A Journey of Upward Discovery at The Upper House Hong Kong
A sense of arrival awaits guests at Swire Hotels’ new small luxury hotel in Hong Kong, The Upper House. Rising above Pacific Place in Admiralty, the hotel’s Asian influenced and timeless design reveals an understated calmness throughout.
Andre Fu of AFSO, hailed by Vogue UK as ‘Design Wunderkind’ and Conde Nast Traveler US as an ‘Asian Design Sensation’, is behind the design of the Upper House Hong Kong.
Andre’s previous notable projects include Piacere Italian Restaurant and Nadaman Japanese Restaurant for Shangri-la Hotel Tokyo, Cassia Chinese Restaurant at Singapore’s Capella Resort, Agnes b. La Loggia Flagship Store in Hong Kong, JIA Shanghai’s eclectic lobby as well as the private residence of international actress Michelle Yeoh.
Natural materials, original sculpture installations and seamlessly proportioned spaces are integrated to create a sophisticated and modern “Asian influenced” residence. “With an intention to create a small luxury hotel reminiscent of a private residence, I have purposely conjured a sense of tranquility throughout the design and ambience of the hotel,” says Andre Fu.
Dean Winter, General Manager of The Upper House Hong Kong, adds: “Our hotel was created to provide a retreat removed from the hustle and bustle of Hong Kong. We’ve certainly achieved that by appointing Andre Fu as the designer for The Upper House.”
Entry through a Bedonia stone doorway façade by Thomas Heatherwick evokes the image of a curtain being opened to welcome guests to a private residence. A subtly-lit driveway then leads to a dramatic 13ft high textured nickel front door, enveloped by floor-to-ceiling glass walls that appear to sit on top of pools of water.
Inside the entrance, a circular bamboo enclosure, ‘the Lantern’, marks the beginning of the ‘upward journey’ along a dimly-lit escalator with walls lined with bespoke lamps leading guests into Level 6, flooded with natural daylight, and featuring ‘The Lawn’, a lush grassed area for relaxing with cocktails and bean bags for lounging under the sun.
The Upper House Hong Kong is simply spectacular!
Ascending into the hotel’s 117 spacious guest rooms, each is designed to provide a sense of understated luxury. The contemporary monochromatic design features natural timber, shoji glass, limestone and lacquered paper panels. All rooms including 21 suites and 2 penthouses are presented in two colour schemes: ‘Bamboo’ with solid ash flooring, bamboo timber and lilac upholstery; ‘Celadon’ featuring green tea upholstery, limed oak flooring and creme oak timber.
The room layouts offer abundant space including 300 sq ft bathrooms with walk-in rain showers, dressing areas and free-standing bathtubs with breathtaking panoramic harbour or island views. Lined with Italian ‘Perlato Svevo’ natural limestone floors and Beige Turkish ‘Terre d’Oriente’ limestone walls, the bathrooms are simple and uncluttered.
The highlight of the ‘journey’ is Level 49, which showcases the architecturally intriguing Sky Bridge. Infused with a skylight above a 40 metre high atrium, the Sky Bridge leads to the Sky Lounge and signature restaurant & bar, Café Gray Deluxe.
The warm and inviting Lounge with a centerpiece fireplace serves drinks and cocktails throughout the day. Intimate sofa seating in soft hues of green tea and mineral blue complement the 4 metre high ceiling. Café Gray Deluxe, a 21st century ‘grand café’ overlooking Victoria Harbour, marks the return of celebrated Chef Gray Kunz to Hong Kong. The vibrant restaurant is highlighted by a 14 metre long open kitchen and equally long bar, designed to enhance the guest experience and serving ‘everyday dishes’ with an accent on local organic produce and relaxed service.
The main dining room seating approximately 100 offers spectacular panoramic views. Semi-private dining areas are designed with full view of the open kitchen stations. A private room for 12 is available for exclusive harbour view dining. The bar and lounge, seating 88, is contemporary and vibrant.
Displayed around the entire hotel are fascinating contemporary artworks and sculptures in sandstone, ceramics, marble and bronze, perfectly complementing Andre Fu’s over-riding concept of serenity.
Opening in October 2009, The Upper House, sister hotel of the award winning The Opposite House, is the second hotel to be opened by new hotel group, Swire Hotels. The Upper House was named to symbolise an ‘upward journey’ to a retreat above the bustling city.
About Swire Hotels
Swire Hotels has been created to manage intriguing urban hotels in Hong Kong, Mainland China and the United Kingdom, providing a characterful experience for travellers who seek individuality, style and personalised service.
The Opposite House, Beijing, opened in 2008 and was followed by The Upper House, above Pacific Place, Hong Kong, in October 2009.
Swire Hotels opened a 345-room lifestyle business hotel called EAST, Hong Kong in Hong Kong’s Island East, on 25 January 2010. EAST, Beijing with 369 rooms, located within INDIGO in Jiangtai, will open in 2012.
Swire Hotels has launched a new collection of locally inspired and stylish hotels in the heart of great British towns and cities called Chapter Hotels. The first hotel in the collection, The Montpellier Chapter, opened on the 29th November in Cheltenham. The second Chapter hotel will open in Exeter in 2012.
About Pacific Place
One of the largest commercial and retail centres in Hong Kong, Pacific Place is spread over 5.17 million sq ft of prime real estate in the heart of the city and boasts direct access to Admiralty MTR station. Since its inception in 1988, the four-level mall has become home to over 130 shops and boutiques and two major department stores, collectively offering a dazzling array of contemporary fashion and internationally-renowned luxury brands.
Swire Properties’ flagship development is also home to four five-star hotels, a conference center, three Grade-A office towers and 270 five-star serviced apartments and remains Hong Kong’s iconic shopping destination