There are many service providers that will be able to set you up a HK company or BVI or Seychelles company is popular now. Setting up the company is easy and anyone can do that for you, or even yourself if you go to companies house and fill in forms, but better to get a service provider to do it...You just need your passport and proof of address either utility bill or bank statement. Cost is about 14k hkd for HK company and slightly less for BVI or Seychelles.
What the service provider won't provide you is a company bank account opening, anyone that says they can open one for you is talking BS, all they will do is set up the bank interview for you which anyone can do anyway. Forget about HSBC and Hang Seng and Standard, they are shit anyway. Try your luck with BOC, DBS, BEA, CCB and the other less prominent ones. I've helped associates set up in DBS and CCB and BOC with very few problems.
Make sure you have a decent set of business documents. Business plans, orders, sales receipts, invoices ect etc will all help your cause. A company brochure or website will also help. Chinese is all about how you look and the paper you have, they don't care if you have a real business or not since I've done so many fake websites and brochures for people who simply want a business bank account. Be creative with your docs and invoices. And also exaggerate like you would in a job interview.
So I am afraid your experience from three years ago won't hold up in present days and with two Americans as UBO's you may prepare yourself to be in trouble when they decide to do an enhanced periodic KYC review.
I work for a service provider and it is true that it's very difficult now to open accounts at your retail banks.
I do have contacts at two private banks that are still very much open for business but it really depends on the complexity of the structure at one of them and the minimum balance to be kept at the other, in deposits or investments (it's not a small amount)