Skyscrapers, Hong Kong
The Bank Of China Tower is one of the most remarkable skyscrapers in Hong Kong. It is situated in the business district of Central. It is a short-walk to the Kowloon Park. It is the fourth tallest building in Hong Kong, 315m (1,033.5 feet) height with 2 masts reaching 367.4m (1,205,4 feet) height. This unique architectural building is designed by a Chinese-American architec, I. M. Pei. It was once the tallest building in Hong Kong between 1989 to 1992.
Based the HK Tourism Website, there is an observation deck on 43th floor and allow the public to have a good view of the Central district.
The Lippo Centre is another landmark building in Central District, just right across the street from Hong Kong Park. The building is linked by a pedestrian bridge to the Park. It was completed in 1988 with two towers, Tower 1 has 186 meters high with 46 storeys and Tower 2 has 172 meters high with 42 storeys. The unique architectural building was designed by Australian Architect, Paul Rudolph. It looks like Lego blocks with crystal facade. It looks beautiful when the light reflection of the buildings during the day.
If you love tall architecturally unique buildings, then Hong Kong is the place to admire them. The densely packed streets are not the ideal place to skyscraper watch but there are some good viewing spots to take in the city skyline, the most famous being from the Peak observation decks and more recently the ICC building in Kowloon.
The tallest building in Hong Kong is the recently completed INTERNATIONAL COMMERCE CENTRE which dwarves all other buildings on the Kowloon side of the harbour. The Ritz Carlton hotel occupies the top floors. On the very top floor (118th) you can take a dip in the worlds highest swimming pool and relax in the worlds highest bar (see my review of the OZONE bar) Attached to the ICC is a nicely appointed upmarket shopping centre called Elements. As well as all the usual designer brands, Elements also boasts an ice skating rink (reviewed separately in shopping tips).
TWO INTERNATIONAL FINANCE CENTRE is the second highest building in Hong Kong. It houses the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the 2IFC shopping mall which has a large Apple store. The HKMA is an interesting place to spend an hour (if you are interested in currency) and also provides good views towards the mid levels and The Peak. (The HKMA is reviewed in my "off the Beaten Path" tips)
CENTRAL PLAZA in Wan Chai on Hong Kong Island is the third tallest skyscraper and houses the Sky City Church.
My absolute favourite skyscraper comes in at number four. The BANK OF CHINA TOWER located near the Peak Tram Terminus in Central is an architecturally beautiful building that I never tire looking at day and night (separete review in my HK "favourites" tips) There is a smallish public observation deck on the 43rd floor. The tower is prominently displayed during the nightly "Symphony of Lights" laser show (reviewed in my "Things to do" tips)
The HSBC BANK headquarters building rounds out the top five and its architecture is quite unusual. Its hard to describe the style of the building, which is designed and located to promote good Feng Shui. Its design lends itself well to illumination by night and the building is one of the most beautiful participants in the nightly Symphony of Lights laser show.
Skycrapers are an essential part of the fabric of Hong Kong. There are so many that most blend into the skyline, but some are so distinctive that they become landmarks. One of the most photographed is definitely the Lippo Centre in Admiralty. The Lippo Centre consists of two tower blocks. The modern design of the buildings makes them look like they could be interlocked together from certain angles. Other, more imaginative people say the facade of the buildings reminds them of koalas climbing a tree...hmm. Whatever your interpretation, the architecture of the Lippo Centre is quite unique and eye catching.
In my quests thoughout the cities of the world I am always after getting a good view. One of my favorites besides the peak here in Hong Kong is the observation level of the Bank of China. The 43rd floor is open to the public and a transfer point for elevator traffic. You need to work there to go higher, but you can view from here. If the weather is good it gives a nice perspective of the city.
There are some reports that the observation deck is on 42. I honestly don't remember. It was 2006 when I went and i'm writing this tip in 2012. But i do know the views were nice, especially if you're not staying in the near by hotels with similar views.
The Peak in Hong Kong is one of the worlds spectacular views - not to be missed. We were in a hurry so caught a taxi, but most tourists the the cable car to the top. Quite crowed and long queues.
Peninsular Hotel is grand and expensive. A part of HK's history.
Currently, IFC #2 is the tallest skyscraper in Hong Kong and the 4th tallest in the world. This building is 88 stories tall and was designed by architect Cesar Pelli. You can take the elevator up to the 55th floor of IFC #2 . First you have to register with security by taking the esculator down to the main level of the building if you've entered via the IFC Mall. This picture was taken on a very foggy night. We had just gotten off of the ferry after coming back from Cheung Chau Island.
Because my accommodation was in Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon's harbor side area, I got to see this view on my first night in Hong Kong and I admired it throughout my entire stay. It turned out to be without doubt the view that impressed me the most in Hong Kong (with the nighttime view from Victoria Peak coming on a close second place). It is absolutely amazing to look across the harbor at all those colored skyscrapers, hanging on the northern part of Hong Kong Island. Every evening at 8 pm they put on a show called Symphony of Lights in which the facades of various skyscrapers lit up in different colors, shooting rays of light. You can get to Tsim Sha Tsui by taking the Star Ferry from Central, a great way to enjoy the view from an even closer distance.
