I'd first read about Hotel Icon about a year or so ago, so I was looking forward to giving it a try and I must say, I was not disappointed at all. Although Hotel Icon isn't located in the most convenient of places, it is still not far from the main Tsim Sha Tsui stretch and the hotel does provide a shuttle service every 30mins. Even if you wanted to walk, it wouldn't be too far.
Upon arrival, I was ushered to the check-in desk, where despite some initial confusion between the Front Office staff, the usual procedures were dispensed with rather quickly. I was pleasantly surprised to be upgraded to a Club Room on the second highest floor of the building, and even though it didn't come with the usual Club benefits, I was most grateful regardless. I had picked an Icon 36 Harbour and the view was excellent. I suppose being upgraded to the higher floor Club Room did help but if all their Harbour Room boasted a similar view, then it was worth it.
The room itself is very modern in design, although the long entrance corridor seemed a little unnecessary. Though not very big, they did utilize the space rather well, creating a rather cozy feeling. A complimentary mini-bar was very much welcomed, not a feature found in most hotels. Easy to use smart TV and printer in the room was an added bonus, as was the Blu-Ray player. The bed was rather comfortable and came with a decent pillow menu.
The bathroom was interesting in it's design. I'm not a big fan of faucets that have weird angles and are so low to the sink, and this was no exception. Although the bathtub isn't very long, it made up for that by being a deeper sunk in tub. The tv in-built into the small bathtub mirror was an interesting feature. As for the shower area, I would've preferred a door, as the water did have a tendency to splutter out a little, but that was a minor issue.
The hotel grounds are well designed and had more of a boutique feel than traditional 5-star hotel. The pool area was rather nice and the gym looked out to the harbor, a nice feature. The hotel's Angsana Spa is a sister brand of the renowned Banyan Tree, and it must have been decent as each time I walked by, it seemed to have guests walking in and out.
As my room package included a buffet breakfast at The Market, I was keen to try it out. The selection was pretty good, nothing particularly special but on the whole, well prepared. I did find it odd that the staff would come with the bill within about 5-10mins of sitting down, particularly since I had already given my room number and they should have been able to see if the breakfast was complimentary or not. This was a minor issue though, as I just had to initial on it.
I must praise the service of the restaurant manager on my first morning though. I wish I had remembered to take his name. Having had a bit of a cough, I requested from him if it was possible to get some juice at room temperature. He explained that all their juices were kept cold for freshness but that he would try to have a cup placed in some hot water, so as to reduce the coldness of the juice. About 10mins later he returned and although the juice was still a little cold, it had indeed been made easier to drink. Just a few minutes later, I accidentally got some honey on my hands, so I asked a server for a wet tissue, and out of nowhere, he popped up and whipped out two little packets from his pocket! If that was not attentive service, I don't know what is. I've had the good fortune of dining at several fine dining establishments and even at some of those places, I had never experienced such good service. I was so grateful that at the end of my meal, I sought him out to express my gratitude. Pity he wasn't present on my second morning of breakfast.
Overall I had a pleasant experience at Hotel Icon and it is to my understanding that the hotel acts as both a for-profit establishment as well as a training ground for students of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. If this is a student run hotel, then I can think of a number of other 5-star establishments who should send their staff here, perhaps they might learn a thing or two. I'd say there's a very good chance I'll be back to Hotel Icon on my next trip back to HK.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A hotel unlike any other. Welcome to a different world. Hotel ICON is a unique hotel designed by celebrated architects Terence Conran, Rocco Yim and William Lim. Breathtaking open public spaces, a striking vertical garden by Patrick Blanc, a grand sweeping staircase, innovative guest rooms and three vibrant dining spaces radiate contemporary style. We offer our guests traditional Asian hospitality, with all its courteous and attentive qualities – but in a refreshingly modern, stylish and international environment. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel ICON Hong Kong