Discovery Bay – Expat paradise just across the water from Hong Kong
Hong Kong city is a loud, fast paced, shining beacon of skyscrapers, luxury retailers and bustling city life. And for new residents and expats moving overseas, it can feel like a relentless city to call home, especially while trying to acclimatise without local language skills. Not to mention the limited space – parts of the city, including skyscrapers, are literally built into the side of mountains. Which all results in limited housing options, all of which are on the small side and very expensive (rental costs are around $120 per square metre).
All these factors combined mean that for many expats moving to Hong Kong, there is an alternative location that has grown in popularity – Discovery Bay. Nestled amongst beaches and mountains, and just a 30-minute ferry ride from downtown Hong Kong, Discovery Bay (DB) is an almost uniquely expat town.
Located on the coastline of Lantau island, facing the Hong Kong skyline, the city provides a calm oasis from the hustle and bustle of the city. It is also unquestionably more westernised, with all signage in both English and Chinese.
Great transport links
The whole of DB community is pedestrianised, so living here means you will have to learn to live without a car. However, that does mean that the area is quiet, clean, and safe. It also means that the area benefits from exceptional public transport links. There are buses running pretty much 24/7 around the community, and a ferry that runs from the port to Hong Kong city until 4am every day. And all transport can be paid for using your Octopus card – with special discounts for DB residents. Many residents invest in electric scooters and even golf buggies to indulge their needs to private modes of transport!
DB is home to all the amenities and activities you could need, meaning that should you want to, you don’t need to visit Hong Kong city. From the members only clubhouses, beautiful and immaculate gardens, golf course, and a beach complete with children’s play area, as well restaurants and shops, there is a lot to do in DB. And the area is home to a number of excellent fee-paying international schools for all ages, as well as preschools.
There’s plenty to keep the active resident busy: hikes, tennis courts, sailing and gyms to name a few of the DB activities. And for those expats who enjoy a good night out, are looking to make friends, or want an active social life after work, there’s an excellent restaurant and bar scene. In fact, DB is home to the largest ocean front bar and restaurant plaza in Hong Kong: perfect for lazy afternoons in the summer heat with a cool drink.
Accommodation and communities
The accommodation available here varies but is universally expensive. The costs reflect the numerous benefits that come with living in DB, as well as the outdoor space and safety in the area. It’s a very popular area for expats with children as it affords a more relaxed pace of life than in the city. And for many expats, housing costs on DB are covered in whole or in part by their Hong Kong employer. The majority of housing is apartments, with a full concierge service. And many include membership to one of the country clubs as part of the accommodation fees, giving you access to a gym, pool, restaurant and bar, as well as classes, which are all great ways/places of meeting and making new friends.
If you’re considering a move to Hong Kong, our expert removals services cover more than just packing and shipping. With real local knowledge, and an office in the city, we are the international moving company to make your move to Hong Kong easy. We can even help you find your dream Discovery Bay home, and international schools for the family.