Where: We're swimming again, but this time it's at Repulse Bay. The big building on the left is the old Repulse Bay Hotel, looking out over its gardens to the beach, and the sea beyond:
When: The hotel was opened on the 1st of January, 1920 , so it must be later than that. Not too much later though, judging by the look of the cars:
Can anyone tell us more about these models, and which years they were popular?
Who: Here are this week's swimmers:
If they'd arrived here in one of those chauffer-driven cars, they were certainly a lot wealthier than the swimmers in last week's photo ! Or perhaps they'd made the trip here on a company launch:
Failing that, there was always the bus:
As regards the accessibility of the hotel the problem has been solved by the Dragon Motor Company. On January 1, there is being instituted a motor bus service to Repulse Bay at the low charge of $1 return. It is hoped to have five of the small motor buses running by that time. The buses, which have been locally constructed, will accommodate 20 passengers each, all facing front. They are cushion seated and will be covered at the top. More are under construction. The trip will take about an hour each way, but when the new road that is being constructed from the Wong Nei Cheong Gap is opened it will be of much shorter duration. We learn that a service of motor bus trips round the island at a charge of $2 is contemplated when the road is completed. Government permission for the service has been granted.
Page 4, Hongkong Telegraph, 23 Dec, 1919.
What: There are a several piers visible. The long one in the foreground was built to let passengers on the launches walk to and from the beach. It doesn't appear in later photos, so it likely went out of use as more visitors arrived by car or bus. But what about the shorter "pier", out in the sea?
It doesn't reach the beach, so I'm not sure what it was used for. Does anyone know?
While editing the photo I noticed there's a third pier at the far end of the beach:
It looks as though there is a house on the slope behind it, that is somehow connected with the pier.
The other structures along the top of the beach are accomodation for visitors who prefer something simpler than a room in the hotel - larger matshed beach houses, and smaller canvas beach huts in front of them:
Trivia: Something else to note is how narrow the beach is in this photo. Compare it with the width of the sand in a modern satellite view:
The beach has been extended artificially, by dumping extra sand to make it wider.
- Opening of the hotel: http://gwulo.com/the-repulse-bay-hotel#comment-25724
- 1907 Soldiers swimming: http://gwulo.com/node/17184