Grace and Leo Xia
Co-owners, Hongdae 33 and Duck ‘N Bao
For many entrepreneurs, setting up shop in Asiatown was a way to connect to their roots. Grace Xia, Beijing-born owner of the new Korean BBQ hotspot Hongdae 33 and Peking duck specialist Duck ‘N Bao, shares that she and her husband and business partner Leo Xia, who is from Chengdu, frequently visited the area for a taste of home.
“Whenever we miss our hometown, we’d head to Asiatown to find these familiar flavours that help heal our homesickness,” Xia explains. “Asiatown includes a mall, supermarkets, shopping centers, restaurants, milk tea shops and bakeries, so people can come to one center to get everything they want at the same time.”
She adds that the couple’s go-to restaurant is Ma Lu Bian in Diho Square, which offers bian, the beloved skewer-style hot pot dish: “Bian is a trendy skewer hot pot restaurant that has recently attained cult-level popularity. It is from my husband’s hometown of Chengdu, and he has had it since he was a little kid.”