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See & Do | Hong Kong

Victoria Dockside set to become Hong Kong’s new art and design district Words by Kate Springer

“Opening in phases through 2019, Victoria Dockside has its eye on becoming Hong Kong’s premier art and design district with a new museum, outdoor amphitheater, hotel, and retail space.”

For decades, the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade, located across Victoria Harbour from Central, has been synonymous with Hong Kong’s top museums, mega malls, the Star Ferry, and the Avenue of Stars, where local celebrities immortalize their handprints in concrete.

But the Kowloon Waterfront is about to welcome a new face: Victoria Dockside. The $2.6 billion project by New World Development, led by Executive Vice-Chairman Adrian Cheng, plans to usher in a new era for Tsim Sha Tsui—one that brings contemporary art, architecture, and creative industries together in a new art and design district.

Opening in phases through 2019, Victoria Dockside is a neighborhood in itself, encompassing a world-class public art collection throughout K11 MUSEA; an outdoor ‘Sunken Plaza’ amphitheatre for concerts, events, and film festivals; a co-working space aimed at creative industries at K11 Atelier; and green spaceon many levelsof the property, including a 50,000-square-foot living wall flourishing across the facade of K11 MUSEA. As for where to rest your head, there will be two luxury hotels: K11 ARTUS (opening 2019), a hotel residence concept , for both short and long term stays, designed by acclaimed Hong Kong designer Andre Fu, as well as a harborfront Rosewood Hong Kong (opening this year).

 

 “So much mixed-use development in Hong Kong isolates the building from the street, internalizing the urban experience,” explains Forth Bagley, a Principal at Kohn Pedersen Fox and the lead design architect of Victoria Dockside. “Our building attempts to invert this configuration by placing terraced green and outdoor space vertically – turning the building inside-out.” 

 

Victoria Dockside is similar to what you would encounter in a traditional neighborhood — just in vertical form. “The most striking thing about Victoria Dockside is its attempt to resist making an iconic tower on the site,” says Bagley. “We spent a lot of time designing green and natural materials into the façade and interior experience, and we’ve opened the district to Hong Kong and the harbor.”

 

Before Victoria Dockside, the harborfront site was home to the former Holt's Wharf, which was a major hub of transit and logistics through the 1900s. In the 70s, Cheng’s grandfather purchased the land to develop New World Centre, which was one of the world’s largest commercial centers.

 

The tower was demolished in 2010, in order to make room for Cheng’s culture-driven vision. For many years, the neighborhood was actually cut off from much of the waterfront promenade. As such, one of the big aims of the project was to make the water more accessible by “stitching existing Kowloon to the waterfront,” he says.

 

While the lineup of shops, restaurants and artists is still being finalized, travelers can look forward to cultural events, concerts, film festivals, contemporary artwork, as well as a collection of high-end boutiques with a creative bent.

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