Romance in bloom among HK's lovers
As the city turns pink and red and the scent of flowers wafts through the streets, lovers in Hong Kong seem to be celebrating Valentine's Day the traditional way, with dinner dates and roses.
Bunches of flowers spilled into the aisles at Flannel Flowers in Times Square, Causeway Bay, as the half-dozen staff trimmed and wrapped the blooms in preparation for more than 100 bouquet deliveries across the city tomorrow.
'The largest order we have is 99 roses,' Flannel Flowers florist Patricia Ko said. 'I don't know what he [the buyer] does [with them], but he comes back every year.'
Ko says the price of flowers from some countries has risen in the last year, but not enough to hit business.
Florists charge more on Valentine's Day, Ko says, but this is because suppliers traditionally raise prices at this time of year. The florist shop, like many others in the city, gets its flowers from the Netherlands, the United States, Japan and South America.
A single stem rose at Flannel Flowers today will set you back HK$150, subject to a minimum order for Valentine's Day of HK$1,200. Roses were on sale for HK$60 a piece in a nearby wet market.
But not every couple has extravagant plans. Others were looking for something more low-key - or weren't too keen on the day.
'I'm just going to get a cake for my wife,' said Thomas Leung Pui-wai, who has been married for 10 years.
Still, some can't resist the romance of the day. 'We're going to get dinner and then go for a walk,' said 30-year-old Edward Li Huayong, who was visiting from Shenzhen. Li planned to pick up an Armani watch for his girlfriend of five years while he's in town.
'I really like her,' he said, his face lighting up in a broad grin.