Header image courtesy of @kyying2 (OpenRice)
In the next instalment of our hidden cafés series, we’re deep-diving into the Yau Tsim Mong District to reveal the best cafés in Yau Ma Tei, and Tsim Sha Tsui, and Mong Kok. As some of Hong Kong’s most popular neighbourhoods, Yau Tsim Mong is filled with shops and attractions for tourists and locals alike. Here are our top picks of hidden cafés around these areas—let us know which one is your favourite! And don’t forget to explore hidden cafés around western New Territories, too.
We’ll let you in on a little secret: Located on the twenty-third floor of Tung Nam Lou Hotel, Room68 is a secret café that lets you take in unspoiled views of the impressive Hong Kong skyline. With a distinct vintage vibe, from the decorations to the tables and stools used, you can find posters from Hong Kong’s golden age of films as well as gilded porcelain plates lining the windows. Funnily enough, they actually specialise in Chinese teas and traditional afternoon tea snacks, though coffee fanatics can still opt for a caffeine fix with expertly-made filtered coffees.
Room68, 23/F, Tung Nam Lou Hotel, 68 Portland Street, Yau Ma Tei | (+852) 3708 7768
Bunches of dried flowers and potted plants make up most of the elaborate design at Café Zi, not to mention branches from their indoor tree that hang over the entrance of the café. With thin bar stools lined up against the window, it’s a great spot to show off those fabulous long legs or get your friend to work the camera angles. The chalkboards and readily available note pads up for grabs on the counter also signal that it is time to bring out your inner artist and draw a doodle for the shop. The woven baskets, wooden tables, and stools will remind you of mini bookshop cafés hidden in Taipei alleyways, where you can spend the day reading, drinking, or taking oodles of Insta-worthy pictures.
Café Zi, G/F, 8 Hill Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2778 1629
If you’re on the hunt for a place that’s work-friendly and lets you sit around for as long as you want, N1 Coffee & Co should be your next stop. This quiet café is a great place to hunker down and clear your inbox or catch up with friends, and the rustic industrial décor matches surprisingly well with their pale green colour palette. A Cappuccino ($36) is a great way to test out their coffee, and if you have confidence in their baristas, you should opt for something from their Barista Choice menu. Wonder what Magic ($42) tastes like? Try it on your next visit to N1 Coffee & Co.
N1 Coffee & Co, Shop G, 34 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 3568 4726
Another secret upstairs café, Grassman’s running décor theme is grass, just as their name suggests! And when we say grass, we mean that half of the sitting area is covered in green astroturf, with low tables and cushions placed out for you to sit as if you’re engaged in an impromptu picnic. If you don’t like crossing your legs for an extended period of time (it can get tiring, after all), you can always opt for the normal wooden tables that also get their fair share of sunlight. Have a full-blown meal here with their all-day dining menu, or chill out with a simple, cold Hazelnut Latte ($45) and pretend as if you’re out in the wild—you can go as far as your imagination takes you!
Grassman, 9/F, The Lamma Tower, 12–12A Hau Fook Street, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 6693 2896
This hidden café never really gets packed, making it a wonderful place to wind down despite the hustle and bustle of Tsim Sha Tsui. Additionally, the friendly baristas here are more than happy to introduce you to different types of coffees. Number 9 Coffee’s speciality is, of course, the Aeropress coffee, which we would recommend trying if you haven’t before. There are actually only a few places offering it in Hong Kong because of its complicated process, but the owner specifically decided to use it on account of its novel nature and superior flavour. Contrary to stereotype, the Cold Brew ($60) made using the Aeropress method is surprisingly clear and sweet. It’s up to you to decide whether you’re going to be a fan of the Aeropress!
Number 9 Coffee, Shop 9, G/F, Hilton Towers, 96 Granville Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2796 2286
“What on earth could be more luxurious than a sofa, a book, and a cup of coffee?” That’s the first thing you see when you are waiting to order your coffee at Courage Eighteen and we are very inclined to agree. The owner designed the storefront when he was 18, thus the name Courage Eighteen. Try out his courage and efforts by ordering a Piccolo ($32) or Icedrip ($45) to go with one of their famous bagels, we heard that the Bagel with Avocado ($68) is a popular choice!
Courage Eighteen, G/F, Shop 55, Houston Centre, 63 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2682 0665
This particular café is hidden inside a clothing store, which is, in turn, hidden inside a shopping mall—it seems like a pretty well-kept secret to us! Deus Café can be found inside the I.T Orange Forest on the second floor of Tsim Sha Tsui’s THE ONE. We didn't expect to find the café in the middle of our shopping trip, but it’s an ingenious tactic to keep us browsing inside the store! Once your feet have had enough of walking around and trying on clothes, pull up a chair for a slice of open-face toast from their menu or a quick Macchiato ($25) to boost your caffeine levels.
Deus Café, I.T Orange Forest, 2/F, THE ONE, 100 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2815 2390
Page 148 is a boutique hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui, and although most people wouldn’t really consider going inside a hotel for a hidden café, you definitely don’t want to miss out on Page Common. The entrance is carved into the wall of the hotel and a large sharing table is the centrepiece of the café. Page Common might seem a bit plain (or common—pun intended) at first glance, but the secrets are actually embedded within their menu. The Homemade Tiramisu ($48) is dubbed by local food bloggers as one of the best in town, and their Hong Kong-style Scrambled Eggs with Corned Beef Toast ($58) is sold out almost everyday. There is an extensive menu for hand-drip coffees as well, so go ahead and pick the perfect one for you!
