There’s a feeling of 1920s New York elegance that pervades the St. Regis Hong Kong. From the butler service to the marble-clad lobbies, it’s a celebration of a bygone era that insists on high-touch, five-star service as the bare minimum, contrasting starkly with the fast-paced, tech-savvy city around it. With a focus on pampering and curated services, Compare Retreats Chief Content Officer Rebecca Cairns checks into the hotel for a restorative urban staycation.
In the centre of Wan Chai district on Hong Kong Island, St. Regis Hong Kong is in a prime spot for weekend adventures and business travellers alike. Surrounded by skyscrapers, this is very much a city immersion—which, in spite of its hyper-urban location, feels tranquil and removed.
New York-Chic Hotel
Channelling 1920s New York, Hong Kong interior designer André Fu creates a contemporary minimalist aesthetic that blends natural light and clean lines with traditional, elegant materials like marble and bronze.
Infusing inspirations from filmmaker Wong Kar-wai, Fu’s design bridges East and West in a hotel that subtly pays homage to both its present location and New York origins, where the flagship St. Regis was opened in 1904.
The vertical height of the entrance lobby, second-floor reception and porte cochère—note the impressive fortress-like front door—are reminiscent of art deco New York architecture the city is famed for.
Guests check-in at the reception lobby on the second floor, although once you and your booking are verified, check-in is completed in your room with the St. Regis’ signature butler service. Available 24 hours a day, and providing services from clothes pressing to running bubble baths, the butler service is what sets St. Regis Hong Kong apart from other luxury urban hotels: it’s a feeling of truly being spoilt you won’t find elsewhere.
The reception lobby opens into the Drawing Room and St. Regis Bar, while in-house restaurant Rùn sits separated at the back, and L’Envol is up a sweeping marble staircase on the third floor. The Athletic Club—outdoor pool, state-of-the-art gym and spa—are located on the seventh floor.
Striking in design, the rooms and suites at St. Regis contrast a soft palette of neutral tones with feature walls and highlight soft furnishings: in the St. Regis Suite I stayed in, bold tangerine accentuated feature walls, notebooks and cushion covers. Generously sized and light-filled, especially for an urban property, the suites boast ample living space for meetings and entertaining guests, with plush sofa and armchairs, dining table, a well-stocked bar and separate loo.
Through a pair of sliding doors, the bedroom space is large, with a king-size double bed that boasts possibly one of Hong Kong’s most comfortable mattresses, a writing desk, armchair and large flat-screen television.
For bath fanatics, the ensuite bathroom space of the St. Regis won’t disappoint: one of the largest bathroom suites of any hotel or resort I’ve visited, the ensuite features two separate walk-in-wardrobe dressing room spaces, a separate toilet and rain shower, double sinks in a marble countertop, and a large stone stand-alone bathtub. Fluffy white towels, robes, and ultra-soft slippers are all provided along with Remède amenities.
Striking in design, the rooms and suites at St. Regis contrast a soft palette of neutral tones with feature walls and highlight soft furnishings… bold tangerine accentuated feature walls, notebooks and cushion covers.
Employing a variety of high-tech tricks, the curtains, blinds and lights are all operated from control panels by the bed and doors, and the room uses motion sensors to close curtains and switch off lights when you’re out, automatically reopening curtains when you come back: a neat energy-saving trick.
Contemporary Chinese Dining
St. Regis Hong Kong has three in-house dining venues: the French fine-dining restaurant L’Envol, contemporary Chinese fine-dining at Rùn, and casual all-day dining at the Drawing Room, including afternoon tea.
If you believe breakfast is the most important meal of the day, then the semi-buffet breakfast served up for hotel guests at Rùn will not disappoint. Choose from a wide variety of fruits and grains, milk and plant-based alternatives, fruit juices, cured meats and cheese, along with fresh-baked breads and pastries.
The menu is comprehensive, and the ‘healthy’ set guides diet-conscious diners straight to lighter dishes: raspberry and banana smoothie bowls, and steamed egg-white omelettes stuffed with roasted cherry tomatoes. Everything was delicious, and the buffet selection was generous without sacrificing on quality or freshness: the smoked salmon with red onion, large caper berries and lemon creme fraiche is a must.
