Tsui Wah Restaurant is a well-known Hong Kong Tea Restaurant (Cha Chaan Teng) which under Tsui Holdings Limited. It has over 26 branches in Hong Kong, Macau and Mainland China. 21 branches, 1 branch and 3 branches are in Hong Kong, Macau and Mainland respectively. Some of them provide 24-hour service for people to dine in mid-night. The famous one is in Wellington Street which is located near Lan Kwai Fong. It attracts lots of celebrities, artists, paparazzi, tourists and locals after clubbing nearby. Many media film works also mentioned Tsui Wah because of the clubbing culture in Hong Kong.

It is famous for its food and serving format. Compared with many ordinary Tea restaurants in Hong Kong, it provides more varieties of Hong Kong style food to tourists and locals. Due to its quality and fame, it charges higher than other ordinary Tea Restaurant[1].

In 2012, it became a listed company in Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited. Its stock no. is 1314.

Background Information


  • 1960s- 1970s, have one branch

Mr. Choi Cheung Po first opened TsuiWah Ice Dining Room (冰室), the predecessor of Tea Restaurant, in 1967at Mongkok.

  • 1970s- 1980s, have 4 branches

Opened three new branches at To Kwa Wan, San Po Kong and Tuen Mun. They operated as the small scale café. However, the restaurants at Mong Kok and To Kwa Wan closed at 1971.

  • 1980s- 1990s, have 7 branches
In 1989, Mr. Choi retired; and Mr. Lee Yuen Hong took the charge to run the business of TsuiWah.
The first TsuiWah Tea Restaurant was opened in 1989 at San Po Kong, Kowloon.
  • 1990s- 2000s, have 12 branches

In 1990s, following the opening of a branch located at Central District, TsuiWah begun to target at middle class customers.

  • 2000s- now, have 26 branches

Entering the 21st century, the company opened TsuiWah Concept at Mongkok, mainly targeting at young generations.
First overseas TsuiWah Tea Restaurant in Shanghai was opened in 2009.
TsuiWah Tea Restaurant was opened in Macau in 2011
TsuiWah Tea Restaurant established in Wuhan in 2012
TsuiWah Tea Restaurant became a listed company (IPO) in Nov, 2012.
Nowadays, over 30 TsuiWah Tea Restaurant located Hong Kong and Mainland. 8 of them open 24 hours a day to provide night meal to customers.


First Mongkok, then San Po Kong, now the TsuiWah Restaurant has its branches all over Hong Kong, including Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and New Territories. [2]
File:Location and Year of establishment (Tsui Wah).jpg

Service Format

Service hour are various depended on different locations of branches. Tsui Wah mainly provided three types of meals (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner set) during different time periods. Tsui Wah also provides take-away service but it requires take away distribution charge which is different from ordinary Tea Restaurant. Besides, for certain branches like the one in Wellington Street, a minimum charge will be enforced during busy peak hour. Those regulations are distinct from many ordinary Tea restaurants in Hon Kong.

Food Choices

There are several of food choices provided by Tsui Wah. From the categories divided by Tsui Wah, here below is the classification. Food in blankets are recommended by Tsui Wah itself.

  • Sandwiches / Toast / Porridge (12-inche French Hotdog / Crispy Bun served w/ Sweet Condensed Milk)
  • Instant Noodle / Macaroni in Soup
  • Instant Noodle (Kagoshima Pork Cartilage w/ Stirred Instant Noodles)
  • Swiss Wing Series (Chicken Wings "Swiss Style")
  • Soup
  • Japanese Udon & Fried Instant Noodles
  • Baked Rice / Spaghetti
  • Spaghetti
  • Prawn Ball Suggestion (Sizzling King Prawn w/ Fried Noodles - Peking & Sichun Style)
  • S.E. Asian Favourite
  • Chow Mein / Rice Noodles (Shredded Pork & Mushroom w/ Fried Noodles)
  • Rice (Western Style)
  • Rice (Chinese Style) (Hainanese Chicken Rice (Boneless))
  • Vegetarian
  • Malaysian Curry with Rice (Beef Stew Curry w/ Rice)
  • Rice in Fish Shop
  • Special Recommendation
  • Noodle
  • Vermicelli in Fish Soup (Fish Ball & Sliced Fish Cake w/ Vermicelli in Fish Soup)
  • Drink (Milk Tea)
  • Healthy Drinks
  • Universal Drinks
Here below are the top ten dishes suggested by Tsui Wah.
1) Sizzling King Prawns w/ Fried Noodles
2) Shredded Pork & Mushroom w/ Fried Noodles
3) Malaysian Brisket of Beef Curry
4) Kagoshima Pork Cartilage w/ Tossed Instant Noodles
5) Jumbo Frankfurter Hot Dog
6) Milk Tea
7) Crispy Bun Served w/ Sweet Condensed Milk
8) Swiss Sauce Chicken Wings
9) Fish Balls & Sliced Fish Cakes w/ Rice Noodles in Fish Soup
10) Hainanese Chicken Rice

