• MSL Mall – A shopping village for everyone, neighbourhood mall in transformation by Alexander Wong Architects

    15 November 2023

    Inspired by the traditional villages of Asia, the renovation of the latest MSL Mall in one of the earliest developed areas of Hong Kong, namely Shek Tong Tsui in the Western District of Old Hong Kong, is a huge challenge for the design team of Alexander Wong Architects.

    Just by looking at the “Before and After” Images, the contrasts could not be greater.

    Many old and smaller shopping malls, the first generation of its kind in the urban fabric of a bygone era in Hong Kong, is going through a series of huge transformation, some swankier than others, but the important question to ask is : “Who is the mall built for ?”

    “Surely not just for the younger generation or the bigger sectors of the consumer pie chart as these malls exist in the midst of communities filled with all age groups from socially diverse backgrounds, including locals and foreigners, young and old, sick and healthy, abled and disabled, families and singles, privileged and financially challenged, and so much more from many different lifestyles. It is therefore really important to create a facility that caters for more than just a few individuals, even though some may never buy anything from the shops in this mall. The fact is these non-consumers will traverse through the shopping arcade and therefore this will become a part of their communal experiences nevertheless. Everyone should feel a sense of belonging and share the community spirit as much as possible. And they should also feel comfortable in it as well. Not some invasion of local or international brands which they may or may not wish to be a part of. The challenge here is how to respect existing residents and the culture of its neighbourhood whilst injecting a new energy into the mall. The coexistence of these shops with several entrances to residential units above are also critical to its success,” explains Alexander Wong of Alexander Wong Architects.

    “Many built in the roaring 50s, 60s and 70s in Hong Kong, these typical ‘Neighbourhood Arcade Malls’ were a first of their kind but certainly a relic of the past now. Many have become old and dilapidated with poor or next-to-zero maintenance and upkeep. Some have become dark with severe glare problems during the day and lack of proper lighting after nightfall. Even the communal conveniences were designed right next to an open yard without weather protection which seem slightly archaic to us now,” Wong further adds.

    The transformation is nothing less than significant. The newly opened MSL Mall is cleaner and brighter. The design of the arcade is modular and contemporary with a touch of Asian aesthetics which harks back to any experience of traversing through a communal village but with a modern twist. It is simple and stylish, friendly and warm with easy to maintain woodgrain aluminium slats on most surfaces. Labelled with big circular lightbox signages, all the shops are easy to find creating a perfect backdrop for introducing brands or businesses new and old alike.

    MSL Mall — A Neighbourhood Mall Rejuvenated with a New Facelift is now opened to everyone.

    For further information, please visit alexanderwong.com.hk.

    More Design
    Welcoming redesign of the Dah Sing Bank Central Branch
    In the redesign of the Dah Sing Bank Central Branch, Richards Basmajian sought to create a welcoming pavilion to stand out at the busy intersection of Pedder Street and Des Voeux Road. It was essential to provide a warm and convivial atmosphere for customers, and to link together six banking zones in a fluid, continuous manner – as opposed to the previous hub + spoke arrangement: • [...]
    The workplace reimagined: Benoy + Uncommon Land’s new home in Singapore
    As cities evolve, so do perspectives on work and the workplace. Seizing this opportunity, we designed a people-centric environment that envisions the future of work. (按此浏览中文版) After nearly a decade at Anson Road, we recently relocated to a new Studio. The interior design team at Benoy and landscape architects at Uncommon Land embraced this chance to create an innovative [...]
    Designing a Symphony of Appreciation: My Journey with Kadensa
    A Collaboration with Kadensa to Create an Inspiring Workspace, Rooted in Staff Appreciation. Text: My Tien Nguyen   Photos: Scott Brooks The Kadensa Project As the owner of MYN Studio, every project holds a special place in my heart. However, my collaboration with Kadensa, a forward-thinking financial institution in Hong Kong, was a transformative experience that resonated deeply with me. [...]
    Jidu’s new experience center ROBOVERSE unveiled at Sanlitun Beijing
    Jidu unveiled the ROBOVERSE Sanlitun Experience Center at Taikoo Li Sanlitun, a next generation brand experience center for the intelligent car 3.0 era that is focused on realizing an extraordinary vision of reality where digital intelligence comes alive to unite people, art, and technology. (按此瀏覽中文版) A collaborative work between Jidu and Gensler, the Jidu ROBOVERSE Sanlitun [...]
    The Indochine-Vietnamese Wood-fire Kitchen by PANORAMA Design
    The Vietnamese word SẾP is originated from the French word “Chef”, the design of this fine dining restaurant in bustling Central area of Hong Kong evokes the historical and cultural origins of the unique Vietnamese cuisine served. A sophisticated yet modern setting was derived by juxtaposition of Indochine-Vietnamese features and wood-fire inspired material palettes. Re-interpretation [...]
    fws_work brings a sense of tranquility into an apartment in Taiwan
    Residence W is designed by fws_work to bring a sense of tranquility to a home overlooking the city of Qinpu, known for its fast development and transportation hub. The owner is an airline pilot, spending most of his time constantly traveling between different countries with short stays. For him, home is a haven to provide a sense of relaxation at the moment when he arrives home. To respond to [...]
    Bespoke Interiors for a Brave New World
    A 25th anniversary is a milestone. For a company, it implies that the business weathered cycles of good and bad times, prospering while adapting to new normals. For architecture and design firms, a silver anniversary is remarkable as the profession demands that each project be better than the last one. For companies that specialise in commercial projects, seismic shifts such as online [...]
    Building a world of luxury spa experiences
    Grand Lisboa Palace Resort Macau is the newest milestone development of SJM Resorts, S.A. (SJM) in the Cotai district, and also the latest integrated resort of the widely-recognised Lisboa brand. Inspired by the monumental European buildings of the Neoclassical to Belle Époque periods and traditional Chinese motifs, the resort celebrates the grand union of the best from East and West as it [...]
    The Natura by Alexander Wong Architects
    The Essence of Beautiful Living “Study Nature, love Nature, stay close to Nature. It will never fail you.” Frank Lloyd Wright One cannot create Nature but one can attempt to imitate a fraction of its beauty. The heart and soul of The Natura is to live in harmony with an idealized version of our environment. One of the principle inspirations is derived from Alvar Aalto’s Villa Mairea in [...]