Also unforgettable was our experience driving through Beijing in an old fashioned motorcycle side car followed by lunch with a local family in their traditional hutong house.
A California father and son

Pursue Your Passion: Celebrate the arts in five of Asia's Most Captivating Capitals

Not only does this unique trip allow you to explore five different and incredibly diverse Asian cities, it also grants you the opportunity to immerse yourself in bountiful visits to dozens of highly esteemed art galleries, exhibitions, and museums – most of which are known worldwide. If art appreciation is your passion, and combining it with travel rings like a dream come true, this fascinating expedition is ideal for you. From the myriad of art museums in Tokyo to private glimpses into some of Shanghai’s most-valued artist studios; a highly coveted experience at Hong Kong’s famed art auction hosted by Christie’s Asia and witnessing the sensational Gardens by the Bay light show in Singapore – prepare to be swept away by some of Asia’s greatest, most enviable art-laden destinations.

  • Experience the wonder of the Art Triangle Roppongi in the soaring heights of modern Tokyo
  • Enjoy stays in luxurious, five-star hotels in every city, such as the elegant Aman Tokyo and the stunning Seoul Conrad, for some well-earned relaxation
  • Explore Shanghai’s delightful M50 community for an interactive immersion into the local art scene
  • Marvel over the innovative activism on behalf of the arts presented by Hong Kong’s Asia Art Archive
Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1

Upon arrival in Tokyo, the day is yours to spend at will. After checking into your lavish hotel, either the magnificent Tokyo Aman or equally sensational Tokyo Peninsula, feel free to take advantage of their opulent comforts and enjoy a relaxing evening, or if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, head into the bustling metropolis and, while experiencing the rush of Japan’s whirlwind culture, delight in an exquisite meal at a local restaurant.

Day 2

Kick off the first day of exhibit exploration with a visit to the distinguished Art Triangle Roppongi, which collectively houses Tokyo’s National Art Centre, the Mori Art Museum (home to the Sky Deck, which boasts of an unparalleled view of Tokyo), and the Suntory Museum of Art. Afterwards, head to the Yanaka district – considered central in Tokyo’s “art zone” – to discover SCAI the Bathhouse, where you will enjoy lunch with the gallery’s innovative director. Round off the day’s exploration with the striking 21_21 Design Sight museum, or attend an optional porcelain painting session with an expert artisan.

Day 3

Rise early for another full day of engaging activity, beginning with Tokyo’s influential MOMAT – the museum hosting Japan’s leading collection of modern art – or the awe-inspiring Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery, a brightly lit space known for its careful selection of mesmerizing exhibits. In the afternoon, take in a private collection by teamLab – a collaborative collective that seeks to unite different creative disciplines – while enjoying informative commentary from an expert. Afterwards, you can take in an evening show, such as teamLab’s Jungle - Art Night.

Day 4

Head back to Tokyo airport for a short flight to Seoul, leaving ample time for a half day of exploration amidst this South Korean city’s vivid metropolis. Visit the Dongdaemun Design Plaza, which displays fascinating outer architecture, as well as various appealing exhibits within, including the beautiful Art Hall and different design museums. Following this, enjoy a stop at Gallery Hyundai, which aims to modernize the divide between past and present with exhibitions featuring both prominent Korean artists and others from overseas.

Day 5

Prepare for your first full day in Seoul with a visit to the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, a museum known for welcoming many different styles of artistic pursuit, while also employing architectural innovation. Later, explore the vibrant Seoul Arts Center for a true glimpse into the enchanting world of Korean music and art, followed by a stroll through the contemporary PKM Gallery and a coveted visit to the Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, which caters to both modern and traditional tastes.

Day 6

Commence the day with a one-hour flight from Seoul to Shanghai, before launching into your next adventure into the heart of Chinese culture. Experience a stirring study of a private collection by Pearl Lam Galleries and visits to impressive artist studios – such as those of famed artists Su Xiaobai or Qiu Deshu – ensuring that you have been properly introduced to Shanghai’s treasured art scene.

Day 7

Lace up your walking shoes, and start the morning at 50 Moganshan Road – or M50 – an acclaimed modern art community hosting over a hundred public art studios and galleries. Next, visit the Museum of Contemporary Art, unless you are drawn instead to the Power Station of Art, which is also an adored haven for contemporary art. Later, enjoy an illuminating tour of MAB Society with the founder himself, Mathieu Borysevicz, to discover more about the organization’s intriguing aim in using art to communicate cultural and international issues. If time permits, you can also visit the Rockbund Art Museum or ShanghART Gallery.

