Hong Kong almost got a Trump Tower

Central Station | Nury Vittachi 16 Sep 2020

Some readers were puzzled by international media references to a place called Sea-to-Sky in Canada this week.

Turns out that the popular new Hong Kong property development of that name seems to have been, er, inspired by the name of a place near Vancouver.

Some years ago, a major Hong Kong property developer named a new project in this city Trump Tower - until a reporter advised him to change it, since a certain American family would surely complain. He changed it.

I know that anecdote is true, because that reporter was me.

* * *

The scariest conversation a salaried employee in Hong Kong can hear this month:

GOVERNMENT: Free money! Who wants some?

BUSINESS BOSSES: Er, no thanks.

(Bosses who receive Covid bailout funds have to promise not to sack staff.)

* * *

I've had a lot of odd reminders in my time, but this one, seen yesterday at Windsor House in Causeway Bay, has got to be one of the strangest.

* * *

Although two diners from a seafood restaurant in Sham Shui Po were recently diagnosed with the virus, its popularity will return.

The decadently fatty pork belly dish alone means that the restaurant, named Man Fat, is correctly titled in both Chinese and English.

* * *

In this column way back on June 17, we speculated that since Hong Kong protesters had been deemed worthy of nomination for a Nobel, "next, we'll see calls for the [Black Lives Matter] protesters in the US to be given the Nobel Peace Prize."

The headline in another Hong Kong English language newspaper on September 12: "If Hong Kong protesters deserve Nobel Peace Prize, what about Black Lives Matter protesters?"

* * *

A Hong Kong teacher named Nigel was yesterday reflecting on the 12 bail-jumpers detained in mainland China: "If only there was some agreement with China on the handover of suspects "

* * *

Actually, mainland China has repatriated at least 248 fugitives back to Hong Kong in the past six years as a mark of goodwill.

So they could return them here if they felt like it. But something tells me these 12 bail-jumpers, wanted for crimes ranging from assault to bomb-making, have not generated a lot of goodwill.

* * *

On Monday, we speculated that an anti-China voice who uses the name Doge on social media might be connected to the CIA.

Yesterday, Daniel Dumbrill discovered that she worked for the Uyghur World Congress, a US-based anti-China group financed by the National Endowment for Democracy, the CIA's regime-change arm.

* * *

Several media reported that poor old Hong Kong was recently cut out from a project to lay a giant underwater telecoms cable to link Asia and the United States.

But few reported that local engineers last week received permission to switch on a new undersea cable from Hong Kong to Hainan Island.

More than 2,000 international companies have registered in Hainan this year, with insiders expecting a boom as it becomes a free trade port.

If you ever feel low, just stroll over to Central and chat with people in the business community, where the future's so bright you gotta wear shades.

* * *

Financial Times headline: "Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong says he expects to be arrested at any time."

Remember when newspapers reported things that actually happened?

I miss journalism.

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