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Your neighbourhood guide to Kennedy Town

By Localiiz 4 July 2020 | Last Updated 23 August 2022

Header image courtesy of @k3lvin.w (via Shutterstock)

Originally published by Catharina Cheung. Last updated by Jianne Soriano.

All the way at the western end of the MTR Island line, Kennedy Town has followed fast on the heels of its neighbour Sai Ying Pun in gentrifying. This has obviously meant an upsurge in coffee shops and restaurants, but the district—not quite as westernised as, say, Sai Ying Pun’s High Street—nevertheless retains much of its local charm, with wholesale markets and local eateries still aplenty. Here are our recommendations for what will definitely become your favourite places to dine, drink, and explore in Kennedy Town.

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Things to see and do

Wheat and Wood

This is a cosy board games café tucked into a little alley across the road from Belcher Bay Park. Aside from a huge variety of games (Catan lovers unite; they’ve got all the extension packs), the café also serves small bites like nachos, mini pizzas, and sandos, as well as a surprisingly decent selection of drinks. The cover charge during peak hours (Fridays, weekends, and holidays) is $100 per person for the first two hours, then $60 for each additional hour, or $100 for unlimited gameplay on Monday to Thursday. Both price brackets even come inclusive of $40 to claim towards food and drink.

Wheat and Wood, Shop 6, G/F, Brilliant Court, 28 Praya, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2399 0433

Photo: k3lvin.w (via Shutterstock)

Sai Wan Swimming Shed

You’ve already seen it plastered all over social media, but going there in person will still hammer home the point that Hong Kong offers some beautiful views. You’ll be able to take some gorgeous photos, but be prepared to wait in line, especially during sunset.

Sai Wan Swimming Shed, Victoria Road, Kennedy Town

Photo: Wpcpey (via Wikimedia Commons)

Kennedy Town Swimming Pool

This stand-out, modern-looking building by the waterfront houses Kennedy Town’s public swimming pools. The indoor pool and jacuzzi are heated so you can still get your laps in come wintertime, and the outdoor pool has amazing views of the harbour from Hong Kong’s west side. They’ve even designed it so the side facing the water is all glass, so swimmers can gaze out directly from the pool. If you want infinity pool vibes on a budget, this public swimming centre is it!

Kennedy Town Swimming Pool, 2 Sai Cheung Street North, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2817 7973

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Photo: Minghong (via Wikimedia Commons)

Lo Pan Temple

This temple is interesting because it is the only temple in Hong Kong dedicated solely to Lo Pan, the patron deity of Chinese builders and contractors. Apart from its unusual jagged roof, Lo Pan Temple is also famous for having the largest number of murals among Hong Kong Island’s temples. Every year on the thirteenth day of the sixth Lunar month, the birthday of Lo Pan is celebrated, and lots of local builders participate in the pilgrimage up the 200 steps from Belcher’s Street, and meals are distributed at the temple.

Lo Pan Temple, 15 Ching Lin Terrace, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2802 2880

Photo: Slowood (via Facebook)

Slowood

One of our favourite zero-waste stores, this bright minimalist shop with floor-to-ceiling windows stocks a massive array of bulk-buy food, organic pantry staples, and plastic-free household, beauty, and lifestyle items.

We love rummaging around in this shop, daydreaming about having a minimalist, zero-waste life, helped along by a home stocked with products from Slowood. If you’re looking to get started with a zero-waste or plastic-free lifestyle, start here! Slowood will offer paper packaging but bring your own containers to enjoy a five percent discount.

Slowood, G/F, The Hudson, 11 Davis Street, Sai Wan

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Shing Fat Coconut & Spices

This old-school brand used to be based in Wan Chai, but moved to its new home in Kennedy Town a couple of years ago. Visit this no-frills shop for all your coconut-related needs, whether they be fresh or grated coconuts, coconut milk, or even coconut meat. It also stocks plenty of spices, sold by the jars or in smaller packets, for very reasonable prices. We think these pack much more of a punch than the mass-produced stuff on supermarket shelves.

