Aqua Restaurant Group has launched a new junk to join Aqua Luna. Chinese junk Aqua Luna II boasts distinctive blue and white sails displaying the imperial blue and white dragon from the Ming dynasty. The dragon is a symbol in Chinese culture of power and good luck for all it touches. Like its sister ship, Aqua Luna II will be offering cruises on Victoria Harbour.
It has taken two, painstaking years to build Aqua Luna II. Leading the construction was 86-year old Sifu (master craftsman) Au, who is said to have built more wooden boats than any other person in Hong Kong. The vessel is made exclusively of wood, using bamboo for waterproofing and not a single nail in the whole structure.
Both boats have been named in Chinese after Hong Kong pirate Cheung Po Tsai, who it is said used the caves of Cheung Chau to store his pirate treasure over 100 years ago. Aqua Luna is Cheung Po Tsai and Aqua Luna II is Dai Cheung Po (big brother of Cheung Po) – indicating its greater size.
The junks were commissioned by the Aqua Restaurant Group and conceived by founder David Yeo in response to “the sad disappearance of one of Hong Kong’s great traditions – the Chinese wooden junk,” according to Yeo.
“The Victoria Harbour was once filled with glorious red sail Chinese junk boats, however over the years they have disappeared one by one. What better way to raise the spirits of the city than to recreate such a visually stunning and quintessentially Hong Kong icon,” he said.
To celebrate the launch, there will be complimentary rides on the new junk on May 13 and 14 for all Hong Kong ID holders (noon to 5.30pm). And until May 31, all restaurants in the Aqua Restaurant Group will be serving random dishes using Ming Dynasty china – if you are served a Ming Dynasty ceramic you will receive complimentary tickets for the new junk. See www.aqualuna.com.hk for more details.