Given Hong Kong’s reliance on apartment living, it’s no wonder that so many of the buildings around town are pretty cookie-cutter affairs. It’s almost a surprise then that, with their latest project, New World Development is diverging from the well trod path that has seen them become one of the biggest players in the Hong Kong property sector.
Eight Kwai Fong, set to open its doors in August, may not be the biggest apartments on the market, but thanks to clever design features and exclusive services, will surely stand out from the masses.
The neighbourhood: There’s so much to love about Happy Valley — and we’re not just talking about Wednesday nights at the races. For an area so centrally located, it has a quiet suburban feel about it, providing immediate respite from the madness of its immediate geographical neighbours. Beyond the sports clubs, there’s a more than serviceable selection of restaurants (Jules Bistro and Saint-Germain we’re looking at you), art galleries, private members clubs, and probably one of the finest coffee bars in town.
The concept: Eight Kwai Fong realises New World Development’s new “The Artisanal Movement” vision, which represents a new approach to Hong Kong apartment living. This is probably best exemplified by the impressive collection of artefacts that they’ve amassed for the common areas, including the entrance lobby, and ground floor dining, hobby and collection rooms.
Highlights include Venetian-inspired glassware by Finn artist Tapio Wirkkala, candle holders by Lara Bohinc for famed Swedish brassware house Skultana, a replica Brionvega radiofonografo by Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni (first produced in 1965), and handcrafted vases by Hong Kong design firm Lattitude 22N.
Artworks on permanent display include Eskimo (oil on canvas) by Chinese abstract artist Yin Zhao Yang, and Parade 28, Rio Madre de Dios, Peru, 2005, a chromogenic print by photographer Thomas Struth.
The apartments: What so often lets down new apartments in Hong Kong is their lack of efficiency (the streets are crowded enough, surely we don’t need to come home to experience more claustrophobia). Eight Kwai Fong has managed to maximise the living space with a more open planning — not just the open kitchen, dining and living area, but also by giving each of the 156 furnished residences its own private balcony, which are separated with full height glass doors and walls to take full advantage of the view.
Each apartment also comes with solid wood panelling, a designer kitchen with impressive Gaggenau appliances, Dornbract bathroom fixtures with a rain shower, for that extra bit of luxury.
The wow factor: As well as the striking apartment design, it’s the personal touches that really serve to impress. As well as daily housekeeping, free wi-fi, concierge service (read: restaurant reservations, party planning, or even hiring a private chef), and round-the-clock service, there’s also a secure, dedicated mobile app to make complicated back and forth exchanges with the landlord a thing of the past.
The details: Eight Kwai Fong consists of 52 studios (323 square feet, gross) and 104 one-bedroom (535 square feet, gross) residences, over 31 stories. While viewing is available now, the apartments won’t be officially opening until August 2015.
Eight Kwai Fong, 8 Kwai Fong Street, Happy Valley, Hong Kong, +852 2929 1228, www.8kf.com.hk