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Hong Kong's International Commerce Center (ICC) Tower (2019)

ICC TowerThe ICC Tower and Elements Mall stands out among the others

The ICC Tower is important for tourists. It has the highest observatory, one of the plushest of Hong Kong's malls, and a good MTR subway transportation. Since the opening of the West Kowloon HSR station in 2018, the ICC has the best regional transportation system in the world with direct connections with most of the major cities of China via bullet train. In 2019, these reasons and more make it a tourist highlight in Hong Kong.

The International Commerce Center (ICC) is part of the second financial district in the city. It's an attraction for both tourists and business people.

This is a notable record-breaking building. It is innovative in that it contains residential, commercial and business facilities and the world's best transportation system. It is part of an efficient self-contained community called Union Square and a park and culture oriented area called the West Kowloon Cultural District.

Features

  • Tallest building in Hong Kong; 12th tallest in the world in 2019
  • Height: 484 meters (1,588 feet); about 220 feet taller than the IFC Tower
  • Cost: 3.69 billion dollars
  • World's highest hotel
  • World's highest swimming pool
  • Hong Kong's highest observation deck
  • Excellent views
  • Fast bullet train station to China

Tourist Attractions

The ICC Tower is a tourist attraction. The building and the adjacent mall under it are designed for visitors and tourists. Tourists are interested in the view from the top, the Elements Mall, the light display, staying at the Ritz Carlton Hotel, and dining at the restaurants.

Elements Mall

The Ritz-Carlton Hong KongICC Tower and Elements Mall stand out in Kowloon

The mall in the bottom floors is one of the top five luxury malls in Hong Kong, and it is in a strategic location. Travellers and tourists stop in as they come and go from China via bullet train, wealthy shoppers come in from the Union Square area, and people passing to and from the Kowloon Station and the Airport Express necessarily pass through.

Now that the HSR train and the West Kowloon Station are completed, the mall is going up in rank in popularity and ritziness.

Popular Luxury Shopping

Visitors usually enjoy it for its central location, open feel, blend of shops, variety of restaurants, and entertainment areas. It was built by the same company that built the IFC Mall and towers and has the same comfortable feel.

  • Products: designer luxury fashion, jewellery, watches, and electronics
  • Major stores: Jimmy Choo, Rolex, Miu Miu and about 120 others.
  • Special features: Hong Kong's best high tech movie theater, convenient transport, Sky100 observatory
  • Dining: Three Michelin starred restaurants for Cantonese, Japanese, and Italian (2019), plus many other gourmet and moderately priced restaurants of many varieties.

So you won't see crowds of people, but you'll see high-priced jewelry showcased in the shop windows and other things beyond the budget of most people. The mall measures about a million square feet. It is quite big and luxurious.

Unlike the IFC Mall across the bay that has the reputation for being Hong Kong's "ritziest mall," you'll see no fast-food chain restaurants. The international restaurants in the mall are all quality restaurants.

The Five Elements

The Elements Mall gets its name from the 5 elements of Chinese Daoist philosophy: wood, water, metal, fire, earth. There are five sections with these names in the mall that each sell different kinds of goods or services that somehow match these ideas.

The Fire section has Hong Kong's best theater. There are 12 screens, and the theater seats 1,600 people. It is equipped with excellent audio equipment. Perhaps it was put in the Fire section because people get excited in there.

To show how upper-class the Elements Mall is, the Three Sixty supermarket is an organic and natural food supermarket. It is unusual in Asia. There is even organic milk, organic coffee, and organic hamburgers. The supermarket is in the Wood section.

Sky100 Observation Deck

Sky 100 is an observation floor with a 360 degree view. You can see the city from the highest observation deck in Hong Kong on the 100th floor of the building. They present an interactive media presentation about the ICC Tower, Hong Kong, and Hong Kong's history.

There are telescopes and a photography booth. Sofas allow people to relax for a while watching the city and the harbor below. There are beverage machines. The ticket price is about 168 HKD (21.70 USD) for tickets bought online and about 188 HKD for buying on site. People can stay there until 9 or 10 pm when it closes.

The elevator can shoot up in 60 seconds, and people enjoy the quick ride.

Three Michelin Starred Restaurants in 2019

The 101st and 102nd floors have the best restaurants. They serve mainly visitors, business people, and people staying at the Ritz Carlton above. Dragon Seal for Chinese food and Inayaka for Japanese food are on 101.

Two restaurants, the 3-Michelin-starred Tosca that is an Italian restaurant and the 2 stars Tin Lung Heen are located one floor below hotel reception on floor 102. Both of these restaurants are on our Top 20 Hong Kong Restaurants 2020 guide. Tenkyu Ru Jin received 2 stars in 2019 and is on the 101st floor.

In the Elements Mall, the popular dim sum restaurant Lei Garden received one star for 2016.

Ritz Carlton

The Ritz Carlton opened in 2011. It is definitely meant for wealthy people. It is still the highest hotel in the world. The Ritz Carlton Hotel takes up the top 16 floors.

The top floor has a lounge and swimming pool called Ozone that is the highest such hotel facility in the world. The cheapest rooms are deluxe rooms with prices that start at least 4,000 HKD (500 USD) per night.

Hong Kong's Best Light Display

iccThe ICC Tower lighting effects can be watched while riding the Star Ferry and at its Central Star Ferry terminal.

The building now has the best light display in the city. The light display is an achievement. Hong Kong is known for interesting light displays that tourists can watch most evenings from the Avenue of Stars.

The light display is called the Symphony of Lights, and the light shows include mainly the buildings on the Hong Kong Island side of Victoria Harbour. The ICC Tower joined the Symphony of Lights in May of 2012. Its scintillating light display across the whole building is the most interesting.

