Hometown Debrief: Moustache in Hong Kong
by Alex Daye
Some cities make you work hard to find their creative enclaves. But once you stumble upon that telling gem — a fine coffee or meticulously curated shop — it's like you've cracked some secret artisanal code. Suddenly everyone you meet is a worldly, well-dressed, lit-referencing obsessive (in the very best way). The men of Moustache, Hong Kong's wittiest men's shop, are of the Renaissance variety: They make bespoke suits, collect Old World ephemera, write a local travel guide, and generally keep their finger on the pulse of all things hip and happening in HK. Alex Daye keeps us in the loop.
Local coffee shop/breakfast spot: Libertine, a big new brasserie on Aberdeen Street.We bring our dog Waffles to work, and it's one of the few spots in town with outdoor tables. It doesn't hurt that it's right across the street from our shop.
Where you go when you need inspiration: A good bookshop. Unfortunately, Hong Kong is not exactly blessed with many of them. A note to foreign booksellers: We need you!
Best spot for people-watching: Classified, a small but very popular café on Hollywood Road.
Your office is located: On the border between Sheung Wan and Central.
You wish your office was located: In our bedroom.
Your preferred mode of travel around the city: For the romance of Hong Kong, if not for the speed, nothing beats the taking the tram.
The route for your favorite city joy ride? Lugard Road on the Peak, an old Victorian Promenade with unparalleled views of the city.
Where do you go when you want to be in the middle of it all? Causeway Bay, Hong Kong's answer to the Shibuya crossing.
Where do you go when you need an escape? Long Ke Wan, a white sand, clearwater beach towards the China border. Feels like Thailand.
Most underrated thing in your city: I'd have to say the cultural scene. Clearly the government could do more besides real estate development to foster creativity and a more dynamic, welcoming atmosphere for visiting talent. But the private sector is doing an increasingly good job in their stead.
Most overrated thing in your city: The Peak Tram. Don't do it!
Best place for an afternoon coffee? Barista Jam on Bonham Strand.
Favorite local shops? I love all the old Chinese hardware shops. They sell everything from bamboo dog carriers to canvas sneakers to tea thermoses — all for a song. I defy you to leave Hip Wo Hardware on Hollywood Road without a bag full of something you didn't even know you needed.
You dream about your meal at: Yin Yang in Wan Chai.
Favorite local institution:The Star Ferry.
The best thing about your neighborhood, Sheung Wan, is the nice mix of old and new. And the low-rise buildings.
Current local buzz word: Organic. Almost never used correctly.
Best book or movie based in your fair city? In the Mood for Love. The reason we moved to Hong Kong.
Best way to pass an evening: Salon No. 10 on Arbuthnot Road. The most eccentric bar in Hong Kong.
No trip to Hong Kong is complete without a hike on one of Hong Kong's many beautiful mountain trails.
PLAN YOUR TRIP
Before you dive into the South China Sea, check out our guide to Hong Kong.
See all locations mentioned in this story. (Google Maps)