I read on http://www.chinaconsulatesf.org/eng/lszj/zgqz/t751633.htm (mirror), which explains the supported documents needed to apply for Chinese visas:
L Visa: Documents showing the itinerary including air ticket booking record (round trip) and proof of a hotel reservation, etc. or an invitation letter issued by a relevant entity or individual in China.
Is an air ticket booking record (round trip) to Hong Kong good enough to apply for a Chinese L (tourist) visa?
I am a French citizen if that matters.