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Where to live for HK$20,000-25,000

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  1. #71

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    What Kowloon cultural centre? If you're talking about the West Kowloon Cultural District, they've been jaw-flapping about it for over 10 years now, and still nothing has been done.


  2. #72

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    maybe you could try the Kennedy Town area...


  3. #73
    ojo
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    Quote Originally Posted by kittykat0308
    maybe you could try the Kennedy Town area...
    Good idea. We pay HK$24k for a 886 sq ft flat in The Merton, Block 1. It has 3 bedrooms, two bathrooms, a balcony and an unobstructed sea view. Also it is very private as most of the windows face outwards to sea.

  4. #74
    ojo
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    - I will work in Central (in a building called The Center) and would prefer not to have a commute longer than 30 minutes
    Kennedy Town (in the morning rush hour) is about 30 to 35 minutes to Central by bus.

    - I would prefer an area where English is reasonably understood and there are some western style supermarkets and access to private doctors/GPs
    English is reasonably understood in most places, particularly those close to residential buildings with expats: The Merton, Manhattan Heights, Belchers Hill, Ivy on Belchers, Cayman Rise, Mount Davis 33, 60 Victoria Road, Sail on Victoria, Academic Terrace and University Heights.

    There are two western style supermarkets: a Welcome and a Park n Shop. The more up-market supermarket brands Taste and Park n Shop International have yet to reach Kennedy Town. My guess is they will arrive soon.

    Kennedy Town may not be able to meet your medical needs. There are plenty of clinics but I have never tested them out. Most of the doctors advertise themselves as qualified in western countries. However, I have only used the doctors based in Central where I work.

    - we would ideally like 3 bedrooms, or at a minimum, 2 bedrooms with some kind of additional maid's room. If we could have a 2nd bathroom that would be a (valued) advantage
    Except for the maid's room, most of the buildings I have mentioned above can meet your requirements within your price range. Mount Davis 33 and Sail on Victoria are too pricy as they are at the top end of the market. Others may not have a maid's room. The Merton (Block 1), Belchers Hill (funny name but a brand new block (it is on Belchers Street - named after Edward Belcher, a Royal Navy officer who surveyed Hong Kong harbour in 1841)) and Cayman Rise are worth a look. I know Belchers Hill has a (windowless) maid's room.

    - if we could have a gym in the building that would be an advantage, but less interested in other clubhouse type facilities
    The three buildings I have mentioned above have gyms and clubhouses. Most of the other buildings I have mentioned in this post do too.

    - it is important for us that the apartment is in good condition and kitchen/bathrooms nicely fitted out
    Then Belchers Hill may be the best for you. We looked round there recently and it has all the mod cons. We got the feeling they are having trouble filling the place. We were quoted HK$25k for a 900+ sq ft flat. Make sure you stick to your guns on your price range and you should be able get one.

    You are coming at a reasonably good time as market prices have begun to take a slight turn downwards in Kennedy Town recently after rising for many months.

    The only negative about Kennedy Town is that it is not yet connected to Central by MTR (the station opens in 2013). However, there are still many transport options depending whether your are in a hurry and how much you want to spend: bus (5X is the quickest, 101 and 104 are next best), mini-bus (e.g. no. 54), taxi (there is a stop directly outside the Merton), tram (the terminal is outside the Mertion so it is easy to get a seat and good for weekends when you have time to spare).
    Last edited by ojo; 17-11-2011 at 04:04 PM.

  5. #75

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    Also, the Wellcome on 4F of Westwood Mall (Belchers street, Kennedy Town) is huge with heaps of international brands.


  6. #76

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    Ojo - thanks v much for the detailed response. Kennedy Town certainly sounds worth considering -- I've added it to my list of places to visit/consider once I'm actually on the ground.

    Is Kennedy Town a different neighbourhood from Pokfulam - they seem to be next to each other on the map. Are they quite similar?


  7. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fragrantharbour

    Is Kennedy Town a different neighbourhood from Pokfulam - they seem to be next to each other on the map. Are they quite similar?
    No. Kennedy Town is very noisy with narrow canyon-like streets that send all the noise reverberating off the buildings. I lived there for a year but wouldn't return, especially now there is added MTR construction noise and disruption.

  8. #78

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    And Pokfulam -- is that less noisy and crowded?


  9. #79

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    Yes, more spread out, but of course more expensive.


  10. #80

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    Yes. The conclusion I'm coming to as I search the various property websites and forums is that what I really need is a (substantial) housing allowance...

    I work in consulting (we essentially compete with the corporate finance/consulting teams of the Big Four accounting firms) at a reasonably senior level (still a few years away from partner though). How common is it for people in this industry/at this level to get housing allowances? My reading on the web indicates these have generally become much less common in recent years -- although it seems investment bankers and corporate lawyers still get generous allowances. Do multinationals offer these also? Any consulting firms?


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