Swire Group

Ah Pak

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 29 June, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 29 June, 2011, 12:00am


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Eye-catching art comes with a price tag

The sculptures at Kerry Centre, on 683 King's Road, Quarry Bay, have been a talking point in the property community recently.

The eye-catching works, including the six short guys and a tall guy by Korean artists Yi Hwan-kwon and Jang Dok-dae, and the tai-chi man, by Taiwanese sculptor Ju Ming, have attracted not only tenants' attentions but also drawn sculpture lovers to the building.

Property consultants say that to maintain the top-end status of the group's latest flagship office development, Kerry Properties changes the sculptures in the building every few weeks.

Ah Pak was non-plussed by the challenge of moving such huge artworks and the question of their storage, until an executive of Kerry Properties provided a clue. The sculptures were not removed from the building, merely moved to a different location. Like a game of musical chairs.

Yesterday Ah Pak saw four of the six short guys located near the lift lobby. They may be moved to another corner next month, giving tenants something new to ponder. But the executive said that the tai-chi man was a relatively recent addition.

Just as arresting as the statues in Kerry Centre are the rents. Agents said asking prices for office space in the building are now as high as HK$50 per square foot per month - versus average monthly rents in the Island East area, in which it is located, of around HK$38 per square foot.

Getting tenants onside the strenuous way

For sporty rather than arty types, another novelty attraction in Island East is an indoor football tournament held at Cornwall House, TaiKoo Place, in Quarry Bay. The final of the two-a-side tournament was held yesterday and was won by technology services provider Hong Kong Communications. Competing for the trophy were 65 companies and 232 contestants, including Citibank, HSBC, Hutchison Global Communications, KPMG, Swire Properties and The Dairy Farm Company. Swire said the tournament was staged as part of its efforts to build relationships with its tenants at Island East. Ah Pak reckons there is a surer way for landlords to get tenants onside - just stop raising rents so fast.

Ng's vote of confidence in Bistronomique

Friends of Ah Pak are debating the quality of the food at a small French restaurant called Bistronomique in Kennedy Town. While food critics say there is room for improvement, Ah Pak has learned the restaurant has at least one heavyweight customer - Robert Ng Chee Siong, chairman of Sino Land. Ng, whose company owns a number of hotels in Hong Kong, recently dined there with friends and at least one of his companions found the food great.