A whole new world

Mount PaviliaIn an increasingly competitive first-hand sales market, developers are going to great lengths to woo buyers by offering financing incentives not found in the second-hand market. The problem for many is that to make up the difference — and boost supply — those same developers are making flats smaller and smaller, and buyers are starting to speak with their chequebooks. A number of launches recently failed to drum up the business they expected to: Poly Property Group’s Vibe Centro fell short of expectations at its April release. Mantin Heights by Kerry Properties also fizzled on launch day, as did the URA’s De Novo in Kai Tak among others. There’s a raft of reasons for the subdued performance, flat size and stamp duties among them, but either way buyers are becoming choosier.

Offering up a wholly different product is New World Development’s (NWD) Artisanal Movement series. What started as one project has become the developer’s signature residential brand, with projects in Kennedy Town (Eight South Lane), Tin Hau (Pavilia Hill), Sai Ying Pun (Bohemian House), unlikely Mong Kok (Skypark), Tsuen Wan (Pavilia Bay), and a serviced apartment in Happy Valley (Eight Kwai Fong). Now comes the most ambitious iteration of the brand, Mount Pavilia in Clear Water Bay.

Mount Pavilia

Mount Pavilia

New standards

The low-rise Mount Pavilia takes New World’s goals of “personalised, bespoke living that is truly unique,” to new heights in order to create a resort-style residential product in resort-ready Sai Kung; Mount Pavilia feels as much like a South Pacific hotel as it does an apartment complex. The aim is also, according to a statement from New World, to have residents “experiencing an infinite and boundless life right [in] their own home, feeling at one with nature, redefining the new standard of residential projects under The Artisanal Movement.”

The Artisanal Movement properties share several common motifs, among them warm, contemporary lobbies, clever interiors that maximise space and a focus on craftsmanship and art. New to the brand at Mount Pavilia is a permanent sculpture collection scattered across the 700,000 square foot site (which was cobbled together over a decade).

“The unparalleled unique ambience created by sculpture parks fits in perfectly with the key concepts of The Artisanal Movement,” the statement continues. Currently, the art collection includes Share by Hong Kong sculptor Kum Chi Keung, Home by Beijing-based Gao Wei Gang, Waterfall by Italy’s Tatiana Trouvé and Clear Water Bay’s Rebounds by Jean-Michel Othoniel at the Clear Water Bay Road entrance. Each was created to a theme (home) and Home and Share are the kinds of interactive, public art springing up in cities around the world.

You might also be interested in:

>> 20 year growth spurt of Hong Kong's property market

Mount Pavilia

Mount Pavilia

Green space, water features, sustainability measures (wind turbines and solar panels power public areas), forward-looking architecture and interiors, and strong management services cap off the artisanal mandate - all elements New World believes purchasers are now looking for. Buyers so far have been, “People looking for weekend homes, or currently living in Clear Water Bay or Sai Kung looking for a new home. Some come from The Peak or the Southside, because they like the special units. And then celebrities, doctors and other professionals,” notes an anonymous NWD spokesperson.

Though the word “artisanal” smacks of a trendy and, to some, gimmicky sales pitch, there’s no denying the tranquillity of the location (easily accessed by MTR and transit), the careful design consideration and the fresh air.

Maximum lifestyle

Situated on Clear Water Bay Road near Tai Po Tsai village, when finished in early 2018 Mount Pavilia will comprise of 680 units spread over 27 four- to seven-storey towers and blocks on a massive 700,000 square foot site, making it the most ambitious Artisanal Movement development yet. Ranging from 409 to 3,372 saleable square feet, the units are configured into one- to four-bedroom flats, duplexes and triplexes, and include 301 special units broken down into garden, terrace, rooftop, and penthouse collectables (among others).

The apartment themselves, designed by architects Wong Tung Group (whose work includes Taikoo Shing and Discovery Bay), are efficient (plenty of sliding doors where possible and contemporary, semi-concealed dry kitchens), with modern technology and retractable living room flywalls that emphasise an outside-inside flow; a position set against nearby hills ensures lush green views for many of the towers.

Given the emphasis is on lifestyle, it’s no surprise that the development has facilities and amenities that focus on the great outdoors. Korean architect Cho Minsuk designed the mammoth 67,000 square foot clubhouse — complementing a surrounding 270,000 square feet of greenscaping — and its white and glass curvilinear walls (often in alternating finishes like interlocking brick) not only give the clubhouse an art gallery feel, in keeping with the Artisanal brand, but maximise natural light and emphasise the seamless connection of all the spaces: indoor and outdoor, children’s areas and entertainment facilities, public entrances and private enclaves.

Mount Pavilia

Mount Pavilia

The leisure facilities feature a nearly one kilometre cycle path, 400 metres of woodland trails, indoor and outdoor pools, picnic and barbecue spaces, tennis court, fully-equipped gym, and dining and entertaining space as a start. For children in particular, there’s an urban farm, a park, water park, and carefully curated multi-intelligence play areas — for toddlers, kids three to six, six to 12 and so on — designed to stimulate the imagination and independence by Dutch studio carve. Binding Mount Pavilia together, the art trail provides what could be Hong Kong’s most creative signposting. Completing the amenities is local café and grocer St Bart’s, nestled in Mount Pavilia’s retail podium, underneath the art gallery space.

Properties at Mount Pavilia start at HK$7 million.

>> Previous issue: A mid-year review of Hong Kong's property market

>> Next issue: Tips for first-time home buyers