Hong Kong Photo Gallery - COVID-19 (Central 2022)

Hong Kong had enjoyed a relatively virus-free 2021 where life went on normally until omicron arrived in late December. First linked to an air crew who returned to the city, infection numbers swelled and the retailing and restaurant industries took the brunt of social distancing curbs once again. Dine-in was banned after 6pm and entertainment venues such as theme parks, theatres, and gyms were forced to close.

With Central's offices emptied as staff worked from home and the bar shutdown, Lan Kwai Fong is no longer the bustling nightlife district. I visited on a Sunday afternoon in late March, expecting people out enjoying an afternoon tea under cooler weather. But what I got were empty streets with the shutters down. As bars could not serve food, some owners questioned why eating the same food in their shop would be any different than a restaurant that is allowed to stay open.

Further uphill, SOHO has also seen business closures, but it was not as dramatic.

However, the district has been declining even before COVID, with greedy landlords increasing rent, messy streets from redevelopment, and 7-11's arrival selling cheap alcohol.

COVID gallery - Winter 2020 | Spring & Summer 2020 | Autumn 2020
Omicron in HK - Tsim Sha Tsui
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