The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong resides within the International Commerce Centre building. This giant 118 story (actually only 108 above ground due to tetraphobia) is hard to miss. It’s Hong Kong’s tallest building and the 11th tallest in the world.
The Ritz-Carlton only occupies the top section of this massive building, between floors 102-118.
This lofty position affords it plenty of world number ones. Not only is it the world’s highest hotel – the bar and swimming pool are also the world’s highest. After a number of trips to Hong Kong, we finally decided that we’d have to check it out to see if the hotel itself matched up to these physical world-beating standards.
We booked a Club Deluxe Room (Skyline view) at this property for a 2-night stay following our flight from Singapore on Singapore Airlines’ new A380 Suites product, after the first leg of our round-the-world in First Class trip.
You can read our full review of the A380 Suites experience, including the double bed, here.
After we left the Ritz-Carlton, we moved on to the excellent Cathay Pacific First Class Lounges in Hong Kong, and experienced Cathay’s First Class to London.
Several days before our arrival the concierge reached out to see if we would like the hotel to arrange an airport pickup. Whilst this seemed like a convenient option, the prices were rather steep, and given that we had only a short flight preceding this we chose to take the train.
The ICC building is located above Kowloon station, which is on the Airport Express line. The train departs every 10 minutes and only takes 22 minutes to Kowloon, stopping just once on the way. It’s then a short, signposted walk through the ‘Elements’ basement mall to the lower lobby of the hotel itself.
Here you’re greeted by hotel staff who will direct you to the high speed lifts which then whisk you up to the ear-popping 103rd-floor main reception in less than a minute.
The lobby is dark and opulent with plenty of traditional Chinese decoration. It was generally rather busy here at all times during our stay, but it is well staffed and the wait wasn’t long.
The receptionist was friendly and polite. He repeatedly thanked us for our loyalty as Marriott Gold Elite members.
Interestingly Marriott Gold Elite (now Bonvoy Gold Elite) members usually aren’t recognised at Ritz-Carlton hotels. Whilst they are part of the group, they run their own reward program. So when we were told we had been upgraded to a Deluxe Victoria Harbour view 1-bedroom Suite as loyal Marriott customers – we were rather surprised!
We were then personally shown to our room and given a guided tour, which is also unusual in a city hotel where typically you are just passed the key and told where the lifts are.
There are several entry-level room types configured in a very similar layout. The only difference is the view. You can also select the same rooms with Club Lounge access, which effectively means paying for access to the Club Lounge. Normally we wouldn’t recommend this, but in this case – it’s well worth it and we’ll explain why later on.
For further details on the room and suite types available at the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, see the hotel website here.
Suite first impressions
A short corridor with an art piece on the wall greets you as you first enter the suite.
Alongside one wall as you walk in to the room is the dresser area, housing amenities with tea and coffee making facilities, a wine and spirits selection and the mini-bar.
Between the dresser / bar and the living room there is a well-equipped desk with ample space, a writing tablet, charging outlets, and a fantastic office chair with views across the suite and out over the water.
An impressive set of speakers with an iPod dock also features at the desk area, alongside a telephone and writing pad on a dedicated side table against the wall.
These speakers were perfectly placed for listening to music in the living room while enjoying the amazing view.
Opposite the desk a large mirrored wall gives a great sense of additional space as you walk through to the living room.
Obviously, in a building like this, you are expecting an amazing view but nothing quite prepares you for when you step into the living room for the first time and the curtains automatically draw open revealing genuinely jaw-dropping views of the harbour, Victoria Peak and Hong Kong island.
There is a seating area with a recessed TV on the opposite wall and of course the large windows that extend from a low padded windowsill all the way to the ceiling.
The decor continues with the theme from the lobby of dark colours, modern materials and traditional Chinese accents.
The luxurious Ritz-Carlton style of deep carpets and window dressings can make their properties feel slightly dated to us even when new, but it’s a design choice that they stick with and it seems popular with their guests so it’s hard to criticise.
Through two sliding doors either side of the TV you enter the bedroom, featuring a large king-sized bed, numerous wardrobes and, of course, another huge TV.
The luxurious colour scheme continues here with shades of brown, deep reds and black marble surfaces.
The floor to ceiling window continues into the bedroom for those morning views, out over Discovery Bay in the case of our room.
On the left side of the bed a drawer extends to reveal USB charging sockets and blind / lighting controls.
On the right side a Type G (UK / Singapore / Hong Kong) 3-pin plug socket is included, with a few replicated lighting controls.
Of course there is also a phone on one side of the bed. Also a writing pad and a clock are provided.
Storage is ample with a small wardrobe at one side of the bed between the bedroom and the bathroom.