When you think of Hong Kong you immediately picture that famous skyline. The international finance centre of Hong Kong has 112 buildings that stand taller than 180 metres (591 ft).
The tallest building in Hong Kong, completed this year (2010), is the International Commerce Centre in Kowloon. It has 108 stories and is the 4th tallest in the world.
The International Finance Centre comes in 2nd with 88 floors and is the 7th tallest in the world
The highest church in the world located in a skyscraper is in the Central Plaza, which at 78 stories is the 3rd tallest in Hong Kong and 11th in the world.
Next is the 70 floors of the Bank of China Tower which brings it in as 12th in the world.
5th in Hong Kong and the world's 16th is The Centre.
For more check out Wiki.
Some of the most valuable real estate in the world is to be found on HK Island - resulting in everything being built vertically. The proximity to each other is extraordinary - as seen from the Peak.
But Kowloon is catching up as so much of HK Island cannot be built upon. Great swathes of Kowloon is disappearing under the new apartment and office developments - and there is also the constant reclamation of land...
Dropping by the Tsim Sha Tsui harbour stretch to view the Hong Kong Island nightime skyline is a must. Lights from the spread of skyscrapers are like jems encrusted in tall jewel boxes. Don't miss the nightly firework display from 8:00 to 8:18pm.
The firework display (named Symphony of Lights) are best viewed at the Avenue of Stars.
A good way of combining activities to get a Hong Kong experience would be to grab dinner at a local restaurant/coffee shop on Hong Kong Island, then take the Star Ferry from either Wanchai or Central over to Tsim Sha Tsui (the ferry is a great way to take in the night view!) and finally take a stroll along the Avenue of Stars to catch the light show.
Space is a series problem in Hong Kong especially given that its economy is constantly expanding. Therefore, to solve the problems, the planners only had one option and that was to build up. The largest concentration of high-rise apartments and office blocks are found on the northern side of Hong Kong Island in the Central, Admiralty and Causeway Bay districts and are, probably, the best overall impression of what Hong Kong is all about. The price of land in this area has soared to astronomical heights, and it is now a district of high-rise blocks occupied by banks and commercial firms which have almost completely displaced the handsome old buildings of the early colonial period. Looking round the streets and squares between the Mandarin and Hilton Hotels, for example, it is difficult to imagine that right up to the 1960s this was an area of whitewashed four- and five-story buildings with verandas. The best way to see them is either from the top of Victoria Peak or from across the harbour in Kowloon. Another way is to simply walk around the districts that I've mentioned, especially at the weekend, when the traffic and population is less congested, so as to look up at them in awe.
FOR A BIRDS EYE VIEW OF HONG KONG WHY NOT GIVE THE BANK OF CHINA TOWER A TRY.
WHEN IT WAS OPENED IN MAY 1990 IT WAS THE TALLEST BUILDING IN HONG KONG AND ASIA PLUS IT HAD THE HONOUR OF BEING THE FIRST BUILDING TO TOP 1,000 FT OUTSIDE THE USA.
THESE DAYS IT IS THE THIRD TALLEST BUILDING IN HONG KONG BEHIND THE IFC TOWER AND CENTRAL PLAZA..
EVEN SO AT 74 STORIES HIGH THIS STUNNING BUILDING STILL DOMINATES THE SKYLINE OF HONG KONG..THE OBSERVATION DECK IS ON THE 43RD FLOOR.
WITH THE BUILDING STANDING SOME 74 FLOORS HIGH, ITS A SHAME YOU CANT GET ANY HIGHER TO TAKE IN THE VIEWS..
BUT HEY.. YOU STILL GET SOME STUNNING VIEWS OUT OVER THE CITY AND VICTORIA HARBOUR... ENJOY THE VIEW.
En route to the tram terminus (we took the tram up to Victoria Peak), we saw the brightly lit Bank of China building. This iconic building is one of the most recognisable buildings in HK, with its reflective glass panels and sharp edges. It was designed by the world-renowned I.M. Pei.
The International Finance Centre Two is the tallest building in Hong Kong (although it is about to lose this claim when the International Commerce Centre is completed). Built opposite the Star Ferry and Outlying Islands Ferry stations, it's in a prime location. Built adjoining IFC 1 (completed in 1998) the IFC 2 is 88 storeys and 420 metres high (twice the size of its older neighbour) and as such is the 6th tallest building in the world.
Within the joint lower levels of IFC 1 and IFC 2 is the Hong Kong Airport Express Station, a huge shopping mall (what else!) as well as the Four Seasons Hotel. In keeping with its useage, on the 55th Floor of IFC 2 there is an exhibiiton area and a Library of the HK Monetary Authority Information Centre open to the public.