Prostitution Report
from Hong Kong

The Hong Kong city of Mong Kok is as densely urbanized and populated as any city can get. With its dizzying array of corporate high-rises, street markets, karaoke bars, and department stores, there are as many reasons to be in Mong Kok as there are people on its streets. But Mong Kok is probably most famous for consumerism gone amok as the city attracts droves of shoppers from both the local and tourist population. With energy flowing nearly around the clock, this city of only two square miles best demonstrates the variety of people, products, and culture one can find in Hong Kong.

Of course, if you're viewing this website, you're probably concerned with only one thing: the brothels! As someone on this board joked, the name of the city says it all: Mong COCK (and the joke is funnier for those aware that "Mong" is Chinese for "busy"). Unlike the city of Sham Shui Po (the subject of Part One of my report), girls of virtually all nationalities work here. Its brothels are frequented by locals seeking to avoid the pricey and tourist-minded massage parlors, bars, and saunas of Causeway Bay or Wanchai. Of course, tourists and foreigners are also welcomed here although they should prepare to pay a premium and drop all expectations of communicating in English.

Portland Street, running to the West and parallel to the Kowloon thoroughfare Nathan Road, is the artery of the Mong Kok brothel district. To locals, Portland Street epitomizes Hong Kong prostitution just as Wall Street epitomizes American capitalism. But don't neglect the neighboring streets. Brothels are also peppered on Argyle Street, Nelson Street, Sai Yeung Choi Street, Tung Choi Street, and others. A conservative estimate of brothels in the city puts the number at fifty. It may be as high as one hundred.

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Like all points of interest in Hong Kong, Mong Kok is one of the stops on Hong Kong's efficient and well-organized subway system: the MTR. On the MTR, Mong Kok can be accessed on both the Red Line (or Tsuen Wan Line) and the Green Line (or the Kwun Tong Line). A passenger in Central can expect travel time to Mong Kok to take eight minutes with a fare consisting of approximately $6 HK (or $0.75 US). The city can also be accessed by the Kowloon-Canton Railway (KCR) for those who don't mind walking ten minutes westward from its Mong Kok station. The KCR may be a more-convenient and cheaper alternative for those coming from Shenzhen or deep inside the New Terrorities and wish to avoid transferring onto the MTR in Kowloon Tong.

Upon arrival at the MTR station in Mong Kok, proceed to exit #A2 (marked for Portland Street). Emerging from the exit, you will find yourself dead center of the brothel district. The street running from left to right is Portland Street. In the immediate vicinity are brothels and stores selling kitchen and bathroom flooring tiles. Don't worry, there is no way you can confuse them. As someone on this board noted, brothels are often marked by second-story colorful neon tubes arranged in this fashion: IIIII> (with the arrow pointing into the entrance). From the MTR exit and looking in all directions, you can spot atleast ten brothels. At the entrances are often handwritten Chinese characters on yellow paperboard detailing the price and girls available. Sorry, no English words can be found and no one at the entrances to welcome or solicit you.

Initially, I was a bit disappointed at the apparent lack of patronage at the brothels. Before entering one, I had spent two days (and at differing hours) wondering the streets to ascertain what types of girls and clients enter them. Considering the several million horny Hong Kong men living only a short subway ride away, I'd expect the brothels (like other parts of Mong Kok) to be bustling with activity. But traffic was meager at best. I would estimate that each brothel serves only about one customer per hour. I felt a bit intimidated entering one just as I would being the sole patron at a nudie bar.

The day after my disastrous experience at Sham Shui Po, I randomly walked into a brothel located about 200 yards north of the MTR's A2 exit and proceeded to walk up the stairs. The flight of stairs from the street to the second-story brothels has been the subject of much discussion on this board. Many have characterized the stairs as dark, slimy, and scary -- like a dark passageway leading to a second-story dungeon of a medieval castle. After scoping out scores of brothels, I found none of the stairs were as described. Most of them are well-lit, clean, and inviting. It may be intimidating to navigate for first-timers only because of the uncertainty above. I found nothing objectionable to the stairs itself.

