The Upper House: The Height of Luxury In Hong Kong
It all began with a glass of champagne on top of the world.
Guest Experience Manager, Antoine Périé, had whisked us from our car to the top of the towering Upper House in seconds and now here we were, sipping free champagne at the hotel’s famed Cafe Gray Deluxe and admiring the views of Hong Kong Harbor. It was quite clear that from the start, service goes above and beyond at this Hong Kong power house.
Opened in 2009, The Upper House is architect Andre Fu‘s pride and joy, containing over 350 pieces of art and radiating a sense of understated luxury. It is without doubt a 5-star hotel yet you won’t find yourself nervously tugging at your collar and wondering if you’re somehow out of place—the furnishings and staff make you feel entirely at ease yet somehow still, incredibly important. It’s a hotel that is full of surprises, from the lack of an actual lobby (check in is all done electronically) to the beautifully appointed terrace where you can enjoy creatively crafted cocktails (and you had better).
The location in the Admirality neighborhood on Hong Kong Island is ideal, especially if you’re a business traveler or a visitor who isn’t interested in staying in the overly-touristy Tsim Tsa Shui area on the mainland. The Upper House conveniently sits on top of the Pacific Place shopping center so not only are there a wide array of shops and restaurants at your disposal, there is also a MTR subway stop located beneath the mall, making it easy to get wherever you need to go.
If you prefer to stay in the sexy seclusion of the hotel to eat, and you just might, Cafe Gray Deluxe on the 49th floor has every type of cuisine you could crave. Chef Gray Kunz, the cafe’s namesake, delights in creating modern European classics and signature dishes. The breakfast menu alone is an impressive undertaking and offers guests a multitude of choices including the Upper West and Upper East, both respective takes on traditional Chinese and English breakfasts. Dinner is a whole other affair and you’ll swear it feels like they rolled out a red carpet just for you. Of course, there’s also the option to order room service from your tv because the piece de la resistance is indeed the rooms.
In a city of 7.2 million people, space comes at a premium and Hong Kong is the poster child for cramped apartment living. So imagine our surprise when we opened the door to our room and found a veritable labyrinth of living spaces, all for us. Our room overlooked the harbor and was comprised of 3 separate spaces; the living area, the bedroom and the bathroom, all cordoned off with their own doors and their own thermostats. My personal favorite touch was what they affectionately refer to as their ‘maxi-bar’ because there’s nothing mini about it. The maxi-bar has all the teas, coffee makers, and cutlery you need but the best part is the free snacks and the bounty in the fridge. Jars of sweet and salty snacks like smokehouse almonds and Milano cookies are free for the taking and the fridge is stocked with complimentary coconut water, sodas and Heinekens (yes, you read that right), plus sake and wine for purchase.
The windows throughout the entire suite are remote control operated so you can adjust the lighting with the click of a button from the comfort of your bed. By this point, I probably don’t need to tell you that the bed is everything you would expect and more. Aside from the maxi-bar, there’s only one thing that could make me even happier and I found that in the bathroom of this gorgeous suite. The bathtub, oh the bathtub. I swear I still dream about it. A stand-alone masterpiece that sits off the main vanity area and overlooks the peaks, many introspective moments were spent here and perhaps a few complimentary Heinkens were consumed too. The bath and shower products are made by Ren and a beautiful jar of salts and rosebud oils was replenished daily. I might have stuffed all the extras into my suitcase but shhh, don’t tell.
After a luxurious 4 days, we were reluctantly ready to check out and head for the airport. We were able to check out via the TV, Antoine called us a black car and we were dropped at the airport by the sharpest dressed man I have even seen. The time we spent at The Upper House in Hong Kong will go down in the annals of our travels as one of the nicest hotels we’ve ever stayed at and while it was a costly affair, it was well worth the money. Luxitality tip: If you’re an American Express Platinum member, they often run a 4th night free special via the Fine Hotels & Resorts program, so be sure to check.
There is no question that the Upper House is the height of luxury in Hong Kong and will reign supreme for years to come. We look forward to our next visit and to raiding the maxi-bar once again. You can check TripAdvisor for the latest room rates and offers.