Causeway Bay Edges Fifth Avenue For World’s Most Expensive Rent
Owing to its notorious crowding, an influx of mainland Chinese shoppers and property buyers, and a saturated and contentious retail environment, it’s no surprise that rent for prize retail real estate in Hong Kong is sky-high. But this year, its rise has hit yet another milestone, with rent in Causeway Bay surpassing New York’s Fifth Avenue as the world’s most expensive.
Though undoubtedly making landlords in top retail areas very happy, the astronomically rising rents have — as Jing Daily columnist Cedric Delzenne wrote this summer — had a devastating effect on local businesses:
What happens when [a landlord] decides to woo a luxury jewelry brand or sports car dealer as a tenant instead to increase their bottom line quickly and easily? Rents are jacked up so high, often in an instant, that small shops simply have no choice but to pack their things and go, with little or no room for negotiation unless the property owner is a long-time friend.