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“Great little escape”

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Tai O Heritage Hotel
Ranked #149 of 730 Hotels in Hong Kong
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 29 July 2014

I will start by saying this isn't a hotel I would recommend for tourists coming to Hong Kong to shop and see the main attractions, this would be more suited to people living in Hong Kong who are looking for a night or two away from city life, or tourists who are interested being near great hiking and seeing part of old Hong Kong.

We were exactly that, a couple looking for an escape from the city and this was perfect. We had been to Tai O many times but this was the first time we got to see it without all the tourists, just the locals going about their daily lives without the hordes of people traipsing through their village.

The building has been beautifully restored, the rooms are modern and well equipped. On the point of tourists, during the day it gets pretty crowded around the reception area and restaurant because the hotel is open for people to see the heritage aspect of the building, but once they have all left around sunset it’s so peaceful. We ate dinner and breakfast at the restaurant, and the food was simple but good.

I would highly recommend this for every Hong Kong resident to experience something a little different without having to get on an international flight.

Make sure you book well in advance for weekends!

Room Tip: We only saw our room which was on the ground level (where most of the rooms were), I would recommend...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Cameron M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 17 July 2014

The location is definitely interesting and peaceful; it shows a different side of Hong Kong. The exterior renovation is a clear success but we have the feeling that this hotel is on a balance, which makes it difficult to review :

- Our room was spacious (suite), quite, nicely decorated, with well outfitted bathrooms, but humidity was a big problem, for example the ceiling suffers from water damages and nights were uncomfortable because of the dampness of the sheets.

- We stayed there for 2 nights and, even though the food was ok and cheap (except the wine), the choices are limited and far from the local cuisine that is expected (not spaghettis bolognese, burgers...). By the way, the dining room is lovely indeed.

- There are "little things" that would make the stay more pleasant were missing: like informations on places to visit (beautiful hiking trails around, temples), and it's a pity that the little beach downstairs next to the entrance looks almost like a trash yard even though its not part of the vicinity.

- Staff is nice, friendly but lacks the normal professional conversation : a simple question like "Did you enjoy your stay?" might have been a good occasion to discuss and temporise our impressions...

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank EChong2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 June 2014

Had a lovely "staycation" at the hotel for one night as a respite from living on Hong Kong island. Very impressed by the heritage renovation done on the property - very classy and comfortable with a real old world charm. Large rooms, tv, coffee making facilities and comfortable bedding.

Despite reading the negative/average reviews of the restaurant we had dinner at the hotel and were not disappointed - although we did go in with low expectations! Sampled both western and asian cuisine and both were very nice (minestrone soup, pork knuckle, nasi goreng and apple pie).

Took a boat out to see the pink dolphins and saw quite a few - a great experience. If we had planned it better we would have done the walk to the infinity pool during the day before coming back to the hotel, would imagine that would be a great way to take advantage of a stay at the hotel.

All in all a very relaxing, pleasant experience.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Alicem99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 June 2014

The hotel was a police station in the old days which was renovated into a heritage hotel.

It is beautiful, clean, spacious and comfortable. We stayed on the ground floor on a weekday not much disturbance from the daytime visitors. However, it would still be preferable to stay on the second floor as I believe it will make you feel more secured especially when you are using the bathroom but somehow you could hear hotel staff talking/walking by outside of our bathroom.

The air conditioner is a bit noisy. We have asked hotel technician for help but not much improvement.

Our package included a set dinner for two and breakfast. Environment of the restaurant is nice and romantic at night. Food quality is not bad. If we visit next time probably would dine out in the Tai O village for seafood dinner which is just 15 minutes walk from the hotel.

Free movies and wifi available in room which is definitely a plus to the stay.

Room Tip: Reserve room earlier and try to stay on second floor
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank YS11313
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 June 2014

The village of Tai O was interesting and quite different from the other spots in Hong Kong. It's worth a visit. The rooms of the Hotel are clean, with excellent shower/bath areas. We travelled with 2 kids and needed a cot, for which they charged $300 Hong Kong dollars. The walk over is quite long and there isn't much to do around the hotel. The food at the restaurant was average, and not great value.