Tsui Wah’s Customers

We are not only what we eat and how we eat, we are also where we eat. The socially constructed realities about different restaurants indicate their customers’ hierarchical position within a given society.

Originally, when Mr. Choi Cheung Po first established Tsui Wah as an Ice Dining Room in Mongkok, as what other Tea Restaurants at that time did, Tsui Wah was designed for those construction workers nearby for them to have their lunches or suppers during meal breaks. Because the price was low and the food is served quite efficiently to meet the limited time. It matches with the busy work style of the construction workers. The customers and even the market share of each Cha Chaan Teng is at the average at that time. Thus, as the business of Tsui Wah grew, Tsui Wah begun to target at middle class people, white collars and travellers in Hong Kong to differentiate itself from its competitors and earn more money.[3]

The first strategy is to set up a higher price.[4] We can see that the average price of food in Tsui Wah is significantly higher than other symbolic Tea Restaurants like Tai Hing and Kam Fung[1].

The second strategy is the opening of branches in Central Business Districts on Hong Kong Island since 1990. Despite that the rent is extremely expensive in those areas, even reaching millions of HK Dollars per month, the company insisted to do so because it allows Tsui Wah to target at those middle class people and travelers as they want.[5] This can help to reflect the high class of Tsui Wah Cha Chaan Teng when compare to others. It also gives a perception to the customers that having meals here will be more superior to others.

The third strategy Tsui Wah employed to expand its business among higher status market, is to enter the stock market as the only Tea Restaurant Stock at that time. It indicates its high status among other Cha Chaan Teng in Hong Kong and shows it has good economic strength. The action was a huge success. Since then, Tsui Wah has been frequently appearing on financial pages of local newspapers as a potential investing direction for investors[6], thus generated unexpected media effects, which is extremely favorable to the company[7].

Mass media are one of the principle sites where culture is exercised; it will affect the general perception about class and status among the public. Tsui Wah’s appearance on financial pages reflects the pattern of media representation of the company among local culture. The report leads people to believe that Tsui Wah is doing good business and making money, thus intangibly establish Tsu Wah as a higher-status Tea Restaurant.

The management of Tsui Wah also appreciates the value of this mediated commonsense about the company among society. So the last strategy is to invest the cinema to get Tsui Wah exposed to the public as a traditional cultural icon of Hong Kong[8], especially Hong Kong made films. In lots of popular films such as Love in a Puff (2007), Love in the Buff (2011), Perfect Couples (1993), and Lan Kwai Fong (2011), Tsui wah was portrayed as a daily routine of HK style life among those people with higher economic status.

Business Strategy

In order to reach the mission, providing delicious, safe and fresh Cha Chaan Teng cuisine of consistent quality to customers [9], Tsui Wah has implemented a set of standardization in different aspects in operation to keep the consistent quality of their dishes and maximize efficiency, calculability, predictability and the ability of control under the hub-and-spoke strategy.

Food Preparation

1) Central Kitchen

Unlike normal Cha Chaan Teng, as an organized business, Tsui Wah used central kitchen in 2008 to centralize the preparation, production and distribution of food in order to provide consistent food in every branch store. In this way, the quality of food can be measurable and customers can predict the variety of food under the same food choice provided by central kitchen.

