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Thomas Graindorge

Hong Kong's most unusual drinking and dining experiences

These places offer so much more than just food and drinks

Written by
Craig Sauers

Leave it to Hong Kong to turn chores, shopping and art gallery-hopping into opportunities to eat and drink. Or to tie in spa treatments, fortune-telling and magic tricks as part of your meal. A café within a laundry shop. A whisky bar hidden inside a barbershop. A manicure and massage while you queue for your Sichuan hot pot. Why not? 

Hong Kong is constantly transforming the way we interact with food and drinks, reminding us that both are pretty much woven into the fabric of our everyday lives. Whether it’s Moksa, which offers fresh immunity-boosting juices and aromatherapy while you get your nails done, or Strokes, which combines cocktails, craft beer and elevated dishes with the most unlikely of leisure activities – mini golf - Hong Kong business owners always keep us on our toes. Here are some of our favourite places to go for more than just food and drinks.

Recommended: If you're into quirky crossovers, you might also enjoy spending an afternoon at the city's first Shiba café.

Hong Kong's most unusual drinking and dining experiences

The Duke's
  • Health and beauty
  • Barbers
  • Central

The Duke’s elevates your average haircut experience. There’s the actual barber shop, where you can get a cut and a hot towel shave – typically the reason you would go to the barber in the first place. But there’s also a waiting lounge offering games, darts and live sports, as well as a bar selling bottles of fine whiskies at cost. Not to mention a private room on the third level (yes, there are three levels) where customers can retreat from the rat race for a while.

Coffee & Laundry
  • Restaurants
  • Coffeeshops
  • Sheung Wan

The name says it all: enjoy an iced latte while you wash your linens. This launderette-slash-café has 10 self-service washing machines, as well as a pretty great coffee bar serving everything from cold brew to fresh coffee with Okinawa brown sugar and seasonal sakura lattes. This is precisely the kind of thing we didn’t know we needed until Coffee & Laundry opened. If only someone would open a laundry shop with a bar, too.

  • Health and beauty
  • Soho

Slow beauty is still a fringe concept in Hong Kong, but this charming little shop is working to bring it to the mainstream. A nail salon, beauty shop and juice bar all rolled into one, drop into Moksa for a pedi or a personalised aromatherapy treatment and linger over some fresh juice or tea. It’s a holistic approach to well-being intended to help you escape Hong Kong’s hustle and bustle, even if just for an hour or two.

Bamboo Scenes Gallery
  • Art
  • Sai Ying Pun

It’s an art gallery meets philanthropy meets restaurant at Bamboo Scenes in Sai Ying Pun. Run out of popular farm-to-table restaurant Locofama, the gallery sells the photographic works of young local artists and then donates a portion of the proceeds to ImpactHK, a charity that supports and empowers Hong Kong’s homeless. Obviously, considering the location of the gallery, food and drink events go hand in hand with the business, too. There are regular wine tastings and other events at the gallery weaving together food, booze and art.

  • Bars and pubs
  • Sports bars
  • Causeway Bay

What makes mini golf more fun? Cocktails and beer, of course. At Causeway Bay’s self-described ‘urban golf course’, the old nine-hole meets the watering hole. The neon-bathed putt-putt course may be the main attraction, but the drinks served in the much more subdued bar aren’t half bad, either. Think Moonzen craft beers, aged whiskies and a smoky spin on the Old Fashioned. After a few cold ones, you won’t even care that you’ve shot ten over par on a mini golf course.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Mong Kok

Hot pot and a massage. Hot pot and a manicure. Neither sounds like a combination that anyone should be lining up to experience and yet here we are. Haidilao isn’t exactly giving you a backrub while you eat, though. With queues so long that people often wait up to two hours to get a table, the restaurant has attempted to stymie irritation by offering complimentary massages, manicures, playing cards and games for those waiting in line. Now that’s great customer service.

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