Dating from 1902, this building was formerly the Tai O Police Station and one of the earliest police stations built in the New Territories. It is situated on a small hill next to the Tai O Ferry Pier. The authorities stationed police on this western extremity of Hong Kong to combat piracy and smuggling, and to make the presence of British law and order known throughout the entire colony. Initially, there were six to seven policemen posted here but by 1983 this figure had increased to 180. In 1996, the low crime rate in the fishing village made it difficult to justify such a police presence and the station was downgraded to a patrol post.
The station consists of the main block and the outhouse block, each two stories high, linked by a footbridge on the first floor. The main block with its Chinese pan-and-roll tiled roof, projecting eaves and arched verandas has an Italianate Renaissance appearance and contains a charge-room, two cells, separate dormitories, bathrooms and a store. The outhouse block, a later addition built in the 1960s, contains kitchens, drying-room, store and bathroom, an interpreter’s room and some accommodation for servants. It displays features of the Arts and Crafts architectural style. Windows are fitted with steel grilles or shutters for defensive purposes and there is a circular watchtower on the roof at one end.
The building was revitalised and converted into the Tai O Heritage Hotel in 2012. The hotel includes nine colonial-style rooms and suites with sea views and a roof-top restaurant serving Tai O specialties. The surrounding cannons, searchlight and guard towers have all been restored.
- Shek Tsai Po Street, Tai O, Lantau Island, Outlying Islands
- +852 2985 8383