We’re rounding up 10 architectural gems in Hong Kong! Check out our top picks:
- THR 350, Jardin’s Lookout
Jardin’s Lookout boasts an altitude of 433 meters and is a residential spot in a mountainous area located between the Wan Chai and Tai Hang area. It is considered a high-class region due to its scenic views and small population, and it is also considered as one of the most expensive residential areas in the city. It’s home to many Hong Kong socialites. Its stunning huge window glass panels give a sense of elegance that contrasts with its distorted-styled middle structure, which reflects the image of “collapsing elements; a building as shambles”.
THR350, 350 Tai Hang Road, Jardine’s Lookout, Hong Kong, www.aedas.com/thr350
2. Hong Kong Design Institute
From its name, you can guess that Hong Kong Design Institute is a school that provides higher education in the field of design. This structure was designed by international architects Thomas Coldefy and Isabel Van Haute, winners of a competition (beating 162 other teams) with a prize to take the reins in building this structure. The inspiration for the design stems from the idea of design itself, putting together creative ideas starting with a blank canvas and the institute itself is a representation of the metaphor to a finished product. The “pillars of education” are crafted into the complex, and the ground floor has been transformed into a public space for events that celebrate art and design.
Hong Kong Design Institute, 3 King Ling Road, Tiu Keng Leng, Hong Kong http://caau.fr/hong_kong_design_institute
3. Innovation Tower, Hong Kong Polytechnic University
The Jockey Club Innovation Tower of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University was designed by Pritzker-price winning architect Zaha Hadid (who also designed the Dongdaemun Design Plaza). This architectural feat marks her first work within the city. The university, best known for its design courses, made the innovation tower a home to its School of Design. Hadid said her idea behind the design is to reflect Hong Kong as a growing creative and artistic hub. The structure is a crazy zig-zag of edges and sharp points – almost like a futuristic spaceship ready to take flight. This design also aims to make PolyU an accessible urban and creative space to transform how the university is perceived locally and internationally.
Jockey Club Innovation Tower (Block V), The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon Hong Kong http://www.sd.polyu.edu.hk/en/j.c.-innovation-tower/the-architecture
4. Hong Kong Velodrome
This is the city’s first velodrome and holds both local and international track cycling events. It was designed by Hong Kong-based Palmer and Turner Architects and Engineers, the brains behind the Maryknoll School and Convent’s European style architecture. The velodrome also provides a variety of recreational facilities including a children’s play area, a climbing wall, and a fitness corner for the elderly. The roof design, its most distinctive feature, was inspired by a bicycle’s helmet – a perfect choice for the velodrome’s main purpose.
Hong Kong Velodrome, 105-107 Po Hong Road, Tseung Kwan O, Hong Kong, www.p-t-group.com
5. Kwun Tong Indoor Swimming Pool
This swimming pool complex is a new three-story building that has a wide variety of Olympic-worthy swimming pools and recreational facilities. Its most daring feature is its exteriors of deep brown panels and linear-cut roofs that seemingly float above the swimming pool, while also managing to top it off with a very furnished and elegant look. The swimming pool is separated into two main areas, both slightly elevated. Designed by Ronald Lu & Partners, it won the 2013 Perspective Award for its streamlined and sustainable design.
Kwun Tong Swimming Pool Complex, 2 Tsui Ping Road, Kwun Tong, Hong Kong, www.rlphk.com
6. Court of Final Appeal
Located in a business district and built on reclaim land, the Court of Final Appeal is also known as the Old Supreme Court Building. It is designed by Sir Aston Webb and Ingress Bell, who are also the ones behind the eastern facade of the Buckingham Palace. This two-storey building speaks of a neo-classical style, and it’s supported by ionic columns that showcase how much of a preserved historical monument it really is. Its most notable feature is a blindfolded statue of Themis, the Greek Goddess of Justice and Law. To this day, the building continues to be a symbol of the rule of law across the city’s rich political history.
8 Jackson Road, Central, Hong Kong Island, www.amo.gov.hk
7. Blue House
The Blue House is an iconic four-storey house that was built in 1920 that mixes both Western and Eastern architectural style. Its distinctive blue color was not the intended color but it soon became its own identifiable feature that has stuck as its trademark. This lignan-styled building is one of the few remaining tong lau (tenant buildings built during the 19th century in Hong Kong, Macau, Southern China, and Taiwan). Because of its long history and how culturally embedded it is, it has become a symbol of nostalgia and a uniquely Hong Kong icon. To this day, there are still people occupying the area and it has now become a sort-of exhibition area and is home to the Hong Kong House of Stories.
72 Stone Nullah Lane, Wan Chai, Hong Kong Island.
8. Main Building, University of Hong Kong
Opened in 1911, the University of Hong Kong is the city’s oldest university where prominent figure Dr. Sun Yat-Sen (founder and first president of the Republic of China) graduated. The main building is also the campus’ oldest structure, and it boasts a colonial-style architecture that is supported by colonnades in a Renaissance style, with a clock tower rising above the building. This Edwardian Baroque-style building was designed by Alfred Bryer of Leigh & Orange. In 1984, it was became a declared monument in Hong Kong. It also houses four courtyards accompanied by staggering palm trees.
Pok Fu Lam, Hong Kong Island. hku.hk
9. 1881 Heritage
1881 Heritage is formerly the Marine Police Headquarters Compound that stands in the heart of Tsim Sha Tsui, one of the city’s busiest districts. This site which boasts a 120-year history has been transformed into a cultural and shopping landmark. Constructed in Victorian style, it now houses luxury shops, restaurants, a hotel, and even bars; all while preserving its classic and colonial-style architecture that speaks of Hong Kong’s rich history.
2A Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, www.1881heritage.com.
10. Run Run Shaw Creative Media Center
The Run Run Shaw Creative Media Center is home to the City University of Hong Kong’s School of Creative Media. Designed by Polish-born architect Daniel Libeskind, in cooperation with Leigh and Orange Ltd., the building has won many awards including the Emporis and the International Property Awards. Libkeskin said he wanted to “design a building that is more than concrete and glass, allowing creativity to flow freely, like music.” Hence, he cites music as his main inspiration. To him, “Space can’t just have the hardware, the infrastructure, the concrete and the glass. It has to have atmosphere, it has to have spirit. There’s not just an intellectual connection, it’s an emotional connection.” Although the architect admits that it is not his best work, there’s no doubt that this crystalline cliff design makes the structure look stunning.
18 Tat Hong Avenue, Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong. http://www.scm.cityu.edu.hk/