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Atop the first flight of stairs of my selected brothel was a shady-looking man seated behind a desk. Despite his appearance, he was very friendly and receptive. "Come on in, boss!" he greeted in Cantonese (because I'm Chinese-American and speak fluent conversational Cantonese, he probably concluded that I am a local). He led me down a short hallway where there were three small rooms, all without customers. I entered the one on the left. Despite its small size, however, I was pleasantly surprised at the cleanliness and appearance of the room. It resembled a college dormitory or the living quarters of a cruise ship. There was a bed with towels, a showering facility, and a television atop a shelf above the bed. Upon entry, the man activated the television to show a hard-core American pornographic video. The video was about a student soliciting her college professor for a blowjob in exchange for a higher grade.

Unlike other brothels discussed on this board, there was no sign detailing prices or the nationality of girls available. Instead, the man simply asked what types of girls and services I desired. I asked if he had any Filipino girls but he said no. I then asked for his recommendation. He suggested I try a young mainland Chinese girl who arrived in Hong Kong just a few days prior. I inquired on the price and he responded $390 HK (approx $50 US) for forty-five minutes. I asked if he had anything cheaper since I lacked the stamina to perform that duration. He said I didn't have to because the session includes a shower, massage, and after-sex conversation (believe it or not). He vigorously pressed his case. Knowing that these places are likely property of organized crime, I didn't wish to offend. I accepted his offer and he exited to execute my request.

After ten minutes, the girl arrived, entered nonchalantly, and locked the door. Unlike the reports I've read, I was not offered the option of changing girls. However, I wouldn't want to. The one he ordered, named Yun (rhymes with "run"), was approximately 5'3" and 105 pounds with much larger-than-average breasts for an Asian. While she had bad teeth (typical of mainland girls), she had a cute little-girl's face. Overall, I was very pleased with his selection. Although I'm inexperienced with Hong Kong prostitution, I cannot imagine higher-quality for what I was paying.

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There was no awkwardness when we undressed and proceeded to shower together. After about ten minutes, Yan laid me down onto the bed to begin the massage. Massage is definitely not her forte. During the massage, we engaged in some minor conversation. She confirmed she recently entered Hong Kong and lives in a nearby dingy hotel alone. In return, I revealed that I was born in Hong Kong but immigrated to the United States as a toddler. She then remarked how all Americans are rich. At this point, I decided to interject a lie. I told her that I am a graduate student at the University of Hong Kong and that I would be in the country several years. I fibbed in hopes she would perceive me as a potential repeat customer which should give her an incentive to improve her service.

After ten minutes of mediocre massage, the main course began. She started out with a blowjob without condom. Her performance was not the greatest but definitely manifolds better than my Sham Shui Po experience. After a minute, I got up and placed her on the bottom to proceed to explore her body orally. When I started licking her stomach, she began to laugh and said she was ticklish there but said I could continue. Unlike my Sham Shui Po experience, I had no desire to perform oral sex on Yun. I was already quite aroused and wanted to get straight to the point without the needless shenanigans.

After two minutes of foreplay, she got back on top and took out a condom seemingly out of nowhere. I inquired whether she was about to mount and she said yes. I said I'd prefer straight oral sex throughout. She agreed but asked for me to give warning so that I wouldn't ejaculate in her mouth. The scope of her oral performance, by the way, included not only the traditional blowjob but also the licking of the scrotum and other parts of the pubic area. After about two or three minutes, I signaled the warning and she conducted the finale with a handjob. It was not as satisfying as I had hoped but much better than my experience the day before. The main course this time lasted about five minutes and we engaged in another shower lasting another five minutes. During the shower, she gargled with Listerine to remove that unpleasant penis taste in her mouth.

