What ’s it Like ?
Open since last November, the Crowne Plaza is a purposebuilt, thin slice of a building, 28 storeys high with a rooftop bar, pool and fitness studio, and bedrooms all with uninterrupted views of either the Happy Valley Racecourse or Causeway Bay. The lobby has a yin yang theme – a backlit waterfall with orchids in front symbolises serenity, while a striking tangled foil sculpture in the centre of the ceiling represents the chaos of the city. And unlike many lobbies, the rest of the hotel lives up to this aesthetic.
Where is it ?
On Leighton Road, a three minute walk from Causeway Bay MTR station (exit A). It’s in a superb position for getting to and from Central, and you also have the shopping and dining options of the local area at your disposal, including Times Square.
The 263 rooms, which include ten suites, are on floors six to 26. Entry-level Superior rooms are 34-43 sqm, and with clever use of space, mirrors and windows, they seem even larger. Some rooms have windows between the bathroom and the bedroom but a sliding door can block them off if you are staying with a partner and want some privacy. All bathrooms have a separate tub and shower along with thick bathrobes and Crowne Plaza amenities. All rooms have a workdesk, high-speed wifi and wired internet access (HK$140/£11 for 24 hours), a fully stocked minibar, tea and coffee-making facilities, black-out curtains, a handy multi-charger device allowing you to plug in various makes of mobile phones and MP3 players, a 42-inch Philips highdefinition LCD TV, a surround-sound DVD system, and an iPod/iPhone dock through which you can charge your device and play your music.
There is also a mobile phone that allows you to pick up calls when on the move around the city, as well as in your room. Making local calls is free. There are 88 Club rooms and suites located on the 21st floor upwards and guests staying in these have access to the Club lounge on level two. This is open 7am-11pm daily, has free internet, serves high tea from 3pm-5pm and offers a daily “happy hour” from 5.30pm to 7.30pm. All guests are served breakfast in the Kudos all-day dining restaurant on the first floor, although there is a separate area for Club guests. Club rooms also provide free internet access, two bottles of distilled water and free faxes. The suites are 79-84 sqm and have Hermès toiletries.
Restaurants and Bars
Kudos is open 6.30am-11pm daily for buffets and à la carte meals. On the ground floor is a coffee shop, Connections, which also offers a self service curry lunch. The Club at 28 on the top floor of the hotel has blue chandeliers, a dramatic illuminated catwalk and a circular bar decorated with glowing bottles. Outside, where there are lounging chairs and an outdoor pool, there are steps down to the Pavilion on the 27th floor, an open-air space with more chairs and loungers, as well as a water feature – it’s a quieter place for those who want a drink without the neon.
Business and Meeting Facilities
There are seven meeting rooms on the second floor, none of which is particularly large – up to 120 people for a drinks reception or 80 banquet style can be hosted when three of them are combined. This is odd for Crowne Plaza, which is normally big on meeting spaces, but perhaps this was dictated by the footprint of the building. There is a small business centre just off the Club lounge with three computers and a printer, as well as a four-person meeting room available to Club guests for free.
Other than the pool, there is a small gym (open 5.30am-11pm) that runs the width of the building on the top floor – it has great views of the racecourse and surrounding mountains.
I was impressed to be greeted by name from the second day of my stay by several staff, and the housekeeping was as thorough as at any five-star hotel. Excellent value and a faultless position both for getting around Hong Kong Island via the MTR or simply relaxing in the evening in.
Crowne Plaza, 8 Leighton Road,
Tel: +852 3980 3980, phhongkong.com