A Hong Kong flat where the kitchen takes centre stage
Two avid cooks have defied Hong Kong interior norms by designing their Mid-Levels apartment around a wonderful gas stove
"We love to cook," says Morgaine. "We do it four or five times a week and it's always a massive spread."
The couple grew up in Connecticut, in the United States, but didn't meet until both were living in Hong Kong (Morgaine works in fashion and Paul in transport). Eight years ago, they had been dating for only a month when Paul decided to buy a flat in a 1960s building. He was living in a high-rise housing estate and was looking for something a little more intimate.
"I couldn't stomach the idea of a big, flashy lobby, and I wanted to live in a real neighbourhood," he says.
With the help of Morgaine, he found what he was looking for in a low-key corner of Mid-Levels.
The 1,137 sq ft apartment needed work, but when the dust finally settled on their first renovation, the McGees weren't entirely satisfied with the result. The kitchen had been squeezed into a narrow slither at the rear of the apartment, which made for some cosy evenings with guests. Two years ago, however, the couple decided to redo the flat and enlisted the help of a friend, architect Cameron Hestler.
This time it was a success.
The pendant light (HK$3,500) came from Indigo Living. The sterling-silver fish on the wall was made by California-based artist Ruth Wright. The Trust floor tiles, by Atlas Concorde, were sourced through Pacific Gallery (159 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, tel: 2827 9918) years ago.
The full story you find on the SCMP Post Magazine website
Love’s a little easier in a comfortable bed.
Few things are more essential to our overall health and well-being than proper sleep. If one or both of you is having trouble sleeping, it can even put a strain on your relationship. After all, it’s harder to be patient, kind and courteous when you’re always tired or living with back or neck pain caused by a worn-out bed. Given the importance of sleep, a comfortable and supportive new mattress can change life for the better. We hope this little guide will give you the advice you need to find that perfect bed and get back to being a well-rested and happy couple.
Things to consider before you buy:
Put some space in the relationship.
This may be obvious to some of you, but couples should sleep on at least a queen-sized bed. It doesn’t matter how in love you are, a full-sized mattress is just too cramped for two people and all the involuntary movement that happens in the wee hours. The only exception to this queen-sized rule: Hong Kong apartment dwellers.
Have a good, long mattress talk.
In terms of daily impact on your life, this is the most important piece of furniture you’ll buy. So be sure to talk about what you want in terms of comfort. Firm? Plush? Pillow Top? If it’s not what you want, don’t agree just to get it over with. Mutual happiness should be your goal.
Can’t agree? Then compromise.
If you’re at a stalemate, where one of you wants a firm bed and the other needs something softer, you do have options. There are models that allow each side to be adjusted for softness. Or, for a more economical solution, a thick mattress pad on one side of the bed could help.
Talk about price before you shop.
If money is an object, then determine your price range and stick to it. If you can’t find what you want with the money you have, don’t buy an uncomfortable mattress to save a few bucks. Take a few months and save up more. Short-term discomfort always beats long-term misery.
Research can pay off.
If you’re not in a hurry to buy, there are ways to try out different mattresses. For a true test of comfort, and a romantic getaway, you can always book a night at a hotel that uses a brand of mattress you’re interested in. To help you, some chains advertise which bed they feature. If you travel, peel off the sheets and take note of beds that you like or dislike.
Here’s what’s new.
There have been a lot of innovations since you last shopped for a mattress. Here are a few you should know about.
The pampered sleeper.
Beds these days are more indulgent than ever, thanks to the incorporation of cushy pillow tops and breathable natural fibers like cotton and wool. Taking luxury to another level, the Beautyrest Black® mattress from Simmons is created with high-end materials.
These mattresses are perfect for couples with different needs. Some models allow you to adjust either side, while others come with comfort layers for both sides of the bed.
Thick is in.
When you shop, you’ll notice that beds are getting taller. This is because of all the added comfort layers. Beds even 35 cm thick are commonplace, so you’ll have no trouble finding sheets that fit.
Hold the flip.
First created by Simmons, the No-Flip mattress has eliminated one of life’s sillier chores. And for those who want a king-sized mattress, this should be especially happy news.
The wide world of mattresses.
There are many types out there, so here’s a little primer to help you know what to look for in the store.
Innerspring mattresses, the most traditional type of mattress set, typically use systems of open coils or metal springs layered between padding. When shopping, you’ll hear the term “coil count.” Typically, the higher the count, the more support you’ll get.
Encased coil spring mattresses, such as the original Pocketed Coil ® spring mattress created by Simmons, feature an advanced innerspring system. The coils are individually wrapped in soft fabric. This allows each coil to adjust independently to your body. Because these springs move individually, if your bedmate rolls over, the motion won’t disturb you. This feature alone has been known to save relationships.
