After living in Hong Kong for over six years, I struggle finding gifts to bring to the USA for friends and family. I have done the typical, easy thing too many times. Relatives have cheap cheongsams by the armful not to mention enough tea in their cupboards to last a lifetime. Not that these are not great gifts, they were the first year I was here; but now I have to think out of the box.
Both Shanghai Tang and G.O.D have multiple locations around Hong Kong and both have great souvenirs. Shanghai Tang is on the pricier side for their clothing, home goods, jewelery. The products are well made and distinctive and the packaging is absolutely beautiful. G.O.D. is funky goods of distinction, they have less clothing and more home goods and all of it is definitely more affordable, whimsical and humorous. In the past I have bought silk pajamas for grandma from Shanghai Tang, funky t-shirt for brother in law from G.O.D.
I needed to get shopping done fast this year, and for that my first stop was a Chinese department store in Jordan, Kowloon. Yue Hwa is directly above the Jordan MTR station’s exit A. It is literally a treasure trove of all things Hong Kong. You can go to the various markets and specialized streets and get most of their merchandise but when there is a lot of shopping to be done it is nice to be under one roof. They really have everything from Chinese medicinal herbs to instruments to calligraphy to clothing. This trip, I focused on the toys and bought Chinese checkers and Mahjong sets and then the basement supermarket for traditional candies.
One of my all time favourite gifts is Rose Petal Jam from the Mandarin Cake Shop at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. Beautifully packaged, delicious on toast with tea and completely conveys the opulence of the hotel through smell and taste. It is rare for me not to go home with a jar for someone and it is always loved.
Chops from Chop Street are a great affordable gift that both kids and adults seem to love. They can be made with an English word and the Chinese character translation on an animal but the stamps are fun and the porcelain inkpad which are sold with them make them look very gifty.
HKTDC Design Gallery sells only Hong Kong designed and developed products. The company’s mission is to help Hong Kong designers succeed. It is a noble mission and their products are amazing. They have three locations around Hong Kong even one at the airport for those last minute types. The product range is diverse and brilliant and truly shows the wealth of talent in Hong Kong.
For years, I have been a fan of Recycled. They make bags, wallets electronics cases out of newspapers, helper’s bags, rice sacks basically anything they find that would look cool. It all looks amazing, it is very affordable and it is a family business you want to support because they are lovely people.
Finally Tang Tang Tang Tang was opened a little over a year ago by David Tang owner of Shanghai Tang . The travel line is great and durable and I love my umbrella with the flys all over it. It is a great gift store, more affordable than Shanghai Tang, more modern and much younger in attitude
Have you found any great souvenirs/gifts that I missed? I am hardly finished shopping and would love more suggestions.
Yue Hwa: 301-309 Nathan Road, Jordan, Kowloon, 852 3511 2222, Daily 10am -10pm.
The Mandarin Cake Shop: Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 5 Connaught Road, Central, 852 2825 4008, Monday – Saturday 8am – 8pm, Sunday 8am -7pm.
Chop Street: Man Wa Street between Bonham Strand and Des Voeux Road, Central, Monday – Saturday: 9:30-6:30pm. Chops take 24 hours to customize or there are some generic characters and animals available on the spot.
HKTDC Design Gallery: PMQ, unit HG07, Block B, No. 35 Aberdeen Street, Central 852 2548 1115 , Daily 10am – 9pm.
Recycled: No. 28 Kau U Fong Street, Central 852 2191 6865, Monday – Saturday:10am-8:30pm.
Tang Tang Tang Tang: 66 Johnston Road, Wan Chai, 852 2525 1112, Daily 10:30 am – 8pm