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World's Tallest Hotel Gets Off the Ground in Hong Kong

ABC News(HONG KONG) -- If you ascend the shaded trails of Victoria Peak on Hong Kong Island, you will eventually find yourself gazing into the distance, eye-level with the third-highest roof in the world.

Dominating the relatively sedate West Kowloon skyline, on the opposite side of Victoria Harbour, is the tallest building in Hong Kong, the 1,588-foot International Commerce Centre, which finished construction in 2010.

For the complementary perspective, looking south, you'll have to visit the ICC's new rooftop bar at the brand new Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, scheduled to open March 29.

Last week, as an army of construction and hospitality workers buzzed about, excitedly focused on opening day, Regional Vice President and General Manager Mark DeCocinis offered a tour of the luxury hotel, which occupies the top 16 floors of the 118-story tower.

"With the amazing hardware in place," DeCocinis said, "what is happening from now till the opening would be training, training and training."

Indeed, during the tour, test meals were being prepared and served, and groups of workers huddled together in strategy sessions, pausing to cheerfully proffer a "good afternoon" to DeCocinis as we strode past, dodging vacuum cords and wet paint.

DeCocinis mirrored the chipper eagerness of his staff, beaming like a proud father as he showed off the design touches in the hotel's fine dining facilities, which include Chinese Restaurant Tin Lung Heen, Italian restaurant Tosca and a chocolate-themed lounge named the Chocolate Library.

But the venue with the most buzz, DeCocinis said, is the rooftop bar OZONE, featuring Asian tapas, sushi and an open-air lounge.

"Our friends in the offices below us are waiting for this to open," he said with a laugh.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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