We arrived at 1PM and were not able to check in early despite a room being available.

They did not offer us a breakfast package at check in, and would not offer it as part of the room after we checked in so we did not eat breakfast for the $150 per person (4 of us) which would have been $50 per person as part of the pre-paid option.

The staff were very friendly, but did not offer to help with any of the above issues.

In order to get there, you have to take a water taxi which costs 10 HKD per person and 10HKD per piece of luggage, and is not provided by the hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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5  Thank AlbertCrumb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2014

Hong Kong used to be seen as a metropolitan but few people knows that there is such a well preserved and beautifully restorted heritage hotel in the far western corner of Hong Kong. From Central you can take the subway line to Tung Chung and change at the bus terminal right next to the subway station for route number 11 and you can get to Tai O directly at the final stop. It's not difficult at all, and you will get into a totally different world there, escaping from the hustle and bustle of the city life. All the old fishing village charms are well preserved at Tai O, with the many hawker stalls selling local fish made product and food. There is no chain store here, no convenience store, no supermarket, all you have is the old heritage charm reminding you of the good old days of the fishing village in the sixties. The hotel is situated at the west side of the village and you can get there simply by walking a short distance of 10 minutes and on the way you will not be bored as well. The hotel has only nine rooms so booking much in advance is highly recommended. The rooms are very spacious, all 5 stars facilities, clean, and very bright. The colonial archietcture and the white wooden window frame just recall your memory about the old policy station and the policimen that worked here many years ago. The hotel also featureed a short video that you can either watch from your room or at the reception to learn more about the history of this lovely hotel. There is also a guided tour that talk about the history of the hotel while touring around. The hotel is situated at the seaside on top of a small hill, so every room has a sea view but of course the room at hte second floor would have much better view. The only one thing that you need to be mindful is that the hotel is open to the public for visit because the whole project is a kind of community project, and the heritage belongs to the Hong Kong people rather than to the hotel operator, so every day from 11am to 6pm you will expect to see quite a number of lcoal visitors wondering around. In particular if you are staying on the ground floor you might need to put up your window blind. Else you can choose to stay at the rooms on the second floor where the public cannot reach even within the opening hours of public visit. Down right at the seashore you can view beautiful sunset upon a wide horizon of ocean water, very romantic. If you can, you should visit here on the Dragon boat festival which is on the fifth day of the lunar month of May. On this day you will see thousands of traditional festival flags flying all around, you will see dragon boat competition, you will also see the cultural heritage of the local villager using the dragaon boat to tow a small boat that hold the statues from the local temples, and they will parade around the several water canals around the village. These are all very special and very cultural, and will surely add on to the fun to your stay here. There is also some art galleries, small scale museums around the village. For food, I would recommend to have some local food or sea food from any restaurant in the village instead of staying inside the hotel for food. There are also a lot of different cafe in the village which you can try them one after the other. Some cafe are next to the canal so you can sit there, relax, enjoy the summer breeze, and also the coffe of your like. There are just so many to talk about in Tai O but making a stay in the Tai O Heritage hotel would definitely a must, and will surely add on to your experience of staying in Hong Kong.

Room Tip: Second Floor Sea Tigers which is the only room that has a windwo facing west and can see the sunset...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank HKA_888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 May 2014

As a Hong Konger I'm happy to see some of its heritage preserved. This lovely building is spectacular & a lot of work has gone into its renovation.

We paid a little extra for the top floor, assuming it would be quieter and have less foot traffic, although I didn't see many people around the hotel during our stay. This may be because this hotel is not crowded with rooms. There are only 9 rooms in total. Although the public are allowed to use the restaurant and outside space during certain times.

The room was very spacious with a separate lounge room, two bathrooms, two TVs & king bed. It is beautifully done.

The shower head in one of the bathrooms is HUGE & needless to say the shower was amazing.