Come evening, Rùn offers a contemporary fine-dining experience with a menu grounded in traditional Chinese cuisine, paying specific homage to the hotel’s Cantonese base. The eight-course Chef Hung’s Specialities Menu gives diners a taste of everything on offer at the restaurant, from delicately steamed fish dashed in soy sauce to double-boiled abalone in a coconut broth: a refreshing and ultra-hydrating twist on a classic Chinese ingredient, with a sprinkling of superfood goji berries for good measure. The menu isn’t actively trying to be healthy, but uses high-quality ingredients and thoughtful portioning to deliver an indulgent but balanced meal. While vegetarian options were available on the menu, this is definitely a dining experience more suited to those with a love of meat and seafood.
What was refreshing about the signature menu at Rùn was its suggested accompaniment of tea-tastings rather than wine. The hotel, in general, was very accommodating to non-drinkers with plenty of mocktail options and delicious tea options. This isn’t somewhere you’re going to come if you’re looking to enforce a strict diet or lose weight, but if what you’re seeking is a little self-care then St. Regis offers high-quality dining experiences without the guilt.
Bespoke Wellness Offerings
St. Regis Hong Kong doesn’t currently offer any set wellness retreat programmes, but those looking to do a DIY staycation there’s plenty of activities to keep you preoccupied: on my staycation experience, I did a personal training session and bespoke massage in the spa.
Cherry, the Athletic Club’s resident personal trainer, put me through my paces in an hour of mixed HIIT cardio and strength training. She helped with stretches to ease my calf muscles (which are eternally sore from running) and gave me directions on moves that I could incorporate into my daily routine. The strength-training exercises we did—a mix of balance and stabilising exercises, mixed with some powerful jumps and lifts—didn’t feel too taxing at the time, but I could feel the effects the next day. Using minimal equipment, they were all moves I was able to take away with me, and Cherry’s quick and accurate analysis of my physical condition and fitness needs showed her decades of experience as a personal trainer.
The following morning, I checked into the spa for a well-deserved massage: St. Regis Hong Kong has one treatment room where they offer customisable treatments. My masseuse, Yuri, helped me choose different scents to make my own bespoke aromatherapy oil, and having spoken with Cherry about my tight muscles, made recommendations to include juniper to help detoxification of built-up lactic acid. With luxuriously soft massage table linens by Sposh Spa, a high-quality microfibre, the massage was incredibly relaxing. Yuri’s touch ranging from deep to work on my knots and tight spots, to gentle and relaxing, and the bespoke aromatherapy scent was a nice personal touch.
Whatever you’re doing at St. Regis, make sure that you give yourself time for a lie-in—the bed was one of the comfiest I’ve ever slept in.
Like others in the St. Regis group, the hotel welcomes local residents to join its St. Regis Athletic Club membership, where guests can take advantage of the outdoor pool and large gym. Other wellness activities in or around the hotel include the rooftop pool and running opportunities at the nearby Harbourfront and Tamar Park, though the real reason you’re at St. Regis is probably more for the self-care and relaxation—and they have that in buckets.
Expect to feel utterly pampered. This quick staycation escape was convenient but also felt completely removed from the urban setting that was fatiguing me so much. The butler service and attentiveness of all the staff were beyond parallel, and I’ve never felt so looked-after or spoilt: from making my morning coffee to requesting different pillows on the sleep menu, there was nothing too big or small.
Whatever you’re doing at St. Regis, make sure that you give yourself time for a lie-in. The bed was one of the comfiest I’ve ever slept in: it was the best night’s sleep I’ve had in a while, and once nestled in I was reluctant to get out, giving my alarm a firm snooze.
Order your morning coffees from the butler concierge team. There’s a coffee machine in your room, but the Butler who showed me to my suite—Jimmy—was quick to tell me that I didn’t have to use it as one of the services provided by the butler concierge was tea and coffee brought to your room, 24/7, which he assured me was of better quality than the Nespresso machine. The coffee made by the Butler team was incredible: I wish I was staying longer just so I could wake up to that every morning.
The Bloody Mary’s are a St. Regis special, so if you have time to try them it’s well worth it. Invented in the flagship St. Regis King Cole Bar in the 1930s, each location now does a location-specific twist, so make sure to try the Hong Kong ‘Canto Mary’.