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soloflightEd

September 3, 2010
Hong Kong Trip Day 2: World Trade Center and Times Square in Causeway Bay, Wan Chai

It rained on our second day in Hong Kong and it was declared as Storm Signal Number 1 which was such a bummer since we were raring to go out.

clive owen bvlgari
Designer Tram at Causeway Bay

Although we slept late in the morning, I woke up early to find some food for breakfast. From our hostel at the Tai San Guesthouse, I went to iSQUARE which is just a couple of blocks away. Initially, I thought iSQUARE was an office owned by Apple; later did I found that it is one of Hongkong’s skyrise malls.

I went there because I was looking for a supermarket to buy some grocery items: water bottles and chips; as well as some hair gel because we realized we weren’t in our best look when we saw our pictures the previous day. hehe.

marketplace by jasons
Marketplace by Jasons at iSquare mall

Places we visited:
iSquare Mall
World Trade Center and Times Square in Causeway Bay
Wan Chai Computer Center
The Spaghetti House

I found it really interesting how the items are being sold in the grocery. For example, a water bottle is sold at $7, if you buy 2 then it would be priced at $10. With that in mind, you’d definitely go for the two items because it would come out cheaper. They have a good way of positioning their sales and bargains.

Just my luck though, I couldn’t find any cheap hair gel as the was priced at 50 HKD (300 Php!). but I got one when I searched for some shops outside.

I bought pizza and some drinks for breakfast and when I got back to the hostel, Cindy and Logan were already up and doing some auditing from our expenses the previous days. I joined them just to keep track of our budget.

accounting and audit pizza and juice
Cindy auditing, and us eating pizza

It was still raining so our plan of going to Disneyland or Ocean Park or Macau was postponed. We didn’t want to go to either of the Hongkong tourist destinations mentioned because weekends in those spots could get crowded. It was still a Friday and we decided to check out the shops and other high-end stores of Causeway Bay in Wan Chai.

hongkong picture car in times square
Still busy. And a purple hello kitty car

times square
sights at Causeway Bay

We got out of the MTR station and didn’t know that the exit was already a mall (SOGO mall). We were in an actual mall outside the MTR which was just one of the many wonders of riding in the transit. We tried to search for some good finds but the products sold had the same price back in the Philippines. We went out and explored the place since the rain had subsided.

world trade center hongkong
World Trade Center HongKong

Bargain sales was splattered everywhere when we dropped by the shoes section in the World Trade Center. I even saw my old shoes back in Cebu – before it was stolen after only a month – and was shocked at the price. I bought the shoes for 5,450 Php. At the store, when converted, would only cost 2,500 Php! I wanted to buy the same running shoes from Adidas because I really wanted the pair. However, they didn’t have any other size available. Darn it.

shoe sale
When they say sale, it’s really a SALE!

At least here, we didn’t bother double-checking if they were knock-offs because the shoes were inside the mall and we knew they were authentic. I resisted the urge to buy because I was saving the shoes part when we would reach the factory outlets hub at Citygate Outlets – will blog about it in my next posts. Logan bought Nike shoes though at around 1,800 Php.

rain hongkong weather hongkong
still busy despite the rain

We kept on walking again and admired the different shops and signs despite the rain. After the World Trade Center, we went to Times Square which is a major shopping center and office tower complex. It was mesmerizing to see so many shopping centers. We then wondered how people in Hongkong were able to buy stuff with so many stores to choose from.

times square hongkong
Times Square Hong Kong!

Gucci, Zara, Versace, Armani Exchange, Burberry and other branded items and labels — items and labels that I didn’t want to stress myself out because I know I couldn’t afford them and I DIDN’T want to afford them. haha.

But they still have some shops for the mid-range market so we checked out a lot of sports houses; even us guys were excited about the items being displayed.

branded shops hongkong
inside Times Square – Cindy buying a shirt in Zara

We went out of the Times Square mall and proceeded to the Wan Chai Computer Center. The Wan Chai Computer Center is a building full of electronics and gadgets which is the same as the Mongkok Computer Center. The prices didn’t have any big difference from the ones in Mongkok.

It was time for some late lunch or dinner and we ate at KFC (again) because that’s the only restaurant that was conveniently located to where we were as it was still raining outside. After we ate, we kept strolling and we were forced to buy some umbrellas because we had shopping bags brought and we also didn’t want them to get wet.

wan chai centerstill raining at night. bummer

I think we were so mesmerized by the number of shops – both branded and not – in town that we didn’t mind the time.

