Silvermine Beach Resort
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Historical Traveler Reviews Spindrift Bed and Breakfast Seahouses
Fantastic location for a relaxing break away from HK Island
I stayed at this hotel for 3 nights of a 10 day holiday in Hong Kong. It was a perfect place for the end of my holiday, as I had seen all the major sightseeing spots in Kowloon and Hong Kong Island before I checked into this hotel, and so was able to fully enjoy what Lantau has to offer. The hotel is a little bit run down but the swimming pool and beach are great, and the location can't be beaten at just a 10 minute walk to the bus terminal and ferry pier. There are several good bars and restaurants in Mui Wo. I booked through Expedia and I found the hotel to be very good value, although note that there is no elevator to the 2nd floor.
Not quite what we expected
On first seeing the Silvermine Hotel, it looks run down and dirty. When we got to our room, our opinion didn't really change. However, we have seen worse. It is very cheap and it is very basic so we didn't expect much more. We did however, expect the toilets to flush, the sink plugs to work and the room to be clean. Sadly, this was not the case.
The staff were very helpful and the food was ok. After one week of our holiday (which should have been two weeks) we decided that we'd had enough of our hotel and location and changed our flights home.
Let's just say that the photos don't really show the hotel as it is.
If you want peace and quiet then I guess Lantau could be for you but the only entertainment the hotel has is a gentleman playing keyboards (incredibly loudly!!)
Fantastic Value For Money!
Don't be put off by the price of this hotel - it's a bargain. Enjoy this little gem while it lasts, because I get the feeling that the price won't stay this cheap when Mickey Mouse opens his doors to the people of Hong Kong later in 2005.
We ate here for just one night upon arrival and took advantage of the buffet breakfast (which was very good). After that, we found the local restaurants on Lantau Island exceptional. The food was around £8 per head for three courses of mind-and-belly-blowing cuisine. The "Big Tree" restaurant at the back of the hotel was a particular favourite, with friendly staff and the best Lemon Chicken and Pork Ribs I've ever had in my life. Yum....
The rooms are in need of a refurb, but this isn't really an issue when there's so much to see and do in Hong Kong and the surrounding islands. You'll hardly be in the room!
We had great fun getting about via the ferries and buses. The terminal is a short 10 minute walk from the hotel. Just make sure you get an Octopus card and you'll have no trouble getting about this great city.
You really will appreciate the fact that this hotel is a short ferry ride away from the hustle and bustle of Hong Kong. It's certainly worth asking for a sea-view upon arrival. The view is unforgettable.
Expect to pay about $150 HKD for the taxi ride to and from the airport. It takes about half an hour. Alternatively, take the A35 bus from the main Lantau Bus Terminal which goes direct and then it's a very short walk to the hotel.
I wouldn't bother taking your laptop to use in the room. They wanted too much money for this facility ($1000 HKD deposit) and there's no Wi-Fi. A better bet is to use the computers in the bar, which you can access for an hour just for purchasing a beer (about $14 HKD) and enjoy the live "music" at the same time.
A good overnight stop
Read the TripAdvisor reviews and decided to book one night here while in transit through Hong Kong.
On the plus side, you get to see a piece of Hong Kong which is much different from Kowloon and Hong Kong Island.
On the minus side, the bus ride from the airport takes about 65 minutes, though it is an interesting and very comfortable and scenic ride. Also the guarded pool closes at 6:00 p.m. so we missed out on a refreshing dip.
Here's what you should know about the bus which we didn't get from the earlier reviews.
From the international airport, arrivals level, follow the signs to the "trains and buses" go down the ramp and staight ahead is the train, turn right and keep going down another ramp to the BIG sign with the bus info. right in front of you at the end of the ramp. Look at it carefully (wish we had). There is a map showing that the bus you want (number 35) is tucked away to your right in a roadway under the first ramp. There is a red sign there clearly showing the bus number. Too bad we didn't see it and wondered all over the other bus lanes looking to find No. 35. We should have looked at the map more carefully.
The bus ran right on time and the schedule is posted. Make note of the return time for the ride back.
The bus cost HK$14 adult, or HK$7 senior or child. The bus is a big coach, comfortable, with lots or room for your luggage in racks at the front of the bus just in front of the seats. The driver has no change so make sure you have the right coin or you will pay extra. Our dirver allowed us to pay at the end of the ride so we could make change with the other passengers along the way.
The ride to and from Mui Wo takes you to through that highrise development you see from the airport and over the middle of Lantau, with a good view of the airport, the hills, the trails, the picnic areas, to the opposite side of the island where you travel west along the shore to a small town before backtracking back east along the shore to Mui Wo. Mui Wo is the end of the line so sit back and enjoy the ride.
