The year of 2012 marked the completion of Frank Gehry’s very first residential project in Asia, the Opus Hong Kong. Coming from a Pritzker prize-winning architect, this residential complex cannot be labeled as just another building. Frank Gehry engraved his distinctive and whimsical style on the building, making it beautifully unique. However, the appeal of this building does not stop on its exterior. Serving its purpose as a residential unit, the building was meticulously designed to fit into the cultural aspect of the potential residents.
As the most expensive housing in Hong Kong, Opus is equipped with the utmost grandeur facilities. With only one apartment per floor, the space gives a sense of privacy and solitude to the owners. Complemented by floor to ceiling windows facing the metropolitan view, and the terraces designed to accessorize the harbor view (made to look like ship docks), the place is awarded with supreme luxury that ideally counterparts the hedonistic lifestyle of the natives.
Furthermore, the location of the Opus is especially favorable. Positioned on top of the mountain where there is nothing else can be built around it, the Opus secured the best of panoramic view, overlooking the skyscrapers surrounded by the lush green of the hills. That very spot has become the inspiration of the bespoke residential complex.
Under such circumstances, Frank Gehry took reference of the twentieth century art nouveau style to incorporate the natural essence into his design so that it blends with the natural environment of the surrounding. With a lot of inspiration from the nature, the exquisite façade was designed to mimic the nature. The glass-encased columns were designed to look like a swaying bamboo and the curved floor was made to resemble flowers. These qualities do the building a favor so that it enhanced the geographical value of its surrounding.
Additionally, another point that is often overlooked is the faint resemblance the Opus bear to Antoni Gaudí’s Casa Milà (The Quarry). This similarity can be found on the wall structure placement of the Opus. The Opus’ wall towers that were built to protrude in between the glass towers portray minor resemblance to the protruding wall structure placement of Casa Milà. Moreover, the Opus’ wall towers were built with the same material that was used to build Casa Milà, which is Spanish limestone. Antoni Gaudí himself was also an architect whose works were influenced by nature, particularly for Casa Milà, which was built during the height of popularity of art nouveau (1906-1910). The similarity between the two buildings might be coincidental, however, this is not an excuse for not taking such detail into consideration.
Nevertheless, Gehry did not miss out in embodying his style onto the Opus. Having known for being inspired by Picasso, Frank Gehry’s noteworthy panache displayed from his previous designs correspond the avant-garde style of the cubism art movement. Although his musing was an...