Hong Kong's Ritz-Carlton: A Hotel with Altitude

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The Ritz-Carlton


If you've taken in the views from Hong Kong's famous Victoria Peak, there's a new aerie from which to catch vistas just as vertiginous — and that's the newly opened Ritz-Carlton. Billed, with the industry's love of superlatives, as the highest hotel in the world, it is perched between levels 102 and 118 at the ICC tower in West Kowloon, sitting comfortably atop 15,000 office workers, a train station (that includes a direct link to the airport) and an upscale shopping mall.

Given all that, the hotel can expect floods of casual sightseers popping in for tea and a few quick photos. But staying guests will be able to properly luxuriate in the stunning views available from the 312 rooms — appointed in a contemporary style with delicate Asian overtones. Views from the suites are made all the more engrossing by the telescopes that the management thoughtfully provides. Five-star amenities (Blu-ray DVD players, iPod docking stations, Nespresso coffee machines) come as standard in all accommodations, which range from the 50-sq-m regular rooms up through seven categories of suite, the largest being the 365-sq-m Ritz-Carlton suite on level 117.

Assuming the heights haven't made you queasy, you can head for a meal in the hotel's lavish Italian restaurant, Tosca, or at the slightly more sedate Chinese restaurant Tin Lung Heen. Both offer corner VIP rooms that will be a hit with status-conscious diners. If that's you, book early, or the legions of investment bankers who work on the floors below will beat you to them.

Finally, if vertigo hasn't overwhelmed you, head for a digestif at Ozone, the 118th-floor bar. At 490 m, its alfresco terrace isn't much lower than Victoria Peak's viewing platform — but it's considerably more comfortable.