With all of the (Chinese) New Year festivities done, it feels like the year has just started anew — and lucky for us, February is chock-full of activities to keep us busy and into the groove for 2017. Here are this month’s best activities:
European Union Film Festival
When: 8-24 February 2017
The annual European Union Film Festival returns to Hong Kong this February, so if you’re a fan of European cinema, you’re in for a treat: 16 award-winning titles will be screened at Broadway Cinematheque and AMC Pacific Place throughout the month, including the black and white drama “The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki,”, about the Finnish boxer vying for the 1962 world featherweight title. The film was given the gong of Un Certain Regard at the recent Cannes Film Festival. For the tail end of the festival, art-lovers might want to catch closing film “Cézanne and I” (pictured) about the camaraderie between the 19th century painter and renowned writer Émile Zola.
Broadway Cinematheque: Prosperous Garden, 3 Public Square Street, Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon, +852 2388 0002, cinema.com.hk
AMC: 1/F, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong, +852 2265 8933, amccinemas.com.hk
Longines Masters of Hong Kong
When: 10-12 February 2017
One of the most exciting events in the social calendar each year, the Longines Masters is undoubtedly one of the most glamorous occasions to see and be seen. After stops in Los Angeles and Paris, this top-ranked showjumping series will make its final round in Hong Kong — be sure to keep your eyes on Hong Kong’s first national champion rider Jacqueline Lai, among other European riders too. Beyond the showjumping and riding competitions, the event combines entertainment, fashion, art, fine dining, and no doubt plenty of flowing cocktails and bubbly, especially at the Prestige Village, which will feature premium food and beverage options as well as a live DJ for the after-party. For the best experience, you’ll want to book a ringside table at the VIP Masters Club with all-new Premium Suites, with a dining programme by two-star Michelin Chef Yves Mattagne.
Valentine’s Day Dim Sum Classes
When: 11-14 February 2017, 3:30-5:30pm
No doubt you’d be planning how to spend a special occasion with your beloved on Valentine’s Day, but how about the most quintessential (and romantic) of Hong Kong experiences — making your own dim sum? Known for their cute, Instagrammable dishes, Yum Cha in Central is offering a cooking class where you and your boo will learn how to make red bean rose buns and pineapple love bird pastries. It’s followed by a dim sum afternoon tea set for two, which will include your creations on top of other festive, romantic delicacies as well as two glasses of prosecco. Send an email or call the restaurant to make a reservation. Advance payment is required.
2/F, Nan Fung Place, 173 Des Voeux Road Central, Hong Kong, +852 3708 8081. HK$1,100 per couple.
The 45th Hong Kong Arts Festival
When: 16 February-18 March 2017
This year’s Arts Festival celebrates the incredible feat of its 45th iteration — that’s 45 great years of bringing some of the world’s best arts programmes to the SAR, and if you haven’t already done so, you’ll want to book your tickets before they’re fully snapped up. Highlights include a double bill showcase of ballet legend Pina Bausch’s most celebrated works, “Cafe Müller” and “The Rite of Spring”; There’s also the first opportunity to see all three parts of celebrated Hong Kong theatre trilogy, “A Floating Family,” which chronicles a Hong Kong family throughout important turning points in the city’s history, from 1996 to today. Arts special programmes will also be taking over every corner of the city — you’ll want to make a special trip to see Superpool at Chater Garden, a colourful large-scale interactive piece by Jen Lewin where you can jump across over a hundred circular LED pads that light up and react to touch. It’s free, but advance registration is required.
For the full programme and ticketing, check out hk.artsfestival.org
I AM DUALITY by I AM Concepts
When: 10-11 February 2017, 8pm
For two Februaries now, I AM Concepts has hosted “DUETS,” an intriguing night of immersive dance, poetry and theatre themed around modern love for the Valentine’s Day crowd. This year, things take a different turn in their annual performance, which also celebrates the first year anniversary of performance venue Hive Studios. Instead of couples, the rebranded theme this year for “I AM DUALITY” is on the duality between an artist and his or her craft, exploring new and nifty ways of audience experience with live performance, but also digital content — a new roster of film directors and photographers will be joining the stage for their share of storytelling. Tickets are HK$380 for one and HK$1,450 for a group of five from iamduality.pelago.events. A ticket includes two drinks on the night.
