Architects, chefs, designers, executives, communications experts, performing artists and more tell us why they're backing the jab

It has been over a year of Covid-19 in Hong Kong and it can sometimes feel hard to remember what life was like before the pandemic. But, with the vaccine rollout currently forging ahead, there is hope that those times aren’t lost forever, and that we won’t be eternally stuck in a world of Zoom meetings, social distancing and face masks.

Luckily, we live in a city where we have multiple vaccine brands available to us and the process is quick and free of charge. The vaccines are exciting for us, and with summer approaching and low Covid-19 numbers being reported, it's given us all hope that Hong Kong is finally on the road to recovery.  One day soon, we’ll find ourselves doing what we were doing just two years ago.

At Tatler, we're celebrating the vaccine. Watch why we and members of our community are choosing to get vaccinated and our hopes for the future.

See also: All The Covid-19 Vaccination Incentives Hongkongers Can Receive: #OurBestShot

Above Watch why we and members of our community are choosing to get vaccinated and our hopes for the future.

Syed Asim Hussain, Co-Founder, Black Sheep Restaurants

Over the past year and a half, the entire world has undergone unprecedented changes to everyday life. While our pre-Covid day-to-day may never return, we need to get vaccinated if we want some semblance of normality. As industry leaders in hospitality, we at Black Sheep Restaurants know just how important this is in keeping ourselves, our teams working the frontlines, and our communities safe. I have experienced firsthand what Covid-19 can do to you and feel a responsibility to protect those around me by getting the vaccine. I encourage others to do the same. I am cautiously hopeful that by the end of this summer, this nightmare will be over.

Shane Osborn, Chef-Owner, Arcane and Cornerstone

The past two years have been incredibly challenging both professionally and personally. Professionally, our restaurants have stared down the path of financial ruin. We really had to fight hard, and I am proud to say that we are still standing. Personally, my wife and my two children, who live in France, all got Covid and are still suffering from the after-effect. Believe me, you do not want to get this illness.

The only way out of this situation is by achieving herd immunity through vaccination. I have had both my vaccines, as have the majority of our employees. I plead with my fellow Hongkongers to work together by signing up for a vaccine as soon as possible. The quicker we get this done, the quicker we can save lives, save jobs and save businesses. We are all in this together.

Elliot Faber, Co-Founder, Sake Central

At first I wasn’t sure about getting the vaccine because I felt I wasn't 'high risk'. However, I realised I'm in contact with so many people that I should be protected. Besides that, hopefully getting the vaccine will open up doors for reduced or even no need for quarantine. When that announcement is made, it may not be so quick and easy to get the vaccine so, at the end of the day, I'm glad I've already had mine.

Olivier Elzer, Culinary Director, L'Envol

It has been a challenging year since Covid-19 started spreading, but it now feels like there is a light at the end of the tunnel thanks to the vaccination roll-out worldwide. I am looking forward to borders opening and travelling to visit my family––particularly my daughter in Australia and my mother––while continuing to explore other countries. One place I particularly want to visit is India, and I'd love to return to Thailand for muay Thai training.

Danny Yeung, Founder, Prenetics

I have already had my second vaccine shot and this has given me significant peace of mind that I am protecting myself, my family and colleagues from Covid-19. While we are still a long way from returning to normality, the vaccine is a key step that I hope everyone will take for the good of the greater community.

Lauren Khoo, Jewellery Designer

As I write this, it's the night before I receive my first shot of the vaccine. And when this article is published, I will be awaiting the second dose. In Singapore, we have a robust healthcare system: the vaccine roll out has been quick, organised, and the population is being vaccinated by age groups. As I am required to travel for work, I appealed to the Ministry of Health to receive my vaccination earlier. Getting vaccinated keeps me and my loved ones safe in the fight against Covid-19. I would encourage those suitable for vaccinations to take them. For effective protection within the community, we must band together to overcome the virus.

Lucia Tait Tolani, Interior Designer

There was never a question in my mind whether I was going to get the vaccine or not—it was only a matter of when. We have all been waiting and wishing for a way out of this pandemic. The vaccine is the one and only way. We have a moral responsibility to the elderly and those most vulnerable to get the shot. Speak to your doctor if you have any concerns and then post your post-jab pics!

Odelia Cheung, Hospitality Industry Executive

I am very pro-vaccine––it doesn't just benefit the Hong Kong community but the world by establishing herd immunity. We all want to get back to lives we lived before Covid and move and travel freely between borders. My decision to have the vaccine is based on science and my doctor's advice. Regardless of which vaccine you choose, just do it!

Above Here's why the Tatler community are backing the vaccine.

Peter Cheung, Regional Advisor on Engagement, PR and Business Development, Tatler Asia

I don't have any issues with getting vaccinated as it is a top priority for countries being able to deal with the pandemic. We are lucky to be in Hong Kong—from how well we have dealt with Covid-19, to the availability of free vaccines and the choice to choose which one we prefer. In my work, I come into contact with many people yet I also have elderly family members who are vulnerable to infection and need to be protected. These are the main motivations behind my choice to be vaccinated.

Shirley Hiranand, Co-Founder, Bonvivant & Bellavita

I got the vaccine because it's the only way Hong Kong can regain a sense of normality. I wanted to do my part as Hong Kong is a wonderful city with plenty to do. I miss going to the gym, seeing friends and family, and being able to go to restaurants. My daughter Rajé lives in Sydney, and with some countries talking about vaccine passports, I hope we can be reunited soon.