In evaluating this session, I must comment on how Yan was so eager to please (as predicted by many comments on mainland girls on this board). She had inquired several times during the shower, massage, and the main course how I didn't seem to be having a good time. I guess she expected a screamer like the porn actors on the video playing overhead. I had to assure her several times how I was indeed having a wonderful experience and for her to quit worrying. It's nice to interact with prostitutes devoted to customer satisfaction.

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After the main course, she remarked that we still had fifteen minutes and started to engage in some conversation. This time, our conversation turned more personal. I commented how there are countless fun opportunities in Hong Kong and inquired if she had a chance to explore the city. She said no because there is no one to accompany her. She then asked if I had a girlfriend, of which I responded negatively. She then asked if I had a pager or cell phone and suggested for us to get together someday. I said I didn't own these devices but said I will come back and ask for her soon. We then conversed on other subjects such as our families, our professional aspirations, and general life in the United States and China. Throughout, I learned that life as a prostitute is not all that great. Strangely, I found myself enjoying the conversation almost as much as the sex itself.

After the forty-five minute session was complete, Yan and I walked out of the room. As I passed the front-desk, I handed the man $400 HK. Without giving $10 change, he asked if I was satisfied. I smiled and said yes. "See boss, I knew you'd like my recommendation!", he gloated. And shortly before leaving, I handed Yan $60 HK ($7.50 US) which she accepted graciously. In retrospect, I believed my tip was too low. Since I had over-tipped the girl in Sham Shui Po, I perhaps felt a need to compensate by under-tipping here. However, I felt a sense of guilt and injustice. Along with the occupational hazards, prostitution is probably the most degrading thing any woman can do. For those who engage in this profession and attempt to do a good job, I felt a moral imperative to compensate them fairly. This is not the time to be a cheapskate. I should have tipped at least $100 HK.

After walking down a flight of stairs, I found myself back onto Portland Street sensing satisfaction and accomplishment. I had performed several weeks of Internet research on prostitution in Hong Kong and had told several friends what I was about to do. I had feared chickening out or being unable to perform when the moment arrives. Now that the deeds were done, I can finally concentrate on the reasons I keep returning to Hong Kong year-after-year: the shopping, visiting relatives, and vacationing in one of the world's most fascinating and beautiful cities.

In comparing my experiences in Sham Shui Po and Mong Kok, I'd strongly recommend for all sex-minded tourists to proceed straight to Mong Kok. The brothels there evoke an aura of professionalism and legitimacy -- just like going down to the supermarket to buy your groceries. While Sham Shui Po sex may be much cheaper, you will have to endure the sleaziness of soliciting a street prostitute and then venturing blindly into her apartment. It is certainly not safe and I shouldn't have permitted my libido to eclipse my sense of reasoning that night. Even if you prefer Thai girls, I'm not sure Sham Shui Po is worth your while. As mentioned by others on this board, you should instead head to Macau or find a Mong Kok brothel that employs them.

It's probably true that the Mong Kok brothels are controlled by organized crime. Since all the brothels are marked by the same neon lights, same handwritten signs, and similar pricing, I have a nagging feeling that they are all owned by the same organization. Still, these are permanent and legitimate establishments and their survival depends on referrals and repeat customers. They may be criminals but they need your continued patronage. Besides the clout of organized crime in Hong Kong has declined since the territory reverted to Chinese rule in 1997. The Chinese government (not known for being overly concerned with human rights) is far more stern in the treatment of criminals than the British. As long as no one complains or gets hurt, organized crime and the police (who probably frequent the brothels themselves) can continue to coexist.

As I conclude my report, I wish to express hope that everyone would have the chance to experience Hong Kong at least once in their lives -- even if sex was uninvolved. From its bustling street markets, to the ferries crossing Victoria Harbor, to the mega glass skyscraper thrusting towards the heavens, it is hard not to fall in love with the city. Many of us Hong Kong born Chinese-Americans cannot resist the urge to return every-so-often. I hope all of you will have a chance to go someday. A great place to start planning your venture is the Hong Kong Tourism Association's website at www.hkta.com.

If you are planning a trip soon, please have a memorable and lustful time in Hong Kong!

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