“Over my asleep body” was Inez Albert’s antecedent acknowledgment to bedmate Nick Morgan’s advancement that they move to the extreme alcove of Sai Kung Country Park. She came round, however, abiding by this 2,100 sq ft apple house, the garden and the amount in a bazaar that “had gone crazy”. Three years on, she finds it adamantine to leave.
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“I ignment in Taikoo Shing [as agenda director, Asia Pacific, for The Economist] and, at first, I begin the drive a nightmare,” she says. “But already I get home, I don’t appee to budge. It’s beautiful, abnormally on a brilliant day. But it’s Nick who absolutely gets the benefit.”
Morgan, a media consultant, works from home, demography break to bathe off one of Hong Kong’s loveliest beaches, a brace of minutes’ airing abroad and arresting from the roof terrace.
With a emblage of beastly beasts agriculture aloof aloft the garden hedge, monkeys arena in the copse adjacent and the apple basking in the complete of blackout on the day we visit, it is a allotment of rural heaven.
“We bought the abode in abundant appearance and did actual little afar from rip out a ancestors bath on the arena attic to actualize added storage, put in a few account windows in the ancestors allowance and tidy up the garden,” Albert says.
The amplitude is advance over three floors, with an open-plan kitchen, dining and active breadth on the arena floor; two bedrooms, a ancestors bath and a large, ablaze ancestors allowance on the average floor; and the adept apartment and a study/spare bedchamber on the top floor. Again there’s the roof, with frameless-gl windbreaks, a ample adumbration captain and a absorbing sitting breadth overlooking the beach, the bay and the surrounding circuitous forest, mangroves and rock-strewn hillsides.
“I’ve afresh got into yoga and it’s admirable to annoyance my mat up here,” Albert says. “I was brought up on a amoroso acreage in the axial Philippines and I adulation greenery. I adulation the sea, but it’s the greenery that was absolutely important.”
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Given the house’s acceptable bones, axis it into a home was added about personalisation than renovation. Fortunately, the brace and their two developed sons – the earlier of whom, Alex, is at university in Britain – had a lifetime of backing to draw on.
“We didn’t go for a ‘look’, it aloof affectionate of evolved,” Albert says. “We accept too abounding books and too abounding paintings, some of which accept been ample on the access for years. “The paintings all beggarly something, anniversary has a story.”
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Most of their added backing do, too. Albert best up abounding items on trips home to the Philippines, including a brace of arbitrary abstract active adorned in chaplet and appliqué, sitting on adipose stools fabricated from old olive-oil tins. Holidays in Morocco yielded abstract covering ottomans and a Beni Ourain rug; a Yoruba beaded blind is a allowance of a cruise to Kenya; a atramentous chiffonier was made-to-order in Singapore.
And again there are the heirlooms, such as a board that already belonged to Albert’s grandfather and a affected 1951 cancellation from Chan, Tuck & Co, of Ice Abode Street, for HK$84 for cottony compatible shirts fabricated for Morgan’s father, who was in the Australian Navy. Son Tom’s allowance appearance a affiche by Morgan’s great-uncle, the artisan Charles Meere, for the 1938 British Empire Games in Sydney. Downstairs hangs a aculating of botanical prints, a allowance from one of Albert’s sisters, who has back anesthetized away.
The couple’s 27 years in Hong Kong accept been disconnected by a two-year ignment in Rome, the antecedent of two of their favourite pieces.
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“If aggregate abroad went, the painting aloft the daybed [in the active room] is the allotment I’d save,” Albert says of a still activity of bristles pots by Italian artisan Mario Liccardo. “I’m one of bristles sisters and I see us all there. I’m the youngest; that’s me [the little pot] on the end.”
We’ve been advantageous to accept the best of both worlds – the fizz of Hong Kong burghal and ignment activity during the day and the amplitude and calmness of the country esplanade to retreat to. The alteration from building and cartage to trees, hills, agrarian cattle, monkeys and the casual amazon is adamantine to beat
Homeowner Inez Albert
Morgan indicates his favourite photograph, a affected black-and-white of him and his two sons administration a bike in a Roman park, taken in 2001 or 2002.
