Tuesday, March 10, 2015

That Man Bolt - Fred Williamson (1973) - Yee Wo Street, Causeway Bay

A quick jump back to the opening of the film and one of the many seemingly anonymous streets featured as Bolt gets driven around. This one is not so anonymous though because it's Yee Wo Street in Causeway Bay around where Sugar Street joins it.

The top picture shows us what used to be at the junction with Sugar Street. The latter, or at least the western end of it, can be seen behind the tram. The old building, with its interesting (to me, at least) horizontal ledges seems to still be the same building today but with a massive facelift removing all the interesting bits. The building is called "V Causeway Bay" and looks as though it had a bank in it when this film was made, these days its looks as though it has been converted into serviced apartments. Anyway, its nice to know it's still around, albeit in a much altered form.

The second picture gives us a view of Hong Kong Mansion - pretty much about the only building around here that doesn't seem to have changed much. Paterson Street leads off to the right here. But the biggest change for me is the empty space where we can see cloud at the end in the bottom picture. This nice bit of venting has now been filled in by the East Point Centre. As you'll see from the Streetview grab below, I don't think it's improved the area much.


  1. Hi Phil,

    A few more points to note:

    1. CMB was still painted in red back then;
    2. I believe a few of the buildings toward the Yee Woo Street/Jardine Street is still around. They are just not visible in the screen capture;
    3. For the row of low rise buildings aling Hennessy Road with the clear sky above, a few individual blocks still exist today, heavily modified.
    4. The first ever Cafe de Coral fast food restaurant was opened in Sugar Street in the 1970's, at the location of the yellowish low rise shown in the capture;
    5. The Chinese Restaurant located in Hong Kong Mansion was called the Ruby. It has a few branches, one of them was a Western Restaurant in Man Yee Building, Central. This one, however, also have a cake/bread shop on the ground floor on Great George Street, which I frequented when I was small. They also have a BBQ section with above average Cha Siu and BBQ sausages which I liked very much.
    6. The corner store at Yee Woo Street and Paterson Street was (and still is) a municipal drug dispensary. The sign changed a little bit, the the old store is still there. That appeared to be the only store on the street level of the Hong Kong Mansion still around.

    Very fond memories;

    1. excellent recollections Thomas. Interesting one about the Cafe De Coral. These days you'd be hard pressed to find a street that didn't have one, they seem to be almost as prolific as 7-11!

  2. Hi Phil,

    One more observation: - The Taxi Fleets had been generally being replaced by Toyota Crown Sedans. In the previous decade they were primarily Mercedes-Benz.


    1. Is the taxi licensing system different now? I get the impression that there were a lot more independent cab companies in the 70's but I have no idea if that has changed. I guess the split into NT/Urban/Lantau is a more recent event?

      Actually, in my 9 years here I have caught hundreds of cabs and only two of my trips have been in something other than a Toyota Crown - both were Nissans, perhaps it was even the same cab twice :-)

      It's nice to see the electric ones and the MPV versions on the streets as well.

  3. Hi Phil,

    Before the Cross Harbour Tunnel, I believe the government licensed Taxis for the Island, then Taxi for Kowloon (including NT) as two different type of licenses. They could cross the harbour by vehicular ferries (I think), but some drivers elected not to. This is among some of the reasons that some present day Taxi drivers would refuse to cross the harbour even the licensing had changed.

    On the other hand, the license plates in used are not the same as modern day Taxis. I believe someone had posted in Gwulo about it. The front and back plates as captured in the screen are using different colours.