, French herbs, Mr Black Coffee Amaro, pineapple, and almonds ($95). The two drinks are okay to whet your appetite, made for easy drinking but aren’t standouts. T

News (125)

More private hospitals to accommodate Covid-19 patients

More private hospitals to accommodate Covid-19 patients

In a press briefing this Wednesday, Chief Executive Carrie Lam announces that more private hospitals will step up their contributions to the city's fight against Covid-19. The government states that 380 patients will be transferred or discharged from Queen Elizabeth Hospital to give way to its conversion into a Covid-19 facility. Patients will be transferred to other hospitals in the Kowloon area. Non-Covid patients will not be entertained and turned away in Queen Elizabeth’s emergency department. One thousand five hundred beds will be freed up to accommodate Covid-19 patients, and conversion is expected completion by Sunday, March 13. The government has already asked private hospitals to provide more doctors in treating Covid-19 patients and help man medical facilities. Meanwhile, Hong Kong aims to open Lok Ma Chau medical facility to accommodate emergency care by April. As for the compulsory mass testing, the government is still planning and considering the provisions, workforce, and the best time to launch the programme. Lam said that it cannot be done overnight and needs to be planned out carefully and consider the public's daily life. She also say that there are enough supplies for daily essentials so there is no need to panic and hoard supplies from the markets. Currently, experts from China are still in the city to help the SAR with the current situation. Want to hear the latest city news and learn about what's happening in the city? Subscribe to our newsletter and be

Hair salons to reopen in Hong Kong

Hair salons to reopen in Hong Kong

If you're not cut out to do your own haircut, fret not, as starting Thursday, March 10, the government will allow salons to reopen since it was ordered to close on February 10. Other venues and current social distancing measures will be kept in place until March 23 and will be reviewed based on the current situation in the city.  The vaccine pass will need to be implemented in the salon reopening. Customers who will need to visit the salon must have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine and use the LeaveHomeSafe app before entering the premises. Salon staff are required to check guests' vaccination status before accepting walk-ins.  The recently launched platform for reporting positive results of self-administered rapid testing logged over 14,000 new cases since it opened yesterday, adding to over 30,000 new Covid-19 cases today. There are reposts that the plan for mass testing and large-scale lockdown might be postponed to April compared to the previews March 26 schedule, but the government has not yet confirmed final dates.  Plan your next visit to the best salons in the city, but make sure to call to check on their new operating hours. If you'd like to know the current social distancing restrictions in the city, visit this regularly updated link. Tested positive for Covid-19? Here's what to do next. Want to hear the latest city news and learn about what's happening in the city? Subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to get the news.

HK launches reporting platform for positive Covid-19 antigen test results

HK launches reporting platform for positive Covid-19 antigen test results

People isolating at home who tested positive using self-administered rapid antigen test (RAT) kits can now report their results via chp.gov.hk. Hong Kong reports 25,150 new coronavirus infections in the city today, but these numbers doesn't include those who tested positive via rapid testing at home. Hongkongers who tested positive from February 26 to March 5 are allowed to declare their infections until March 14.The new platform, now live from 6pm today, March 7, will record new submissions of positive cases in the city. After successful submission, residents will receive an SMS within 24 hours with a link to upload supporting documents and information on isolation or quarantine orders from the government. Report will include complete personal information, details of family members, symptoms, and information if they need to go to an isolation facility in case the living condition is overcrowded.  Once the report is submitted, it can't be amended, so make sure to fill up the fields properly to avoid mistakes. If you have changes to your submission, "email [email protected]. with your reference number, your request, and all essential details."  So, you’ve tested positive. Now what? Click here for a complete guide on what to do next.  Want to hear the latest city news and learn about what's happening in the city? Subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to get the news.

