Chungking Mansions
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Chungking Mansions

36-44 Nathan Rd., Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon ,, Hong Kong
Chungking Mansions in Hong Kong
Quirky/offbeat, Off the beaten path

This gargantuan building located on Nathan Road—one of the busiest strips in Hong Kong—feels a world removed from the department stores and luxury boutiques in its vicinity. With multitudes of poorly-regulated but bargain-priced guesthouses, the building was a notorious center for criminal activity in the '90s. Thanks to Government intervention and an ownership committee determined to turn things around, the property is now generally cleaned up—even though locals still avoid it like the plague. Don't let Hong Kongers deter you from exploring the complex. The superstructure is a fascinating microcosm of the city: People of all ethnicities and walks of life can be seen rushing in and out, lining up for the few elevators in the building. With so many intersecting blocks and a massive ground floor shopping area, there's so much to discover—even if you hardly know where you are going. Stores peddling Indian spices, counterfeit luggage, and halal food are all squeezed into the same space. The dizzying complex is also home some the cheapest and most authentic Southeast Asian dining in the city. Make a dash for the Delhi Club in Block C for a proper sit down meal, and remember to avoid solicitors for other restaurants near the main entrance.

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