Expat communities?

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  1. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by ontheroad:
    I find this happening more and more on this forum, people asking for advice and getting an earful instead. People are going to be afraid to ask anything!
    Interesting to see some of the additional comments that are being made, and the fact that the direction of the thread has not really been addressed (apart from a couple of people's earlier postings - thanks). I hope that unlike Singapore, HK isn't so opinionated as it sounds, but I guess I'll find out along the way.

    In my discoveries of places that are now my short list, I have a few more questions which have come to mind. We have a 4 year old boy who is attending kindergarten here in Australia, and are really looking to put him into the Australian International School, or at least one with a majority of British-type teaching / outcomes.

    Two locations are on the list (Google Earth and other HK mapping sites are great!):

    + Kowloon Tong: This is close to the Aussie school and looks like the most preferable from an ease of getting our boy off to school. The housing around here doesn't look terribly expat friendly though - a lot of apartments, but few condo's around.
    Q: Where in Kowloong Tong do the expats live (names of roads or condo's/ apartments would be appreciated)?

    + Discovery Bay: Sounds like a nice place, and have viewed a couple of apartments online which look good. Looks great from a lifestyle perspective and have seen the Discovery Bay International School web site (http://www.dbis.edu.hk/index.php) which looks quaint. Q: As far as getting to work (in Central most probably, and travelling to other areas of HK), how does this rate? Q: Is this school really geared up for expats? Q: Would we really need to be looking at getting a car living in this area?

    Anyway, it's good to see so many people being involved on this forum and is probably reflective of the fact that there are good expat communities out there in HK which we can connect with. Keep the comments coming.


    Paul...

  2. #52

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    i've lived in Discovery Bay for the past 6.5 years (out of my 12 in HK). we love it, but it isn't for everyone.

    getting to other parts of Hk is very simple. to get to central there is a 25 minute air-conditioned ferry ride. you are guaranteed a seat. it is a nice way to start the morning, you can have your coffee and read your paper without any problem at all. it is also a nice wind-down at the end of the day. it means that you are ready to "tackle" the family when you walk in the door. the ferry runs 24 hrs/day although the frequency varies depending on the time of day you are travelling. during rush hour it runs every 12 minutes. as for getting to other areas, there is a bus to Sunny Bay station and from there you can get the MTR to any other area you like in kowloon.

    yes, the school is geared towards international students. but there is a waiting list, so i'd contact them as soon as possible.

    no, you do not need a car living in DB. as a matter of fact, private vehicles are NOT allowed into DB. there are internal buses that will take you to the "local" areas in DB.

    for outside access there is the ferry, the Sunny Bay bus and the Tung CHung bus. there is also an airport bus.


  3. #53

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    PS. you'll find there are expats in most areas of HK, but they do gather in certain districts. you shouldn't have any trouble finding friends in either of your choices. i don't think that you need to limit yourself to certain buildings, that's taking it a little far.


  4. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by carang:
    PS. you'll find there are expats in most areas of HK, but they do gather in certain districts. you shouldn't have any trouble finding friends in either of your choices. i don't think that you need to limit yourself to certain buildings, that's taking it a little far.
    Hey Paul

    This is a photo of the area we live.
    Flickr ?? The Gold Coast from the air [email protected]@[email protected]@http://farm1.static.flickr.com/23/[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@AME [email protected]@e8d41a6030

    If you enjoy beach, sailing and living amongst a pretty friendly xpat community, as found at the Gold Coast Mall ( theres an outdoor pub there ), you should fit right in, from your Singaporian experiences.

    For the kind of budget that you want to spend, you could easilly rent a large 2100ft villa with 15K change, right on the water front, fish off your balcony lol.

    Public transport is only as difficult as you want it to be, everybody who lives here, doesnt mind the 40 minute commute to central, for the sake of the many benefits of living here, especially on the weekends.

    If you are not into the Central/Wanchai/LKF lifestyle, rat race so to speak, then the visually appealing area's like Sham TSeng - So kwan Wat ( Gold Coast ), Disco bay, Tsuen Wan including areas that are dotted in between, like butterfly beach/bay etc. All of these area's have abundant sea views, most are within 5 minutes walk to a beach in most cases, its also very tree lined regarding streets and parks.

    From what I have read into your posts, all of these area's will be enjoyable, we chose where we live due to car friendly aspects and ease of access. In every other regard its pretty much of a muchness.

