Location, location, location. Property-obsessed Hong Kongers understand this universal real estate mantra all too well. Where you choose to reside in the city will be a defining aspect of your time here, influencing everything from your monthly living expenses to how you are perceived by your peers and co-workers.
If your employer is putting you up in a company-owned property, then where you will stay in Hong Kong is predetermined. But if you are tasked with finding your own accommodation, you will soon realize that each district and neighborhood in the city is unique, and that each can offer you a distinctly different living experience and environment.
Whether you love the city or the suburbs; whether you want to be within walking distance of Hong Kong’s best beaches or its best bars, a bit of research will reveal the right neighborhood for you.
There are three main geographical sections of the city of Hong Kong: Hong Kong Island, Kowloon peninsula across the harbor and the New Territories to the north of Kowloon. In addition to these three main sections are several outlying islands to the south and west of Hong Kong Island, including Lantau (where the airport is located), Cheung Chau and Lamma.
Although the expat community has traditionally preferred to live on Hong Kong Island, there is a growing trend of people moving to Kowloon, the New Territories and outlying islands as the ever-expanding public transportation system makes commuting much easier. Far-flung places like Sai Kung, Tai Po, Lamma Island and Lantau – once difficult to reach – are becoming increasingly popular with expat families thanks to their wholesome environments and availability of good schools.