The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, the pearl of Central

On entering the arrival hall of the airport, a shower of warm greetings from a duo of valets stuns me with boards of the familiar fan logo in gold and platinum. Intuitively I speak to Richard, the golden, legendary Mandarin Oriental airport representative. And he presents me the gleeful colleague in a cheery, silver hue suit. “John from the Landmark Mandarin Oriental will look after you today, Dr. Wan. And we all welcome you back home to the Mandarin and the Landmark.”

The electric Mercedes speeds with little noise and soon drives on the Queen’s Road where the harbour and the peak are no longer visible. I alight the state-of-the-art vehicle at the discreet entrance of the Landmark Mandarin Oriental, and finally return to the stylish, tender debutant sibling of the esteemed grande dame, the Mandarin, after a decade.


The Landmark Mandarin Oriental offers a modern and supreme accommodation, with 111 guestrooms and suites refitted by renown decorator Joyce Wang, full array of avant-garde and eco-centric gourmet options led by Richard Ekkebus, an indoor swimming pool, and a luxurious spa center. Positioned along some of the world’s most costly real estates and atop the eponymous mall, the Landmark nestles in the heart of Central, utterly the very heart of the main business and shopping district in Hong Kong. Despite the frenetic location, stepping into the yacht inspired hotel lobby feels akin to a subdued seaside getaway.

The A-list guests don’t stay here for the harbour or the peak view, they opt for the youthful vibes and cosseting hospitality.The nightfall is tender, and I lower the curtains and sheers to unwind and luxuriate fully in the soaking tub. Recollection of my late 20s is crystal clear as I flip through a copy of travelogue by V.S. Naipaul, life can be ripples of perfection from the center of the tub, to the signet bromine color backdrop of the MO Bar, and to the bronze chandeliers of Amber.

Ushered by the entire concierge into the vestibule, I ascend the beaming marble staircase streamlined with veneer wood, and then journey to the fully redesigned heaven upstairs. The swift lift ride is punctuated by a tour to the spa sanctuary where hotel guests can sign up complementary yoga and wellness programs.There is an effortless sense of flow about the Landmark: the intuitive stream of minds from the lobby through to the bar and restaurants; the humming water percolating through the spa; and the wafts of the hotel scent following you wherever you go.


The layout of the L600 Premier remains unaltered. The vanity area wedge cleverly splits the living parlour and the reposing bed chamber. I recall the visual delight and impact when I first saw the circular limestone bathtub enough for two in the center of the vanity cocoon. The onyx texture millennium Adam Tihany urban oasis tranquility is now reincarnated into the pistachio and crema palette feminine Eden crafted by Joyce Wang. And the clever glass cabinet stocked with all sorts of welcome delicacies is undoubtedly the most instagenic feature of the room.

The thoughtful and personal touches, such as a yoga mat in the wardrobe, the Fan of MO medallion chocolate and courtesy bottles of kombucha, and fancy bath ritual amenities, impress me. The housekeeper brings in the Hong Kong style milk tea and further refreshments curated by Richard Ekkebus right before the check-in ends. I cannot help but start nibbling the delish walnut cotton candy and pouring the chilled chai and rewind the fond memory of my first stay in the Landmark.


In-room dining is my go-to solution for a quick dinner, and the futuristic Dim Sum Bento is wheeled in by an artful trolley tailored for the hotel. The Landmark is the kind of hotel where every member of staff bears your name even before arrival. From the welcoming doormen to the invisible housekeepers, to the knowledgeable restaurant staff, the service is nothing short of perfection now and then.

Before the extensive revamp, the trendy Landmark Honkie breakfast could be enjoyed in either Amber or the MO Bar. The former is the restaurant landmark led by the internationally renowned chef Richard Ekkebus, with two Michelin stars, and dedicates to culinary excellence and innovation. Amber is also auspicious for engagement proposals, I have witnessed some happiest unions tied up here.

Now, a delectable petit déjeuner is served at the MO Bar, the bar and all-day dining complex, and Somm, the gastronomic bistro epitomizes sommelier expertise. The organic produces and exquisite pastries guarantee a day of vitality and vivacity. I scan the QR code and shuffle the digital menu, and then opt for a yogurt adorned with fresh figs and chia seeds.

About the rare synergism of the Landmark and the Mandarin to the island hospitality scene, he continues with the insight. “While the Mandarin is our legendary classic with oriental heritage, the Landmark is about a chic, advanced, and sustainable residential luxury. Platinum would be the word, if we really are to be juxtaposed to the timeless and golden Mandarin. The Landmark is a platinum boutique hotel that offers unconventional lifestyle experiences.”

I reckon the exceptional experience as I walk on the street toward the Star Ferry pier. It is all about innovation, fashion, and unfailing love for a lifestyle, the Landmark Mandarin Oriental is well positioned with incomparable confidence and completion among the myriads of luxurious hotels in the world.


Author: Joseph Wan

Photo: Joseph Wan

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