I just read Scott Kraft's article ["Looking Up, Up, Up in Hong Kong," May 6]. I lived in Hong Kong from the mid-1970s to 1980, and his article refreshed my memory. Hong Kong is one location that changes ever so quickly. I can only imagine what it must look like today — much, much more of what I loved, adored and encountered in my past living experience.
I would suggest another film, "Love Is a Many Splendored Thing," as parts of it were filmed in Hong Kong. Jennifer Jones and William Holden — a very touching story set in a dramatic time to come.
I really enjoyed Kraft's story about Hong Kong. It has always been a favorite of mine, and he captured the many nuances of that wonderful place.
I first went to Hong Kong in January 1947. I was a soldier in the British army. At that time, Hong Kong was a typical British colony town: No houses appeared to be more than four stories. The tallest building was the Hong Kong Shanghai Bank — like a miniature Empire State Building in New York.
Life was slowly getting back to normal after the brutal Japanese occupation, and there were still a lot of Japanese war prisoners performing menial work. They seemed in no hurry to get back to Japan, which had suffered so much damage during the war.
The tram to the peak was a wonderful way to get away from life in the barracks, and the Star Ferry was popular going to Kowloon.
Kraft's story really brought back many happy memories.
Good times in Vegas
It is said that "you can't go home again," but in Vegas they make their own rules. The Sahara Hotel & Casino, which shut down a year ago, apparently is coming back to life under a new name, SLS Las Vegas, and is due to open in 2014 ["Sahara Comeback," Need to Know, May 6]. The old Sahara, originally built in 1952, featured such celebrities as Elvis, the Beatles and the original Rat Pack. I'm reminded of a line in the original 1960 "Oceans Eleven" movie said by Dean Martin, who quipped, "Good times are only good when you've had them." And even though the days of the old Rat Pack are long gone, perhaps the resurrection of the Sahara will create new memories and good times for those yet to experience them. And who knows? Maybe the SLS is just short for Sahara, Lost and Saved.
Another opinion on Acqua Pazza
I am glad Christopher Smith enjoyed his meal at Acqua Pazza ["The Gilded Age," May 13]. The food is good and the prices are reasonable for Rancho Mirage. But in my experience, the service was substandard. Fortunately, we know other local places for good food and good service.