If you’re tired of battling the crowds and waiting for someone to get out of your shot at the popular tourist attractions around Hong Kong you should think about looking further afield for that perfect photo op. While unbeknown to many, the numerous universities around Hong Kong house many unique art pieces and feature stunning architecture that would make the perfect Instagram photo. Come with us and discover some of these hidden photo hot spots!
The Pavilion of Harmony at the Chinese University’s New Asia campus
(See featured image above)
Located in northwestern Sha Tin and nestled in the hillside, the Chinese University Hong Kong (CUHK) is one of the most beautiful universities in the city. It is blanketed with shades of green and has panoramic views of the sea and lots of open space. However, the main spot that steals the spotlight here is the Pavilion of Harmony which is the most scenic spot in CUHK.
Built to commemorate the founder of the New Asia College, Dr Chien Mu, the Pavilion of Harmony features a visual illusion which is great for photos, thanks to its strategically placed pond. It is dubbed as “Man and the Sky Unites,” which resonates with the “Concept of the Union of Man and Nature” written by Dr Chien Mu. If you stand at the correct angle and look over the entire pavilion, the cleverly designed sheet of water reflects the view of the sky, mountains, and ocean. This picturesque spot never ceases to maze admirers.
Chinese University Hong Kong New Asia College Ma Liu Shui, New Territories, Hong Kong
Jockey Club Innovation Tower at Hong Kong Polytechnic University
This university has a vintage feel to it as it has been around a long time – but it did just recently get a few updates that have made it much more Instagrammable. The most prominent of these updates is, of course, the stunningly futuristic Innovation Tower, designed by none other than the late Zaha Hadid. She won the bid to design the building in 2007 and she aimed to create a beacon of a structure driving the development of Hong Kong as a design hub in Asia. The fluid character of the Innovation Tower shows the dynamic and creative side of the University. It was Hadid’s first permanent work in Hong Kong, and although she passed away her office continues to push the envelope and they recently won a bid to build some offices in a prime plot in Central, Hong Kong. You can also read about their featured stunning project in Macau, The Morpheus.
Anyway, back to Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) – once you’ve done shooting the Innovation Tower from all angles you should also wander around the rest of the campus as it has a photogenic vintage 60s/70s feel to it, thanks to its collegiate red-brick exteriors and almost brutalist forms.
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Run Run Shaw Creative Media Centre, City University of Hong Kong
Another urban and avant-garde piece of architecture in Kowloon a few stops from PolyU is the Run Run Shaw Creative Media Centre, part of the City University of Hong Kong (CityU). Ths angular and geometric structure was designed by Daniel Libeskind who worked on the One World Trade Center in New York, Imperial War Museum North in Manchester, and more.
The nine-storey architectural icon is a typical crystalline design. Not only in appearance, but also in its rough-cut diamond outlines which can be seen in the lines of structural beams, windows, doors and the linear lighting patterns on the ceilings inside. One of the prominent features is the central spiral staircase with irregular twists that connects the floors – they almost remind one of the Hogwarts in Harry Potter.
Run Run Shaw Creative Media Centre City University of Hong Kong, 18 Tat Hong Ave., Kowloon Tong, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Hong Kong University Main Building
Hong Kong University (HKU) has always taken a responsible role when it comes to preserving their long architectural heritage. The oldest structure on the HKU campus is this main building. It features typical Edwardian Baroque styling and was designed by Alfred Bryer of Leigh & Orange. Completed in 1912, the historic Main Building is great for photos, thanks to its gorgeous corridors, archways, and historical design.
During the war, parts of it were badly looted during but thankfully in the 50s, the main building was renovated and extended with the addition of two new courtyards and a further floor at the rear. In 1984, the main building was declared a monument by the Hong Kong Government, and it has now become an iconic spot on the campus where students hang out and others take photos.
Hong Kong University Pok Fu Lam, Hong Kong