Local Hong Kong practice Nude brings the joy of sea and sand to an old beachside motel in Sai Kung
Renowned for its tasty seafood, pristine beaches and beautiful landscapes, Sai Kung is well recognised by locals as ‘Hong Kong’s backyard’, as well as an ideal weekend haven. Now, a former motel has been transformed to a boutique hotel that radiates the same languid charm found in the area, thanks to an intriguing design schemed by local practice Nude (Natasha Usher Design Enterprise).
According to previous Perspective 40 Under 40 laureate Natasha Usher, who founded Nude and was the mastermind behind this refurbishment, the client’s brief was an evolving process which ultimately aimed to turn an old, unnoticed property into a beach-themed hotel that would enchant guests with lovely views upon the beachfront. “We wanted to remove ourselves from the rustic industrial approach so commonly seen in Hong Kong developments,” says Usher. “So we had a beach theme concept that features the casual charm of a cottage.”
The captivating final result offered some challenges, as she recalls: “The ceiling heights were incredibly low — only 2.4 metres to the true slab. This truly posed an issue with E&M service pipes, air-conditioning and fire sprinklers that could not be all concealed. To avoid the industrial warehouse look, we took great care to clean up the ceiling as best as we could, since a false ceiling was not an option.”
After extensively altering the layouts on each floor, the hotel now offers two large suites per floor at 1,400 sq-ft each. In every room, solid plank wood walls, exposed wood beams and solid strip wood doors are all complemented by white hues and subtle tones, giving the space a ‘cottage cabin’ atmosphere. “We used rustic large plank wood floors of up to three metres long,” Usher says. “Bleached solid strip wood walls were also incorporated to enhance the overall interior effect.”