HK's winter wonderland

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 30 June, 1996, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 30 June, 1996, 12:00am

Even though it is summer, there is a corner of Hong Kong where you can discover a veritable winter wonderland.

Snow Garden offers visitors the opportunity to experience a way of life that is totally different from the usual: cool, clean and not crowded.

Lai Chi Kok Amusement Park, a new sports and entertainment centre with an emphasis on community involvement, is the location of this unexpected Arctic environment.

Wendy Tang, one of the Snow Garden's first guests, summed up the attraction. 'It's freezing but good fun,' said the 12-year-old after trying the ice-slide.

Other features at Snow Garden include an Eskimo village, time-tunnel, natural snowing zone, wishing well, ice-bar, tobogganing and ice hockey.

Chan Hang-chung wants to help youngsters discover ice hockey by becoming a coach in Snow Garden.

'Although ice-hockey is relatively new in Hong Kong, I wish more young people would take up the sport,' the 18-year-old said.

While humidity is maintained at 90 per cent, a multi-million-dollar snow generator makes use of liquid nitrogen at minus 196 degrees Celsius to turn the moisture into snow.

Betty Keung Siu-lung, director of Taiwanese firm East Lord International, said the 'natural snow-making machine' was used worldwide to provide indoor winter entertainment. It has already reached thousands of people in Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia.

'It's our mission to bring a cool summer to Hong Kong. Local people can enjoy the comprehensive icy ambience of Snow Garden without leaving the territory,' she said.

Snow Garden's owners have donated 10,000 tickets, worth $100 each, to Save the Children, an international charity devoted to improving the plight of the deprived.

Anthea Strickland of Save the Children, said needy children in Hong Kong and the mainland would benefit from the owners' generous donation as the charity counted on public support to accomplish its mission.

'Children are our future, and yet too many of them are without adequate health care, a home, education, and a secure life with their family,' Ms Strickland said.