Reyna Harilela, Co-Founder, Bonvivant & Bellavita

Having the vaccine is vital. I have elderly relatives at home that I want to protect. More than that, I have a civic duty to make sure I am doing my part to contain the virus in Hong Kong. The vaccine marks the beginning of restoring life as we once knew it. The vaccination programme is bigger than ourselves; it will facilitate local and global change by saving lives, opening up new life-changing possibilities (both personally and professionally), and revitalising the economy. I want nothing more than to help people, and the way I can do that is by having the vaccine.

Florence Tsai, Head of Community and Change, Circle DNA

I'm very excited to get vaccinated so that collectively we can move towards the old norm. I'm sure I'm not the only person who is tired of social distancing and wearing masks. Such measures help reduce your chances of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others, but vaccines work with your immune system so that it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. I look forward to the day when we don't have to fear Covid-19.

Nicholas Ho, Chairman, Ho & Partners Architects

Vaccinations are the best scientific solution to eradicate the virus. It's a light at the end of the tunnel, but it needs everyone's participation otherwise it won’t work. Get vaccinated today and keep humanity safe.

Alia Eyres, Chief Executive Officer, Mother's Choice

I am getting vaccinated because I want to protect my family and the families of our city. I want to be able to safely gather with all the generations of my family: my children, my siblings, my parents and my grandmother all present. In my work, I serve vulnerable children living without families and young girls facing a crisis pregnancy, so it's important for me to ensure that they are safe and protected too.

Jacqueline Chow, Executive Committee Member, Hong Kong Society for the Protection of Children

I believe in science and the impact of herd immunity, and I truly believe in Hong Kong. Many elderly people are not fit to have the vaccine so they are relying on the rest of us to create a community immunity. If we are to be responsible Hong Kong citizens, getting vaccinated is the least we can do. We must all stay positive and united especially during difficult times.

Alan Lo, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Classified Group

I have had the vaccine because it's a basic civic duty. Covid-19 has been an ordeal for the whole world, and I hope the vaccination will bring some normality to our lives as well as the economy—especially in hard-hit industries like travel, hospitality, dining and bars, and arts and culture.

Marcel Holman, Managing Director, The Langham Hong Kong

It is important to get vaccinated to protect ourselves, our family, colleagues, the community and more. I believe that speeding up the rate of vaccinations will give us a real opportunity to be more effective in controlling this pandemic that has no borders. Plus, I'm really looking forward to travel again so I can see my friends and family in The Netherlands and around the globe in the very near future.

Richard Greaves, General Manager, Area Vice President, Grand Hyatt Hong Kong

Hospitality is about caring for people and getting the vaccine is a responsible action to take. I am having the vaccine not only for my protection but for the protection of those I care for, including my family and friends, my colleagues and our guests. I believe the vaccine will bring the start of a return to normality, such as being able to travel again, something we are all craving.

Septime Webre, Artistic Director, Hong Kong Ballet

I got the jab! And I hope all of Hong Kong does so soon. I look forward to being able to explore Hong Kong with my eight-month-old son, travel to see friends and family abroad, and welcome audiences back to the theatre. The vaccine is the best tool we have to get back to the important business of life.

Heidi Lee, Executive Director, Hong Kong Ballet

I miss the days when our smiles were not hidden by masks, the theatres were filled with audiences, and we could hang out with friends and family without fear. The quickest way for us to get back to the theatre and watch our favourite performers onstage again is for most of the population to be vaccinated. I have a responsibility to maintain a safe workplace, and I strongly encourage everyone to get vaccinated when it's their turn. Protect ourselves and our loved ones: let's do this together.

John Lee, Vice Chairman and Head of Greater China, UBS

It is important that everyone contributes and works together to put this pandemic behind us. We are very fortunate to have the vaccination available to the majority of the people in Hong Kong. We should all act together and get vaccinated: this would not only protect ourselves but also our community. We should all unite and get Hong Kong out of this pandemic so that we can all resume the lifestyles we led prior to Covid-19, including being able to travel.

Allan Zeman, Founder and Chairman of the Lan Kwai Fong Group

Inoculation is your protection, not just for yourself but also for your family and the society. I have no hesitation to get vaccinated as it is also a big incentive to rejuvenate the economy. It's an important step to get back to normal life. Let's end the pandemic together through vaccination. 

Kristina Snaith-Lense, General Manager, The Upper House and Pacific Place Apartments

I'm still nursing my second child, however, as soon as I’m able to do so, I will be getting the vaccine. This way, I would be doing my part to take care of myself, my family and the community. I also miss travelling and hope that this will bring us a little closer to having borders reopened. I hope this small step will make an impact on Hong Kong.

Hoss Vetry, Regional Vice President and Managing Director, Rosewood Hong Kong

The choice was very simple and easy to make. I did it because I want to live a Covid-19-free life without any worries or anxieties. I want to go back to some kind of normality.

Peter Borer, Chief Operating Officer, The Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels

I have had two doses of the vaccine with no side effects. I decided to take the vaccine because it is the fastest way for Hong Kong and the global tourism industry to rebound as quickly as possible. Vaccines save lives and livelihoods. We all want to travel again to visit our families overseas and to enjoy evenings out with friends. I would like to thank all the research scientists and health professionals in Hong Kong and around the world who have contributed to developing and rolling out the vaccines. They give me great hope for the future.

© 2022 Tatler Asia Limited. All rights reserved.