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Nam Koo Terrace - A creepy remnant of Hong Kong's Colonial Past

Nam Koo Terrace - Wan Chai, Hong KongNam Koo Terrace is a two-storey mansion located at No. 55 Ship Street, Wan Chai, Hong Kong. Constructed using red bricks in circa 1915-1921, featuring Eastern and Western architectural styles, the building was declared as a Grade I Historic Building in 1996. Derelict and unmaintained, it is now more popularly known as "The Wan Chai Haunted House."

Sitting on a 200-square metre property, the building is considered as one of the more prominent villas in the Wan Chai District during its heyday. What makes it an important architectural jewel is the use of ecclectic design styles including Classical Revival and Italian Renaissance architectural features interpersed with traditional Chinese decorations and motifs.

Some of its most noteworthy features include the symetrical façade consisting of a curved colonnaded porch and veranda. The main entrance gate, which is situated adjacent to the Ship Street steps, applies a combination of Greek and Roman features. On the rooftop, a pavilion has been built in traditional Chinese style.

During the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong, the Nam Koo Terrace was allegedly used as a military brothel or "comfort house" for the Japanese soldiers where many local women were said to have been raped and killed. This made the mansion the subject of ghost stories and supernatural tales. According to urban legends, the buiding is haunted by the ghosts of women who died there during the Japanese time.

Cases of suicide were also reported in the building over the years. A number of depressed Hong Kong residents reportedly sneaked into the property and hang themselves from balustrades or throw themselves off roofs on different occasions. These reports add to the creepy reputation of the place making it a popular venue for ghost hunting activities.

In fact, a group of school girls once sneaked inside and planned to stay the night to witness the paranormal occurrences first hand. Unfortunately, one of the young girls had been reported possessed and was hospitalized thereafter. Media reports say that the victim was hysterical and attacked police officers who came to rescue the students.

The building is currently owned by Hopewell Holdings, a large property development company based in Hong Kong, which initially planned to demolish the property to make way for a hotel project. The plan didn't materialize and recent public announcements indicate that the development company's intentions have now shifted to the preservation, rather than the demolition, of this historical site.

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