Yes, hotels can do luxury experiences right

The Sybaritic Single thought he knew Hong Kong and its luxury hotels. Over the years, he had taken residence at The Peninsula Hong Kong, Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, The Island Shangri-La and, whenever on a tight budget, the world’s most glamorous InterContinental Hong Kong.

But now, he has tried something different – The Langham Hong Kong. Most of his posh friends raised their perfectly shaped eyebrows as they assumed the Sybaritic Single had finally been hit by the damn Hong Kong crisis. In all fairness, nobody could expect that the three days at the hotel would become the most exquisite stay in Hong Kong the Sybaritic Single had ever enjoyed.

Upon arrival at the airport, he was greeted by a three-strong yet absolutely discreet welcome committee with a signature Langham pink rose and whisked to his limousine. In-suite check-in followed with sniper-personalised amenities of a properly chilled Dom Pérignon, abundance of raspberries, all sorts of cakes, whole fruit (including his favourite koshu grape) and even his own bespoke macarons, as if from Paris. The Chairman’s Suite was an absolute delight with admirable art adorning its walls and a commendable library with some great volumes on fashion and style. Pristine copies of the latest Tatler and Dior mag were there as well, naturally.

In charge of comfort was Brian Yau, who miraculously managed the hotel’s club lounge (with the most enviable collection of leaf teas) as well as looked after the Sybaritic Single and his caprices 24/7. One morning, the bubbles-lover woke-up in the mood for a four-tier Champagne pyramid for breakfast and a good-morning picture wearing a Langham-pink Dior suit. Within moments Brian Yau orchestrated 19 Champagne flûtes, a professional photographer, an art director and a crew to make it happen, so smoothly as if he managed such wry society requests twice daily. The silly picture turned out perfect. Brian was also there to keep the Sybaritic Single effortless company all the way back to the airport and through its formalities.

If this hotel isn’t pure and thoughtful luxury, tailored for the most eccentric guests, than what is? For the Sybaritic Single, it has become Hong Kong’s best kept secret.


Sybaritic Single, who has been writing under this nom de plume for some years, is in fact Dubai-based Oleg Kafarov. As well as touring lesser-known parts of Cuba by bicycle and spending a recent New Year at Kabul’s best hotel – always with his beloved OK-initialled Louis Vuitton valise to hand – he knows all the world’s so-called top luxury hotels.  He has a monthly column in Condé Nast Traveller @olegkafarov

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