Off the Wall
What do you get the homeowner who has everything? How about an outdoor carpet? Hong Kong-based luxury rug brand Tai Ping Carpets (Prince's Building, Central, tel: 2522 7138), known for its custom-made, hand-tufted designs, has introduced two carpets specifically for outside use. The Outdoor Collection features two materials that offer the quality and look of the company's indoor offerings: the Finelvo (right), is made with a polypropylene fibre, which has a soft feel and natural look, and comes in floral and graphic designs; and the Batyline, made from a newly developed PVC fibre that imparts depth to the designs with varying loop heights and tone-on-tone colour schemes. The carpets are available in round, square and rectangular shapes, with the largest measuring three metres by three metres. Prices range from HK$6,150 to HK$12,654 a square metre.
Any would-be bride looking for something to complement her gown, might like to consider the striking white wedding chapel (far right) at the Palace Hotel Tokyo for the ceremony. This serene space was designed by Ryu Kosaka of A.N.D., the Japanese designer behind the Shin-Marunouchi building in Tokyo and the Mori Tower in Roppongi. A modern take on a Victorian church style, the structure features iron pipes that form Gothic-inspired arches and a pearlite spray finish applied to the walls, which not only looks beautifully ethereal but also helps the acoustics - all important for hearing the betrothed recite their vows. Minimalist and intimate, with light streaming through the lofty windows, the church evokes nature's 'blessing' upon the wedding ceremony. It's enough to make any bride say, 'I do.'
If you're heading to the French capital this summer, take a look at the Paris Mandarin Oriental's Camelia restaurant, which is currently home to a giant birdcage-esque structure called the Garden Table (right). Designed by Agence Jouin Manku, made up of French designer Patrick Jouin and Canadian architect Sanjit Manku, both of whom worked on the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai, the 'table' is delightfully Parisian, refined and in keeping with the beautiful scenery, but also intimate - playing on the hidden nooks of the garden. The indoor section of the Camelia restaurant, named after the flowers that fill the courtyard garden, is intended to blend seamlessly with the outdoors, with an indoor garden theme that includes giant, back-lit ceramic 'camellia' petals lining the walls. If Coco Chanel were alive she'd probably jump ship from the Ritz to here.