THE HIVE, 8/F, Cheung Hing Industrial Building, 12P Smithfield Road, Kennedy Town, Hong Kong
When: Training starts 27 February for the 1 April run
The Women’s Five is a five-week ladies’ running and yoga training program culminating in a 5k run within the Aberdeen Country Park. It’s a journey empowering ladies to make change in their life; to tie up their shoelaces and begin a journey of health and fitness — although of course it is open to participants of every level. The HK$800 registration fee includes access to five weeks of running meetups, yoga workshops and video routines hosted by partner studios including Flex Studio, Yoga Room, and more. HK$100 of the fee also goes to charity, namely RainLily Hong Kong, which serves to protect victims of sexual violence.
Learn more and register for the race at womensfive.com
When: 6 February 2017, 7:30am
Rise and shine, NFL fans, the year’s biggest American sporting event arrives bright and early on 7:30am Monday morning, and there are a few hotspots to get your football fix and American game day favourites.
Over at new Central bar Halcyon, it’s putting up a two-metre by three-metre screen to broadcast the game, while HK$250 gets you American bar snacks and breakfast, plus a beer, coffee or freshly squeezed juice. Two-for-one drink offers go on for the whole session.
Shop 1, G/F, The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 3162 3710, facebook.com/HalcyonHongKong
At Stone Nullah Tavern, dig into a full spread of American game day eats, including a nacho bar, a wings buffet and all you can eat pizza, all for just HK$300. Pitchers of Bloody Mary or Margarita go for only $199.
69 Stone Nullah Lane, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, +852 3182 0128, facebook.com/StoneNullahTavern
At Linguini Fini, it’s HK$369 for a feast of buffalo wings, pizza, mini meatballs, penne a la Vodka and a build-your-own-sandwich station.
49 Elgin Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2387 6338, facebook.com/LinguiniFini
Eddie Izzard: Force Majeure
When: 23 February 2017
The beloved English stand-up comedian will be heading on stage in Hong Kong this February with his latest show, “Force Majeure.” Known for his whimsical humour, one-man roleplays and monologues, and for wearing tights and lipstick in his excellent, award-winning stand-up special “Dressed to Kill,” you’ll be sure to leave the theatre with a belly full of laughs.
Hong Kong Baptist University, Academic Community Hall, 224 Waterloo Road, Kowloon Tong, Kowloon, Hong Kong, +852 3411 5182. Tickets HK$488-888 from hkticketing.com
Daybreaker Hong Kong
When: 11 February 2017, 10am
If you need an energy boosting wakeup call after Chinese New Year, fitness fans will be happy to learn that Daybreaker — Hong Kong’s first daytime rave — is returning to the city since its debut in October last year. Partnering up with H&M Sport, the energetic morning event held at the Maritime Museum will be sure to help kickstart your day in a healthy way, beginning with a yoga session before getting into full on dance party mode. Can’t make it on 11 February? Fear not: morning dance parties are the thing these days, and local team First Light hosts a more intimate version every two weeks at Sheung Wan’s Premium Sofa Club — February’s events are on the 7th (it’s first held in the early evening at 7pm) and the 16th (starts at 7am).
Daybreaker: Maritime Museum, Central Ferry Pier No. 8, Man Kwong Street, Central, Hong Kong. Tickets HK$180-300 from daybreaker.com/event/hm-sport
Movie awards season
When: All month
As it inches ever closer to the thick of movie awards season, February is shaping up to be an exciting month to go to the cinema in Hong Kong. The weekend of Chinese New Year saw the opening of much-hyped La La Land on 26 January; but come February you can also catch a handful of other Oscar contenders.
Hidden Figures, starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae in the untold story of three brilliant women in NASA, opens on the 2nd. Jackie, the biopic of Jackie Kennedy, opens on the 9th. Opening on the 23rd is Manchester by the Sea, a brooding film about a Bostonian loner returning to his hometown; and “Moonlight,” a story about human connections, based around an African-American man growing up in the rough neighbourhoods of Miami.