Our ETD for Hong Kong is at 8:25 and since we’ll be coming all the way from Laguna, we left around 4:00 am and arrived at NAIA 3 before 5:00 am.
First we paid the Philippine travel tax of Php1,620 (adults) and the reduced travel tax for children of Php1,010 (50% less, plus Php200.00 processing fee). Then we presented our passports and receipts at the counter, checked in and got our boarding pass, paid the Php750 terminal fee, filled the departure card and proceeded to the immigration counter. I was not asked by the immigration officer and she just stamped my passport, passed through scanner and waited at the gate for boarding time.
Two hours later we landed at HKIA. We went downstairs to take the train that will take us to the other building where immigration is. After falling in line for 10 minutes or so I reached the immigration officer, asked me how many days I was staying and stamped my passport. After immigration, we passed through the ‘No items to declare’ hall and had lunch at Maxim’s.
The food was quite disappointing; a complete meal but was rather bland.
Mine: Fish Fillet, Scrambled Eggs, Macaroni Soup, Bun with Butter and Milk Tea (HKD24)
Mom’s: Congee, Fried Noodles, Lemon Tea Sausage, Roast Chicken (or duck?), Bun with Butter and Milk Tea
After lunch, we bought our Octopus cards from the customer service counter at HKD150 (adult; HKD50 deposit and initial load of HKD100) and HKD70 for child. Then we just followed the arrows pointing to ‘Buses to city’, fell in line at the A21 stop, hopped on the bus and tapped our Octopus card at the scanner near the driver’s seat (HKD33 to TST).
From the airport, it was about 40-45 minutes before we reached the 13th stop, literally walked a few steps and we reached Burlington Arcade. Take note that there’s Burlington A and B inside this building. So if you’re checked in at Taisan, they are on Burlington B. Upon entering the Arcade, turn right when you see Opal Mine and take the lift to 15th floor (last floor).
When we arrived, our rooms were not yet ready so we went to Wing Hoi first to change our USD to HKD. Wing Hoi is located inside Mirador Mansion which is just walking distance from Burlington. Exchange rate that day was 1USD=7.78HKD.
We went back to Taisan and I was a bit disappointed because it seems that their booking is not organized. Even if I reserved 1 twin room (with two single beds) and 1 triple room (1 double and 1 single bed), they gave us one room with one bed (seems like 2 single beds put together) for the 3 of our companions and my mom and I were assigned to the ‘penthouse’. Yes, the room is literally on top of Burlington Arcade. My mom and I had to go through the narrow and very steep stairs to get to the room. The room only has one bed but we were able to fit in it so no big deal and it has a bigger bathroom than the first room they gave our companions. In fairness, the room and bathroom is clean with computer and TV. They also provided towels, hangers, toothpaste, disposable toothbrush and liquid soap and shampoo.
After resting for about an hour, we already decided to go to Nan Lian Garden. TST Station Exit B1 is literally a stone’s throw away from Taisan Burlington. Within a minute, we were already on the train. This is the route we took: from TST station -> got off at Mongkok and changed platform to Kwun Tong line (green line) -> alight at Diamond Hill station. Follow the signs going to Chi Lin Nunnery/Nan Lian Garden and you will see Plaza Hollywood when you exit. Again, follow the signs and you’ll see the entrance of Nan Lian Garden.
Here’s some pictures from Nan Lian: