KEYS TO THE CITY
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Secret Macau: Hidden Street
Macau is best known for its Historical Centre, the Macau Grand Prix and its casinos. Let me tell you of hidden streets that you might not know of that are close to the Historical Centre where you can experience real Macau.
Rua Dos Ervanarios is a hidden tiny lane in the Historic Centre of Macau which is located just southwest of Rua de San Paolo. If there is a street that could be used to describe ‘China meets Portugal’ in Macau, this would be it!
Walking down this lane lined with old Chinese shops and surfaced with beautiful Portuguese style pavement, this street makes for unique photographs which features the marriage of Chinese and Portuguese heritage, something one can only see here in Macau. This is one of those rare places that maintain a real connection to the past.
One of the traditional shop in this area, you must try is Hong Heng Cocos, a coconut merchant who has been around since 1869, and is best known for their coconut ice cream. This medium soft concoction is made with coconut water, milk, and some shavings. It is sugar free so not particularly sweet and thus allows the natural coconut flavors to come through nicely.
Rua Cinco de Outurbo is found in the St. Antonio Parish, veering off Rua des Lorchas, it curves through the western side of the Macau peninsula. The street stems from Macau’s colonial past and remembers the day Portugal became a Republic (5 October 1910). Rua Cinco de Outurbo will be particularly interesting to those who want to see a part of Macau that has not changed through the years. It is a good way to experience living and eating like a local.
A good number of our favorite eateries are located here. Ngau Kei for the crab congee, Teeny Fatt for early morning dim sum, and Nam Peng for its traditional breads. Ying Kee Tea House, established in Guangzhou dating back more than 130 years, only selects the finest tea and blends, providing visitors with a calming and nutritious refreshment.
Four Seasons Hotel Macao
Authentic Macau – Cotai Strip
Macau is often described as the Las Vegas of the East, when visiting the Cotai strip area and you could experience different themes and design in an area. Cotai Strip shows the modern side of the former Portuguese colony. The huge resorts and hotels along the reclaimed boulevard mark the role of gambling in Macau’s economy and social fabrics. It is genuinely an amazing place and the Casinos are absolutely huge and the scene at night with dazzling light is even more amusing. Let’s explore more inside of the area and you can feel the real Cotai Strip. Do not miss it!
The Grand Canal Shoppes – Venetian Macao
The Grand Canal Shoppes makes people feel like standing in the middle of Venice with entertained by serenading gondoliers and enjoy performances by signature Street performers with colorful antics of jugglers, living statues, musicians as they wander around the colorful Venetian streetscapes. When you look up the selling, the lighting is so genuine that sometimes you do believe you’re walking outdoors in light even in the evening.
Skycab Cable Car – Wynn Palace
You could enjoy free ride above the Fountain Show at Wynn Palace, may coincide with the fountain performance where the lake area is dimmed, the fountain dances to the pipe-in music and also you can see nice views of the hotel and MGM Cotai. It takes you slowing over a lake with dancing water shows. After arriving at the hotel, you could walk around and you might find beautiful revolving flower exhibits. Surrounding floor and walls of marble and decorated mostly in gold, red, white, yellow and green. Enjoy!
Eiffel Tower – Parisian Macao
How amazing with half-sized replica of the real Eiffel Tower! The tower is around 40 floors high and is regularly changing colors, the view is spectacular especially with the light and music display in the evening, and the stunning views from the top of the tower. The Observation Deck was still impressive and the place you could see whole Cotai Strip.
Assistant Chief Concierge
The St. Regis Macao
“There’s more to Macau than just Casinos”
Maybe you’re wondering what to do in Macau other than hopping in chains of casinos.
This little island of Macau is considered the Las Vegas of Asia with blaring lights, slot machines, dealers on the table and clatter of tokens. But don’t assume Macau stops there. Let’s satisfy your appetite with the city’s diverse gastronomy and unique cultural heritage through its buildings, museums and galleries.
If you are both a food adventurer and a person who loves history, you will surely get your hands full with the unique restaurant choices and architecture of this quaint Old Taipa Village. From Portuguese cuisine, Chinese cuisine and Macau offers you a fusion cuisine with significant influences from Southeast Asia and the Lusophone world.
Old Taipa Village is located on the island of Taipa and a long time ago it was a fishing village. It is a perfect place to wander around during your stay in Macau. This village showcases Chinese temples to colonial churches, to some of the best Portuguese and Macanese restaurants in town, as well as museums, art galleries, and great souvenir shops, all within walking distance of each other. With its pastel-colored houses, quiet backstreets and traditional restaurants avid tourists will surely get their cameras occupied.
Here’s what not to miss in Old Taipa Village.
If you’re looking to taste one of Macau’s popular egg tart desserts, this is the place to go. Macau Egg Tart is filled with flaky pastry crusts, delicious egg custard centers and crispy crème brulée tops. There are a number of shops which offer this traditional tart but the original is always where you will find a long queue of people waiting in line just to experience a unique taste of Macau.
Macanese Cuisine is a unique blend of both Portuguese and Chinese ingredients and cooking techniques. It is believed to be the world’s first fusion cuisine. Just to name one of the signature dishes is “Minchi”, combining minced beef with diced potatoes stir-fried with onions, and seasoned with Worcestershire sauce. It is often topped with egg and served with a side of steaming white rice. Macanese cuisine has evolved when Macau was a former colony of Portugal and has a 400-year history. It is a comfort food not to be missed.
Taipa House, is one of the cultural remnants and heritage of the island. It features five green houses which display Portuguese architecture namely “Macanese Living Museum”, the “Exhibitions Gallery”, the “Creative Casa”, the “Nostalgic House” and the “House for Reception”. It is a worthwhile place to spend your afternoon and delight your eyes with splendid architecture. And to top it off it is free of charge.
If you haven’t visited Macau, now is the time to pack your bags and explore this wonderful place.
Author: Sammy Chan
“November to Remember”
Macau is a place full of appetizing goodies and events that will indeed keep your heart pumping. On the month of November, the City presents two major events – the Macau Food Festival and The Macau Grand Prix. These events are held every November and are the perfect activities for the cold season to kick in.
Many locals and tourists alike anticipate these happenings during this month. You might need to plan in advance as it is expected for the hotels to get sold out very quickly.
Macau Food Festival is an annual event held at the public square next to The Macau Tower. Every year around November, it attracts local and visitors alike to savor almost any cuisine from around the world. If you are a food aficionado, you will surely satisfy your taste buds with the number of food stalls in the area both from local and foreign participants. The organizers each year introduce different cuisines which will be displayed on a particular area of the event. They invite chefs from a specific country and allow.
them to introduce their cuisine to Macau and foreign visitors. Since it is a festival, it will not be complete without live entertainment and games. This festival is popular for its al fresco dining experience and will delight everyone with the beautiful sceneries around the area.
In 1954, the first Macau Grand Prix event was held as a sports car event. This annual racing event which is the only street circuit racing event in the world to allow both cars and motorcycles, has acquired a massive following among racing fans and elite drivers around the world. Everyone should expect world class driving and intense competition throughout the four day event. The highlight of the event is the Macau Formula Three Grand Prix which features many Formula Three veterans from around the world. The Guia Circuit is indeed one of the most challenging circuits in the world and you will get to see each professional competing from start to finish in navigating every single twist and sharp corner.
November is indeed one of the best times to visit Macau. From racing events to food fest, you will surely not regret your visit to the city.
Author: Sammy Chan