The Peninsula Hotel [1927- ] | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

The Peninsula Hotel [1927- ]

Current condition: 
In use
Date Place completed: 

It opened as a hotel in 1928, but the building was completed earlier than that. From the hotel group's website:

1927 - The Peninsula taken over by military authorities, accommodating The Second Battalion, The Coldstream Guards and a battalion of The Devonshire Regiment; soldiers vacated the hotel a year later.

1928 - The Peninsula officially opened to the public by Sir Wilfred Thomas Southorn CMG, Governor of Hong Kong.

Photos that show this place


I'm surprised how long it took before the camouflage paint added by the Japanese was removed / covered over. It's still visible on photos dated 1948 and 49.

At first I thought maybe it was because the hotel was still used by the British military for several years after the war. But the hotel group website has an entry for 1946 saying "The Hong Kong establishments returned to the company's control after being requisitioned."

So are the dates on the photos wrong, or did the camouflage paint really last that long? Was it just too expensive to cover over at a time when money was in short supply?

in the immediate post-war period the hotel was also used a centre for Jewish refugees from Shanghai.

according to this, the fountain, which must date from the 1930s, ended up at the True Light Middle School

Pre-war I remember 'the Pen' as the height of luxury, its ambience so impressive.   I had tea there with a friend just before our war.

In the 1950's my husband small children and I spent two days there before sailing on Home leave. 

Years ago I read somewhere that Noel Coward wrote one of his plays while staying in the Pen, 'Private Lives' I think.    But I don't know if that is true!

Peninsula Hotel guest-Noel Coward & Noon Day Gun
Peninsula Hotel guest-Noel Coward & Noon Day Gun, by IDJ