Our next stop was the Central District so we could check the cheaper offerings of this region. We wanted to drop by the midnight markets in order to practice our haggling skills and buy those really cheap goods as we’ve been strolling for branded items the past two days.

Oh, I forgot how tired we were from walking. It felt good though in a sense that this was actually a form of exercise. Then did I notice that I couldn’t find any fat/obese person in Hong Kong. Maybe I’m just not looking hard enough but still I’m assuming that it’s because of all the walking. hehe.

mtr scenes
scenes at the MTR. pure walking

Always make sure that you have your maps with you! The most important maps in Hong Kong are the map of Hongkong and the MTR Map! Don’t leave home without them! Unless you want to keep on asking people for instructions, better secure copies for yourself and your friends because it’s always good to be ready.

MTR escalator lost in hongkong
smiling at the escalator and checking our maps because we got lost… again.

The Central District station is the biggest among all the MTR stops because it’s where the airport is connected. This is also the business district in Hong Kong where many multinational financial services corporations are located. When we got out of the MTR, we planned on visiting the Jollibee restaurant in Hong Kong just to see how it looked like since we wanted to see a Filipino connection.

central
we were stuck in International Finance Center (IFC) Mall in

We tried going out to test if we could handle the rain but we were unsuccessful. We didn’t bother anymore because we were tired and the weather wasn’t cooperating. We did see a number of brightly-lit buildings and skyscrapers though.

raining in hongkong
tall building, this is what you call a skyrise! raining still

We Wanted to drop by the Victoria Peak but that plan was also cancelled.

Hence, we decided to get back to Tsim Sha Tsui and rest. We ate at The Spaghetti House for some late night snacks. We had spaghetti, some snack platters and a fruit cocktail smoothie for Cindy. I would like to thank Logan for the generous treat. I couldn’t afford the food at that time anymore. hehe

the spaghetti housemirror at The Spaghetti House

spaghetti house hongkong1020 Php – ouch!

Back at the Tai San Guesthouse, we ate some ice cream while surfing the net. The speed, when I checked on speedtest.net, would reach 6mbps! haha. It was great knowing that the internet connection wasn’t slow despite the number of people inside the hostel.

dreyers ice creamDreyer’s Ice Cream

Today wasn’t a very productive one because of our locations being limited due to the rain. I slept around 3am and I was hoping for a better weather after a couple of hours.

Expenses:
Food: 20 HKD – Juice 2 Cartons at 1Liter each
20 HKD – Pizza (sliced to 3) for breakfast

89 HKD – KFC Bucket Meal (lunch/dinner)
10 HKD – extra rice
170 HKD – Spaghetti House restaurant (treat c/o Logan)

Miscellaneous: 12 HKD – Hair Gel
100 HKD – 3 Umbrellas (33 HKD each)

* 1 Hong Kong Dollar at 6 Philippine Pesos

Check out my blog posts about my Cebu to Hongkong trip here:


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soloflightEd.com is a travel blog by Edcel Suyo. He enjoys performing headstands and crazy stunts during his trips in the Philippines, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. Now based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and working to earn a living, he takes time to enjoy the city and travel during weekends.
For updates, Like his page on Facebook or Follow him on Twitter.
For questions, advertising, and other concerns, shoot an email to ed@soloflighted.com.


8 comments… add one
  • antoy

    asa dapit ang kfc located? wer mo palit sa tickets for disneyland/oceanpark?

    • Edcel

      antoy: there are a lot of KFCs located around town. murag jollibee sa pinas. so you won’t have to worry. the same with mcdonalds and other fast food shops. we bought our tickets sa Disneyland and Oceanpark sa hostel/guesthouse where we stayed. try to ask sad where you will be staying. we got a discount kay sa hostel mi nipalit compared so other places.

  • Oh darn, I want to go to HK now!
    The last time I went there was way back in 1994. Was amazed back then. Lalo na siguro ngayon! 😀

    • Edcel

      @mica: wow, 1994 pa! antagal na talaga. you should go back there. now na. haha

  • wow. that's a lot of activities, are those fins in your pic? you bought fins na? Let's go snorkeling!!! 😀

  • Edcel

    @EJ: actually this day we had the least activities done. haha. because of the rain, we didn't get to explore much. nope, those are tennis rackets. my friend bought them. 

  • AJ

    Your photos look very Wong Kar-Wai. You should be more emo though. 🙂 Nice post, Ed! Makes me wanna go back to HK. The last time I was there was in 1983! Maybe you weren't even born yet! Hahaha

  • soloflightEd

    @AJ: haha. my emo shots are usually not posted here. haha! thanks AJ! yeah, wasn't even born in 1983. wow, tagal na pala! 😀

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