Saturday, April 29, 2017

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Tiger Balm Gardens, Tai Hang

I think we have seen Tiger Balm garden enough times on this blog for me to dispense with the usual brief description, so I shall just post some pictures. The place features fairly extensively in a couple of scenes so we get to see some areas that are not necessarily featured very often. It would be great to have a 3D map of the place so I could place all the locations, so if you know of one please let me know in the comments (and if there isn't one then that is a challenge to whoever reads this and has the ability to do that kind of stuff).

Remember that the garden's founder, Aw Boon Haw, was a staunch Nationalist/Kuomintang supporter, and I suspect that some of the Nationalist imagery in the garden was one of the reasons Li Ka-shing was so keen to bulldoze it post-handover. One example is the famous gate over the stairway that contained "Double Ten" references.

I personally believe the largest loss due to the redevelopment was, arguably, one of Hong Kong's most iconic pagodas. The white pagoda was a landmark and also highly ornate. It's a real shame that it wasn't kept along with the mansion.

You'll notice that the pagoda in this lower shot has the national emblem of the R.O.C on it. It's the famous blue sky with white sun emblem. Anyway, we'll finish off with some of the bizarre images that the garden was more famous for.


  1. A book titled "Tiger Balm Gardens" published about 15 to 20 years ago has a good 3-dimensional map with an overlay transparent map showing the before and after of building development in the 1980s. The book also covers the garden in Singapore as well as some Aw family history.

    1. thanks C, something to keep an eye open for in the 2nd hand bookshops. Cheers, Phil