Hong Kong’s Mid-Levels Offers a Vibrant, Historic Enclave Heaped in Prestige

Hong Kong’s affluent Mid-Levels neighborhood is perched on the steep hillside that ascends from Central to Victoria Peak, the highest point on Hong Kong Island that is home to its most expensive properties.

The Mid-Levels was settled by British colonists priced out of Hong Kong’s most desirable addresses and wealthy Chinese families who were forbidden from living on higher land as part of the Peak District Reservation Ordinance of 1904, a zoning law that reserved most of Victoria Peak as a place of residence for non-Chinese citizens and essentially equated social status with the altitude of residents’ abodes.

Over the past century, attitudes have changed and regulations have been relaxed, but the Mid-Levels has remained one of the most sought-after residential areas in Hong Kong, at times eclipsing its loftier neighbor, the Peak, in both price and prestige.

Boundaries

The northern edge of the Mid-Levels runs eastward along Bonham Road, Caine Road, Robinson Road and finally Kennedy Road, until the latter meets Queen’s Road East. Lovers’ Rock, a nine-meter-high granite monolith at the end of Bowen Road marks the Mid-Levels’ easternmost point. From here, the southern border is drawn from east to west along the contour of Victoria Peak that lies at an elevation of 200 meters. The main campus of The University of Hong Kong lies just outside of the Mid-Levels, at the area’s westernmost spot.

Because it spans a relatively wide portion of Hong Kong Island, real estate agents further divide the area into two or three sub-districts: Mid-Levels West, Mid-Levels Central and, for some, Mid-Levels East.

James Fisher, COO and director of market analysis and analysis for Hong Kong-based real estate platform Spacious, provides an anecdote to illustrate the desirability of the Mid-Levels, explaining how properties outside the boundaries are sometimes misrepresented as being located within the neighborhood. “All of the agents and all of the landlords want to be labeled Mid-Levels because they know it potentially will get them more money,” he says, adding, “We are constantly arguing with agents about how we define [Mid-Levels West specifically] because they all want their properties to be there … it’s slightly sexier.”

Article Source: Mansion Global