Traditional Japanese dining experience inspires micro-apartment design

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Hong Kong-based architecture studio Sim-Plex has created a stunning micro-house inspired by Japanese culture. U. Izakaya House in Hong Kong’s 57-story Grand Waterfront Plaza features clever, space-saving storage units and a U-shaped kitchen at its heart designed to replicate a traditional Japanese izakaya bar/restaurant .

“In Japan, if you want to drink and eat, the best atmosphere is usually at an izakaya,” says design studio Sim-Plex. “Among most of them, the U-shaped izakaya can most highlight its characteristics: the chef or patron is at the heart of the layout, and the diners are seated in the bar table of U surrounding the center.”

At the center of the apartment’s 367-square-foot (34-square-meter) living space is an izakaya-inspired U-shaped kitchen, complete with stainless steel fridge, wall oven, washing machine, blue tiled floor, gold plated stainless steel splash wall and an induction hob to reduce cooking fumes. The kitchen is adjoined by a folding bar table and there is enough space for an additional dining table for guests if required.

Hong Kong-based architecture studio Sim-Plex brings the buzz of Japanese dining to the center of its latest micro-apartment

Sim-Plex Design Studio

Keeping in mind the new pandemic living conditions, where occupants have to spend longer periods at home, the design studio sought to provide the young couple with a flexible and open home that could also facilitate additional activities, such as homework, exercise, yoga and relaxation. As such, it’s filled with smart space-saving furniture and an abundance of hidden storage.

The U. Izakaya house houses a master bedroom, a guest bedroom, a hidden bathroom, and a shared dining and living room. The main saloon has several built-in storage units and cleverly incorporates a shoe cabinet; bench seat with storage underneath; an integrated magazine rack; and corner media unit with cabinets.

The apartment can facilitate additional activities, such as homework, exercise, yoga and relaxation
The apartment can facilitate additional activities, such as homework, exercise, yoga and relaxation

Sim-Plex Design Studio

The use of wood is present throughout the house, staying within the theme of traditional Japanese architecture, while bringing the warmth of wood to the space. A sliding door conceals a modern bathroom with a quartz stone countertop, sink, ample storage, toilet and tiled shower.

Modern bathroom, complete with a quartz stone countertop, sink and ample storage
Modern bathroom, complete with a quartz stone countertop, sink and ample storage

Sim-Plex Design Studio

The master bedroom has a plethora of storage, with a wooden platform filled with hidden storage boxes, full height storage space, while also serving as a base for the double bed. The bed extends beautifully to the window sill, allowing natural light to fill the room while providing stunning views of the Hong Kong skyline.

The additional bedroom is currently unused, but offers the young couple the flexibility of having a home office, guest bedroom or children’s room in the future.

Source: Sim-Plex Design Studio

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Rozella J. Cook