Ngau Liu

With a close-knit community, pools and parking, Ngau Liu
ticks all the boxes for resident Becky Merrett.

With a close-knit community, pools and parking, Ngau Liu ticks all the boxes for resident Becky Merrett.

After almost 10 years – and three different houses – in and around Sai Kung and Clearwater Bay, my husband and I had a pretty clear idea of what we were looking for during our latest move. As a mother of three, I wanted a house with a garden in a safe, quiet neighbourhood, where the children could play and ride their bikes, within walking distance of Sai Kung. My husband’s priority was more basic: lots of parking for his cars.
Clustered at the top of Chuk Yeung Road, and overlooked by beautiful Ma On Shan peak, Ngau Liu – Springfield Villa, Greenfield Villa and Jade Villa – seemed a good option.
Located within easy driving distance of Sai Kung, although with no minibus access, and with a moderately treacherous short cut to Tai Mong Tsai Road (best avoided in your new Laboutins), the individual developments are loosely grouped collections of village houses, each with its own swimming pool (Jade Villa’s is the newest).
Built in the 1980s and early 90s, the developments were designed by Dorothy Wong, who targeted the expat market with communal areas, well-spaced houses with gardens and practical internal layouts. Some are subdivided into apartments, and garden sizes vary from the large and lawned to tiny patios. Parking is easy and abundant, and well-placed speed bumps slow down all but the most notorious taxi drivers.
During summer, the pools attract relaxed groups of expatriate and local families and helpers, while major festivals – Chinese New Year, Christmas, Halloween – bring out a rash of colourful decorations and usually an impromptu party or two.
Residents remark that the mood in the developments treads the fine line between welcoming and intrusive. You can pop out for a
glass of wine with neighbours (shoes optional) or stay home and be reasonably secure from nosy parkers peering over the fence.
Dog walkers and fitness fans gather every morning to tackle the brutal hill from Ngau Liu up to the MacLehose Trial – and on to Ma On Shan for real die-hards.
Further down Lung Mei Tsuen Road – which has been under redevelopment for four years and counting – the community spirit is spreading to new developments The Rock and Phoenix Palm Villas.
Commuters to Hong Kong Island have the option of turning right or left at the bottom of Chuk Yeung Road. Right takes you along the shorter, but more congested Hiram’s Highway, while left heads along Sai Sha Road, through Ma On Shan with the option of taking any of the cross-harbour tunnels.