As told to Vivian Chen
WHAT: HOME THEATRE
WHO Ajax Law and Virginia Lung
Husband-and-wife team Ajax Law and Virginia Lung established Hong Kong-based interior design firm One Plus Partnership in 2004. They were the first pair of Asian interior designers to win the prestigious Andrew Martin International Interior Designer award. They are most famous for their avantgarde designs of commercial cinemas and show apartments, including the Shanghai ifc Mall’s Palace cinema, Chongqing Mountain and City sales office and Hong Kong’s Yoho Residential Clubhouse.
Although Ajax Law and Virginia Lung have already unleashed their creativity in an impressive portfolio in commercial cinemas, from the futuristic Wuhan pixel box cinema, inspired by the pixel unit of film, to the most recent Tianjin Insun Lotte Cinema for children – that borrowed the idea of an Olympics for wild animals – they still have some crazy ideas in the back burner. “We’ve done so many cinemas and, every time, we’d think about why cinemas have to restrain the audience in rows of seats,” Law says. “I think it’s most comfortable watching a movie when you’re curled up in bed.” The innovative design for this at-home theatre very much reflects Law’s idea to cross the boundaries of conventional cinema setting.
Divided into two floors, the private cinema features a lowerdeck recreation area, where the owner can mingle with the guests. he storage area is designed to showcase the owner’s collection of favourite movie titles and other film memorabilia. Snacks and other treats are on hand, such as popcorn and soda machines.
Once a favourite title is picked, the owner and the guests can walk up the staircase to the upper-level screening area, featuring a domeshaped screen. Controlled by a series of strategically placed projectors, the audience will be able to watch the movie on the screen like in an IMAX cinema. In addition, 3D effects can be achieved with specially edited video sources.
Instead of traditional seats, the designers sourced adjustable beds, located randomly amid the screening area, where green carpets are rolled out to mimic the environment of an outdoor cinema. “The beds are embedded into the floor,” Lung says.
Law adds: “It’s a den that you’d only share with your most intimate circle of friends and loved ones. You can kick-off your shoes and roll over to the next ‘bed’ – something you can also share if you have a big family. My daughter, for sure, will be running around with excitement.”
Adding to the luxury elements, drinks and snacks can be ordered via an iPad app menu. If you want to help yourself, a hidden minifridge will rise from the floor level.
The design duo reckon that the hemisphere structure will make up a major chunk of the budget, as two layers will be constructed for better sound- and fire-proofing.
The state-of-the-art surroundsound system also comes with a hefty price tag. “We want the cinema to be completely different from what you’ve seen before,” Law says. “When you enter the cinema, it’s like you’ve dived into a beautiful meadow that only you and your loved ones have access to. It’s free and spacious, and you watch a movie as if you’ve gone into the wild for stargazing.”
Illustration One Plus Partnership