these comments are interesting too Park Island, Ma Wan, Hong Kong: Park Island Property Prices - An update
You are ofcourse forgetting yet the other choice: A clean, close, convenient location that is fairly priced but most importantly has character and soul. It has local shops, wetmarket, schools, hospitals, libraries, bakeries, daipaidongs and much much more within walking distance. Thats the one I want and I found it in Happy Valley. It also exists in many other parts of Hong Kong.So if you have the choice of something small, old dirty/grimey to live in, with high rent, or something new, spacious, peaceful and clean, with great facilities, at low rent, park Island is an obvious choice.
Yes indeed, you and some others prefer the more sanitized, soulless places such as PI and DB where these dont exist.
With very few schools nearby, limited parks and limited activities, I would not consider it to be excellent.For many people with children living in HK, park island makes an excellent living choice.
This is well below current market rates. If the LL was aggressive, he could easily get 40-60% more for the place but he likes peace and quiet and we've given him an absolutely quiet 6 years.
i'm one who loved DB. of course, there were some things i didn't like (who decided it was a good idea to put the pier right beside the beach?)
what i liked about it was the community. i liked the flea markets, the mid-autumn festival/christmas activities etc.
i never found it "sterile"... i found it well organised and fairly well planned.
one can bury their head in the sand and keep HK at arm's length no matter where they live, if they wish to. that is not limited to DB. there are so many people out there who foolishly think they are living in the "real hk" (whatever that is) but never venture out of the mid-levels/central/soho area.
If you found a nice place in Happy Valley that's great. I am happy for you (and I am sure others are too). Happy Valley is nice, and yes it does have a "character" which some people like.
However, if you are a newcomer to HK, the choice of where to live, within a certain budget can be daunting. And for many, they may have a concept of wanting to live in Happy Valley or Mid Levels, and then be totally dissappointed, and more likely SHOCKED at what crap you get for such high prices. Tiny little rooms, poor condition, lousy views, poor plumbing, a loud street directly outside, cars honking, fumes, difficulty in pushing a pram due to uneven surfaces, etc.
For a single person willing to put up with some of these things, who might even enjoy being amoung the hustle and bustle of the city, there are lots of options. But for someone with a child, let alone multiple children, coming to a new country, the model of having the "city" for the income earner to travel to and from and then a more remote location for the family works very well. I have seen many families move to Park Island exactly for this type of lifestyle. Morning might start with a family walk along beach, swim, etc, husband then heads off to work, and kids depending on age then either play on the island (multiple and huge playroom facilities, outdoors gardens, car-free estate, beaches, pools, etc), or they go to school on the Island, or some go from the island to schools in other parts of HK by bus, with the family making occasional trips to "the city" as needed (which actually is not often).
For the mother at home, a large part of the estate is very accessible, flat, pram friendly, safe, and relaxed. There's a nice ex-pat scene and parents easily meet each other, for coffee, playgroups etc. Grocery shopping is on the island and you walk there to do shopping, and can push or carry it back.
Husband works in the city, comes back, and family can eat at some of the restaurants, BBQ, beach walk, hang out with other families.
Of course, if you want to you can find criticisms, just as you could find criticisms about any place in HK, no matter how expensive, prestigious or whatever. My point in summary is that just because you like Happy Valley, it does not necessarily follow that Park Island is a bad choice for others. (Indeed quite the opposite - Happy Valley might indeed be a poor choice for others who may have different lifestyle needs, budgets, or preferences than you do).
And I've seen the model of living close to everything works equally well when both mom&dad work and kids need to go to school. Remote locations like PI and DB and the associated commute are not exactly nice for such families.For a single person willing to put up with some of these things, who might even enjoy being amoung the hustle and bustle of the city, there are lots of options. But for someone with a child, let alone multiple children, coming to a new country, the model of having the "city" for the income earner to travel to and from and then a more remote location for the family works very well.
You are putting words into my mouth, stop it pls.My point in summary is that just because you like Happy Valley, it does not necessarily follow that Park Island is a bad choice for others.