Shing Fat Coconut & Spices, 48–49 Praya, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2572 7725

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Where to eat and drink

Photo: @alvyshk (via Instagram)

Alvy’s

Inspired by New York’s many pizza parlours, Alvy’s is a charming pizzeria that incorporates local flavours into its well-curated menu. Its sourdough pizzas are baked in-house in a red-brick oven that’s named “The Big Red Bitch.” A must-try is the Bak Gwei pizza ($148) that’s slathered in Gruyère béchamel sauce that topped with char siu, mozzarella, and a mouth-watering mix of scallions and grated ginger in oil. Also not to be missed is the Yu Kwen Yick fried chicken ($96), made with Hong Kong’s favourite local chilli sauce.

Alvy’s, 8 Holland Street, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2312 2996

Photo: @11westside (via Instagram)

11 Westside

11 Westside is headed up by Mexican chef Esdras Ochoa, who was featured on the Netflix cooking show The Final Table, so you know you’re in for some authentic grub. These guys have some of the best guac around and they make it directly at your table. We also love the tacos, especially the al pastor ($50) with achiote and grilled pineapple roasted pork, the baja fish ($60) with beer batter sole with smoked chilli mayo and shredded cabbage, and the mango shrimp ($60) with garlic butter shrimp, pico de gallo, avocado, mango, and chipotle aioli. Go on Taco Tuesdays, when almost all of the taco options are half-priced.

11 Westside, 1/F, The Hudson, 11 Davis Street, Kennedy Town

Sun Hing

This local institution has been around for approximately six decades now, and is still going strong with a loyal group of regulars. Famous for its unusual opening hours of 3 am to 4 pm, Sun Hing is the perfect place for late-night snacks—or a very early morning breakfast. Its no-frills dim sum is still made by hand every day, a rarity in these days of speedy mass production, which explains why it’s still so well-loved. Expect to have to queue!

Sun Hing, Shop C, G/F, 8 Smithfield Road, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2816 0616

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Photo: Waffling Beans (via Facebook)

Waffling Beans

Drop by this contemporary café bistro for a great pick-me-up coffee, or some Western dishes and Belgian delights. It serves fantastic all-day brunches which all come with signature savoury Liège waffles. Go for the Hitchhike Moo ($92) or the All the Best ($118). If you’ve got more of a sweet tooth, try the Granny Smith ($75) sweet Liège waffle instead.

Waffling Beans, G/F, New Fortune House, 4–8 North Street, Kennedy Town

The Clay Oven Indian Restaurant

These guys serve what could arguably be the best North Indian food on Hong Kong Island. It has a huge array of curries, enough to make your head spin, but if you’ve already got a go-to favourite, The Clay Oven will definitely have it. We love the chicken madras ($88) and the paneer butter masala ($88). Instead of rice, we prefer mopping up the curry with a side of Chennai roti ($36). Should this be too heavy, go for the Kashmiri naan ($42) instead, which has dried fruits and coconut shavings inside for a bit of a lighter and tangier taste.

The Clay Oven Indian Restaurant, G/F, 27–31 Catchick Street, Kennedy Town

Cake Secrets

This little cakery has no in-house seating and is only for takeaways, but is one of our go-to places for cakes. Its beautifully prepared confectionaries are the perfect accompaniment to any birthday or celebration and are not too heavy or sweet. We love the green tea red bean cake ($298) that’s decorated like a bamboo forest, and the mango Napoleon ($390).

Cake Secrets, G/F, 43 Hau Wo Street, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2816 6000

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Smithfield Cooked Food Centre

Like all local cooked food centres, this is a no-frills eatery where you can choose from a wide range of Cantonese favourites and cha chaan teng classics. What sets this cooked food centre apart is that it houses Cheuk Kee, known as one of the “Three Treasures of Sai Wan” and very much a local favourite. Its speciality is congee, of which it has a huge variety, and a plate of cheung fun (腸粉; steamed rice rolls) will only set you back by $15. What a steal.

Cheuk Kee, 2/F, Smithfield Municipal Service Building, 12K Smithfield, Kennedy Town

Café Siam

Hong Kong diners were first introduced to this Thai restaurant when it opened back in 1999. This is one of our few Michelin-recommended Thai eateries, featured in the Bib Gourmand for three consecutive years, so you can be sure the food won’t disappoint. If you’re sceptical of Michelin ratings, know that Café Siam has also been certified by the Royal Thai Government as a provider of authentic Thai cuisine since 2013!

