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Best of the Best: CovetED Recalls Covet International AwardsMonday 25 March 2019
Best of the Best: CovetED Recalls Covet International Awards⇒ The Covet International Awards had one mission – to find the world’s most outstanding projects where design meets craftsmanship, resulting in luxurious, functional and individual spaces that get their richness from reviving ancient arts and crafts. Commercial, Hospitality, Residential and Students were the four categories in the contest. The winners of each category of Covet International Awards have already been announced during Milan Design Week, the online voting for the Best Of The Best started on February 1st and we need your help to choose the winner. But first, let’s meet the projects and the creative geniuses behind them.
The Covet International Awards is a fierce design contest organised by Covet Group and the Covet Foundation that seeks to promote the most outstanding interior design projects in the world. This is a unique ceremonial distinction that was created with the purpose of reviving the value and meaning of art, design and craftsmanship. The international awards are divided into a series of categories, including residential, commercial, hospitality and students.
Winner: ASYA Sales Gallery Design Concept by PTang Studio Limited
Located in Jakarta, Indonesia, Asya is the family orientated and warm-hearted development which centres family ancestry as a concept. Various architectural elements trickle and flow through this space, such as lighting and partition features. The numerous spaces are structured with interconnecting components, warm lighting with soft textures throughout, to echo the warmth and sentiment within the areas. These physical details weave and envelop the visitors within comfortable surroundings, reiterating the sense of familial protection and nurture, creating different functional areas of open and enclosed spaces without making it too small. The Reception sculpture is an abstraction of a tree, simulating the concept of lineage.
PTang Studio Limited was established back in 1997 and has developed a wide range of projects in Hong Kong, China, Japan, and the UK, from small scale residential to show flat designs, as well as large scale commercial works, such as corporate headquarters and movie launching functions. The studio follows a modest philosophy, creating spaces that bring to clients the most comfortable atmosphere that includes all of their individual preferences.
The studio is constantly seeking the finest quality and innovations, developing a fresh and unique style that transcends existing boundaries and widens the horizon of design the visionary future. This all becomes quite evident by looking at the refined interiors of the Asya Sales Gallery Design.
Winner: Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo by The Ascott Limited
Drawing in panoramic views of the city skyline, Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo is conceptualized as both a literal and figurative lens, through which guests can contemplate the dynamic movement and vibrancy of Japan’s metropolitan capital. Inspired by the synergistic relationship between the rapid pace of modernization and the dignified charm of local culture, the design harmonizes vernacular minimalist principles with luxurious modern trappings. A stay at this five-star hotel stands for a unique experience that guarantees guests the best of two different worlds.
MEC Design International worked closely with Mr Kian Liew, The Ascott’s Head of Global ID Management, Product & Technical Services to plan and design the property. Liew has 15 years of experience in interior design and his signature style is best defined as understated yet sophisticated, straightforward, elegant and functional with the occasional accents. Balance, light, space and colour, all factor into his design, thus he is able to create interiors with a timeless effect. Clean lines and simple but well‐crafted furnishing, with an attention to texture and highest quality materials, are Kian’s essentials.
Trees, blossoms, leaves, water and clouds, motifs that epitomize the Japanese philosophy of Zen, adorn the walls and ceilings, while linear elements resonate with the surrounding high‐rise architecture. Seemingly disparate elements are employed to achieve a quiet balance, an oasis of serenity amidst the bustle of the thriving metropolis.
The design experience begins as one crosses the threshold from the busy thoroughfare into a ground‐floor foyer wrapped in warm and welcoming hues of brown, bronze and soft gold. Entering the lift, panels of brown and bubble‐filled blue glass evoke a sense of fluid motion. As one travels upward, the lighting shifts subtly from blue to white, the only indication of movement in the silently ascending vessel, heralding guests’ arrival at the 22nd-floor sky lobby.
At the reception area, taking centre stage is an objet d’art that draws from the Japanese ensō. It was designed by Korean artist Bahk Seong Ghi and this outstanding artwork combines Avant‐garde form with earthy charcoal. The ensō, known traditionally as a circle hand‐drawn in an uninhibited brushstroke to express spontaneous freedom of expression, is reinterpreted using suspended fragments of charcoal. Where an ensō circle is typically either closed or incomplete, in the former case it is done so in order to represent perfection, whereas in the latter it symbolizes the never-ending quest for improvement. Nevertheless, Bahk’s masterpiece allows for multiple perspectives. This union of venerable philosophy and modern innovation characterises the design approach to Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo.
In the lounge, Shinnosuke Tojo’s triptych of copper plates highlights calming colours, fluid strokes and deliberate rusting of the metal plate to reflect the passage of time. The artwork’s constantly evolving patina is a perfect allegory for the Japanese concept of ‘Mono No Aware’, or the ephemerality of existence.
The artists who have contributed to the artistic direction of Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo come from a myriad of nationalities, from Korea to Brazil. This diversity does indeed reflect the cosmopolitan character of Tokyo, while all of these artists share solidarity in paying homage to the Japanese minimalist aesthetic.
