The Sai Kung peninsula is famed for its beaches, country parks and mountains. Located on the northeast coast of the New Territories, it is a haven for spacious family living as town and village houses are abundant, with many homes enjoying a patio, rooftop and garden areas.
'Sai Kung is a wonderful area,' says Frankie Liu, district sales director at Century 21 Goodwin Property Consultants. 'The whole area is low density with low-rise designs [and] either villas, town or village houses.'
Liu also likes the fact that Sai Kung offers the type of homes not sold anywhere else in Hong Kong. 'Take Marina Cove,' says Liu, who has been in the property sector for 24 years, of which the past six years have been in Sai Kung. 'It's a famous complex with some of the houses having their own private pontoons, which is the only place in Hong Kong to offer such a feature.
'Sai Kung is also a convenient location, as places [such as Clear Water Bay] is only 20 minutes away from Central, which is a good selling point for families wanting to move here from Hong Kong Island. And when people arrive home they can relax and enjoy a spacious, comfortable home enjoying the sea or mountain view and greenery, as well as the fresh air.'
Engineer Ray Smith enjoys Sai Kung for these reasons.
'I can really relax when I get home and, at the weekends, because it is relatively quiet and peaceful. I think it's great for families, but maybe not for younger, single people who may prefer city life,' says the father-of-two. Rents are also reasonable compared with other areas of Hong Kong and Kowloon.
The Riggs family moved to Sai Kung nine years ago. 'The rents were cheaper than the flats in Kowloon close to my children's school,' says mother-of-three Lizzie Riggs. 'The location is convenient and we can also enjoy the outdoor life Sai Kung affords, such as hiking, kayaking and swimming in the sea.'
Liu agrees that rents in the area are cheaper than elsewhere and says this year more people are renting than buying, due to the 50 per cent down payment now needed when purchasing a property.
He still thinks the future is bright for the area with families not only attracted by the lifestyle but with the new facilities 'such as two international schools and the hotel near Sai Kung town'.
'And with the government plans for nearby East Kowloon,' says Liu, referring to the new cruise terminal at the old Kai Tak airport, which is only a short drive from Sai Kung, 'we expect to see interest in Sai Kung grow rapidly in the future.'