Home Cameras/Lenses Leica Gone With the Wind: Macfilos heads for Hong Kong

Gone With the Wind: Macfilos heads for Hong Kong

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  Tsim Sha Tsui station, gateway to the best photographic stores in Hong Kong
Tsim Sha Tsui station, gateway to the best photographic stores in Hong Kong

From today, I am taking a much-needed break in Hong Kong and Macfilos postings might be fewer as a result. No doubt, however, I will find something of interest to share with you while I’m away. 

  Who would have thought that the rather inappropriately named Champagne Court in Kimberley Road would hide a collection of alluring camera dealers? You definitely need a good guide to find all this stuff
Who would have thought that the rather inappropriately named Champagne Court in Kimberley Road would hide a collection of alluring camera dealers? You definitely need a good guide to find all this stuff

I was last in Hong Kong nearly three years ago and on that visit, I did the rounds of the Leica dealers in the busy Tsim Sha Tsui area of Kowloon. For any photographer, these well-hidden shops (some on the upper floors of high rises) are a revelation — if you can find them. If you are in the market, it’s good to steer clear of the tourist stores on Nathan Avenue and find the real enthusiast stores. 

While I am away I hope to publish my review of the Leica C-Lux. I’ve done all the preparation on the iMac at the office and I can polish the final bits on the MacBook from my hotel.  William Fagan also has a fascinating photographic tour of Oman which will appear in the next few days. No doubt more new things will crop up.

Looking forward, there is a good chance of a Leica announcement later this month, after I return to London, and I will be bringing all the latest news on that. 

As for cameras, I’ve packed the Leica CL with a couple of lenses, the 28mm f/2.8 Elmarit for walk-around use, and the 35mm f/1.4 Summilux for some close-up action. I resisted taking a zoom because a small corner of my bag has also been reserved for the Sony RX100 Mk.VI which I am able to keep until after the journey. After experiencing the convenience and capability of the C-Lux, I have a feeling the Sony will see more action than planned.

If any Hong Kong readers would like to meet for a coffee and a chat then please get in touch.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. Hi there. I’m a keen follower of your site and will be travelling to Hong Kong in January next year. It would be great if you could list the camera dealers that you find. I’ve heard that it’s an “Alladins Cave” but difficult to find the true enthusiasts shops.
    Regards Robin.

    • Hi Robin, I did a review of some dealers back in 2015:

      http://macfilos.com/photo/2015/10/16/hong-kong-leica-dealers-an-afternoon-stroll-round-the-cream-of-the-crop

      I don’t think things have changed much, although I do know that Gilbert Yuen of Photopia has moved to another building, but still on the same road. The back streets to the east of Nathan Avenue between Tsim Sha Tsui and Mong Kok are where most of the action takes place. There are other areas I believe, but this is the most convenient for visitors. As I say, though, you have to search and keep your eyes open. One or two stores are offices in ordinary-looking office blocks and can be difficult to find. If I get the chance I will update with any new discoveries. Mike

  2. Safe travels Mike. I was in HK a few weeks back, got my M10 from Fotopia. Small store and not easy to find especially the address on google map is wrong. So heads up. The new location is on the same road but a different building. You can check the photos on google map to match, those are legit. But do not trust the address. Other stores are not too bad as well but much more expensive. Didn’t meet Gilbert though. Shame. Cheers!

  3. local trivia…..Champagne Court is an infamous warren of one-woman brothels run by triads !

    I’m very wary about buying photo gear in HK. The stores on Nathan Rd in TST are notorious for ripping people off, and I once had my credit card pinged with an extra zero when I bought a lens adaptor.

    I haven’t checked recently but with the exception of Fotopia and Rangefinder, I find the prices of Leica gear in many stores to be over the top. Rangefinder HK don’t take trade-ins for their grey market Leica gear but Gilbert at Fotopia has always been very fair with trade-in pricing.

    It will be interesting to read about your impressions.

    • Wow! I was in Champagne Cour (sic) this morning and am happy to report I left with my virtue intact. I didn’t see any one-woman brothels but they must have been lurking upstairs. I concur with your views on shopping for cameras, especially the good advice to avoid anywhere on Nathan. Gilbert Yuen seems to be al all-round good guy, though, and I would have no hesitation dealing with Fotopia.

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