Day 8
Hong Kong

Settle in for a brief flight from Shanghai to Hong Kong, where you’ll check into either the classically inspired Peninsula or the Upper House, with its soaring views of both the skyline and harbor, before commencing the afternoon in the city with a visit at a local artist studio and an optional private dinner with an esteemed representative from Christie’s Asia – an organization famous for its distinguished art auctions and fascinating exhibitions.

Day 9
Hong Kong

Dive into history at the Asia Art Archive, which is both a collection of art documentation, as well as a community dedicated to using artistic vision to provide insight about the world. This visit will be conducted by the Archive’s founder. The rest of the day involves private expeditions to Sotheby’s Collection, the 10 Chancery Lane Gallery, and the White Cube Gallery, rounded off with a trip to the historic Pedder Building, constructed in true Beaux-Arts fashion. If you like, conclude the day with a dinner hosted in an exquisite gallery space.

Day 10

Return to the airport for your flight from Hong Kong to Singapore. Upon arrival at the elegant Fullerton Bay, enjoy a free afternoon relaxing, exploring or admiring the waterfront hotel’s glorious view of Marina Bay. In the evening, optional entertainment will be provided by Singapore’s adored Gardens by the Bay light show; a dazzling experience that will both delight and inspire, and offer you a glimpse into Singapore’s spirited culture.

Day 11

Gear up for the last full day of sightseeing with a visit to the Visual Arts Centre. Tucked within the serene oasis of the Dhoby Ghaut Green, you’ll be moved by the imaginative exhibits displayed within the sprawling, glass-house gallery. Afterwards, explore the biggest public collection of Southeast Asian art at the National Gallery Singapore. Later, revel in visits to the Gillman Barracks, a prominent arts cluster for contemporary works, and the Orchard Road Art Walk – known for its captivating outdoor art installations.

Day 12

Climb aboard your private transfer to the airport for your onward travel, with a vast new appreciation for both traditional and contemporary art that spans cultures, and continents, alike.


Suggested Accommodations

Aman Tokyo, The Peninsula Tokyo

Aman Tokyo

Since its opening at the end of 2014, Aman Tokyo has been one of the most talked-about luxury hotels in the city. The most striking thing about it is its location; spread across the top six floors of a 40-storey tower in the Otemachi business district, the panoramic views are simply incredible. What’s more, all of the 84 rooms and suites take full advantage of the lofty position with floor-to-ceiling windows letting light in during the daytime, while also framing the breathtaking lit-up cityscape at night. Aman Tokyo has also received praise for its impressive interiors, which have been inspired by minimalistic design, including the use of camphor wood, washi paper and stone surfaces throughout the rooms as well as traditional Japanese facilities such as large ‘furo’ baths. Situated on the 33rd floor, both guests and non-guests can enjoy the fine Mediterranean food at the hotel’s signature restaurant, not forgetting more of those incredible views across Tokyo stretching as far as the Imperial Palace Gardens and Mount Fuji in the distance. Elsewhere, there is a spa, enclosed garden area, swimming pool, wine cellar, cigar lounge and a whole host of other facilities to keep guests entertained.


The Peninsula Tokyo

Mere steps from the Imperial Palace sits Tokyo’s newest luxury hotel, The Peninsula Tokyo. Located in Marunouchi district just a short walk from the shopping paradise of Ginza, the hotel is perfectly located for business or pleasure. With a total of 314 elegantly decorated rooms and 47 suites, the Peninsula Tokyo’s accommodations are among the most spacious in all of Tokyo, and offer plenty of amenities including espresso machines, complimentary Internet access, multifunction fax machines, nail polish drying machines, and shoe shining service. The hotel’s culinary options include Cantonese cuisine at the Hei Fung Terrace, regional Japanese fare at Kyoto Tsuruya, and International food and beverages at Cirque Culinaire and Peter. For relaxation, enjoy the hotel’s state of the art health club with pool complex, undergo a “spa journey” at the Peninsula Spa by ESPA, or try a leisurely jog around the Imperial Palace. Other amenities include a business center and a boutique store that offers food, gifts and souvenir items.

