The bachelor owner of this 1,400 square foot flat in Sai Yin Pun, Hong Kong approached One Space to design his home from a bare shell state. An importer of wines from around the world, he travels very frequently and sometimes for extended periods. Given this lifestyle, his primary focus was understandably on creating a ‘personal sanctuary’ – a very private place for repose, reading and listening to music.
Being a ‘foodie’, however, our client also very much enjoys entertaining, and does so for a few close friends and business associates several times per year. It would be imperative to develop a highly-impactful, yet comfortable living-&-dining area that could accommodate up to 10 people for a seated dinner or up to 75 at a cocktail party. This same space must, of course, provide a relaxing and cosy atmosphere for the host alone at all other times, making for an interesting design challenge.
Finally, it was important that he be able to monitor his business from home on occasion, as he routinely works across nearly every time zone in the world.
After demolition, the flat’s floor area is comprised roughly of two rectangles fused together at the middle at a shallow angle, to form a widened ‘boomerang’ of sorts. Adjoining this was a kitchen and servants’ space, awkwardly pushed into a triangular appendage behind the front door.
A somewhat noisy road with uninspiring views ran along the front of the block, whilst the rear views offered a beautifully tranquil, green view into nearby woods, with birdsong and no road noise.
Our planning strategy subverted conventional apartment planning, by moving the conventional internal corridor serving bedrooms and bathrooms to run instead along the front façade of the flat.
This unusual move achieved two vital goals in one stroke:
Firstly, by refusing to bisect the space with a corridor, we created an unobstructed and substantially sized ‘inner sanctum’ for the master bedroom suite, which would enjoy the calming natural setting at the rear of the building. And secondly, this externally facing corridor would serve as a buffer against street noise and unwanted views.
The remainder of the ‘boomerang’ area would be devoted to an expansive, free-flowing living-&-dining area. For entertaining, the owner expressed a strong desire for an Entrance Foyer, a rarity in Hong Kong and considered something of a ‘luxury’ in compactly arranged homes. We, therefore, needed to relocate the main entrance door and to create a new Foyer in what was previous the kitchen.