Welcome to Hong Kong! Now, what?
You did it! You’re either ready to move house, or you’ve packed your bags, found a flat and now you’re here in Hong Kong. The bad news is, all your belongings are on a literal slow boat and you need a hairdryer (or iron, or teapot, you get the idea) now. So, where do you get, well, just about everything you didn’t bring with you from your home country? We’re here to make things easier for you. Each month we’ll be featuring a “Where Do I Get” article to help you find what you’re looking for. This month, it’s basic things for the home.
Read more: Best Homeware Stores in Hong Kong
General Items, Household Goods and Appliances
JHC (Japan Home Centre)
This little go-to shop is located on most corners in almost every district in Hong Kong. What’s great about JHC is it features what you need, when you need it, and for pretty reasonable prices. For instance, when it gets a bit warmer, the front display will miraculously change to feature anti-humidity products, mothballs, and vacuum-pack bags (to keep your winter clothes in, natch). But if you also need bed linens, towels, hangers, kitchen items, cleaning items, storage items, or even a squeegee (like I did), you’ll find it here.
JHC, various locations across Hong Kong, www.japanhome.com.hk
“Hey, Elizabeth, where to I get an iron?” I asked a friend my first week in our new apartment. Because I literally did not have any electronics (most other countries have a totally different system) – no iron, hairdryer, rice cooker or even a vacuum. She led me to Fortress, where I discovered all my electronic needs. I got a hairdryer, iron, rice cooker (it is Asia, after all), and a vacuum. If you’re not one of the lucky few whose flat or house has appliances, you’ll even find washers, dryers, refrigerators, air-con units, computers, camera equipment, televisions, and even some health and beauty items.
Fortress, various locations across Hong Kong, www.fortress.com.hk/en
Much like Fortress, this store has all sorts of electronic and household items you might need, including washers, dryers, water filters for the kitchen taps, phones, computers, fridges, TVs, hairdryers, kettles, coffee makers, irons and more.
Broadway, various locations across Hong Kong, www.broadway.com.hk
If you’re from the West, chances are you are spoilt by mega stores (or Amazon) that are a one-stop shop for everything you need. So moving to a country where rent is insanely high and shops are insanely small, it’s hard to find places that will have all your needs. Welcome to Wing On. I call this place the “Sears of Hong Kong” because it is similar to the American brand in both style and products. Although not cheap like its US counterpart, you can easily find pretty much anything you need under one roof. The one in Sheung Wan, for instance, has kitchen supplies and home items in the basement floor, cosmetics and jewellery on the ground floor, sheets and linens on another floor, clothing, shoes and bags on another … you get the idea. If you’re even looking to get a filter for your faucet (as we did for ours), you’ll find a great selection here. They also offer online ordering, perfect for oversized items such as vacuums or dehumidifiers.
Wing On, various locations across Hong Kong, www.shop.wingon.hk
This high-end department store has quite a directory of goods including bedding, kitchenware, home appliances and so much more. Don’t get distracted by its Gucci, Tiffany, and upscale designer areas as you head up its escalators to the areas you seek. If you need a mattress, sheets, towels, whatever, head here.
Sogo, various locations across Hong Kong, www.sogo.com.hk
Its sections include Digital, Kitchen, Beauty, Lifestyle, Kids & Toys, which means even simple things such as coffee makers, water filters, cookware and more can be found here. It’s all here under one, erm, site. Can’t be bothered to leave your home? No worries. With a seven-day returns window, just look online and find what you need when you need it.
J Select, various locations across Hong Kong, www.jselect.com
The Swedish megastore is packed almost every day, and it’s no wonder. Everything you need to help you live in tight spaces can be found here. Made-to-order wardrobes, beds, lamps, kitchenware and more. There’s even a tasty café inside for when you need more energy to cruise its massive floors (where the food isn’t half bad). It has home delivery, at-home set-up and an interest-free instalment plan. Shop online (its selection is quite limited) or in-store.
IKEA, various locations across Hong Kong, www.ikea.com/hk/en
Several stores fall under this Japanese brand’s umbrella – Aeon (for groceries as well as pots, pans and other kitchen utensils), Aeon Style (food, fashion and household goods in a mall-type setting), GMS (electronics and electrical appliances), Living Plaza (knickknacks, stationery and other items), Bento Express (bento boxes, of course), Molly Fantasy (an arcade for kid-friendly games), La Bohéme (a bakery), Aeon Body (cosmetics and beauty products), R.O.U. (Japanese groceries, stationery, beauty products and clothing) and Glam Boutique (cosmetics and beauty products, along with natural foods and organic products). Many offer free shipping (with minimum purchase) and home delivery.