We will always start with the Siam platter ($148) consisting of prawn cakes, spring rolls, satay, and more, before moving on to the fantastic roasted duck in red curry ($149). Fans of seafood should order the tiger prawn pad Thai ($129) or the Thai grilled seabass with chilli-lime sauce ($249) to share. Wash down the heat with a Thai Singha beer ($50), but don’t forget to leave space for the sticky black and white rice with mango ($78) dessert!

Café Siam, G/F, 38 Forbes Street, Kennedy Town | (+852) 2855 0810

Photo: Blend & Grind

Blend & Grind

Blend & Grind in Kennedy Town features a large indoor and outdoor area, trendy rustic-industrial interiors, and a healthy menu. This morning-to-night spot is the perfect place to get your first cuppa of the day to get you started on your daily grind, or a delicious brunch spot for weekend hands.

The menu ranges from açaí bowls ($115) and bagels $100) to the heavier lamb shakshuka ($128) and lighter toasties ($70). Coffeholics will gush over the selection, which includes espresso ($28), cappuccino ($38), and flat white ($38), along with teas ($35), smoothies ($60), and more. If you are on the hunt for a post-work spot, it offers delicious plates for sharing such as bao tacos (starting from $83) and signature cocktails (starting from $98).

Blend & Grind, Town Place, 20 Catchick Street, Kennedy Town | (+852) 6905 4038

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Photo: Creo by Brentwood

Creo by Brentwood

Creo by Brentwood is more than just a coffee shop—it is also a place that inspires people to connect with local artists and sparks a desire for a more sustainable environment for future generations. Championing the 3Cs—craftsmanship, community, and community—this coffee concept worked with local timber recycling craft HK Timberbank, local artist Zoie Lam, and women-owned ceramics studio Lai Chan Kee to promote sustainability, arts, and creativity.

Other than its coffee selection, Creo also has artisanal kombucha ($48) and exclusive lattes (starting from $48), smoothies ($58), and tonics ($58). It sources bread and pastries from local bakeries such as Miam and Alive Eatery. We recommend getting your morning fuel here, such as the avocado egg sourdough toast ($88) or the pesto pasta ($88).

Creo by Brentwood, G/F, 40 Forbes Street, Kennedy Town

Photo: Breeze Bistro

Breeze Bistro

We all love Kennedy Town for its harbour views, pet-friendly cafés, and brunch hangout spots. Now it’s time to add Breeze Bistro to the list—this food and drink destination brings a sumptuous taste of the Mediterranean coast to the promenades of K-Town. Get cosy in its open-air diner, complete with pet-friendly tables next to large open windows.

When it comes to the menu, you will be spoilt for choice. We love the lobster linguine ($280), whole grilled seabass ($360), and the porchetta ($260). For drinks, whet your whistle with the Twilight Collins ($90), a chamomile-infused gin cocktail with dry vermouth and soda. Enjoy happy hour drinks and evening sunsets over the harbour.

Breeze Bistro, 7–8 New Praya, Kennedy Town | (+852) 9020 6210

Winstons Coffee

By day, Winstons fires up its La Marzocco coffee machine and serves up a mean cup of joe, and by night, the lights are dimmed and the drinks become craft beer and wines. Its semi-open location on the street corner is great for people-watching as well. The one thing you’ll definitely need to order is, of course, the espresso martini ($100).

Winstons Coffee, Shop 8, G/F, The Hudson, 11 Davis Street, Kennedy Town

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By Alisa Chau 16 September 2021
Photo: HK Liquor Store

Liquor Store HK

If you’re more of a grab-and-go person when it comes to booze, Liquor Store HK has you covered with its extensive selection of alcohol. It is the largest independent liquor store in the city, with more than 4,000 types of alcoholic products to choose from, and its physical locations stock chilled wines and sake, Kennedy Town included. Grab a cold one and some friends and sip on quality bevvies while enjoying the sunset views across Belcher’s Bay.

HK Liquor Store, Shop B, G/F, 8 Smithfield Road, Kennedy Town

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The Tramline Liquor Co.

This is Kennedy Town’s one-stop location for almost all the alcoholic products you will ever need, with plenty of independent craft beers, wines, and spirits. It also offers Hong Kong’s first and only gin subscription box, so G&T lovers, y’all know where to go.

The Tramline Liquor Co., 78 Catchick Street, Kennedy Town | (+852) 6908 4844

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