Wondering where to live in Hong Kong? It’s always good to talk to the neighbours! In our regular Street Talk feature, we get the inside scoop from residents of different areas. Here, we chat to Koni Tenedora about what it’s like living in Sai Kung in Hong Kong.
NAME: Koni Tenedora
Occupation: Wellness and Fitness Coach (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Where are you from? Manila originally but I’ve lived in Hong Kong since 1990, so I’m kinda local!
What do you do here? I’m a wellness coach.
Where do you live? Sai Kung, in the New Territories.
How long have you been here? 29 years.
Why Sai Kung? It’s quiet and there is a lot of outdoor space available.
What transport is available from where you live? Bus, taxi and minibus.
When you walk out of your house, what’s the first thing you see? Mountains and trees!
What’s the closest store to your front door? The shops and restaurants of Sai Kung Square.
The unofficial uniform of your suburb is: Beachwear.
If a celebrity were to move in, it would likely be: Keanu Reeves! If we’re talking local actors, I would hope for it to be Donnie “Ip Man” Yen.
What do you do when you’re in need of a dose of culture? I do like to take a peek at the Chinese Opera in Sai Kung, especially during Chinese New Year. I love the colours, the costumes and the makeup. Chinese opera is intriguing. Otherwise, I go to the newly restored Central Police Station – now known as Tai Kwun – on Hollywood Road in Central.
A mandatory stop for taking out of town guests is: Up to The Peak via a Peak Tram ride. There’s also the Tai Long Wan hike, which ends at the awesome Ham Tin beach. I also recommend a Chinese lunch right in front of the beach in Sai Wan.
A common myth about your area is: That you need a passport to visit.
If you wake up at night it’s usually because of: Our neighbours partying, but that is very seldom.
A massive late-night rager in your suburb involves: Just a friendly family gathering, sitting outside and having a barbecue. It’s pretty quiet where I live.
Your hands-down favourite neighbourhood joint is: Little Cove Espresso, otherwise my favourite restaurant in Sai Wan (Tai Long Wan), which is right in front of the beach. It’s famous for Singapore noodles and sweet tofu pudding.
You won’t find better local food than: A restaurant called Vilavilla Gourmet, which is a Chinese restaurant opposite the Po Lo Che bus stop, across from the basketball court. The Thai restaurant beside McDonald’s is awesome too.
The strangest thing you’ll ever see in your neighbourhood is: People napping in Sai Kung Square.
The best bargains in the neighbourhood are: We have lots of small shops that sell beachwear, fitness apparel and more. It’s like Granville in TST. The guiltiest local pleasure is: I guess the sweet tofu pudding because I put on loads of sugar syrup.
One thing you’d never change is: At Sai Kung pier in the early morning you’ll see fisherman selling freshly caught seafood from their boat. I love watching like a tourist.
If the city gave you HK$5M to soup up your area, what would you do with it? I’d build more outdoor facilities like seating areas with tables for everyone to be able to watch the sunrise and sunset while having a picnic. I would also provide a place for healthy fitness peeps to set up suspension training or practice yoga. And a wall-climbing area for kids to enjoy more creative play! We also need additional recycling bins, plants and trees around Sai Kung.
Do you love your neighbourhood?
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This article first appeared in the Home Décor issue of Expat Living magazine. Subscribe now so you never miss an issue.