Another pervading theme is the perpetual dialogue between Man and Nature. This theme is deeply ingrained in the local culture and, when it comes to the hotel, it comes into play gently folded into the guest experience. The double‐height ceiling lobby unfurls towards a million‐dollar view of the city that is framed by lush greenery. In the entire residence, guests can sense a sublime and refreshing aroma of jasmine and tangerine that permeate the air. Furthermore, the subtle shifts in colour and imagery that can be seen throughout the hotel evoke the characteristics of the four seasons – Spring on the 23rd and 24th floors, Summer on the 25th and 26th, Autumn on the 27th and 28th, and Winter on the top floor.
The apartments are decked out with a taupe and cream palette, silk Pierre Frey cushions, contemporary fittings and ultra-modern kitchens, complete with all the paraphernalia necessary for a comfortable extended stay. Bellagio marble tiles lather the bathrooms in cream. The ceiling is embellished with abstract photographic prints, creating the impression of gazing through both foliage and skyline. The graphics manipulate the proportions of both elements, blurring the lines between where the buildings end and nature begins.
Winner: 2GETHER Club House by PTang Studio Limited
2GETHER is a luxury residential development set along the south coast of Tuen Mun, with overall panoramic sea views of five bays and convenient transport links with Light Rail and Ferry Port in close proximity. The location and characteristics of the architecture make this residential development an ideal first home for fashionable young professionals with the interior design taking inspiration from the area’s active suburban vibe, creating a living space which is both stylish and dynamic.
Through the reception comes the lobby interior styling which accentuates light, structure and earthy neutral tones sprinkled with vibrant splashes of colour, to reiterate the concept of crisp natural living within a contemporary atmosphere. The introduction of geometric and abstract shapes amongst the vertical structures continues the forest canopy look and complements the space by softening the lobby expanse for a comfortable yet cutting-edge neighbourhood spot.
The library area introduces horizontal profiles to offset the vertical rhythm. This play on configuration between lines with LED strip lighting creates a slick and contemporary space.
The gym area intensifies the geometric language of the lobby areas with a vertical screen which runs along the entire length of the gym, composing a strong sense of rhythm for a working leisure environment. The screen extends to the ceiling line and the use of ceiling beams allows the eye to travel towards the light of the large harbour view window which, after all, is an ideal workout backdrop.
The multi-functional living and dining area is arranged within an open space layout with no solid partitions, however, the large glass wine display case, allows residents to embrace the social space for a range of gatherings to suit communal and more intimate events. The materials and visual language are a continuum of the earthy forest floor with verticals reaching above.
The entire communal areas have been designed specifically for the tenants to fully use and view the common spaces as an extension of their own private homes with the aim of creating community pride and ownership.
Winners: Dio by Gareth Seah
Gareth Seah was the mastermind behind the design of Dio, a couture penthouse in Singapore. At the age of 24, Seah has already had the opportunity to work in high-end prestigious projects, including Luxury Tall-Ships, hotels, private residences, among others. This project covers 200sqm and focuses primarily on clean lines and shapes, layered with inimitable materials that reveal its story and history. From one space to the other, guests can find unique characteristics in each, which becomes rather priceless for the ones who desire it.
“Dio” means God in Italy and Seah’s design was influenced by modernist architects and designers such as Le Corbusier, Mies Van Der Rohe and Gio Ponti. With the use of holy grails that were fused together such as marble (Lapicida), wood (Talarico Hardwood), metal and lights, Seah created a modern luxury space like no other.
The art of designing with marble acts as the heart fused with veins inside it that frames an intimate relation between the users and space. Exotic materials such as specially figured woods and antique boiserie revive a long-lost era and an unparalleled beauty that goes beyond words.
The coloured lighting then reflects these materials, rendering a wide spectrum of colours into space and allowing users to craft their bespoke mood. Last, but certainly not least, are metals and tinted mirrors which ultimately create mass, volume and give expression to the divine tones found across these spaces.
When designing with “Dio” and Couture in mind, it is necessary to fuse natural materials along with aged artefacts, unveiling its limit and beauty throughout. The level of details which stands as the ultimate creative ground produces a sensation of new spectrums that compliments against one another.
“Style is eternal, it is the experience within the designed environment that slowly, re-connects us with the joyous moments that happens inside. The qualities that are designed to create a subtle rhythmic transition from one to another presenting an intimate quality between the design and users.”
Under the mentorship of Italian renowned Architect Massimo Mercurio, Gareth Seah envisions himself as an architect and interior designer, which will ultimately give him the latitude to design the interior along with an understanding about the exterior surroundings.
As you can see by the interiors of Dio, his design style is based on re-inventing a new modern and timeless space that redefines an haute and luxurious environment with the use of antique, reclaimed materials fusing with new state of the art present creations. He also believes that design is not simply about creating or designing a space that looks beautiful and purposeful, but rather a space that has its metaphysical qualities, allowing the family to cherish every precious moment with one another.
After getting to know the designers and designs options, choose your favourite winner to make him the Best of the Best and go vote on the website of the Covet International Awards.
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