Escaping to 'London' with The Langham Hotel, Hong Kong
Like many of you, I’ve been dreaming of travel. Before COVID, life was so busy that I planned the occasional trip but didn’t read many travel blogs. But nowadays, it’s been so nice to read travel blogs and even lifestyle blogs based in other countries. Maybe it’s difficult to imagine when we’ll get to go to our favourite international destinations again but in the meantime our imaginations can still run wild.
In the middle of my travel blog reading, I saw an announcement for The Langham’s new ‘A Glimpse of London’ staycation package and jumped on it. (Note: I get press releases for staycations all the time and don’t do anything about them, but once in a while I feel like maybe God is saying ‘Go for that one.’ So I fired off an email to my Editor, then to The Langham’s PR, and voila! Thankful for some fun work / R&R.) There have been quite a few Instagram-worthy staycation packages over the past year where the hotel will fill the room with things like balloons and flowers for anniversaries, girls nights and so on. Those haven’t tempted me but the chance to play pretend and ‘travel’ to London? I was definitely up for a little whimsy!
Before we kick off the review, why London? While The Langham is a Hong Kong company, the history of The Langham London dates back to 1865. Apparently it was then one of the largest buildings in London when it opened and today remains a hotspot for travellers. So the hotel knows London (guests, demands, vibe) well.
Before our current period, I'd only done a staycation once before. Hong Kong is blessed to have many hotels that are also so creative. So during the past year, I've been fortunate to try a few staycation packages ranging from $1-4k and think there are great ones to be had at all price ranges. Given the overall quality of The Langham's new staycation package, I think the price of $1,148 for a one-night stay in a Deluxe room which includes the breakfast buffet for two and a 30-minute self-service photo session in the British theme room is a crazy good deal.
The Check-in Process
Seriously, how cute is this check-in process? Upon arriving at the main check-in desk, I was escorted to the London check-in desk where they gave me my boarding pass (as well as the items I actually needed such as keys for my room and the themed rooms). For those craving a trip, it was so fun and satisfying to go through this process again.
In 2014, The Langham Hong Kong completed a US$30 million renovation and upgraded a number of areas including many of the rooms. This includes the Deluxe room we stayed in. It was stylish and very comfortable, luxe in all the right ways and had a very cute faux fireplace. I slept like a baby, journaled on the chaise lounge with the sun streaming through the windows, and took multiple baths.
On the baths, I took one on the first night and soaked while listening to a sermon. The next morning, I took one after breakfast and soaked while worshipping and drinking a latte. Serious. Bliss. My favourite moments of the whole stay.
My only complaints were the pillow menu (the Langham Rose aromatherapy option I ordered didn’t smell like anything at all) and the lack of movies on demand (this has been the case for quite a few hotels - maybe people don’t order movies from hotels anymore?).
The Themed Rooms
Two hotel rooms have been transformed into photo-taking ‘escape’ rooms where you can pretend you’re gallery hopping, standing beside a British phone booth, reading on a park bench and more. Guests get 30-minute sessions (and the rooms are cleaned between guests’ sessions) which I think is plenty of time; I didn’t spend more than 10 minutes in them. The layout makes it easy to snap good photos but let your imagination run wild! Let these photos be a small taster of the spots available - there are quite a few others.
The staycation package comes with access to the breakfast buffet for two at The Food Gallery on the main floor. It’s not super extensive but impressive enough with all the standard must-haves - good coffee; live egg, pancake and noodle sections; fresh juices; hot stations; a large pastry section and more.
For those who want to eat all their meals at The Langham, you can add on an $800 dining credit for essentially $500 (the room fee becomes $1,648 instead of $1,148).
Adding on afternoon tea and British classics like fish and chips or shepherd’s pie definitely adds to the escapist feel. During my stay, I tried the Club access version of Afternoon Tea (go for the Palm Court version if you want to splurge). Excellent scones.
I also had a very decadent in-room dining experience. For three weeks in January, I was avoiding meat and Netflix. So enjoying foie gras with figs ($248), fish and chips ($228), and a mini apple pie ($88) while watching a comedy on my iPad was a treat.
The food was all decent, with prices slightly inflated as would be expected from in-room dining. But I must call out The Langham’s pastry team. Oh my goodness, I had some of the most wonderful bites ever during my stay. The highlight was my basket of earl gray mousse cakes. Never have I ever had such a light, airy, sumptuous bite. I’m not really a dessert person but I ate two in succession. The scones during tea, as mentioned, were excellent; firm yet soft and chewy. The apple pie crust and topping was perfectly crisp and crunchy. And the breakfast pastries, while sadly not warm, were also great. Hopefully I’ll be back before too long and indulge in the full afternoon tea set.
The Other Stuff
Service was warm and attentive all around.
The Langham have been offering fun and whimsical staycation deals all year. If this one excites you, make a booking before 31 March 2021 for stays until 31 March 2021.
8 Peking Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2375 1133
*For Foodie, all prices in HKD