In the central kitchen, chefs are formed in assembly lines to prepare for different dishes and a factory manager plays as a supervisor to monitor the delivery, quality control and storage of raw materials and foods. Tsui Wah, therefore, fully makes use of division of labor to reach the maximum efficiency while maintaining the food quality at the same time.

To support more new branch stores, Tsui Wah has planned to set up a second central kitchen with factory and warehouse to store food ingredients and finished products in the future. All central kitchens will keep a radius of approximately 200 kilometers or within a transport range of two hours[9] as a golden rule to avoid food damage.

2) Centralized Purchasing

Centralized Purchasing is one of steps to keep up the operation of central kitchen. This plays a role to purchase all food materials including food ingredients, raw materials and other inventories by requests.

For Example, fish from fish balls and salt are specially selected and supplied from certain suppliers[9]. With the system of central purchasing, the quality and quantity of food ingredients can be measured.


Under the standardization, fast speed of service has become one of the important elements to Tsui Wah’s success.

In order to maximize the efficiency to the top, firstly, central kitchen helps decrease the amount of time used for preparing dishes from local kitchen.

Other than that, secondly, Tsui Wah has calculated the staff-to-table ratios to increase flow of customers. Tsui Wah successfully reaches the excellent average number of receipts per table per day[10]. The whole duration from customers came in to bill paid should be within 40 minutes. This kind of speed is totally enough to compare favorably with Chinese Fast Food Restaurants that are strictly under control.


Operation can seriously affect how much income the restaurant earns for daily business. The design Tsui Wah created has successfully given a helping hand to their business.

While Tsui Wah speeds up the dining process, they try to create a communal seating arrangement that customer needs to share table with other customers during busy period of time. The distance between each table in Tsui Wah has shortened compared to other restaurants so that Tsui Wah can gain 20% more bills on one-day daily basis.[11] These kinds of rules help Tsui Wah boost the income.

Other than that, Tsui Wah is a 24-hours Cha Chaan Teng in Hong Kong that plays the leading role in this industry. 24-hours operation also maximizes the revenues from each branch stores throughout Hong Kong especially the branch store near Lan Kwai Fong.

Also, Tsui Wah has set up a set of standard operating procedures for operation. Aspects include food booths, wait staff, cashiers, floor managers, chefs, restaurant managers and cleaning staff[9]. Regular Staff are also required to wear uniform to differentiate them from customers that is another standard that staff needs to stick to.


1) Human Resources

Standardization not only confines to system, but also human resources. Each staff in Tsui Wah is strongly being trained with a set of formal and systematic training programs including training programs from outside human resources consulting company, chef training programs with collaboration with outside school, management trainee programs and so on to enhance their working skills.

To avoid dehumanization during the intense training system, Tsui Wah adopts employee incentive scheme to strengthen the sense of belongings and loyalty from staffs including bonus with certain performance targets achieved, subsidies, even residential units and exchange opportunities by requests.

Staff at management level takes full quality control of regular staff to ensure the work quality. At the same time, regular staffs have chances to voice out their concerns through annual surveys, focus groups and exit interviews to have better balance.

2) Management Structure

Tsui Wah is a successful example to illustrate that it is possible to have senior management team in Cha Chaan Teng environment. They focus on development and implementation of standardized operation.

There are different teams within the management structure including headquarters management, overseas management, project team, finance team, human resources department, corporate communication and marketing department, new project team, procurement department, production team, operations team and central kitchen. Under this great division of labor, the business of Tsui Wah becomes flourishing.

3) 5S

In terms of services, Tsui Wah uses specific regulation and standardization to regulate their employees in a certain quality of service[12]. For example, they offer certain training courses. 5S, a famous method for organization from Japan, is used to maintain service quality of Tsui Wah.


In Tsui Wah, you will not see any unnecessary thing appear in their restaurant. Only the necessary tools, such as tableware, are shown and provided to customers. In this way, unnecessary tools are stored in their stockroom to provide more space for the essential goods. Misusage can be avoided so as to create a good environment.


Essential and necessary tools are arranged and organized into an obvious place in Tsui Wah. The tools that are always used are placed in a convenient location to ensure the employees can get them in a quickest and easiest way. For example, tissues and tea cups are located in a cupboard that can be seen easily in Tsui wah. Efficiency can be increased because employees can get the tools in a quick speed and serve them to customers.


