Hong Kong Hidden Gems: Marble Hall Gatekeeper’s Lodge
Built at the beginning of the 20th century – around 1901/1902 – the lodge is the only remaining trace of a sumptuous and hospitable house: Marble Hall, which was once the private residence of Calcutta born Paul Chater, a successful business man of Armenian origins.
Often referred to as one of the finest examples of architecture ever built in Hong Kong, the building owed its name to the imported marble from Europe (quarried in Italy and Greece and finished in Belgium) that was used to build it.
Ravaged by a fire in 1946, Marble Hall was left abandoned until 1953 when it was completely demolished to make room for new property projects. Only the Gatekeeper’s Lodge was kept and turned by the government into dormitories, then storage before it was eventually left unoccupied.
Situated on Conduit Road, at the top of the escalator in Mid-Levels, the lodge could easily be added to the tourist tours of Hong Kong as Paul Chater not only left his name to a building (Chater House), a garden (Chater Garden) and a road (Chater Road) – to mention the most famous sites – he was also the mastermind behind the land reclamation in Central from 1890 to 1904 (expanding Central district by 250 000 m²), the first power station in 1890 (he also created Hong Kong Electric) and helped establish Dairy Farm…
Needless to say that with all the contributions Paul Chater made to Hong Kong, the Gatekeper’s Lodge would be the perfect venue for a museum. In the meantime you can learn more about this illustrious man while touring the Hong Kong cemetery with us. Do not hesitate to contact us to book a tour.