You are let off at the Ferry Docks, so you do have a bit of a walk (10 minutes) to get to the lobby of the Silvermine Hotel. You need luggage on wheels or a backpack for this.
The Ferry Docks has a small retail area with McDonald's and Seven Eleven.
Your walk to Mui Wo is along the bay. On the way you pass some local eateries and vendors selling inexpensive beach stuff, flip-flops and the like.
We booked through expedia and found everything on arrival to be in order. And at C$111. for 3 adults all inclusive including breakfast you can't beat the price for Hong Kong.
[To see the city however, I would still say the YMCA Harbourview International House is your best value (C$159. for 3 adults on expedia.ca -- book the standard room and maybe get a free upgrade to Harbour view just for asking (we did) or pay to upgrade on arrival to a Harbourview room -- the view is worth it and you cannot beat the location--right in Central, Hong Kong.)]
We ended up with the room in the old section right over the lobby (not a front room looking over the water) but had a good view of the bay nonetheless.
There is no elevator to the second floor but the rooms are clean and quiet and the mattresses, including a rollaway for our 3rd traveller, firm.
Staff was friendly and very helpful and accomodating, and spoke understandable but accented English.
The room featured: good a/c, t.v. with remote, hairdryer, kettle, cups with saucers, fridge, lots of good lighting, light dimmers and radio on a built in console by the beds, digital clock, kleenex tissues, lots of towels, good hot water, clean bath, desk with chairs, slippers in sealed plastic bags(!), 2 padded chairs, and a desk with chair, mirror. On the negative side, the bathroom mirror was small and the bathroom has a drop ceiling.
Our early flight caused us to miss the breakfast buffet but the staff had given us three breakfast vouchers even though the expedia site said we would get only two even when booking a room for 3.
The dinner buffet was quite good for the price (HK$124. including tax) though the selection was not overwhelming. The salmon was delicious and the ice cream was first quality.
We had little time but a visit to the fish market in Mui Wo even in the early evening was interesting and a five minute walk from the hotel. We also saw dragon boat teams practising with all the locals out to watch. It was nice to see authentic stuff which was not just a display for the tourists.
The view up Silvermine Bay is scenic. There is no vehicular traffic up near the hotel.
Note from May-September in Hong Kong is quite hot and muggy so October would be the ideal time to visit.
Also, the new Disney (opening September 2005) is located closer to Discovery Bay/Penny's Bay off the North Lantau Express Way nearer to Tsing Ma Island. You have a Trappist Monastery and lots of hills between you and Disney and the road from Silvermine to Disney requires you to drive back past the airport so I don't think you need to worry about this part of Lanau being despoiled anytime soon.
I only wish we had more time to explore.
Some Nice Features, but Use Caution
PROS: 1. It is a quiet, almost private beach with few people crowding the beach.
2. The employees are exceedingly accommodating upon registering.
3. The complimentary breakfast here is better than at any large hotel in the U.S. Their restaurant is clean and the employees are knowledgeable and courteous.
4. If you want a quiet, secluded location, this is it.
CONS: 1. Upon registering, even though you prepaid through Hotels or some other intermediary, they insist on making a copy of your credit card as a "formality". Upon checking out, you are presented with a credit card slip for $300. I took this to be just a "formality", too, so I put the slip in my pocket and left. After returning home, you find $300 charged to your credit card. When asked for a credit card as a "formality", tell them that you were told to leave your credit cards and checkbooks home when visiting Hong Kong and use only travellers checks.
2. It is off the beaten path. If you have any intention of visiting downtown Hong Kong, you'll have a 45 minute taxi ride and half hour express train to town each way.
3. Americans will have difficulty understanding the broken English with a heavy Chinese accent of the hotel staff. The waitresses in their restaurant are Filipino and speak excellent English.
Rare tranquility in Hong Kong
After reading the reviews on this site and debating with my partner, we decided to try this hotel, because of its unique location, and very good price.
We paid only £580 for 6 nights including flights on a bed and breakfast basis. Which is incredible for Hong Kong.
The hotel is only a 30 minute taxi ride away from the airport, costing about £10.
The hotel is based in a pedestianised/cycling zone, which is great because it means quiet nights and makes a relaxed atmosphere. The taxi will drop you at the back of the hotel, which isnt that far only a 5 min walk away. You can even hire a bike to explore the surroundings. The hotel is based on Lantau Island, which has many cycling and barbecue sites in its county park.
The best thing about this hotel is its location. It is right on the edge of the beach, so if you request a sea view room, you can enjoy the amazing views.
The ferry port is only a 10 min walk away, which has regular services to central Hong Kong (every 30 mins), costing very little from $10 - 31 HKD ~ £1 - 3 (approx). Transport in Hong Kong is excellent and made easy by their octopus card system, which is a bit like the Oyster card in london. You can use it to pay for all major forms of transport (MTR, bus, ferry, ect), and even in some shops like McDonalds!