Page Common, G/F, Page 148, 148 Austin Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 3844 8899
You may know Off-White as a luxury streetwear brand, but do you know about their café hidden inside their Harbour City store? Doused in light blue and silver tones, this café gives us futuristic vibes that go perfectly with their fashion items and accessories. That’s right—you can sip away at your coffee while window-shopping Off-White’s signature bags and shoes. They also offer an all-day menu ranging from Parma Ham Pizza ($148) to Sashimi Rice ($128). Feeling thirsty? We would probably order one of their signature Milkshakes ($48) and pose for a good picture while slurping it down!
Café @ Off-White, Shop G301, G/F, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, 25 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2705 9340
Infuse is another hidden café that you may have to go out of your way for, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find out where it’s located. Somewhere not close and not that far... well, would you have guessed K11 Atelier? While K11 Atelier is known to many as a luxury office building and living complex all in one, you would not expect to walk into the building for a casual cup of coffee. All the more reason to explore Infuse, an open-plan café that blends perfectly with the building’s upscale design. If you’re lost, just look for the massive tree that marks the café’s entrance!
Infuse, G/F, K11 Atelier, Victoria Dockside, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 3619 1150
Rooftops are Hongkonger’s favourite hang-out spots, so you can bet that we’re the first ones through the door when someone calls us up to say that they’ve discovered a hidden rooftop café in Mong Kok! You can find Poach on the top floor of 618 Shanghai, a revitalised art mall in the Yau Tsim Mong District. The outdoor terrace café artfully combines Chinese and Japanese aesthetics, with tilework, neon signs, and graffiti lining the walls. When at Poach, you’ll want to order the signature Sencha Earl-Grey Pancakes ($85), which also happens to be the most popular dish of their sister shop, 3rd Space.
Poach, Rooftop, 618 Shanghai Street, Mong Kok | (+852) 9220 9785
If you’re looking for a slice of serenity in the fast-paced streets of Prince Edward, Feed Your Nerves is a nice place to catch your breath. This peaceful, zen café doubles as a lifestyle shop as well, not to mention an Instagrammable spot worthy of your aesthetic feed. Go for an Iced Mocha ($48) while gazing at their several display racks of pottery, ceramics, and beautiful dried flower bundles, or try out their intensive food menu filled with Japanese-inspired dishes.
Feed Your Nerves, G/F, 434 Portland Street, Prince Edward
Tea is all about attitude, and that’s what Atteatude is all about. This hidden tea shop is actually an oasis for tea lovers to DIY their own orders. What this means is that you have an opportunity to familiarise yourself with different types of tea, pick a flavour as well as a cup to drink with, then watch the staff demonstrate the brewing process before you get to try your hand at making the tea. The prices here are a little different than what you might be used to: For the first hour of your visit, you pay $48, then for every 30 minutes after that, you are charged an extra $15. If there are special teas you would like to try, feel free to ask the staff, who will let you know the supplementary charges for each brand of tea.
Atteatude, Room H, 1/F, Mong Kok Building, 97 Mong Kok Road, Mong Kok | (+852) 6275 7702
Coffeezine is a secret, hole-in-the-wall café hidden in Mong Kok that takes some effort to find. While their drinks menu is very straightforward, we appreciate that it is on the cheaper side. The staff here have a real passion for coffee, willingly giving their recommendations on drinks. In fact, they were the ones who advised us that if we are ordering a coffee to go, it is always best to opt for a Flat White ($35) instead of a Cappuccino ($32): Since there is less foam in a flat white, it won’t lose its heat as quickly as a cappuccino does!
Coffeezine, Shop 5A, G/F, Yan On Building, 1 Kwong Wa Street, Mong Kok
Upstairs cafés are always an exciting adventure for us. With thoughtful and creative interior design, they can really give off an illusion of a completely different space, which is exactly what Go Dutch Café brings to us—a slice of the Netherlands in the heart of Mong Kok! There are tulips and mini windmills all across the café, sprinkling the essence of Dutch culture everywhere. In the middle of the café is a massive chandelier surrounded by travel magazines, but if you don’t feel like reading, there is also a massive shelf stuffed with board games for you to pass the time while you sip your coffee.
Go Dutch Café, 10/F, Dundas Square, 43H Dundas Street, Mong Kok | (+852) 3542 5222
Being lazy is a true art form, and here’s a café that celebrates it! 90s Lazy is a hidden café in Mong Kok endeavouring to help everyone be their absolute laziest and they have created the perfect atmosphere for patrons to simply lounge around with a cup of coffee. If you’re up for chewing something in your lazy state, there’s an all-day dining menu to order from, offering dishes like the creatively-named Whatever ($50) or the I Don’t Care ($58) breakfast combo. But eating food means that we will have to lift a fork and knife, so maybe a Passionfruit Smoothie ($35) is good enough for us!
90s Lazy, Shop 401, 4/F, Sincere House, 83 Argyle Street, Mong Kok | (+852) 6744 6315