First batch of the $10,000 consumption vouchers to be issued in April

First batch of the $10,000 consumption vouchers to be issued in April

To boost spending in Hong Kong a help residents during these challenging times, Financial Secretary Paul Chan announced that the government would roll out a new batch of $10,000 consumption voucher schemes during his 2022-23 Hong Kong budget address in February.  In a following statement earlier today, Hongkongers who signed up for the consumption vouchers last year will automatically get the first half, $5,000, of this year’s batch in April, but the final date is yet to be confirmed. Over 6.3 million permanent Hong Kong residents aged 18 and up are eligible to receive the latest vouchers, which will also include new immigrants from mainland China.  Same as last year, digital payment platforms Octopus, AlipayHK, WeChat Pay HK, and Tap&Go will disburse the vouchers. Those using Octopus to receive the vouchers will get the allocations in two instalments $4,000 and $1,000. The second half of the consumption voucher will be announced later on, but residents will have to reapply as new electronic payment systems will be included for the second batch. Meanwhile, rules on the pending Compulsory Universal Testing (CUT) and the limited citywide lockdown that the government plans to run from March 26 to April 3 will be announced soon to alleviate uncertainty among residents. Authorities also stated that public transportation would not be suspended during the testing period. The public would be allowed to visit supermarkets, pharmacies and clinics within a designated time during the loc

Government announces roll out of new $10,000 consumption vouchers for permanent residents

Government announces roll out of new $10,000 consumption vouchers for permanent residents

During the ongoing 2022-23 Hong Kong budget address, Financial Secretary Paul Chan announced that the government would roll out a $64 billion anti-pandemic fund that would include a $20 billion budget to support ailing businesses and Hong Kong residents. The budget will include a new $10,000 consumption voucher scheme to be given to permanent residents in two instalments to boost spending. The first $5,000 voucher will be disseminated in April and the second in August this year.   Other support for residents will include a reduction of salary tax by 100 per cent (subject to a ceiling of $10,000), rate concessions for residential properties, and a subsidy of $1,000 on electricity for eligible residential households. A tax deduction for residents who rent their homes or tax under personal assessment is also being proposed to help Hongkongers. Exam fees will be free for all students aiming for the 2023 Diploma of Secondary Education. To help businesses during these difficult times, the government will propose a measure to allow SME tenants to be able to delay payments for their rentals for up to six months. Once approved, property owners will not be allowed to hound the tenants for the rent. The existing Special 100 percent Loan Guarantee Scheme set to expire in June will also be extended by one year to help small and medium-sized businesses, which allows them to borrow up to $9 million and repay only the interest but not the principal sum for 10 years. The anti-epidemic fund wi

Authorities say no plans for a citywide lockdown

Authorities say no plans for a citywide lockdown

News about Hong Kong going into its first citywide lockdown sparked panic buying at supermarkets and grocery stores. Basic goods like toilet paper, frozen meat, vegetables, medicine, eggs, and other products have been flying off the shelves. Industry suppliers are urging the public to keep calm, as supply lines are stable. Panic buying is what's causing the disruption of supply in grocery aisles.  On video: Grocery aisles stripped bare of basic goods as residents stockpile at home In a statement on Wednesday, the government reiterated that there are no plans for a complete lockdown, but residents' movements will be limited. Currently, lockdown procedures are still in the planning stage, and the government will release information in due course.  Meanwhile, Hong Kong confirms 55,353 new Covid-19 cases and 116 deaths in the past 24 hours.  Some of the city's restaurants and shops have already suspended their operations, while others have closed their doors permanently. We are not really sure what rules will be in place and what will remain open, but while we wait, if you're looking for what to prep for lockdown, here are some recommendations. As to what kind of things to do to stay (relatively) sane at home, here are some handy tips from our readers.  Want to hear the latest city news and learn about what's happening in the city? Subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to get the news