Near the ferry port, there are some small supermarkets, restaurants, banks, everything you need to get you goingh really. There are excellnt bus services which take you to other parts of Lantau island, to view the numerous tourist attractions, like the giant budddah, and the village built over the sea on stilts.
The hotel itself has fairly basic but acceptable facilities. There is a good tennis court, a sauna room, and gym all free to use. There is also a swimming pool, but this was undergoing maintainance at the the time we was there.
The restauant provieds a buffet breakfast, which was OK, items on it included cerals, breads, fresh fruit, and a semi continental/oriental breakfast which cahnged daily, serving your usually egg and bacon, to the more intersting noodles spring rolls and somosas, which may not appeal to everyone, but it was included in our booking, so we wasnt complaining. There are other places to eat not too far way near the port (such as McDonalds) if experimenting really isnt your thing.
There is also a buffet dinner in the hotel too, but I recommend dining in Hong Kong or Kowloon, as the food is much better. There are excellent restaurenats in the new ifc mall (near to the ferry port in central Hong Kong), which are resonabley priced.
The staff were friendly and very helpful, they gave us information on tourist attarctions and services. Unfortunately, because of its location, the only tours avalible locally are the Lantau island tours. However we booked two tours with Gray Line on Hong Kong Island and The New Territories, which we were able to depart from locations in central Hong Kong, so this isnt a big problem.
The most dissapointing thing about this hotel was the condition of our room. We had excellent views from our room beacause it was at the corner of the buidling and had two windows facing the sea; however because the extrctor fan was broken in the bathroom, the room smelt of damp at first, but we adjusted the air con to solve that problem. The bath itself had a broken plug, so we were unable to have baths, but the shower was good enough. You get a refrigetrator and room service is avaliable which was usefull. The television had manly Cantoneese channels, which is to be expected, but we didnt come to Hong Kong for the TV anyways.
Overall im very happy with this hotel, the condition of the room did spoil it a bit, but the excellent location and stunning views made it worth it. Because Disneyland HK is being built on Lantau island, the hotel is bound to change when this opens, as when we was there is wasnt very busy in the week, although a bit busier on the weekend.
If your just into shopping and prestigue, then this hotel isnt for you. However if you love to discover, sightsee and explore, then you MUST try this hotel at least once.
If your a bit put off by the cheap price, dont be, just go, you will enjoy it, and the views will make it all worth it.
What bliss after frenetic Kowloon! Hotel is well run, comfortable and oh so quiet. Drinks and dinner every night at the excellent China Bear Bar at Mui Wo ferry pier, delicious homecooked food (the apple crumble and ice cream better than I make!) Great view, fabulous service, enjoyed every mouthful. Grand holiday.
A great base to explore Hong Kong!
We went to this hotel in October 2004, which for those who dont know, is the best time of the year to visit HK, as the weather is not muggy or sweaty its clear and not cloudy, and its still hot hot hot! av 27-30C.
Staying at the SBH is a pleasure, the rooms are more than adequate for the price, and the beauty of it is that you are on the same island as Chep Lap Kok Airport. You can catch the A35 or N35 (night) bus there and back from Mui Wo bus/ferry terminal, it takes about an hour but its only 28HK$ for two (about £2). The hotel is a ten min brisk walk from the terminus and 15 mins if you are feeling lazy. The pace of life on Lantau is a world away from HK Island (Central) and Tsim Tsa Tsui (Kowloon). However, the fast ferry (air conditioned) speeds you to central in 30 mins and the ordinary ferry takes best part of an hour. The ordinary ferry is a bit cheaper but neither are expensive. Buy an octopus card and you will not regret it. It works on any form of public transport anywhere, even on a public sampan across Aberdeen harbour (the cheapest and most illuminating boat ride in HK), apart from, of course The "Star Ferry" from Kowloon to Central last thing at night. Wow what a view!
If you go in october, you MUST get the 1730 ordinary ferry to Central, as you catch the red sunset on the water just as you approach Central, and let me tell you it is absolute magic. We had stayed on Lantau that day, been to the Big Buddha, and we then went to Central and the Peak Tower, where i proposed to my beautiful fiance, the view over HK at night is just breathtaking. It was the perfect end to the perfect day.
Just make sure you go back to the Peak Tower in the day time, as the views are totally different!
Anyway, breakfast is nice at the SBH, you sit right on the beach front, its lovely and quiet and the sun shines for you across the bay. You can sit back and watch the world go by, the ferries go back and forth and its a beautiful place. As i say. rooms are adequate, but if you are anything like us, the hotel will be a bed for tired feet! and you will be on the 1040 fast ferry to central, returning at 1235am to Mui Wo, listen and look out for the Mah Jong playing workers at the Mui Wo food market at this time, (just round the corner from the public loos), you hear the clacking of the tiles long before you see them playing round their table!