We dined at the restaurant for dinner & for breakfast. The restaurant is reasonably priced, good service, lovely atmosphere & a piano playing in the background was a lovely touch.

Was it worth the money? If you want escapism from city life, peace, history/heritage & something different, absolutely! HK rents are the highest in the world so expect to pay the price for space & expect to pay the price for something different.

Hats off to HK. You're finally doing wonderful things with your old beautiful buildings, some of which lay dormant for many years! Given the cost & lack of living space in HK it's about time we've seen these buildings come alive.

My photos don't do this place justice. It's mush better in real life!

Lifts available from the waterfront below the hotel, up to the hotel. Disabled access available.

Tips:

1. Keep the aircon on when having a shower/bath & boiling the kettle. HK's humidity is high.

2. The restaurants last orders is at 9.30pm

3. Bring your walking/running gear

Cons:

1. Whilst the coffee selection in the room was brilliant, I'm only a tea drinker & there was only jasmine tea available. I didn't call reception to ask for other tea varieties & they maybe available through asking.

2. Not well signed to find the hotel. We arrived at night & I must say that my experiences of all the hidden gems on Lantau Island is that they all have crap signage. I guess that's how they keep hidden ;) Therefore I've supplied directions below

3. When lost, looking for the hotel, I called 4 times before hotel reception picked up the phone. Her directions weren't great & luckily we saw a man in Tai O wearing a hotel top & he gave great directions

4. There were some slight marks on the couch & whilst the towels were clearly washed, some very minor marks on two of the towels. A glass wasn't very clean & the outside of the bins very slightly mouldy. Whilst I understand that dealing with mould is difficult in a humid climate, there is still a lack of attention to detail in other areas, which would give this hotel a higher rating if these issues are fixed.

5. Because of the building a phone signal inside the building isn't great (& my phone changed to a China carrier as I have a China contract as well). Wifi strength is excellent. Phone strength outside the room is fine.

6. Only Pearl, a local tv station in English. Although I'm not sure why one would want to spend their time watching TV here :)

Pros:

1. Excellent location, away from city life

2. Wonderful views & one can see Macau in the background from some points in Tai O

3. Magnificent building

4. Beautifully presented hotel

5. A book on the history of Tai O & the building was in the room (also a copy available to purchase). An excellent touch to learn more.

6. Very peaceful location

7. Big room & the separate lounge room (with two doors to shut between the rooms & keep the bedroom totally quiet) allowed my husband to sleep in whilst I watched TV in the lounge.

8. Given the space & layout, next time we stay we will bring our 2.y.o. son as there is plenty of room for him & with the two separate spaces, one if us can easily rest whilst the other sleeps

9. Excellent wifi strength

10. The bed was soft & comfortable, although my husband thought the opposite. Personal choice I guess.

11. Wheelchair access

12. Lots of places to relax

13. Lots of information about the hotel, located around the hotel

14.$10 for a one way (per person) boat ride to / from the hotel. Available during the day. See photo for details (Recommend to at least walk one way to experience the village.)

Directions:

From Tai O bus station.

1. Face the water & walk down a little alley way/ path to the right.

2. When you see a coke machine on the left, turn left the next street

3. Follow over the bridge & stay to the left. On the bridge there's a small sign and arrow for the hotel

4. As you come to a wire fence, you'll see a sign on the fence with an arrow.

5. Continue past the stilt houses & keep to the left. The building is at the very end & there are a 2-3 signs 'Tai O Police Station' along the way.

PS if you go in the day it's much easier to see the signs'

Room Tip: The upstairs rooms are larger than the downstairs rooms
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank RochCorb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Tai O Heritage Hotel

Address: Shek Tsai Po Street | Tai O, Lantau Island, Hong Kong Hong Kong, China
Region: China > Hong Kong > Lantau Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#91 Romantic Hotel in Hong Kong
#118 Luxury Hotel in Hong Kong
Price Range: £145 - £262 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Tai O Heritage Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 9
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Also Known As:
Tai O Heritage Hotel Hong Kong

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