Australia reopens border to vaccinated international visitors

Australia reopens border to vaccinated international visitors

In the past weeks, many countries – including popular travel destinations that have maintained some of the strictest border controls since the pandemic started – announced border reopenings, signalling a significant shift in mindset around Covid-19 and tourism.  Starting February 21, Australia is once again welcoming international inbound travellers after nearly two years of closing its borders. Fully vaccinated visa holders can now enter the country. Since March 2020, the country has closed its borders and imposed some of the world's strictest travel bans.  In Hong Kong, Australia remains as one of the countries affected by flight bans until March 4, so returning to the SAR after visiting Australia might be problematic should the flight suspension extend. But for those planning to visit Australia for a longer period, requirements for entry include proof of vaccination and a negative Covid-19 PCR test or other Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAAT) test taken within three days before scheduled departure, or a medical certificate as proof of a negative Rapid Antigen Test taken under medical supervision within 24 hours before departure. There are quarantine rules, but it is determined by State and Territory governments, so make sure to check this link when planning your trip.  All international travellers also need to hold a valid visa to enter Australia. Hong Kong citizens are eligible to apply for an electronic travel authorisation (ETA). Visit this link to apply for the ETA

How is your love life looking lately? Here's how you answered our big questions

How is your love life looking lately? Here's how you answered our big questions

For the month of love, we are checking in on our readers with our 2022 Sex & Dating Survey, which was released in Hong Kong and Singapore, to find out what their romantic life looks like right now. We're only a few days in with over a hundred pollers, but we couldn't help but share some surprising initial results with you.    Tinder is the most popular dating app in Hong Kong   So, how are you answering our big questions? In Hong Kong, our male readers are dominating the survey, while our female audience is keeping mum compared to SG, where female readers are the ones telling all. Calling all the ladies in our city! Don't be shy, it's anonymous, so you can spill the tea!  Most of our readers are not active on dating apps, but those swiping right each night and keeping their options open prefer using Tinder. In Hong Kong, those who settled into the bliss of couplehood prioritise date nights at least once a week to keep the romance flowing, while SG respondents only have date nights a couple of times a month.  Seventy-six percent who answered the survey in HK declared that they are sexually active, but the pandemic definitely puts a damper on their sex life. However, a huge portion still feel that is it safe to have sex even with the current situation in the city – some have even engaged in BDSM ( sexual practices that involve bondage, dominance, and submission/sadomasochism) and are open to one-night-stands. In both cities, where prostitution is legal, male readers that answ

Two new Hong Kong bars make World's 50 Best Bars 51-100 list for 2021

Two new Hong Kong bars make World's 50 Best Bars 51-100 list for 2021

World's 50 Best Bars just released its extended 51 to 100 list for 2021, 28 of which are new entries. Thirteen bars across seven countries are from Asia, and Kuala Lumpur's Bar Trigona is the highest-ranked Asian bar at number 52.   Two of Hong Kong's newest and hottest bars made it on the list, which include Four Seasons' new innovative bar Argo at number 72 and the city's first eco-conscious bar Penicillin at number 59. These two bars have been shaking up the city's bar scene since they opened and are now entering the 'best lists' in the world, proving that bars with a purposeful mission are the future of the cocktail industry. In August, Penicillin and Argo also made it to Time Out's list of coolest bars in the world, representing establishments that go above and beyond the call of duty and push the boundaries of today's drinking culture, one drink at a time.   Photograph: Courtesy Penicillin 50 Best announces the 51 to 100 list ahead of the World's 50 Best Bars 2021 reveal on December 7. With only two Hong Kong bars hitting the extended list, we're hoping that some of the city's usual bar listers may be part of the coveted 50.  Photograph: Courtesy Four Seasons Hong Kong The annual list is created by a voting panel of over 600 independent personalities, including industry experts, drink writers, and cocktail specialists. Due to ongoing travel restrictions, visiting bars from across the world has been difficult for The World's 50 Best Bars Academy, so the voting guidel

