St. Regis opened its long-awaited first New York outpost last month…sorry, I mean Hong Kong outpost. You’ll have to forgive the slip-up. For while the look and feel of is quite different from that of , it’s that same 115-year-old, John Jacob Astor-founded New York flagship that provided the inspiration for the new hotel, according to its designer and architect, Hong Kong native .
“I wanted to go deeper than the stereotypical concept of lanterns, junks, and temples and tap into my own memories of the city,” says Fu, founder of the acclaimed Hong Kong design studio , whose other recent projects include the interiors of the .
The 27-story Hong Kong tower is in the waterfront district of Wan Chai, a bustling commercial area with some of the oldest vestiges of the city’s Colonial era. Fu did certainly weave in numerous markers of and references to old Hong Kong—gas street lamps, Chinese tea pavilions—while successfully side-stepping the clichés he strenuously sought to avoid.
It’s in the new hotel’s St. Regis Bar, however, where some of the strongest New York inspirations shine through. The focal point is a hand-painted mural by Beijing artist Zhang Gong that used the renowned in the New York St. Regis’s King Cole Bar as its jumping-off point. It’s the perfect place to kick back for an evening cocktail…and maybe even forget where you are, if only for a brief moment.