I’ve tried each and every one of them, trust me on this…
I’m writing this for one and only one reason alone. None of the lists I’ve checked online have included the BEST shisha in Hong Kong. So I’m here to remedy that direst of situations.
[August 2017] This is fresh off the press, guys. I just went to a cocktail master class last night at Lilya, a new Moroccan lounge and restaurant on Wyndham street (above Tango). I will never be a bartender, but I discovered my new hangout place in Central: music was fiiiine (deep house / Arabic), shisha small and modern but well done, food delicious, vibe exotic all splendidly decorated in handmade crafts flown in straight from North Africa. Oh, and you get belly dancing lessons thrown in from the happiest belly dancer I’ve ever seen. If I remember correctly, she’s Ukranian, but lived in Egypt.
Needless to say, a very, very welcome addition to the Hong Kong lounge scene.
Lilya. 2/F, 77 Wyndham Street Central. Open daily – 6.00 PM to late. +852 2526 2578. www.diningconcepts.com/restaurants/Lilya
[NEW!] 山旮旯 San Ka La
One of my good friends Natalie just alerted me on ‘the best shisha she’s had in Hong Kong’. Apparently Lemon Iced Tea is the winning flavour – but when I went there with K, they were full, not that service oriented, and the place had bright white fluorescent lights that was just not a great vibe for a hookah chillout sesh. Probably won’t be back.
山旮旯San Ka La, G/F, 84-86 Morrison Hill Road Causeway Bay, 2871 2269
Seafood Room [CLOSED]
YES, it is an upscale rooftop restaurant with not one but two terraces (go for the upper deck). I’ve eaten there a couple of times but it wasn’t until I had drinks there with my friends that I realized, holy shit I’ve never been hit by shisha before, and shisha has never been so pleasant.
What makes shisha at Seafood Room so special?
I’m not going to beat around the bush and talk about flavours or service (although their Ukranian shisha master is legendary) – it’s the technology behind the shisha that I have not seen anywhere else. Okay, so forget about me. Let’s talk about my boss. I brought him and a colleague up here because he is a shisha connosieur and even he hasn’t had any shisha like the one we had at Seafood Room, and he’s done shisha from Israel to Los Angeles.
They have all the great flavour mixes and the long-lasting factor, but have you seen anyone else who uses the hookah ice hose tip? If you have in Hong Kong, then do share it with me!
As the flavored smoke makes its journey from the bowl to your lips, it passes through a final gauntlet of ice, which when combined with the frozen water vapor produces an unsurpassable smooth smoke. – Hookah-Shisha
Even without the ice hose tip – in which they chill the smoke down giving an incredibly smooth efect – I was getting a floaty feeling from trying Seafood Room’s normal shisha.
Another pro is the music in their terrace – minimal, house/lounge with some great remixes. All that plus the view make up for an incredible ambience for a chill night out.
If I sound overly enthusiastic, I am not getting paid to write this. I just do it because I want to support and share a great spot, and when you don’t share and nobody comes and patronizes, then there’s a huge chance (especially in Hong Kong) of them closing down..
**UPDATE: AND THEY CLOSED DOWN. But wait! Remember the Ukrainian shisha master I was talking about? He just contacted me to update me on his latest gigs, which I will be posting below…
Below: The shisha menu at the old Seafood Room
Elisey Chernenko’s Shisha Partners
The Ukrainian shisha master just opened a new company called ACES, which provides shisha service to different restaurants and bars in Hong Kong. Below are some of his partners:
Nepalese and Indian Cuisine
**Updated as of 25 January 2017
Just tried this last Saturday (Boba Bear on Elgin couldn’t serve alcohol, Awtar was full and we wanted something new, so we went here). Good move. Mint strawberry shisha was terrible, overwhelmingly minty, and when we changed it, it didn’t get any better… but food is fantastic (specifically, butter naan and Paneer Makhani together, yumm). And it was easy to get a seat up front for some people watching action 😜👳♀️
You can’t really mention shisha in Hong Kong without bringing up Vibes at The Mira. My boss loves holding dinners and meetings at this spot, which has that secret garden feel going for it.
Perks:Great music (lounge / house / minimal)
- Delicious food. Try the chicken fajitas.
Vibes, 5/F, The Mira, 118 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2315 5599
Bloop Shisha Lounge
This is the most recent hookah place I’ve been to (read: last weekend). For one reason or another, I had it on my massive to-try list on my phone (I add places that sound interesting whenever I encounter them reading or from other people’s recommendations).
It was in Lan Kwai Fong – convenient, because we had guests in town, one who had never been to Hong Kong before. So the tourist experience was crucial. And Bloop was in the middle of all the action, but 21 floors up.
So I thought it would be a good idea to start here, and work our way down (literally).
Actually the service wasn’t great, and the sharks in the fish tank really disturbed me. But the good things about Bloop were:
- Open air rooftop cinema on the terrace projecting vintage James Bond that night
- Convenient but above it all
- Decent view and breeze
The music was more Top 40 / hip hop here. At some point it was fun. But it’s not gonna be much of a classy, relaxing night; rather, a pre-game to partayyy
Bloop Shisha Lounge, 21/F, Ho Lee Commercial Bldg 38-44 D’Aguilar St, Central, 2686 1234
This is a Soho institution, more of a traditional hookah experience complete with Morrocan cuisine (me love couscous and tagine), and authentic Arabic / Middle Eastern music, staff, vibe, everything. In the heart of the expat enclave of Soho. Less tourists, more HK international denizens.
A convenient spot on the street I live. Amazing for people watching, especially if you get the outdoor seats facing the street. Hey, you might even spot me on my way home! 😆
Shisha is alright, don’t remember it being particularly amazing, but crowd is very hip and global young professional.
Awtar Hong Kong Island, Central, Soho G/F, 23 Staunton Street 2530 5900RA Restaurant & Lounge
A great spot on the Tsim Sha Tsui East waterfront, right beside Kowloon Shangri-La and a few live band bars. Had shisha here one cold night, the view of the harbour is relaxing, and they even throw in live belly dancing performances every now and then.
You can take a walk on the waterfront promenade before or after to absorb the city vibe 😊
Crowd: After-work Tsim Sha Tsui young local Hong Kongers
RA Restaurant & Lounge Shop 1, G/F, Wing On Plaza, 62 Mody Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui , 2721 3600
Any spots you’d recommend? Leave a comment! And don’t forget to follow me on and like the Facebook Page for updates! Happy hookah-ing,