Business and Commercial Attraction

The building is primarily a business and residential complex for the new financial district for Hong Kong. The ICC Tower is a part of Union Square that attracts wealthy people and business people because they can work, live and shop in the same complex. Its transportation system is the best in the world.

The West Kowloon financial district is important for international business because Hong Kong is one of the top three financial centers in the world in 2019. It is being developed because the Central area proved to be too small.

The ICC Tower is in a strategic location. It is over the new interchange point for major rapid transit systems and is close to the airport.

Services for the CBD are being consolidated in innovative ways for time and money-saving efficiency. For wealthy financiers and businessmen, saving time, convenience, and quick travel to meetings is very important. It is important to be able to travel quickly and to stay at a place where a lot of colleagues and customers live.

Residential and Business Facilities Built Together

The ICC Tower and the Union Square complex has an advantage because the residential buildings in Union Square and the new Ritz Carlton are right next to the business offices of major international corporations.

Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, and other major corporations have offices in the tower. The restaurants and the luxury mall areas are convenient places to meet people and have a meal.

Major Cultural District

The ICC and Elements Mall is a part of Hong Kong's major cultural center around the ICC complex called the West Kowloon Cultural District. The Xiqu Center, a major center for traditional Chinese performing arts and Chinese opera performances, is already attracting large audiences, and museums and additional buildings, restaurants, and shopping places are being built in the area.

As part of this district, a pedestrian walk and park was built in front of the ICC along Victoria Harbour. For visitors to the Cultural District, the ICC is the main place to go for refreshments, dining and shopping.

Fast Regional and International Transportation System

Hong Kong West Kowloon StationThe Hong Kong West Kowloon Station is adjacent to the ICC.

The ICC Tower has the best regional and international travel system in the world. People in the complex can travel quickly in the city, in the region via bullet train, and internationally via the Airport Express connection.

The Kowloon Station underneath allows access to the world's best mass transit system. Also HK's airport is generally considered to be among the best in the world, and China's bullet train system the best in the world.

Mainland Bullet Train (West Kowloon Station)

The tower's regional transportation system is also an advantage compared to Central District's. The HSR line from West Kowloon Station links Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong. People travel to the Guangzhou South Station in less than an hour. The train provides access from many China cities to the ICC Tower within a few hours, catering to hundreds of millions of travellers a year.

Cities such as Wuhan and Guilin are now only a few hours away, and Beijing and Shanghai are only a day's travel away. So the HSR rail line links together international business people with the world's biggest industrial regions and population centers. People can go to morning business meetings in Shanghai and Beijing and still be back at the ICC in the evening.

Airport Express

Travel to the Hong Kong International Airport is convenient because the special Airport Express MTR station is basically "in house" under the ICC Tower. It leaves frequently and whisks people to the airport in about twenty minutes. What both saves time and adds convenience is the airport baggage check in at the station.

Construction History

The ICC Tower 環球貿易廣場 builders are Sun Hong Kai and the MTR Corporation. They are continuing Hong Kong's tradition of being innovators in skyscraper construction. The ICC Tower was built using innovative construction techniques, and its function as a part of a planned residential, commercial, and business complex with its own regional and HK train stations is innovative as well.

The building was built between 2007 and 2010. Its world-class transportation system and building a joint residential and business complex were major design goals.

They wanted the building's shape to match well with the IFC Tower and to enhance the overall beauty of Victoria Harbour. The stylistic effect of their twin towers is that of twin light towers standing at the entrance of Victoria Harbour.

Hong Kong's Innovative Construction

Hong Kong has a legacy of innovating construction techniques and record-breaking construction projects. For example, in 1989, Hong Kong became the first city outside of the US to have a skyscraper. It is called the Bank of China Tower. It had innovative design features.

Modern times demand innovative construction. In the past, business people and financiers around the world preferred to work downtown and live in the suburbs.

In Hong Kong's case, that meant they worked in Central, Admiralty and Wan Chai and lived on Victoria Peak, the Mid-Levels area or on one of the islands. That was when regional and international travel required relatively a lot of time.

Now, faster air travel, faster regional travel and the quicker pace of financial markets is making being able to work and live at the same place very important. The ICC Tower is innovative in fitting together fast transportation systems, residences, the mall, the hotel, and businesses in a planned community.

Innovative Construction Techniques

Sun Hung Kai has a history of being engineering innovators. They built the IFC Tower that is the second tallest building in the city, Park Island Apartments, Noah's Ark Theme Park, and numerous other projects. They innovated skyscraper construction techniques for this building.

They installed double-deck elevators to save space and make elevator travel quicker. These are the first such elevators in Hong Kong.

They also utilized new high-strength concrete that was pumped up to the top of the building using a new kind of pump. This new kind of pump conveys concrete 1,000 feet higher than pumps could previously. This saved money.

Energy efficient: It is unusually energy efficient for such a large building. Energy saving features include natural lighting of the atrium, double-decker elevators with power regeneration functions, and the insulating curtain wall.

Travel Essentials

  • Address: 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon
  • MTR: Kowloon Station
  • Taxi Transport Taxi fare is about 240 HKD (30 USD) from the airport to the ICC Elements Mall. Just say ICC Tower 環球貿易廣場 (wan choo maoww ee gwung chwung) or Kowloon MTR Station.

Discover Hong Kong with a Private Tour

tours of Hong KongHong Kong's Victoria Harbour and ICC in the background.

China Highlights specializes in tours for individuals and groups that and personalized and tailored according to customer wishes.

  • Contact us to go on private shopping tour with us or to stay at a hotel such as the Ritz.
  • We arrange tickets and transport: Entry tickets, visas, accommodations, and any transport tickets are arranged in advance for you.
  • Private Transport: Instead of using taxis, we could arrange private transport for your tour.
  • See our Hong Kong tours.

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