Wabi-sabi: The Pavilia Hill offers respite from bustling Hong Kong life

The Pavilia Hill
Located in Hong Kong’s Tin Hau district, the recently completed residential development The Pavilia Hill embraces a wabi-sabi inspired approach 
(Image credit: press)

Previously the preserve of bland high-rise tower blocks, Hong Kong’s Tin Hau district is upping its residential offering with an innovative wabi-sabi-inspired development that embraces the simplicity and raw beauty of nature.

‘In a busy city like Hong Kong, it is hard to find a place to soothe our nerves and have peace of mind,’ says Adrian Cheng, the Hong Kong-based executive vice-chairman and joint general manager of New World, the developers behind the recently competed 358-unit project.

Called The Pavilia Hill, the development comprises five blocks of 31 storeys linked by a sublime Japanese landscape garden created by Shunmyo Masuno, one of Japan’s most celebrated living landscape architects (who is also the 18th generation head priest of Kenkoh-ji temple, a Zen temple in Yokohama, and teaches architecture and interior design at Tama Art University). 

The elegantly executed space encourages peaceful introspection with a stone path that wends through a series of immaculately landscaped—yet seemingly uncalculated—undulating hills with sculptural rocks, Bonsai and man-made waterfalls. Each tower is defined by enormous stone sculptures representing mountains, water, existence, purity and sound.

Singapore-based Japanese interior designer Koichiro Ikebuchi was responsible for the facilities including a serene clubhouse, gymnasium, and the onsen-inspired indoor swimming pool and bath. Throughout, contemplative, quintessential modern and traditional Japanese materials are reflected in semi-translucent shōji screens, natural materials and simple textured walls. ‘I’ve used natural materials that will age in their own original and beautiful ways,’ he explains.

The bucolic tableaux include a semi-private lounge complete with a Japanese garden in each tower lobby, a contemporary tea pavilion showcasing an ethereal ink painting by the renowned Chinese artist Zheng Chongbin, and a secluded outdoor meditation space.

For Cheng, who studied art and culture in Kyoto, the project demonstrates a growing interest in living spaces that go beyond aesthetics to evoke an emotional connection.

Judging by the rate the units have been snapped up, it seems Hong Kong agrees.

A space

The developers behind the recently competed 358-unit project, New World, were aiming for a space where residents can relax and take a break from the city's busy streets 

(Image credit: press)

31 storeys

The Pavilia Hill comprises five blocks of 31 storeys each, linked by a sublime Japanese landscape garden

(Image credit: press)

The landscaping outside

The landscaping outside was created by Shunmyo Masuno, one of Japan’s most celebrated living landscape architects

(Image credit: press)

Singapore-based Japanese interior

Meanwhile, the residents' facilities were masterminded by Singapore-based Japanese interior designer Koichiro Ikebuchi

(Image credit: press)


The scheme features a stylish and serene clubhouse and a gymnasium...

(Image credit: press)

Indoor swimming pool and bath

...as well as an onsen-inspired indoor swimming pool and bath

(Image credit: press)

The Interiors

The interiors are both contemplative and modern throughout, using traditional Japanese materials

(Image credit: press)


For more information, visit the development’s website 


The Pavilia Hill
18A Tin Hau Temple Road
North Point
Hong Kong


Catherine Shaw is a writer, editor and consultant specialising in architecture and design. She has written and contributed to over ten books, including award-winning monographs on art collector and designer Alan Chan, and on architect William Lim's Asian design philosophy. She has also authored books on architect André Fu, on Turkish interior designer Zeynep Fadıllıoğlu, and on Beijing-based OPEN Architecture's most significant cultural projects across China.