Hong Kong’s SoHo, short for south of Hollywood Road, was one of those love at first sight neighbourhoods for me. The colours and casual pace of commuters downing pints on the way home and a local dogwalker stopped for an espresso on the curb, had me saying, I could live here, over and over. In the 80s and 90s, it was a run down part of Central HK, full of older residents and largely inaccessible to visitors because of the massive staircases and primarily residential streets. In 1993, when the famous mid-levels escalator system was built, it opened the area to revitalization.
There was an influx of ex-pats and younger residents, following the classic gentrification pattern, an area with more affordable rent fills with new people and new businesses follow close behind. Now its rife with restaurants and bars, an eclectic mix of watering holes, pubs and casual dining.
It was a perfect place to stroll around between visits to larger or more site specific destinations. There were plenty of good options for eating, and all of the bars had happy hour deals on pints and bar rail specials. Perched above the sidewalk and inset to the hills, the pub I stopped at was a prime spot for people watching after wandering away the afternoon with my camera, it was perfect to stop for a drink with my laptop and photoshop open.