Hong Kong’s largest design festival deTour returns to PMQ

Hong Kong’s largest design festival deTour returns to PMQ

Calling all creatives, design students, aspiring designers, and architects! The annual design festival deTour is back and bigger than ever. This year’s theme is ‘Use(fu)less’ and will feature a showcase that encourages audiences to rethink the fundamental functions of design. Organised by PMQ and sponsored by Create Hong Kong, the 2021 deTour festival brings together talented local and international designers for a curated line-up of exhibitions, workshops, dialogues, and events.    Photograph: Courtesy deTour   Happening from now until December 12, the deTour festival is divided into three main exhibitions presented via 37 workshops and 12 design dialogues happening online and on-ground, and available to the public for free.  Highlights from the festival include an international collaboration by Japanese artist Sputniko! and local architecture firm Napp Studio & Architects entitled ‘Red Silk of Fate – The Shrine’ representing a modern-day ‘Love Shrine’ that invites viewers to contemplate love and relationships in the time of social distancing.    Photograph: Courtesy deTourRed Silk of Fate – The Shrine The main exhibition is the Curators’ Choice, a series of four design installations featuring various collaborations infusing design with philosophy, sound, typography, and sports. The interactive installation includes ‘I know not what CAFÉ’, a showcase that demonstrates how spatial design can shape the coffee shop experience, designed by Dr Li Hong Ting from local initiati

Registrations for free guided tours of the century-old Sham Shui Po reservoir is now open

Registrations for free guided tours of the century-old Sham Shui Po reservoir is now open

Located at Bishop Hill in Shek Kip Mei, the century-old Romanesque underground reservoir has just completed its $20 million preliminary restorations. The Water Supplies Department (WSD) is finally opening the premises this December to allow visitors to view the site.   Photograph: AFP/Louise Delmotte Now accorded Grade I historic status, the ex-Sham Shui Po reservoir will be accommodating individual and group guided tours daily for six months starting on December 15. A glass roof now covers the exposed section of the reservoir to protect it from the forces of nature, while ventilation systems, pathways, platforms, as well as emergency exits have been installed inside so that visitors can safely tour around the reservoir.  Photograph: AFP/Louise Delmotte I Glass roof and protective structure now covers the exposed area of the reservoir Last March, WSD launched a 360-degree virtual tour of the reservoir complete with educational information that anyone can access from their computers or mobile phones. The on-ground free guided tours will allow Hongkongers to view the historic architecture up close and learn more about its importance and cultural significance to the area.    Photograph: AFP/Louise Delmotte Each month, 1,000 visitors will be allowed entry to the reservoir for a 90-minute tour that will accommodate up to 14 people per session. Visitors will be required to use the LeaveHomeSafe app to enter the facility. Tour guides will be available during the session to edu

Tel Aviv dethrones Hong Kong as the most expensive city to live in right now

Tel Aviv dethrones Hong Kong as the most expensive city to live in right now

According to the latest Worldwide Cost of Living Survey from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), Tel Aviv is now the most expensive city in the world, knocking Hong Kong down to number five from its previous top position last year. The new shift was brought about by the challenges of the pandemic, affecting the industry's supply chain, exchange-rate shifts, and changing consumer demand.   Hong Kong tied at the top with Paris and Zurich from last year's ranking I Photograph: Shutterstock EIU's Worldwide Cost of Living is a twice-yearly survey that compares more than 400 individual prices across over 200 products and services in 173 cities. The data were collected between August 16 and September 12, 2021, when US-China shipping prices had risen sharply, resulting in higher prices for goods.   For the first time, Tel Aviv, Israel tops the chart due to the shekel's soaring currency and price spikes in one-tenth of the city's goods led by groceries and transport. Last year, Hong Kong tied at the top with Paris and Zurich, but the new rankings now push Paris down to second place together with Singapore, followed by Zurich. Other major cities on the list include New York, Geneva, Copenhagen, Los Angeles, and Osaka.  The current rankings are dominated by European and developed Asian cities, while the cheapest cities are mainly coming in from the Middle East and Africa, as well as developing parts of Asia.  Hong Kong tops the ten most expensive cities to buy petrol I Photograph: