Cover One of the restyled balconies, which is accessible via the living room

The owners of this three-storey house in the tranquil Southside enlisted interior stylists to add flair to their living spaces, in response to the pandemic

When the residents of this home in the beachfront neighbourhood of Stanley reached out to Hong Kong-based Liquid Interiors in early 2021, they weren’t looking to renovate their abode.

Instead, they wanted it to be styled by design experts. 

“There are so many people [in Hong Kong] who have quite luxurious spaces, but never personalise it or make it cosy,” says founder and creative director Rowena Gonzales. The three-storey, four-bedroom house has magnificent views of the Southside of Hong Kong island. The designers were tasked with revamping two living spaces, the expansive terraces they're attached to, as well as the entryway.

“The clients really felt they were lacking warmth, emotion and personality in these spaces,” adds Christie Simpson, interior decorator and stylist at Liquid Interiors. 

In previous times, styling was something Liquid Interiors offered as the “final touches” in a home when renovation is nearing completion, explains Gonzales. But after noticing an upsurge in client demand for it during the Covid-19 era, the company began offering it as a standalone service.

The owners of this home felt they had not taken advantage of the terraces, explain the designers. Even though Hong Kong has notoriously small homes, it is not uncommon for those who have rooftops and balconies to neglect them—and that’s all thanks to its nature as a 24-hour city. “In the past, a lot of people in Hong Kong were used to being out and about, going out to restaurants, being at events and travelling,” says Simpson.

The pandemic has changed things dramatically. “[People] are spending so much time at home, realising that they don't have a good use of space,’” Gonzales adds.

During these styling projects, the process can also involve shopping trips with the clients. “People are spending a lot of money—HK$30,000 (approximately US$3,860) on a dining table—and it’s hard to do it by yourself,” says Simpson. Showing the clients the ropes by going through materials and different options can mean they’re able to visualise the outcome—and “feel a lot more confident.” 

One of the living spaces, which was previously used as a TV room and has access to the poolside terrace, was transformed into a dining room, filled with an eclectic mix of pieces from designers around the world. The dining table was sourced from Tree during a shopping trip Simpson and one of the homeowners went on together. A table centrepiece came from Bloomingville, while the plates, cutlery and glassware were from Zara Home. Lights from Muuto, from the Finnish Design Shop, hang above the table. 

Atop a Decor8 rattan cabinet next to the dining table, is a large vase filled with eucalyptus sourced from online luxury homeware retailer Amara, which is also where a number of other pieces were bought, such as the House Doctor large amber bottle vase. The other vases came from Mirth, and there's also a bowl by Dinosaur Designs.

The designers also worked with the owners to source pieces that would complement what they had in their home. On the poolside terrace, Simpson added outdoor cushions from Escape to Paradise, Amara lanterns, and Zara Home glasses on the rattan furniture the owners had bought in Europe.

Over in the living room, pieces were added "to give texture and personality to the room." New features include a floor lamp from Indigo Living, a table lamp from Trouva and a green glass bowl from Echasse. The cushions came from Trouva, William Yeoward and Zara Home. 

The seaside balcony, connected to this space, is decorated with cushions from Harbour Outdoor and Escape to Paradise.

The interior design firm’s long-standing philosophies in sustainability also came into play. Antique pieces were sourced where possible, rather than purchasing new furniture. This hits two birds with one stone: the furniture adds character to the space and makes for a more environmentally friendly option.

When new items are sourced—such as the rattan shoe cabinet in the entry—the team ensures they are sourced sustainably. 

Meanwhile, the addition of greenery is described as a “staple” in all of the company’s projects. Plants can be seen in every turn inside the home—something that Liquid Interiors advocates for all their clients, says Simpson, and can “lift the home and make the space feel calmer.” 

Reflecting on the project, Simpson says the transformation of the TV room into a dining area marked the biggest change—and the space now “flows.” “They can have dinner, then go straight to the terrace for evening drinks,” she says. It’s the perfect set-up whether on a quiet weeknight for the owners, or while entertaining guests during dinner parties. 

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