Rising High in the City - Quarry Bay “Monster Building”
Known as a “Concrete Jungle”, Hong Kong is famed for its tower-studded cityscape which becomes a popular filming location for Hollywood blockbusters. The Yau Tsim Mong District offers a glimpse of the local lives and a unique city nightscape when the neon signs light up, while the Central District lined with skyscrapers is a perfect location to experience the city’s vibrancy. In recent years, a place in Quarry Bay has become the loved location for filming. People call it the “Monster Building”, which is in fact an architecture complex composed of five old mansions which resembles a walled city.
The “Monster Building” consists of five connecting buildings, namely Oceanic Mansion, Fook Cheong Building, Montane Mansion, Yick Cheong Building and Yick Fat Building, which form an E-shaped architecture complex. This giant architecture on King’s Road resembles a monster and is thus called the “Monster Building” by the locals. You can best feel the density of the city when you stand in the courtyard amid the buildings, which somehow gives you an illusion that you are in a big prison if not looking up at the sky. To get to Montane Mansion, take exit A at Quarry Bay MTR Station and walk along King’s Road towards Tai Koo. After walking pass the junction to Mount Parker, you will reach the entrance to Montane Mansion and Ocenaic Mansion. It only takes 2 to 3 minutes to get there.
Built in the 60s, the “Monster Building” gives us a glimpse of the old Hong Kong style. The city back then was mostly composite buildings – with the upper floors for domestic use while a variety of shops and stores selling dry seafood, hardware and Chinese herbal tea occupy the ground floor. On the day we visited, we could still hear the raspy sound of news and Chinese opera coming from radio or television. Apart from photographing the facades of the “Monster Building”, a stroll around these stores will also bring you lots of photo inspiration. Why not spend your weekend here to feel it yourself?
Although India is not unfamiliar to Hong Kong people, few of us really travel there. Long before the thought of traveling to India really struck me, I was always hoping to see Taj Mahal, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, in person.
Che Kung Temple at Sha Tin is always visited by a large number of devotees who come to worship the god and spin the fan-bladed wheel of fortune for good luck on the third day of the lunar new year. Declared a Grade 2 Historic Building, Che Kung Temple is ornamented with intricate divine creature carvings.