    Hope this info helps you make the right location decision.



  5. #55

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyhook:
    Hey Paul

    This is a photo of the area we live.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/hongkongphotolog/29397641/

    If you enjoy beach, sailing and living amongst a pretty friendly xpat community, as found at the Gold Coast Mall ( theres an outdoor pub there ), you should fit right in, from your Singaporian experiences.

    For the kind of budget that you want to spend, you could easilly rent a large 2100ft villa with 15K change, right on the water front, fish off your balcony lol.

    Public transport is only as difficult as you want it to be, everybody who lives here, doesnt mind the 40 minute commute to central, for the sake of the many benefits of living here, especially on the weekends.

    If you are not into the Central/Wanchai/LKF lifestyle, rat race so to speak, then the visually appealing area's like Sham TSeng - So kwan Wat ( Gold Coast ), Disco bay, Tsuen Wan including areas that are dotted in between, like butterfly beach/bay etc. All of these area's have abundant sea views, most are within 5 minutes walk to a beach in most cases, its also very tree lined regarding streets and parks.

    From what I have read into your posts, all of these area's will be enjoyable, we chose where we live due to car friendly aspects and ease of access. In every other regard its pretty much of a muchness.

    Hope this info helps you make the right location decision.


    Thanks for they great reply. I spent a few hours last night looking around the areas you mentioned, and it sounds great! It's certainly appearing as though the location doesn't really matter; there are going to be expats in most of these types of areas.

    A side question: If we choose a location in NT and hence, become more dependant on self-transportation, am I able to buy a car without a HK driver's licence? I read that we're able to drive (rental I assume) on our Aussie licence, but what about purchasing a car?

  6. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulprout:
    Thanks for they great reply. I spent a few hours last night looking around the areas you mentioned, and it sounds great! It's certainly appearing as though the location doesn't really matter; there are going to be expats in most of these types of areas.

    A side question: If we choose a location in NT and hence, become more dependant on self-transportation, am I able to buy a car without a HK driver's licence? I read that we're able to drive (rental I assume) on our Aussie licence, but what about purchasing a car?

    Once you have your HKID, you automatically get a HK licence by showing your Australian licence and paying about 900 HKD. Once you have the HKID most insurance companies won't insure you unless you have your HK licence and I believe you can't rent either.
    HK drivers licence is not needed to buy a car. You will find a big choice of quite cheap used cars sold by leaving expats advertised at Wellcome, Park and Shop and Taste supermarket bulletin boards.

    Re: which neighbourhood to live in, I would recommend not making any decisions without seeing all the different neighbourhoods for yourself, because they're all very different and people like them for very subjective reasons. Rental budget plays a big role in the choice.
    Last edited by ontheroad; 19-06-2007 at 02:15 PM.

  7. #57

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    Ontheroad pretty much summed it all up, we all like various expat communities that are dotted around the New Territories for different reasons.

    For those of you that work in Central, the 40 or so minute commute is going to be more than worth the excellent living environments that are on offer.

    The opinions about which style of apartment complex and access conditions of the location, that will be a matter of ones individual preference. Most have some similarities, but in other ways are quite different. It's best to hook up with an agent that can show you housing in all of the area's mentioned in DB/TC/GC/TM/TW/PI, as they are all reasonably close to one another.

    Good luck



    Also, its pretty easy to just transfer your Aussie licence over to a HK car licence, costs $900HKD and expires in 10 years. Cars are also very cheap compared to Aus used cars, in some ways 50 to 70% cheaper.

    Last edited by Skyhook; 24-06-2007 at 05:12 PM. Reason: an addition

  8. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyhook:
    This is a photo of the area we live.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/hongkongphotolog/29397641/
    Er, no it isn't. That's an idealised computer-generated graphic. But I guess most people here are bright enough to realise that.

  9. #59

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    Ummm, its a stock photo shot from the air actually. On one of the rare clear atmospheric days, like whats been experienced of late.

    Amazing how things look when they arent choked with airborne pollution.

    Last edited by Skyhook; 24-06-2007 at 06:14 PM.

  10. #60

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    This is a photo I took of the Ting Kau Bridge that connects Tuen Mun, about 5-8 minutes drive from the Gold Coast, are we going to debate this photo too ?


    Here's another shot on a poor visibility day, taken from our 15th floor roof top garden.

    Last edited by Skyhook; 24-06-2007 at 06:36 PM.

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