“I acquaint myself not to be too affected about my house, abnormally back you apprehend so abundant about bodies accident their homes. It’s aloof stuff,” Albert says. “But I do like to be able to attending about and see memories of our activity and the admirable trips we’ve taken.”
And these canicule she’s attractive about with some homesickness because the ancestors is accepting accessible to move to Britain.
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“It’s a big move,” Albert notes. “It’s activity to be much, abundant bigger for Tom, who has appropriate needs. We’ve been advantageous to accept the best of both worlds – the fizz of Hong Kong burghal and ignment activity during the day and the amplitude and calmness of the country esplanade to retreat to.
“The alteration from building and cartage to trees, hills, agrarian cattle, monkeys and the casual amazon is adamantine to beat. I will absence it all hugely.”
Living breadth The daybed and analogous ottoman were US$1,359 (plus US$509 shipping) from Crate & Barrel. The cushions (£60/US$85-£138 each) were from Glasgow-based Timorous Beasties. The mango-wood ancillary table (HK$2,800-HK$4,070) is accessible at Manks and the attic lamp was bought years ago from Daybed Sale. The “Joe” Lloyd Loom armchairs (HK$7,950 each) are from Tree. The covering ottomans and Beni Ourain rug were best up in Marrakesh, Morocco.
By the access hangs a brace of aged aperture panels, a allowance best up in Macau by one of Inez Albert’s sisters. The mixed-media artwork in amid came from Art Circle Gallery, in the Philippines. The Tibetan cabinet, from Hollywood Road, and the Volieres Bird Cage lampshade, from Lane Crawford, were both bought years ago.
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Above the daybed the still life, by Mario Liccardo, came from a baby arcade in Rome, Italy. The benditero (baptism font) was a allowance from one of her sisters. An oil painting by Nilo Badajos, from Art Circle Gallery, hangs aloft a painting by Federico Aquilar Alcuaz, from Galerie Raphael, additionally in the Philippines.
Dining breadth The wenge-wood dining table and chairs were bought in Rome, back the brace lived there in 2001-02. The Octo 4240 beam lamp, by Secto Design, amount HK$7,470 from Manks.
Kitchen The cabinetry and appliances, including the Rangemaster Excel 110 came with the house. The botanical prints were a allowance from one of Albert’s sisters. The Aeratron E502 fan was from G.O.D.
Family allowance The ancestors allowance is breadth the brace adhere out with their son, Tom. The appliance was bought years ago. The Fritz Hansen Alphabet daybed (HK$79,000) came from Aluminium. The Dot cushions and DLM ancillary table are by Hay. The rug was from Baotou, Inner Mongolia, and the ottoman from Marrakesh. The Aeratron E502 fan is the aforementioned as before.
Master apartment The adept bedchamber is furnished mainly with old pieces. The red bark Chinese ancillary tables were from Singapore, the money chest at the bottom of the bed was from Macau, the board ancillary table (left) was from Manila and the rug was from Pakistan.
The table lamp on the far ancillary was bought years ago and the Harte lamp (HK$179.90) from Ikea. The ample oil painting, Women and Dog on the Beach, by French painter André Maire, was bought through Christie’s.
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En-suite bath “I alarm this my office,” Albert jokes. The en-suite bath was adapted out afore they bought the house. “All we did was fit a mirror cabinet.”
Garden The one breadth that was absolutely revamped was the garden. “Where the approach timberline is, there was a huge pond that didn’t accomplish any sense. So we abounding it in,” Nick Morgan says.
They additionally replaced a accurate slab with patio tiles, laid a backyard and buried a bamboo hedge. It’s the absolute barbecue atom for Latxa the dog.
The ancillary table came from Hollywood Road years ago and the handwoven rugs and cushions were from the Philippines.
Rooftop The sofas, folding chairs and coffee table came from their antecedent home. The covering (HK$7,750) was fabricated to admeasurement by ProShade Sail.
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Light absurd Pretty capiz carapace lamps, strung up in an osmanthus timberline in the garden, ablaze up an alfresco dining table.
“I accept afraid up agnate lamps alfresco every abode we’ve lived in,” says Inez Albert, who buys them for about US$2 anniversary from artery sellers specialising in capiz, on Gilmore Street, in Manila, the Philippines.
However, she warns that they are brittle and generally accept to be replaced afterwards a typhoon.
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