Aeon Stores, various locations across Hong Kong, www.aeonstores.com.hk
This Japanese store is a hodgepodge of furniture, stationery, cutlery, clothing, textiles, organisational products, pottery, gardening supplies and so much more. We like just going in and seeing all the cool Japanese products on offer. Stores vary in size (which affects the products sold at each one), so make sure the one you visit has what you’re looking for.
Muji, various locations across Hong Kong, www.muji.com.hk/en
By now you realise just how brilliant and efficient our public transport system is, but did you also know the MTR has speciality shops that will help you find what you need? When we first moved to HK, we didn’t pack any bedding or towels (thanks to temporary housing). So, when we got a permanent place (and our stuff was still months from getting here) we just popped down under to one of the MTR shops and found a bevy of great linens in various sizes (sheet sets come with a duvet cover, bottom sheet and pillow cases) at Uji Bedding in Kennedy Town. Before you go, you can check out the shops finder by category online. There is even an MTR malls finder.
Bath and Bedding
Our favourite retailer has a home store, too! Everything from bedroom (sheets, pillow cases, duvet covers, pillows, protective items and more) , bathroom (towels, bath mats, and accessories), tableware (dishes, cups, chargers, and almost anything else table-related), and decoration(furniture, lamps, rugs, cushions and more) can be found here.
Zara Home, various locations across Hong Kong, www.zarahome.com/hk
Another of our faves, this Swedish brand allows you to shop by room or by product. Like Zara Home, it has pretty much anything you need to get yourself sorted. You can even find some amazing sales here, which is a rarity in HK. We especially love them for bathroom items and cushions.
H&M Home, various locations across Hong Kong, www2.hm.com
See also: Uji Bedding, JHC, IKEA, Aeon, Wing On
Like to cook? You’re not going to let a tiny kitchen (or the fact that your flat didn’t come with an oven) dissuade you! But you were told you to bring only enough cutlery and dishes for two. Now what? This is where to go for your cooking and kitchen needs:
Pantry Magic: Because it’s a kitchen paradise. From pots and pans to weekly cooking classes, you’ll get what you need here.
Pantry Magic, G/F, 25 Lok Ku Road, Central, Hong Kong, www.pantry-magic.com
Shanghai Street: This little area of Kowloon (it goes through Jordan, Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok) is where you can find affordable kitchenware. Stock up on everything from cutting boards to dim sum baskets.
Shanghai Street, Yau Ma Tei (MTR Exit C), Kowloon, Hong Kong
Feather & Bone: This butcher, deli and produce shop (with a darn good restaurant) also has some out-of-the-ordinary items you might be seeking. Need a Tangine pot, for instance? Or a BBQ seasoning marinade injector? Feather & Bone has it.
Feather & Bone, various locations across Hong Kong, www.featherandbone.com.hk
Pricerite: Sassy girls call this the local IKEA. Whether you’re looking for air purifiers, electronics, furniture (including custom furniture), you can find most of what you need at the various Pricerite stores. And if you spend $800 online (not hard to do in HK), it will ship for free to most of HK.
Pricerite, various locations across Hong Kong, www.hongkong.pricerite.com.hk
Great Food Hall: The name doesn’t quite say it all, because it also has kitchenware (including La Creuset and Alluflon), food to go, specialty teas and chocolates and other items.
Great Food Hall, LG 1, Two Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong, www.greatfoodhall.com
See also: Fusion, Taste, and Park N’ Shop and Marketplace (depending on the size of each store, you can find towels, household items – brooms/mops, other cleaning supplies – pots and pans, kitchen and bakeware.)
City’super: Specialty items such as British bakeware, Japanese utensils, stationery, artisanal foods (honey, wine, beer, etc.), home BBQ items, can all be found here. It even offers cooking classes, has an E-magazine and features “Wine and Dine” events.
City’super, various locations across Hong Kong, www.citysuper.com.hk/en
Wellcome: Just like JHC, these grocery stores are on almost every corner in HK. And despite the erroneous spelling, it has a lot to offer! In addition to the normal groceries, if you need batteries, home or office goods (car care, electrical, lighting, gardening tools), and household items (even pet food), this is the place to go.
Wellcome, various locations across Hong Kong, www.wellcome.com.hk
759 Store: Although it’s technically a grocery store, you can still get pots, pans and other items here.
759 Store, various locations across Hong Kong, www.759store.com