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Work out, chill out, blow out: healthy places to eat in Hong Kong gyms

It’s Hong Kong’s latest fitness trend: restaurants inside gyms. We gave four of them a workout.

The Elephas at Warrior Academy

Opened: July 2016

What is it? Food meets fitness in a hip and modern 7,000 sq ft space at martial arts and fitness gym The Warrior Academy. Includes an artisanal coffee bar and a Thai cuisine-inspired health food bar.

Food philosophy: “Our food philosophy is something we believe in as trainers,” says The Elephas founder Ricky Cheuk, a former professional rugby player turned restaurateur and fitness trainer. “We want to create food that is healthy, as unprocessed as possible, tasty and value for money. We want people to enjoy the food, be healthy, but not count the calories.”

Who’s behind the food? Cheuk worked with a local Thai chef to create the menu.

Where it’s made: everything is made on-site.

Make sure you try: Cheuk’s favourite salad – tossed minced chicken with avocado and green oak leaves – a healthier version of the popular Thai dish, larb gai. The kimbap or Korean rice rolls come from the family recipe of Cheuk’s Korean wife. And skip the caffeine and try the red espresso, made from rooibos tea.

Shop 118, Hong Kong Plaza, 188 Connaught Road West, Sai Ying Pun, te l: 2838 3979

Coffee bar: Mon to Sat 8.30am-8.30pm

Health food bar: Mon to Sat 11am-9pm

theelephas.com

warrioracademyhk.com

The Restaurant at The Kinnet

Opened: November 2014

What is it? Part of The Kinnet, a wellness centre dedicated to improving the physical, mental and emotional well-being of older adults. In the middle of bustling Sheung Wan, its spacious outdoor patio is an oasis and a hidden alfresco dining spot.

Food philosophy: “We are passionate about serving naturally rejuvenating meals and refreshments packed with delicious flavours,” says The Kinnet managing director Stephanie Tan.

Who’s behind the food? Executive chef Sing Lau and his team create a wide selection of healthy and wholesome dishes based on fresh, in-season ingredients. Registered dietitian Gordon Cheung assesses the nutritional value of the dishes to make it friendly for people with special dietary needs.

Where it’s made: all dishes are cooked on-site. They also smoke their own salmon and bacon in-house, and make all their desserts fresh every day (includes low glycaemic index and gluten-free options).

Make sure you try: their daily seasonal salads, freshly roasted organic chicken, avocado eggs Benedict with yogurt sauce, zucchini pad Thai and Thai chicken with basil with cauliflower rice.

3/F, 33 Hillier Street, Sheung Wan, te l: 3968 7623

Mon to Sat, 8am-10pm

thekinnetrestaurant.com

thekinnet.com

nood food at Pure

Opened: first of 17 outlets opened in 2013 at Pure Yoga in Asia Standard Tower in Central.

What is it? The brainchild of Pure CEO Colin Grant, nood offers organic cold-pressed juices and food at three cafes and 11 juice bars in Pure Fitness and Pure Yoga outlets in the city.

Food philosophy: “nood food is where healthy meets delicious,” says Grant.

Who’s behind the food? In-house raw food chef Moises Mehl and group executive chef Lee Kin-pong. Mehl is a yoga teacher and a certified raw vegan chef from the Matthew Kenney Academy, while Lee is a 30-year veteran in the FB industry with traditional Western cuisine training.

Where it’s made: The smoothies, acai cups, sandwiches and salads are made fresh on the cafe premises, while packaged items such as juices, wraps and pre-packed salads are made in the central kitchen in Chai Wan.

Make sure you try: their 32 flavours of juices, categorised into six different groups, such as “Balance Me” and “Restore Me” to meet different needs.

Various locations, including 2/F Kinwick Centre, 32 Hollywood Road, Central, t el: 8199 8189

Opening hours vary by location but mostly 7am-10pm daily

allnood.com

pure-international.com

Mr Green Juice at Odinson

Opened: April 2016

What is it? An organic cafe and juicery nestled amongst weight training equipment of the boutique gym Odinson. The first retail space of organic cold-pressed juicery Mr Green Juice, founded in 2014. Offers a range of pre-packed vegan salads, raw soups, power bowls and energy shots.

Food philosophy: “Our motto is simple,” says Laurie Mias, CEO and founder of Mr Green Juice. “’Healthy, meet delicious.’”

Who’s behind the food? Mias’ aunt, a nutritionist and naturopath, who gave Mias the passion for good products and healthy food.

Where it’s made: in a factory in Chai Wan.

Make sure you try: Daily Beauty, a blend of beet, carrot, apple, pear and ginger juice that’s said to lower blood pressure, fight cancer and promote heart health. For energy, try Good Morning, a blend of honeydew, lemon, ginger and cayenne pepper and full of antioxidants and vitamins.

11/F The Pemberton, 22 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, t el: 3955 2206

Mon to Fri 9am-5pm, Sat noon-4pm

mrgreenjuice.com

odinson.asia