Mei Ho House

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Mei Ho House
美荷樓
Shek Kip Mei Estate 2013 part6.JPG
Mei Ho House in 2013, after renovation
General information
Location Shek Kip Mei Estate, Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong
Coordinates 22°20′02″N 114°09′49″E / 22.33395°N 114.163705°E / 22.33395; 114.163705
Opening Projected late 2012
Management Hong Kong Youth Hostels Association
Affiliation Hostelling International
Other information
Number of rooms 129
Number of restaurants 1
Parking No
Website
www.yha.org.hk/eng

Mei Ho House (美荷樓), formerly part of Shek Kip Mei Estate, Hong Kong, is the last remaining example a "Mark II" building in a single-block configuration. While the other buildings of the estate dating from the 1950s have been demolished, being replaced by new ones, Mei Ho House was chosen to be preserved.

History[edit]

Mei Ho during the 1956 riots. A banner can be clearly seen hanging from the building.

After a devastating fire in December 1953 that left thousands homeless, the Colonial government built a 29-block resettlement estate on the site of the burnt-down shanties to house the homeless victims.[1] Eight blocks (Blocks A to H), later renumbered as Blocks 10 through 13 and 35 through to 41, were constructed with the financial aid of the United Nations (Mei Ho House is Block H, later Block 41). These 7-storey blocks were constructed in an 'H' configuration consisting of 2 residential wings, with communal sanitary facilities linking them.

During the Hong Kong 1956 riots, the building was used as one of the bases for the rioters.

Preservation[edit]

The building will be tentatively preserved as a record of Hong Kong's public housing development. It was listed as a Grade I historic building in 2005 and as a Grade II historic building in 2010.[2]

In 2008, it was part of the seven buildings of Batch I of the Hong Kong Government's Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme.[3] On 17 February 2009, the government declared that the building will be used by the Hong Kong Youth Hostels Association as "City Hostel". The capital cost of the project is estimated at HK$192.3 million. Estimated completion time is 2012.[4] The hostel will also have an exhibition area with guided tour detailing the living environment of public housing units in the past.[5]

Opening[edit]

Mei Ho House Youth Hostel will be open for business from Thursday, 24 October 2013. A dormitory room with four bunk beds costs from HK$260 per person. A double room costs from HK$680 per night while a family room costs from HK$1,320. At the opening, Chief Secretary for Administration Carrie Lam described it as a "pioneering renovation project" for a public housing estate and "very meaningful."[6]

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

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