Hong Kong thrives as an international financial center, a major Asian commerce hub, and a popular tourist destination.
There is plenty of high-end shopping in Hong Kong. This again is the new Elements shopping center in Kowloon.
But the very foundation of Hong Kong’s business success is its entrepreneurial spirit. People here “do” things and they do them quickly, creatively, and effectively, finding ways of achieving success despite barriers. If you walk around the city you can find entrepreneurs on every corner.
Our favorite tailor is Fletcher Jones Custom Tailor on Nathan Road in Kowloon. We met some of the sewing team in the upper levels of Mirador Mansion years ago. Tommy Wong, the entrepreneurial proprietor, made many shirts, sport coats, and a tux for Michael and he made Liz and Meghan matching leopard skirts in one day when Marcia, Kathy, and the California kids visited. We still get Christmas cards from him. He will take measurements over email and send you bespoke clothing if you’re interested.
Just up the street (literally up, a 20% incline!) from our Mid-levels apartment on this trip, is some kind of recycling center.
We’re not sure exactly how this works since the pile seemed to get larger every day, but we also saw cardboard and paper being taken away.
Next to the recycle pile is a small cobbler shop. More accurately it is a cobbler who has built a lean-to against a tree and awaits passersby needing repairs. We needed a repair to a hole in our backpack. Just $20HK (about $2.50 US) and a few minutes later, it was whole.
After all the walking up and down the hills, averaging 10 miles a day, we were happy to take advantage of the massage services offered literally everywhere throughout the city.
We were able to deal with the ongoing situation of the swollen battery in Nancy’s Samsung laptop. When we took it to Best Buy in Reno, the Geek Squad (geeks in name only) said they had never heard of this kind of problem (although a Google search shows it’s very common…AND replacement is covered by the Geek Squad Protection Plan we purchased!)
Best Buy offered to send the computer out and might be able to repair it for $350 in three or four weeks, but they weren’t sure it could be done. Here in Hong Kong we visited one of our favorite spots, the Hennessey Road Computer Centre. Jason Cheung, a self-taught computer repairperson, was able to put in a replacement battery for just over $100 US and had it back in two days.
Outside the computer center an analog repairperson was even faster. We had a watch battery replaced for $20 HK (seems to be the going rate for streetside work) in less than a minute, too quick to get a photo! Just purchasing the battery would have been more than this in the US.
Each sector of the city has a major wet market with meats, fish, plenty of vegetables. But many an entrepreneur recognizes that people may not want to walk more than a few blocks away to get fruit. These hawkers are on almost every corner. This was our go-to lady for mangoes.
Hong Kong is always under construction, whether it’s major rebuilding…
or repairing or preventing landslips.
Even if everything else dried up, there will always be job security in window-washing.
The skyline of Hong Kong has plenty of windows and they all need to be cleaned on a regular basis.