Hong Kong is home to more big-name hotel brands than we can count — with more on the way this year and next — so it makes sense that the city’s smaller, independent boutique hotels tend to be unfairly overlooked. That being said, there’s one that’s recently caught our eye: The Fleming, which is scheduled to reopen in Wan Chai next month.
Wan Chai has never been considered the most peaceful part of Hong Kong, but it’s nonetheless a frequented tourist area for its vibrant nightlife scene, eclectic food mix, and unique shopping and dining enclaves such as the quietly hipster Star Street Precinct and tree-lined Lee Tung Avenue, with its growing number of sidewalk cafés and specialty shops.
Those looking to stay in this part of town — or seeking a new staycation venue — will be happy to hear that boutique hotel The Fleming will soon reopen, following extensive renovations over the past 12 months. Originally opened in 2006, the stylish hotel has been a Wan Chai mainstay for the past decade — and with a complete overhaul and new F&B concept courtesy of Black Sheep Restaurants, The Fleming is once again set to become one of the perennially popular stays for out-of-town guests in the area, as well as a destination for local foodies.
The renovation project is the brainchild of two Hong Kong childhood friends, John Hui and Jason Cohen. Owner and Managing Director John Hui is a retired tennis player whose global travels as a professional athlete helped spark his interest in hospitality, while Hotel Consultant Jason Cohen boasts a lengthy resume which includes stints at Grand Hyatt Hong Kong, J Plus Hotel and HIP Hotels Media Group. Taking inspiration from major metropolises such as London and New York, The Fleming aims to reflect the growing trend for luxury boutique hotels with catered comforts, while still giving guests a genuine sense of place and insight into the local culture and characteristics of Hong Kong.
Before the hotel officially opens next month, we got a first peek into the stylish new digs of The Fleming, designed by Hong Kong-based firm Substance.
Rooms + Accommodation
The new Fleming is outfitted with a total of 66 guest rooms, each smartly appointed with an underlying maritime theme. Evoking a sense of tranquility and adorned with local art and handcrafted objects, rooms are accented with wood, brass and metal, with a dominant colour palette of natural tones and a deep forest-green to add to the relaxing vibe.
All accommodations are outfitted with state-of-the-art facilities including a flat-screen TV with Apple TV installed, high-speed Wi-Fi, a mini bar and bespoke ‘Shen Nong’ bathroom amenities tailor-made based on the principles of Chinese apothecary, with different morning and evening selections. Catering to business travellers, study desks make for smart additions to the rooms, while unique artwork captures scenes of Hong Kong, such as the city’s iconic red taxi cabs.
Meanwhile, a plush Sealy mattress with goose-down duvets and luxury linens ensures that guests sleep comfortably for the night, with custom lighting options to cater to travellers’ moods. While not large, per se, the rooms have been cleverly constructed to optimise functionality and the fluidity of movement within the space. As an added bonus, all guests will enjoy complimentary access to the nearby gym Goji Sudios, which is fully outfitted with a weight-training zone and a spin studio.
Restaurant + Common Spaces
The Fleming’s reception area doubles as a lounge area, with smooth, dark mahogany wood furniture and nautical-themed chaises with striped pillows evoking the feeling of relaxing inside a luxury yacht. Guests can enjoy a seamless check-in process here, while also utilising the reception area as a sitting room for enjoying a good read, refreshing mid-day with a drink, or communing with fellow hotel guests.
The ground floor of The Fleming also houses Osteria Marzia, the new, maritime-themed eatery from Black Sheep Restaurants, dedicated to serving seaside-inspired fare from up and down the coast of Italy. The 16th concept from BSR (and second to open this month following New Punjab Club), Osteria Marzia is the first of their restaurants to be set within a hotel, an interesting addition to the group’s SoHo-centred portfolio.
Flooded with natural light from billboard-sized windows facing the bustling street, Osteria Marzia is set to be one of the biggest attractions for The Fleming, drawing in both local and visiting food- and drink-loving crowds. In addition to a beautifully designed space decorated in aquatic blue and natural wood tones, the menu promises to be an instant crowd-pleaser, comprised of light and refreshing seaside dishes including raw hamachi crudo, sea urchin spaghetti and towering seafood platters.
Meanwhile, a central bar is sure to become a popular spot for hotel guests to pop in for midday drink or evening nightcap, with a strong selection of spirits from Italy and world-class bartenders at the helm. For guests staying at The Fleming, a complimentary continental breakfast selection along with an additional à la carte menu will be served from 6-10am, courtesy of Osteria Marzia’s head chef, Luca Marinelli.
With The Fleming’s prime location, hotel guests looking to venture out have a wealth of other dining options to choose from at their fingertips, with Wan Chai being one of the city’s premiere food destinations. Seek out the nearby artisanal burger joints, satisfy a hankering for local Cantonese fare at street-side food stalls and cha chaan tengs, and savour a world-class dinner at flagship restaurants from the city’s Michelin-starred chefs, including Akrame, Bo Innovation and Zhejiang Heen. The hotel is also a stone’s throw from the MTR, the Star Ferry Pier and the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, as well as the area’s main nightlife drag.
While there’s plenty of culture and remnants of Hong Kong’s past to explore in the historic heart of Wan Chai, The Fleming has been designed to give guests a sense of the area’s rich background without ever having to leave the building premises, with its maritime look and feel inspired by Hong Kong’s industrial era of the ’60s and ’70s. Combining nostalgia and modernity, The Fleming promises to raise the standard for boutique hotels in Hong Kong and offer a new type of luxury — a localised, one-of-a-kind experience for those seeking a more intimate and integrated experience than the citys’ five-star hotel chains.
The Fleming, 41 Fleming Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, +852 3607 2288