Employees in Tsui Wah will keep the environment of the restaurant clean regularly. Tools are put back to where they belonged to after every shift. This is to ensure the maintenance of quality and decrease the possibility of work injury.


In Tsui Wah, all the job duties are standardized in a certain standard. The above 3S are standardized to develop a work structure for easy following.


To maintain and review the standard that is established. In order to make sure the standard will be sustained or improved, people will be reminded about maintaining standards to make the standards become habits. And the standards will be reviewed and further developed regularly to continue the best practice.

Use of Information Technology

Tsui Wah is few of restaurants that adopt information technology to facilitate the smooth operation. One of examples is that personal data assistant belongs to each staff to take orders. Order then delivers to the information technology system in order to notice chefs in kitchen. Another example is computerized point-of-sale system as for bill paid and saving consumer-spending data[9] to strength the overall efficiency more in depth.

Through data, therefore, Tsui Wah can make prediction and calculation on their business status and formulate better control system to increase the efficiency.

Relation between Tsui Wah Restaurant and HK

Cha chaan teng is a unique culture in Hong Kong. It is actually a mixture of western and Chinese culture. For instance, Yuanyang is a drink mixed with Western coffee and Hong Kong style milk tea.

File:Yuanyang (drink).jpg

The two contrastive cultures co-exist in the restaurant. It has a lot to do with the colonial history of Hong Kong. It’s easy to find lots of cha chaan teng in crowded urban areas. In cha chaan teng, what they emphasize is the fast delivering speed yet maintaining a certain quality. While in Hong Kong, people are similar. They work in a fast speed and quality way. They are yearning for foods that are delivered fast so they can continue to work quickly. So the appearance of cha chaan teng is due to the busy lifestyle and hectic schedule of Hong Kong people. Thus, Cha Chaan Teng is reflecting the Hong Kong identity and lifestyle.

In media, cha chaan teng appears in many Television shows and films, such as Virtues of Harmony II , My life as McDull and love in the Buff. In Virtues of Harmony II, the story background is based on cha chaan teng and it shows the characters are working and living happily there. In love in the Buff, party animals love going to Tsui Wah which are located near Lan Kwai Fong after party as it opens 24 hours every day. Boys want to see the genuine face of their partners under the bright light of Tsui Wah. While in My life as McDull, one of the scenes of the film demonstrates traditional cha chaan teng is popular among the mass in a hilarious way. Mrs. Mc and McDull are representing Hong Kong people’s real lifestyle. The frequency of cha chaan teng appearing in television and films show the importance of cha chaan teng to Hong Kong people; it is deeply rooted in their heart.

File:My life as mcdull.jpg
File:Love in the Buff poster.jpg

Besides, Tsui Wah has attracted many pop stars such as Daniel Wu, Ron Ng, Bosco Wong and Kau Hung Ping[13].


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Comparison between Cha Chaan Teng". Yahoo! News. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  2. "Branch Information". Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  3. "最貴茶餐廳,翠華今路演". HongKong News. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  4. "走中高價路線,加價有牙力". Sina news. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  5. "一年交租逾9600萬元 打造「翠華王國」好貴". Hong Kong Headline. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  6. "首隻茶餐廳股集資上市". Apple Daily. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  7. "翠華30倍PE上市 貴絕快餐股". MP Finance News. Retrieved November 27, 2012. 
  8. "翠華7000萬投資動畫電影 首部3D土產動畫擬進軍荷李活". MingPo News. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 "Business of Tsui Wah". HKexnews. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  10. "Restaurant chain Tsui Wah plans big expansion on the mainland". South China Morning Post. Retrieved November 27, 2012. 
  11. "也談翠華". WiseNews.^201212079754398(S:130615801)&menu-id=&on-what=selected&from-list&display-style=all&tooldisplay=true&currentsubdb=wisesearch. Retrieved November 27, 2012. 
  12. "翠華餐廳續拓展業務 為顧客提供優質餐飲體驗". JiuJik. Retrieved November 27, 2012. 
  13. "香港明星常出没的翠华茶餐厅". Retrieved November 27, 2012. 
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Tsui Wah Restaurant, that was deleted or is being discussed for deletion, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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