Royal View Hotel
353 Castle Peak Road
Tel 3716 2898
Grub: Buffet with a wide range of dishes from all around Asia, sprinkled with some familiar Western options.
Vibe: Cafe Lido is a typical hotel eating area. It is pleasant enough: clean and modern, but otherwise unmemorable. The hotel, however, is at the Tin Kau end of the Tin Kau bridge and it couldn't be closer without actually being on it.
Below is Lido Beach. Sadly the water there is too polluted for swimming, but there is a net where you can play volleyball or badminton to work up an appetite. It is also a wonderful place for a stroll, with the stunning views of both the Ting Kau and Tsing Ma bridges; even twilit wandering is safe as the lights come on at 7pm.
Who to bring: Good for families but even better with a few close friends.
What's hot: The salad bar boasts delicious chilled prawns, sushi and a selection of cold cuts, including duck with mango. There are also delicious Alaskan king crab legs on offer - but the poor rewards-to-work ratio is a little off-putting, and there is no shortage of crab options elsewhere.
The main section is entirely Asian, though dishes may vary depending on what the chef finds at market. The tom yam soup is particularly noteworthy. Served with huge prawns and crab, it is sweet and cocounutty with none of that familiar sour tanginess.
As for the promised crab, there is baked crab with cheese and some excellent Singapore fried crab - and the chef doesn't hold back with the chillies. In fact, all the dishes that are meant to be spicy pack a full punch.
But fear not, if you don't like the heat, there is still plenty to choose from: roast suckling pig, baked mullet with Thai herbs, and Vietnamese rice paper rolls with minced pork and prawns on sugarcane, to name just a few.
The dessert section is mostly Western, and without doubt \the standout dish is the bread and butter pudding. Make sure you save enough room to try it.
What's not: There is too much to try everything in one sitting.
Cost: The dinner buffet is HK$218 for adults, HK$188 for children on Mondays to Thursdays, and HK$318 for adults, HK$218 for children on weekends and public holidays.