You might have thought that the famous eight-minute ferry trip across Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor with the city's audacious skyline and bustling shipping traffic before you could not possibly be improved upon. But you'd be wrong. Provide unlimited champagne and extend the journey time to 45 minutes thereby allowing for a full circuit [an error occurred while processing this directive] of the inner harbor and you elevate the experience to a marvelous new level. Conclude it with a gourmet meal for two in the gilded lobby of the Edwardian-era Peninsula hotel not more than a minute from the ferry pier while a string quartet plays in the gallery overhead, and you have one of the world's consummate travel experiences.
That's the object of the Cruise and Dine package, launched by the Peninsula in conjunction with Hong Kong's "Star" Ferry Co., and it's one that neither first-timers to Hong Kong nor repeat visitors should miss. A specially revamped ferry has been commissioned for the cruise, which departs nightly until March 15. The journey, including liberal amounts of champagne, hotel-to-pier transfers by a vintage, open-topped bus, a three-course meal and a bottle of the Peninsula's own, rather decent wine, costs just $115 for two. Call (852) 2315 3170 for reservations.