How a private residence in the Mid-Levels was redesigned for a couple who loves to host dinner parties

As avid dinner party hosts, the owners of this 2,410 sq ft apartment in Hong Kong’s Mid-Levels district wanted to transform their home into a space that accommodates entertaining.

With the four-bedroom, three-bathroom apartment having previously undergone a full renovation, its owners were after a modern revamp of a home bar, entrance and balcony, as well as the bathrooms, says Ann Chan, the CEO of Hong Kong-based firm Hero Design Group, which spearheaded a partial redesign of the home. “As they grew older, their tastes and lifestyles changed,” she adds.

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With the clients’ styles growing into something more elevated and sophisticated, they were particularly keen on unique marble and brass finishings. They asked Chan to incorporate these natural textures throughout the home, as well as metal finishings that offer both an elegant contrast and a sense of warmth, says Chan.

The bar is designed to accommodate guests when the owners host dinner parties. It is lined with Calacatta marble, a coveted material that is also used in many spaces across the home, including the walls by the bar. Marble makes for a sleek countertop material, says Chan—and the decision to use Calacatta also means the neutral colour scheme that was already in this part of the home remains. Meanwhile, the natural patterns of the stone create visual interest, especially as it is juxtaposed against wooden floors and storage units.

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The idea behind the revamp of the bathrooms of the home was to “transform them into jewel-box-like spaces with statement-making elements”, says Chan. “Bathrooms spaces are more unique than people think, because they are one of the only areas in a home that nearly everyone—including guests—experiences, but not for a long time. This allows for the opportunity to make a really dramatic statement without the risk of overkill.”

Green marble is used in the master’s bathroom and guest’s bathroom. With the material and colour being so bold, says Chan, she and her team chose minimal brass hardware to complement it. “Both are serving a function while still looking beautiful.” 

A bathroom for the children, on the other hand, features a vibrant blue tiling, elevating the ambiance of the space. It also “channels the tranquility of the ocean”, says Chan. Other details, such as the marble sink counter, add depth to the space. It is enough to stand out, says Chan—but is not too distracting.

In the entryway and the balcony, which offers views of the city, bespoke marble benches were installed. 

The contrast between marble and wood, the key materials in the project, provides “the perfect harmony”, says the designer. “The beauty of adding wood to marble surfaces goes beyond a mere textural contrast—it also allows us to … add a hint of rustic, industrial panache to a stylish and modern home,” she adds. “The style lends itself to all types of surroundings, and is a perfect fit for the existing design elements in the other areas of the home.” 

Adding wood to marble surfaces goes beyond a mere textural contrast—it allows us to add a hint of rustic, industrial panache
Ann Chan

It was challenging to consider what materials and finishings complemented the existing nature of the space, says Chan. “Partial home renovations are tricky, as we don’t have autonomy over the entire aesthetic of the space. While minor refurbishments can dramatically improve the way a home can feel and its functions, it is important for the design elements—both old and new—throughout the home to be harmonious.” 

In the end, the efforts had paid off. “With the new kitchen and bar area, [the owners] were able to host more dinner parties during Covid lockdowns, when restaurants in Hong Kong were closed for dinner service,” she says. “The goal of every project we take on is to better the lives of our clients—the most memorable part of this was hearing how happy our clients were to move back into their newly renovated home.” 

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