It’s late March, the entire city is suddenly orbiting around an oval shaped ball and it’s getting towards the moment when it’s time to pick your team… To Sevens, or not to Sevens? That is the question. Will you join the South Stand Squad – beg, borrow or scam your ticket; hit Pottinger Street for your giant Smurf outfit and mainline Pimms all weekend? Or, will you opt for Team Anti-Sevens – dodge anyone in a Rugby shirt; run in the opposite direction whenever you hear the first strains of “Hey Baby” and avoid ingesting jellified vodka at all costs? Or, shock horror, has your quest for a pass to HK stadium proved completely fruitless, leaving you with no choice but to resign yourself to the No Ticket Crew?
Whichever side you choose to back, we have the 852 on the very best line-up for the weekend ahead.
SOUTH STAND SQUAD
Socks up, mouthguard in, it’s time for kick-off…
As all Rugby pros know, pre-match carb-loading is mandatory. To ensure that you go the distance, start the Sevens weekend with a roly-poly rugger brunch at Old Bailey Street’s Fatty Crab. Get the Bloody Mary’s free flowing and order like you mean it – we’d suggest the M’Griddle – buttermilk pancakes, maple nuggets, coriander bacon, egg and cheddar – or the Fried Chicken & Waffles (they’re waffly good…). And if you’re looking for somewhere to kick off the weekend’s festivities early, Fatty Crab is also offering an extended Fatty Hour in honour of the Sevens all day Thursday and Friday. A beer for HK$35? Was there ever a better excuse to call in sick? Sevens Fever? It’s highly contagious…
Spent the day in the South Stand, whooping, dancing, singing, Mexican waving and generally doing everything but watching the game? When the final whistle goes, you’ll probably have worked up a pretty mighty appetite and let’s face it there’s a lot of serious partying still to be done. Before the second half of the Rugby-fest commences, round up your costumed comrades and top up your tank with tapas at Catalunya. Whether you’re a woman or man and despite the fact that you left the house in a gorilla outfit, it’s quite likely that you’ll be wearing just a bikini by this point in the evening. If not, fear not – Catalunya’s got bikinis in spades and you don’t need to worry about getting arrested for indecent exposure in their version… We’re talking black truffle spiked cheese and ham sandwiched between buttery fingers of toast – yup, basically the Mac Daddy of cheese toasties. Better yet, for Sevens’ week only, Catalunya are serving up two pints of beer and bikini for a truly teeny weeny HK$190. Better take seven…
It’s 9pm, you appear to be wearing someone else’s shoes and you’ve just lost a jelly shots drink-off against ten men dressed as Miley Cyrus… it’s very obviously Champagne O’clock. Located within somersaulting distance of Hong Kong stadium, the Louis Roederer Champagne Tents promise to kick the evening up a notch with live music, dangerously delicious cocktails and a great line-up of top DJs. It’s very important that you remember the cardinal rule of the tent though – it’s only permissible to drink Champagne in two circumstances – (1) if your team’s winning the Rugby, and (2) if they’re not.
**DSTS has Louis Roederer Champagne Tent tickets to give away for Sunday Night’s closing party. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with “champagne tents” in the subject line and include your name and mailing address for your chance to win.
If the last weekend in March usually serves as your cue to hibernate somewhere far, far away from all the Rugby mania, make 2014 the year you fling up the blinds, grab your party shoes and make the very most of Hong Kong’s under-the-radar gems that the Sevens crowd will never find…
While the chanting packs of Rugby fans migrate to Hong Kong Stadium, don your own fancy dress (we’re thinking a little something from Chanel or maybe just that Zara ‘tribute’) and start your day with dim sum and Perrier-Jouët Champagne at the Duddell’s Saturday Brunch. Once you’ve sunned yourself on the leafy terrace and eaten your fill of steamed parcels of deliciousness, get your culture fix by taking a peek at the Foreign Presence art, fashion and photography exhibition (rather apt given the volume of tourists currently clogging up the city).
Fingers on the Pulse
With a thought for those currently in a twenty-minute queue for the South Stand bathrooms, it’s time to take yourself for a little well-earned indulgence (Champagne sipping is exhausting). Scoot up the escalators to brand new beauty spot, The Loft – little sister to Sheung Wan’s The Nail Library. Given the eye-popping variety of premium nail polish brands (think YSL to Tom Ford and NCLA to Deborah Lipman) and the super-skilled nail artists at your disposal, why not get a little patriotic and cheer on your home team through the medium of your flag festooned nails?! (Level 2, 26 Cochrane Street, Central, +852 2618 8623)
As cocktail hour strikes, slip on your stilettos and slink down to new speakeasy on the block, Stockton, for an evening of liquor and languid lounging. A reservation is essential though – the door policy is strict even when there isn’t a 40,000 strong Rugby rabble in town, but rest assured, once you’re in, there won’t be a Flaming Lamborghini or vodka jelly syringe in sight. As you settle yourself into a leather armchair, it’s time decide on your tipple of choice – are you feeling like a Bitter Bitch (Tanqueray, Limoncello, Aperol, orange juice and bitters) or more Cherry Tart (Makers Mark, vanilla, citrus presse and cherry gum)? Soak up the sauce with some elegant nibbles – a seafood feast of lobster, gravlax and crab should do the job.
Rugby? What Rugby?!
NO TICKET CREW
Ticketless Tess? No need to cry into your Vuvuzela, you can still get into the Rugby ruckus far from the Hong Kong Stadium’s maddening crowd…
Despite the fact that you failed miserably to score a Sevens ticket, this year you can still feel in the thick of things while not missing a second of the live Rugby action thanks to the Cathay Pacific/ Hong Kong Sevens Fanzone. Big screens pitched harbourside in Central will show every tackle, try and foiled streaking attempt and best of all, access to the site during the day will be absolutely free. Baby Rugby Bugs in tow? There’s plenty to keep them happy with Rugby-themed games and fairground rides as well as the chance to meet players who’ll be dropping by all weekend. As the sun heads to bed, the site will transform into a live music venue with a bill packed with a myriad of local and international acts from the Mandopop-tastic, Khalil Fong, to De La Soul and 2ManyDJs.
**DSTS has Hong Kong Sevens Fanzone tickets to give away for Thursday Night and Saturday Night’s private concerts. Email email@example.com with “Fanzone” in the subject line and include your name and the date of the concert you would like to attend for your chance to win.
If you can’t join ‘em we guess you may as well be holed up at the W Hotel. The South Stand may be fun, but does it really rival watching the Rugby from the comfort of the Woo Bar with a steady stream of ice-cold beers? And once the final game’s over and you’ve drunk the bar dry, your mod-luxe bedroom is just a short lift-ride above you. Win, win! Better still, on Sunday morning, when you wake up feeling a little worse for wear, just zip on up to the 76th floor pool for a refreshing swim swiftly followed perhaps, by a treatment at the uber-awesome Bliss Spa. Still not back to match fitness? Time to get stuck into your custom ‘Hangnomore Kit’ packed with cure-alls to have you back on your feet and down in the Woo Bar quicker than you can say ‘drop kick’. (Rugby Revelry Package HK$3,599+ per night)
Overwhelmed with choice? Let us make it easy on you. Come celebrate Dim Sum & Then Some’s 7th Anniversary on Sevens weekend! Lucky timing! Join us at KEE Club this Saturday, March 29th and you’ll be in Seventh Heaven.
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