Working on your laptop in a café is so 2010. These days, Hong Kong’s enterprising freelancers and creative entrepreneurs work out of beautifully designed co-working spaces specifically created for those who’ve opted out of the typical, 9-to-5 office life. Whether you’re a veteran freelancer looking for a new working space, or an office worker dreaming of a better place to spend your days, you’ll love the city’s coolest co-working spaces.
With branches in some of the coolest areas around the world, from New York’s meatpacking district to upscale and hip Gangnam in Seoul, WeWork is undoubtedly one of the trendiest working spaces that have cropped up in recent years, and one you’ll want to sign up to if you like jet setting around the world meeting like-minded cool kids. In Hong Kong, two WeWork branches have opened up in Wan Chai and Causeway Bay, designed by Nelson Chow, who is also behind quirky establishments such as Sheung Wan bar Mrs. Pound. The Wan Chai branch explores Hong Kong’s east and west dichotomy using traditional local materials such as mosaic tiles paired with European oak wood panelling, as well as neon signage in its decor, a nod to old Hong Kong.
The Causeway Bay branch features work from Hong Kong street and mural artists Caratoes, Kristopher Ho, Bao and designer Nelson Chow himself. Sound like your type of office? Hot desks start from HK$5,600 per month, and a “We Membership” also gets you access to hot desks in locations all over the world where they’re available.
33 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong; Tower 535, 535 Jaffe Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, wework.com
Located in Sai Ying Pun, The Desk spreads out across 8,000-sq.-ft. in a clean, industrial chic space — perfect for innovators looking for a distraction-free, but equally beautiful and intellectual space to work. Setting itself apart from other more playful-looking shared offices, The Desk is relatively sparsely decorated with inspirational quotes on its plain walls, exposed brick and concrete accents, and elegant, unfussy furniture throughout.
A communal outdoor terrace area adorned with greenery is a place where barbecues and big discussions take place. With its minimal look, the greatest emphasis here is on its network of mentors and support for businesses as they grow — recently they have hosted the first of an exhibition series titled “COLLABORATION,” which brings Hong Kong artists and creative professionals together to incite inspiration. Work passes start from HK$60 per hour, with monthly hot desk memberships going for HK$3,600.
G/F, 511 Queen’s Road West, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, thedesk.com.hk
If you want to benefit from a swanky Garden Road address in the midst of the biggest banks and finance firms in Hong Kong, Eaton House is one you’ll want to look into. Founded by Elaine Tsung, who is also behind co-working concepts Garage Society and the Hive at Wan Chai, Eaton House boasts itself as a “new generation work club,” where the premium space is fittingly designed by Blink & Space Matrix — which specialises in hotels, resorts and corporate spaces.
The club offers dedicated offices and desks, meeting rooms with a expansive views of Hong Kong’s skyscrapers, and a gorgeous, open lounge area with plush leather couches and long tables for hot desks. The support offered by Eaton House for businesses is comprehensive, ranging from mail and concierge services to offering PR and marketing support for members’ events to hosting regular seminars and social networking events to even making sure members eat well: F&B partners include some of the most well-known brands in town, from coffee from Elephant Grounds to nutritious eats from Secret Ingredients, Grassroots Pantry and Sohofama. Half of the menu is vegetarian, and at least 50% of the produce is locally sourced as well. Memberships with regular weekday access starts from HK$8,000 a month.
5/F, Champion Tower, 3 Garden Road, Central, Hong Kong, eatonhouse.com.hk
As the name suggests, this coworking space in Kennedy Town is specially tailored to the hands-on creatives who need a workplace to create prototypes or manufacture their designs. But whether if you’re a budding architect or Etsy store owner, the space is versatile and best yet, equipped with a 1,200-sq.-ft. workshop with an industrial laser cutter, sewing machines and other tools. Part of the ubiquitous The Hive Group and founded by Constant Tedder, membership to Makerhive includes access to The Hive’s expansive community of co-working freelancers in Asia. Memberships start from HK$1,500 a month.
10th floor, Cheung Hing Building, 12P Smithfield Road, Kennedy Town, makerhive.com.hk
Founded also by Elaine Tsung, Garage Society is something of a veteran in the co-working space scene since launching more than two years ago, and already has three spaces in Hong Kong (and one in Phuket), with its newest named Garage Collective, located in Sai Ying Pun. An airy, 8,000-sq.-ft. venue converted from an old warehouse strip, the co-working space retains much of its older quirks as decoration, such as an old roller gate and exposed brick wall, while the 6-meter-high ceiling and open facade lets plenty of natural sunlight in.
Catering to green-minded urbanites out there who care as much about their lifestyle as they do about their living, it has an in-house vegetarian restaurant The Herbivores, and a pet-friendly policy. On top of providing secretarial, accounting, HR and digital marketing support for its members, it has also integrated a pop-up space for members to hold public events. Part-time membership starts from HK$3,600 a month.
158A Connaught Road West, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, thegaragesociety.com
Campfire Collaborative Spaces
The first co-working space in Hong Kong to cater each branch specifically to support different industries, Campfire currently has two locations: The Wong Chuk Hang space is suited towards fashion and design businesses, while the Kennedy Town space focuses on the tech industry, designed to maximise convenience and accessibility for its members — both carrying a camping motif with its tent-shaped work booths. Particularly of note is the edgy Wong Chuk Hang space, a raw space imbued with neon and concrete which boasts of a cafe, foosball table and plenty of desk configurations to choose from. If you’re dreaming of a career in design you’re in luck: a 2,000-sq.-ft. catwalk and event space was installed just to display members’ works, and the location is also fitted out with a photo and video studio for digital artists, and a workshop with a 3D printer, sewing machine, and leather-making tools.
4/F, Cheung Hing Industrial Building, 12P Smithfield, Kennedy Town, Hong Kong; 5/F, Remex Centre, 42 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Hong Kong, campfire.work
“Who wants to slave away at a staid, gray office cubicle when they can work and play at the same time?” is probably what the Cheung brothers thought as they founded Sheung Wan co-working space Playground.Work, touting the motto “Work is Fun.” Here, a rock climbing wall forms a colourful backdrop for a flexible work and events space, fitted with hot desks that can be moved around to your preference.
When you’re taking a break from your computer, there are also foosball machines or you can grab an artisanal coffee brewed by the on-site barista. Full-time hot desk memberships start from HK$4,800 per month, and private offices are available. There’s also a Causeway Bay branch which is tailored for businesses in the food industry — equipped with a kitchen for testing new dishes.
11/F, 244-248 Des Voeux Road Central, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong; 13/F, 5 Moreton Terrace, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, playground.work