Hong Kong: TWG Tea Room

For my last afternoon in Hong Kong I wanted a special treat. This whole weekend was a foodie paradise, and my last real meal was a great indulgence.

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TWG(The Wellness Group) Tea is located in the International Finance Center(I’m sure my spelling of that word is killing some people), which is right next to Victoria Harbour. While there’s no great view of the harbour, the interior is pretty enough to distract. So many shiny containers!

In fact, it was a bit too nice for my backpackers wardrobe; but I shrugged it off and enjoyed myself. The waiters could think me a bit grubby if they wanted to. And to be fair, they were extremely polite to me. The only one doing the judging was myself. But who cares? I was here for tea and sugar!

Now, I have to admit I was calling this place Twinings the whole time I was there. It’s on my old posts if you don’t believe me. Tra, la, la. Space case moment! Nothing a little google searching can’t remedy.

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When you are seated, the wait staff hand you a menu, a tea listing, and a booklet with a description of each tea. The tea menu is extensive. I kept waffling between one option or another because it was just too hard to pick one.

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Tea Menu

Eventually, I settle on the French Earl Grey, although all of the Earl Grey’s were tempting.

It was too early for the tea time menu(I had to be back at the hostel by 4:30) and too late for breakfast; but the dessert  and all day menu options were more than enough. The Eggs Benedict looked good, but I had that for lunch the day before. The Dessert options looked so good!

I chose the Choux au The, probably the richest thing on the menu.

According to the menu: “Ethereal composition of light and airy choux pastry filled with three homemade ice creams infused with Caramel Tea, Vanilla Bourbon Tea, and Singapore Breakfast Tea, then enrobed in warm chocolate sauce.”

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Oh, you can bet I ate that all. And what the menu fails to mention is that the Choux au The also comes with fresh raspberries and strawberries, a square of fantastically dark chocolate, a dusting of cocoa powder, and….popping candy! Just like the ‘Pop Rocks’ I remember from kid days.

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I sat for a good hour and a half just enjoying the atmosphere and my perfect meal. And if you do wind up at a TWG, the vanilla bourbon tea ice cream was hands down my favorite. So yummy!

You might guess I’d have a sugar high after this meal. Oh, just a smidge. There’s a giant escalator that covers 800 meters and goes up to an elevation of 135 meters. Well, I took the adjoining stairs, twitching all the way.

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Hong Kong Weekend

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Oh, Hong Kong. How do I love thee? Let me go into way too much detail about it.

The flight from Taipei to Hong Kong is around two and a half hours long. Except for a small delay due to the rain(this whole trip seems to be themed on rain and sleep deprivation!), it was uneventful. Uneventful is always my preferred method of travel by airplane. Excitement on a plane means screaming babies and turbulence.

The rain was coming down hard and the sun had set by the time I set foot in the airport. Again, carrying the one bag made my life so easy here. I skipped luggage and went straight for the transportation card counter. Hong Kong uses the Octopus card for transportation, as well as pay for goods at many shops.

I should have mentioned it earlier, but Taiwan has a similar card. You can pick one up from any convenience store or within the subway stations. The Octopus card at the airport has a $50 HKD deposit. You can return it when you leave Hong Kong for the deposit fee.

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We’re not in Kansas anymore. The old British influence is still felt in Hong Kong. Notice the spelling.

At this point, I still hadn’t fallen in love with Hong Kong. I mean, it’s an airport. There isn’t an airport in the world that can make you love a city. I was meeting a friend, Michelle, which made this trip very exciting! We were staying at the same hostel,so I caught the bus over to Homy Inn North Point. For anyone visiting Hong Kong, I cannot recommend this place enough! You can get a two bed shared room with a bathroom for a reasonable rate. The location is awesome, being close to the subway, trams, and many great sights in Hong Kong.

Once I had my Octopus card, it was time to catch the bus to North Point. The buses are double decker, but I stayed on the lower deck to have a better view and in case I had to dash at my stop. There’s also a monitor to watch for how many stops are left on the route.

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Typical Hong Kong bus. Source: wikipedia

The ride to North Point was my first awe inspiring moment in Hong Kong. While it was raining, just like Taiwan, Hong Kong suits the rain. Anyone who plays the game Bioshock will understand that my first views reminded me of Rapture. Being a fan of the game, I was very happy to see its real life replica.

When I arrived at the hostel, Michelle was there waiting. It was so nice to see an old friend! We met at the airport on our first day in Korea. I hadn’t seen her in six months, so it was a wonderful reunion!

After I had dropped off my bags, Michelle and I met up with her Chinese friend, Jackie. The three of us headed to a vegetarian Chinese restaurant, which was a first for me. Michelle had been the night before, and had only good things to say about the food.

My expectations based on the rave review held up! The soup was amazing, as were the coconut steamed buns, and the fritters, which managed to taste just like meat! All of this was finished off by pot after pot of green tea.

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