Back in September, the HausMag team had the pleasure to be invited into TUVE – An award winning minimalist, boutique hotel. Already establishing themselves in the hospitality space; TUVE has recently been shortlisted in this year’s Wallpaper* Best Urban Hotel Awards as the only nomination from China. Attracting a plethora of unique guests, many choose TUVE as their get-a-way home in the buzzing city of Hong Kong. Most notable for it’s zen-like interior design, the artistic concept story imbedded in each detail of the hotel is memorable to many.
The artistic branding of the hotel, and name, begins from two photographs of a lake in Sweden. Lake Tuve, as captured by photographer Kim Høltermand, inspired the founder of the hotel. The photograph portrays an aura of mystery: a single rock protrudes from the lake in a hazy mask of fog – the sky and lake blend into one, only separated by the hints of texture. Looking at this photograph, one feels a sense of calm. Thus, the founding philosophy of TUVE hotel.
“Sensual and poetic, a utopian sentiment. Timeless, placeless, and genderless, an unknown intimate, caressing the senses as you enter. There may be a moment of déjà vu, of meditation, of both. A space for your identity to rest.”
Philosophy, TUVE 2016.
Lake Tuve, by Kim Høltermand | Photography courtesy of Kim Høltermand
Speaking to Pauline Tsang, Managing Director of TUVE, who so hospitably gave the HausMag team a tour of the hotel, we discovered the founder himself/herself is also interestingly mysterious, and wishes to stay unknown. Though we have been told the founder has a background of rich with arts, such as cinematography, design, and photography – lending to the aesthetic vision of TUVE. Collaborating with design firm Design Systems Ltd, this quiet but philosophical space took 5 years in total from conception to completion.
If not careful, you might miss the hotel upon approach, in the bustling residential area of Tin Hau, Hong Kong. Faithfully aligning with minimalism, the hotel’s signs appear in unexpected places. A large brass table top in the centre of the room acts as the check in desk. Lending a personal feel to the bare space, guests can peruse freely around the table with no distinct barriers. A window installation that filters light beautifully produces speckled dots of light on the floor – changing directions and intensity throughout the day.
Pauline made note of the reception washroom, which often amazes guests. Much thought was placed into the marble tiles – each one individually selected for it’s pattern and placed in a pattern, reminiscent of Rorschach Ink Blot Tests.
The first room we visited was the Premiere Suite. Spacious and meticulously designed to the last detail; we marvelled at the gold leaf paint which filled the concrete cracks. A true testament to the founder’s design ethos, as we were informed that he/she painted these walls themselves. A plethora of textures excite the sense when you stay in this room.
Clean design and minimalism is key here – even the room numbers were removed from the doors and instead placed on the ceiling as an interesting design feature.
Moving onto the second room; the HausMag team was astonished by the desk-come-snack-bar-come-charger-port box, that completely folds in on itself. This custom piece was designed in collaboration with Design Systems Ltd and TUVE founder. Made to fit for the hotel, this “all in one box” upholds TUVE’s philosophy of zen easy living.
Receiving an interview question answer, HausMag caught just a glimpse of the founder’s unique mind through the question: Who or what were your major design influences/ inspirations growing up?
“The hotel was found with all the possibility of developing an art and design language by using storytelling – We admire artists like Hans Bellmer, Egon Schiele. We love architects like Louis Kahn, Peter Zumthor and more.
These artists make work that are raw, they let you feel his work in first person and let you interpret your own language. It’s an incredible feeling, it’s powerful and daring.
Through architecture, art and interior design, we hope to find a cultural identity of our own, we hope to share these common feelings and grow with our guest and with people who appreciates our aesthetic.”
TUVE Founder, 2016.
This quote has been condensed.
Many thanks to Pauline Tsang, Managing Director of TUVE for her hospitality, as well as Emily Chow, Sinclair Communications, for press materials.
Special thanks to Founder of TUVE for their insightful words and inspirations.
Visit TUVE, at 16 Tsing Fung St, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong.