TEXT: CoBo Editorial
IMAGES: Courtesy of K11 MUSEA
If seeing is believing, there’s no better way to immerse yourself in the magnificence that is K11 MUSEA’s architecture than by taking a stroll inside yourself. Drawing inspiration from nature and the surrounding cityscape—and suffused with Bohemian arches, gardens, ovals and hexagons, green facades and more—the design of K11 MUSEA has been crafted to evoke the feel of a contemporary manor house and an ever-present, otherworldly kingdom.
And K11 MUSEA does this all the while keeping an eco-conscious mindset. Sustainability is integral to the design, and is instantly apparent as you approach K11 MUSEA’s Façade, designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF), and Green Wall, by PLandscape. Drawing inspiration from Hong Kong’s dynamic harbour, and crafted from rare Portuguese limestone, KPF’s design for K11 MUSEA is fluid, vibrant, and inviting, as green terraces cascade like rice paddies down the Façade. It is complemented by the lush, verdant Green Wall of botanicals, which softens the limestone and symbioses with the fluid lines of the harbour and the reflections of the water. K11 MUSEA most certainly lives up to its moniker, Muse by the Sea.
PLandscape have also constructed a striking geometric pattern resembling a heraldic family crest for the ground level K11 MUSEA Entrance. Providing balance between form and function, this motif brings an added element of serenity to K11 MUSEA, the gradient allowing sunlight to gently filter through. The overall effect exudes the prosperity and exoticism of the Silk Road.
Such spellbinding details are evident from every floor of K11 MUSEA, visible to the outside world from the rooftop. A breath-taking oasis is spread across two levels on K11 MUSEA’s 7th floor rooftop coined ‘the Bohemian Garden’, with additional spaces and amenities for all to explore. The lower level features al fresco dining shaded by bohemian hexagons, as well as two striking water features in the form of cascading terraces. On the upper level, there’s a chef’s garden and a lush, oval lawn—the supreme setting for gala dinner events or outdoor cinema screenings. Parents, worry not. Children can climb, jump, and slide their way around the peacock-themed playground, while their tired, put-upon parents can relax beneath shaded pavilions.
Stepping down from the roof into K11, prepare yourself for the grandiose splendour below. Get your “classical ware” on for the 2,000-square-foot Sunken Plaza, a cultural venue providing an intimate, street-level setting for performing arts, cinema, and live music, adjacent to the K11 MUSEA basement level entrance. The amphitheatre is enclosed by a 5.5-metre-tall, conical, glass-panel façade, animated by a programmable, wraparound water feature for a fully immersive experience. Aristophanes by the ocean, or Sophocles by the sea, anyone?
And if you seek high drama of the child and adult variety, there’s the KPF-designed Donut Playhouse, a glass emporium of fun, friendship and community that features the thrilling Happy Mega Slide – the largest indoor slide in Hong Kong. Created by award-winning Danish designer Ole Barslund Nielsen of Monstrum. This three-floor giant is a dynamic must-ride-and-slide attraction for visitors of all ages.
In the meantime, switch gear, slow down and ground your senses via renowned Dutch architecture firm OMA’s Kube, a symbolic space outside the mall that reflects and explores Hong Kong’s waterfront culture. The cube-shaped kiosk, dishes up 100% Arabica coffee, featuring aluminium panels with a special anodized gold filter that changes colour as the light’s spectrum evolves throughout the day. An arrangement of moveable, cubical, marble chairs allows people to linger and converse with one other, transforming the space into Hong Kong’s most intimate—and slow-paced—urban living room.
The attention to detail, stunning architecture and captivating installations continue inside the dazzling emporium. Referencing Hong Kong’s past as an entrepôt and Tsim Sha Tsui’s role as an important transportation hub, Victoria, (G/F), an elaborate chandelier designed by Lasvit, captures both the rawness and poetic glory of this bygone age. Inspired by the classical elegance of Victorian-era chandeliers, this “light show” unto itself features single pendant lights dangling from a framework of industrial pipes that also emit sound and steam. Such chandeliers were once used to greet guests in the entrance halls of aristocratic mansions.
Designed by Hong Kong-based architectural and interior design practice LAAB, Escalating Climbers is an organic structure marking the threshold of K11 MUSEA’s grand atrium and the KPF-, LAAB-, and AB Concept-designed Opera Theatre. Like a sprawling root system, the design enlivens and animates the upward motion of the escalators. Each “root” is handcrafted from stainless steel to sprout, fork, and weave in an organic network around the escalator, immersing visitors in the K11 MUSEA experience.
LAAB are also responsible for Oculus, hovering at the apex of the atrium. Inspired by the architecture of classic cathedrals, it comprises a network of bent-steel and glass-fibre branches embracing two, seven-metre-wide skylights. With hundreds of programmable spotlights embedded in the branches, Oculus pulses to orchestrate a soothing and natural environment throughout the day. It’s also the perfect shrine for visitors to convene under to reflect, gawp, or even genuflect at its intricate and awe-inspiring details.
And on the second floor, at the very heart of K11 MUSEA, beats the glamorous, KPF-designed Gold Ball: a huge spherical chamber of a centrepiece that functions as both an InstaGlam necessity—visual honey for K11 MUSEA’s legions of digital bees—and a creative platform for exhibitions, pop-ups, and performances. The ball is embellished with triangular latticework set with V-cut glass panels and LED fixtures by renowned lighting consultant Speirs & Major, which enable a variety of effects and centres K11 MUSEA’s experiential and cosmological universe.
K11 MUSEA is a truly unique cultural retail experience. This cutting-edge platform seamlessly merges art, fashion and culture, connecting function with opulent elegance in an otherworldly universe.