Experience Green Wonders


Hysan Place’s Urban Farm on its rooftop has always been considered the “jewel in the green crown”, a fabulous oasis on top of Hong Kong’s most environmentally conscious commercial building. The only downside, of course, was that it was essentially only for the few lucky farmers, but off-limits to the general public due to access and scheduling issues.

But fret no more, as our environmental programme for knowledge-hungry youngsters, “Green Wonders”, is now in full swing. More than 100 young people between the ages of four and eight, as well as their parents, have joined the programme in the two months since its inauguration and they have overwhelmingly given the thumbs-up to our efforts.

The programme was the brain child of Hysan’s marketing team, and is run on behalf of Hysan by Smiley Planet, a refreshing outfit that operates a number of original green education programmes in town. “We want this programme to be fun and original, too,” says Bonnie Kwan, Hysan’s Assistant Marketing Manager. “We have tour guides who are young and energetic, and we arm them with big tablet computers loaded with beautiful graphics to attract the kids’ attention.”

“We start off at the 4th floor Sky Garden, where we highlight to our young visitors the use of the big holes in the building to help ventilate the neighbourhood, better known as the Urban Windows. Then off we go to the 10th floor office lobby, where they can learn about the huge skylight with sensors to save energy. They can learn the secrets of the double-decker lifts, too, and how they can efficiently transport twice the number of people up and down the building.”

The tour then takes a detour to the 16th floor, where the guides help showcase the Sky Wetland, a green haven with colourful plants to help filter and clean grey water from the office floors. There are also big illustrations on the walls to highlight Hysan Place’s various green features to the uninitiated.

“Then we go to the most fascinating destination of all, the Urban Farm,” says Miriam Choi of Smiley Planet. “Up there the children can appreciate all the vegetables and fruits being grown on more than 5,000 square feet of rooftop, 40 floors above the ground level. The visitors can get their hands dirty, too, as we give them a small farming taster.”

“This is one of the best ways to spend a couple of hours with the kids in Causeway Bay,” says Mr. Ng, a regular Hysan Place shopper. “We heard about Hysan Place being a green building, but now we have the chance to actually see everything in action and it is much better than learning things from a text book.”

At Hysan, we are known for taking care of the smallest detail, and in this case, even the guides’ uniforms are made out of upcycled old jackets our frontline colleagues used to wear. We know we cannot change everyone’s mindset about environmental protection in one go, but we are proud to take the lead and encourage young people to join us for a greener community.