AIA Hong Kong

AIA Hong Kong 2020 Q1 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends of AIA Hong Kong:

Upcoming for 2020

The Chapter’s theme for 2020 is Citizen Architects. Our goal is to use our expertise, creativity and professional network to empower our community.  Our building tours, design competitions and annual awards will be curated around this theme.

In response to the coronavirus, in-person events will be postponed to June 2020.  Between March and June, we will provide online content and webinars for your continuing education. These will include a video demonstrating how seasoned AIA firms weathered previous economic downturns, an online Hello Fellow discussion with Moira Moser, FAIA, and a joint webinar with AIA California.

We hope the coronavirus will subside by early June, which will allow us to resume in-person programs. In anticipation of this, our early summer schedule includes our kick-off summer party and building tours to the Museum of Art, Rosewood Hotel and K11 Atelier in Quarry Bay. We will also launch a joint design competition, to establish a prototype of communal spaces for transitional housing.


Hello Fellow with Moira Moser, FAIA


Hong Kong Museum of Art by ArchSD



COLOURLIVING, the ultimate lifestyle curation brand, has launched a new pop-up store, focused on boosting the health of Hong Kongers in a stylish manner.

Set within its three-storey luxury retail space in downtown Wan Chai, this new Wellness Living concept has three distinct strands – special kitchen, customized tea and indoor pool.

Its singular take on the kitchen space has been designed, first and foremost, to make food preparation a fun and engaging experience for the entire family. As for the chosen teas, the lifestyle brand has opted to incorporate local award-winning brew dispenser brand.  The indoor bathing facility – evocatively titled the Faraway Pool – summons the sheer sensuality of an al fresco immersion, with its luxury KOS tub the perfect solution for the aspirationally inclined.  Mood lighting and submerged shelving are also all available as add-on extras.

A fascinating and most welcome addition to COLOURLIVING’S core offerings, Wellness Living takes comfort, style and personal care to a whole new level.


Making Kitchen Time Special


Relax the Body and Mind in this Cutting-Edge Home Pool



Highlights of 2019

In 2019, we convened two programs designed to increase AIA Hong Kong’s impact in the community through greater cooperation with other professional associations and by making unusual, creative connections.

The first was a joint design competition to explore the future of Smart Cities. Thanks to generous sponsorship from COLOURLIVING and the Hong Kong Design Centre, we launched this event together with the HKIA and RIBA Hong Kong to seek smart street furniture designs that reimagine the existing phone booth. The winning submission by Leo Li and Grace Yeung was prototyped in full scale and unveiled at our Symposium at EKEO in Kwun Tong. The prototype remains on exhibit at The Mills until March 15, 2020, as part of the Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism/Architecture (UABB) in Hong Kong.

The second program was an experiment to create a link between architecture and music. At the event, sponsored by Betrue, members listened to three pieces of music from the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg Grand Opening Concert and were asked to respond to each piece by drawing sketches. The result was three sets of stunning architectural drawings.  Click here to see all three sets.  And a big Thank You! to our contributors for creating these lovely drawings.


Smart City Symposium and Phone Booth Prototype at EKEO


Members’ Sketches from Elbphilharmonie Hamburg Concert Movie Screening


Our Citizen Architects

Professor Nelson Chen, FAIA FHKIA FRIBA

As practicing architects, we are not only designers of buildings but also builders of communities.  A graduation message I share with architecture students is that we enter the profession to serve the needs of society.  When you design for yourself, you may be called an artist; when you design for others, you can become an architect.

Outside of practice, we can all contribute to society by serving on community boards – whether for a church, school, institute or other organization.  From education and experience, we are trained to understand and synthesize complex problems to achieve innovative solutions.  For several years, I served on my Church Council as well as a School Board – lots of late nights with prolonged discussions, but invaluable in engaging all stakeholders to build consensus. These lessons served me well when I later became head of the School of Architecture at CUHK.

For the entirety of my practice, now over three decades, I have donated professional services to a local community project every year.  Sometimes these commitments extended way beyond expectation – one of them lasted 12 years!  But, at the end of the day, God provides for all who seek His ways first.  The more we are willing to give away, the more He gives back to us in ways that cannot be counted or measured.

Fairview Park Alliance Church – 12 years in the making 



Thomas Schmidt, AIA

While many took to the streets in 2019, I took to my drawing board to re-imagine a better Hong Kong.  In an attempt to improve our community through communication of ideas, I created and assembled dozens of design concepts and uploaded them to a new website to share them with the world.  Sometimes architects just need to plant seeds, as things often take on a life of their own.  I would hope that I might be regarded as a “Citizen Architect” by providing food for thought for how our community and lives could be improved, one idea at a time.

Design Proposal in


Community Outreach

The Chapter also partnered with MIT Innovation Node to teach a group of primary school students from Sau Mau Ping about city planning and presentation. We demonstrated methods like storytelling, mind mapping, model making, and body language, to teach the students how to distill their ideas into 2-minute presentations. Our members Vicky Chan, Chris Cho, Sunnie Lau, Fanny Lee and Kevin Lim guided the 2-hour session.


Janice Lam from MIT lectures on presentation techniques


Past Chapter President Fanny Lee, AIA, with students


New Corporate Affiliates

Fresh Accounting

With offices in Hong Kong and Singapore, we provide basic accounting through to CFO services for our clients. In addition to this, we are specialists in implementing cloud based accounting, reporting, and project management solutions. We identify opportunities and strategies to improve business performance and profitability. We offer several measures to SMEs to future-proof their businesses in these abnormal times, ensuring that their businesses will continue to be of value in the distant future.

Glen Raven

Sunbrella fabric gives consumers, designers and architects the material they need to create the extraordinary in shade, indoor upholstery, outdoor upholstery, commercial and contract applications. We feel as responsible for our processes as for the quality of our product, with sustainability as a major initiative. Glen Raven is REACH compliant and participates actively in recycling while using solar power during production of all Sunbrella products.


We started our business as an MEP contractor in 1983. With over thirty years of experience, Keio has proved itself to be an industry renowned integrated solutions provider, specializing in Electrical & ELV, Mechanical, Plumbing & Drainage and Fire Protection Systems. We demonstrate our commitment by achieving and maintaining environmental, health and safety excellence.