Conrad Seoul

Conrad Seoul

The five-star Conrad Seoul is located in the Yeouido financial district with fantastic views overlooking the Han River and city. The hotel offers a huge year-round indoor swimming pool, spa, well-equipped gym, a rooftop garden and even a golf driving range. The spacious executive lounge outshines other five-star lounges with comfortable seating and a generous happy hour promotion. There are 434 spacious rooms with air-conditioning, a deep bathtub, rainfall showerhead, double sink, luxury aromatherapy toiletries, Apple entertainment systems, a Nespresso coffee machine and complimentary newspapers. The hotel is within 5 minutes walking distance from Yeouido Subway Station (Line 5) and reasonably close to Seoul's airports. There is a choice of restaurants including Zest offering international dishes, Atrio that plates up Italian cuisine, a bar and grill on the 37th floor with a 360-degree view of the city and Flames a lobby bar offering wines, cocktails, local and international beers. The hotel also has direct access to the large international-style IFC shopping mall.

Park Hyatt Shanghai, The Peninsula Shanghai

Park Hyatt Shanghai

Floating above the city on the 79th through 93rd floors of the Shanghai World Financial Center, the Park Hyatt is the highest hotel in the world, With 174 suites and rooms, the hotel’s intimate interior was designed to resemble a modern Chinese residence and is divided by gates, halls and chambers. The rooms, on the other hand, are some of the largest in Shanghai. There is a state-of-the-art fitness center, as well as the Water’s Edge Spa, which offers a full menu of skin and body treatments, as well Western, Thai and Chinese massage techniques. There are two bars and three restaurants; 100 Century Avenue, an integrated three-level fine-dining restaurant (serving Western, Chinese, and Japanese cuisine) is among the best restaurants in the city, and certainly has the best view. Other amenities include 24-hour butler service, a technology concierge, the full complement of business services, and wired and wireless high-speed Internet throughout the hotel. The Park Hyatt is a 40-minute drive from Pudong International Airport (PVG).


The Peninsula Shanghai

Located on the Puxi side of the Huangpu River, the Peninsula Shanghai has fabulous views of the Bund, Pearl Oriental Tower and other historic and modern architecture along the Pudong side. Befitting its location in the Pearl of the Orient, the Peninsula’s style is modern while retaining a chic stylistic nod to the city’s Art Deco past. There are 235 guestrooms and suites, which all feature plasma TVs, Nespresso coffee machines, iPod docking stations and wifi access, lending a residential feel to the hotel. Four themed suites – the Astor, Majestic, Palace and Peninsula – set new standards in luxury living. For fine dining within the hotel, Yilong Court for Cantonese cuisine or Sir Elly’s for Western fare in a beautiful setting with views of the Bund are excellent options. The Compass Bar, Lobby and Salon de Ning are lovely places for a night cap. There is a Peninsula spa by ESPA, which offers the brand’s award-winning treatments in a neo-classical setting , indoor pool and fitness center with a DVD library such that gym goers can watch their favorite programs while using the cardio machines. The Peninsula is 40-60 minutes’ drive from the airport, depending on traffic.

Fullerton Bay Hotel

Fullerton Bay Hotel

Upon opening in the summer of 2010, the glittering Fullerton Bay Hotel became one of Singapore’s premier luxury properties. Its 100 guest rooms, five culturally themed suites and one presidential suite have floor-to-ceiling windows and balconies overlooking Marina Bay, while the hotel’s interior design by highly sought-after architect Andre Fu features antique nautical maps and newly commissioned art works. Three dining options, also designed by Fu, include the modern brasserie Clifford (named after historic Clifford Pier, where the hotel is located), with an 800-bottle fine wine list and 32-foot windows on the Bay; The Landing Point, a sophisticated lounge with elevated comfort food and creative cocktails served along its 42-foot-long bar; and Lantern, the rooftop bar with an 82-foot-long swimming pool offering skyline views. Other facilities include a state-of-the-art fitness center and meeting rooms, while high-speed Internet is available in every room and WiFi is accessible throughout the entire hotel. The Fullerton Bay is approximately a 20-minute drive from Changi International Airport (SIN).

Meet An Asia Expert
From Travelogues
Our co-founder & CEO Catherine Heald lived in China for 7 years and returns often. She loves trekking in the rice terraces of Ping An, and hugging baby pandas in Chengdu!
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