So, the SBH is an ideal base for visiting HK, the ferries are plentiful, you are easily set for the airport, (redeem your Octopus card at the MTR desk at the airport just b4 you check in for departure), and the Big Buddha is a 40 min ride on the bus from Mui Wo terminus (dont miss it whatever you do).
The swimming pool is very nice, (1 swim in 10 days, too busy we were!), and the hotel sauna is very refreshing, not to mention free!
We had no complaints about the accomodation, lots of backpackers stop there for a few days, but it really is a friendly place, as is the whole of hong kong island.
dont miss, the big buddha, stanley, aberdeen, shek o beach, peak tower, tai o (also on lantau, an old traditional fishing village, easily reachable by bus), the free zoo by the governors house, Mid Levels Escalators is also a treat, get on in central near queens road market building.
the tram from kennedy town to shekuwan is a bargain at $4HK, wanchai is fun, shatin and the 10000 buddhas monastery is a good afternoon out, see a new town!
and i havent even mentioned kowloon yet!
nathan road, temple st night market, jade market, peninsula hotel to name but a few. you could never be bored by kowloon! always get the star ferry, dont be boring and catch the MTR which goes under the harbour!
the flower street in kowloon is beautiful too, the colours and displays are amazing!
i only have one regret, and that is that we werent able to visit the horse racing meeting at happy valley! it happens on a wednesday but it was a public holiday when we had planned to go, so was cancelled. the hk people love gambling, and if we can ever go back, even en route somewhere, i want to see the gg's!
there are loads of other things i could say, but if you like walking, exploring and sights and sounds and smells beyond your wildest dreams, then get booked and go!
some people say HK is tacky. I say it is a vibrant, amazing wonderful place and the best holiday i have ever had, bar none.
i hope this helps you!
Unforgettable. Get there soon. Not for everyone.
If you are looking for a unique quiet, beautiful, restful beachfront experience, 30 min. ferry ride from HK, this is it. We stayed here half by accident. Hong Kong was booked and this was available and cheap by comparison. However, the more we researched Mui Wo, the better it sounded. We stayed in the older of two buildings, facing the beach. The rooms are comfortable, but basic. This is not your luxury American brand hotel. We had two twin beds that we put together to make our own king. It worked great. We brought our own down pillows and sheets. Even though full, the hotel was very quiet, and the international staff was delightful. The gym was good (wide selection of dumbbells for example), as was the pool and tennis court. The substantial complementary buffet breakfast was not wonderful, but we still really enjoyed it, sitting outside, overlooking the beach. Because there is only a foot and bike path between the hotel and the water, there is virtually no traffic noise. It was so restful to return here each day following the insanity of Kowloon and Hong Kong Island. There are two grocery stores, plus a 7/11, and a traditional food market a few minutes by foot. Things to enjoy include beach walks and shelling, hiking through the quaint village to nearly Silvermine falls and cave. The hotel is easily accessed by a US$20 cab ride from the airport, or via bus. The cab will drop you a few minutes walk from the hotel, since there is no other vehicle access. If we ever return to Hong Kong, we would look forward to staying here. However, with all of the changes on Lantau Island, including the new airport, Disneyland, and new residential communities, the island is undergoing many changes. Therefore, get there soon.
Yes, folks, you can stay at a genuine South Pacific beach hotel and still be in Hong Kong, if not quite on Hong Kong! The Silvermine Beach Hotel lives up to its name. As hotels go it is just an ordinary three-star establishment, but is on a genuine sandy beach, in the lee of a genuine mountain. In fact the location is excellent, being a few minutes walk from Mui Wo ferry terminal (the same company owns both the hotel and the ferries), from where the regular ferry service takes you to Central or, on week-ends, to Tsim Tsa Tsui. A small tip here; some ferries are jet powered catamarans and some are older, slower ferries. The catamarans are a bit quicker, but there is no better or cheaper way to see the skyline of Hong Kong & Kowloon that from the First Class balcony at the rear of the old two or three deck ferries as they parade the length of Hong Kong harbour.
Two other major plus points for this hotel; firstly, there is a regular bus service from the adjacent ferry terminal directly to the airport (a hair-raising journey along the one-and-only single-track mountain road that crosses Lantau island to the airport that lies on the other side of the mountain, not that you would ever know it), and secondly if you contact the hotel directly and haggle they will offer you really cheap rates - a fraction of what you would have to pay on Hong Kong Island or in Kowloon. The best rooms are the sea-facing rooms in the new wing.
TripAdvisor Reviews Spindrift Bed and Breakfast Seahouses
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