Memory foam mattresses are constructed of high-density polyurethane and conform to the body to reduce pressure points and provide natural body alignment. While memory foam is temperature-sensitive and conforms as your body warms it, latex foam is not sensitive to temperature and is available in many different densities. When you research, keep an eye out for Advanced NxG®. Memory Foam found in the ComforPedic® mattress by Simmons.
Many prefer its advanced qualities including heat dissipation, quicker recovery and consistent comfort. Latex foam is hypoallergenic and derived from natural rubber tree sap. The Simmons® Natural Care® latex mattress includes soy-based foams and a cover made from natural fibers.
Hybrid mattresses combine layers of foam and coils. This gives you the comfort and support you’re looking for from each type of bed, and if you’re undecided about foam vs. coil, it allows you to choose both.
Air mattresses use air chambers as their primary support. A quality air mattress will mold to body contours. Some models come with adjustable air chambers, which allow you to change your bed’s firmness whenever you like.
Water mattresses come in several varieties but are all designed to conform to the body and reduce pressure points.
Built for stability, today’s waterbeds have done away with the wavy feeling you might remember.
Patience pays. Take the time to comparison shop. Start looking at the mattress ads in your newspaper. If you know the bed you want, chances are, it’ll go on sale before too long.
Never settle. Yes, we’ve said this a lot. But you’ll spend more hours in bed than on your couch. Hard to believe, but true. So keep searching until you find a bed you both feel good about.
In the store, test for real. However you normally sleep, lie that way for a few minutes and be sure to try out every bed together. This way, you can feel for motion in the bed when one of you moves around.
Bad back? There are mattresses out there that are specially designed to relieve back pain, but the truth is, any good mattress should give your back the support it needs. So if you’re miserable at night, spend a little extra and get some restful, pain-free sleep. It’s worth it.
Know the policies. When it comes to returns, testing period, delivery charge and hauling away your old bed, every store is different. Be sure to ask about all these details. It may affect where you buy.
Yes, buy the box spring. Like any good couple, a mattress and foundation complement each other. Buying just the mattress may reduce its comfort and support. Plus, it might shorten the bed’s lifespan and possibly void the warranty.
A message to men: Assert yourself. If you’re shopping with a partner, be sure to get a mattress that you are comfortable with. According to research, 38 percent of men say they are unhappy with the mattress chosen by their significant other.
Tips for better sleep.
Set the mood. Make sure your bedroom is dark, cool and uncluttered.
Sleep takes preparation. Don’t pay bills or work late at night. Instead, start slowing down and relaxing well before bedtime. Spend some quiet time together listening to music, reading or just talking.
No late night sit-ups. Daily exercise can help you sleep better, but if you work out too late in the evening, it can keep you keyed up and make it harder to fall asleep.
The 11 o’clock news is not relaxing. Don’t watch TV in your bedroom late at night. It goes back to sleep preparation.
The menacing clock. If you can’t sleep, knowing what time it is only makes it worse. So turn those red lights away from you to help you relax.
Make it a habit. Establish a regular sleep schedule and don’t sleep in. Instead, take power naps on weekends.
Bring in the white noise. If you live in an apartment or on a busy street, use a fan or one of those rainforest sound machines to drown out the neighbors and the traffic.
Try not to drink caffeinated beverages after 2 p.m. If you crave coffee late in the day, try decaf. On a related note, don’t eat anything heavy before bed. If you’re hungry, try fruit or cereal.
The night is the most important resting part of your life. With a good night's rest you can recharge yourself to start a new day with a needed fresh start. You are happier, you are more active, you feel happier and we can continue be active for a long period of time.
The basis of a good night's sleep is a comfortable bed and a good mattresses. But especially buying good mattresses is sometimes a difficult task in Hong Kong. There is so much choice and sometimes there are big price differences. That's why we're happy to help you. In this blog we will compare some mattresses.
How to choose the right mattress:
Our spine is one of the most important components of the human body. As we spend a significant amount of time asleep, a good mattress with the proper support to the spine is essential for the restorative cycle of a healthy spine during your sleep. Furthermore, a good nigh of sleep can help alleviate all the mental and physical stress you have accumulated during the day.
Some people have a false belief that the firmer the mattress, the better the protection it provides for the spine. However, the latest medical research shows that only the mattresses with the appropriate firmness can provide the proper support to our bodies.
A good mattress should accommodate that different sleep habits of its users. It should help maintain the proper alignment of the spine for those who sleep on their sides, while ensuring the natural curvature of the spine is preserved for those who sleep on the back.
The right mattress for you should fill up the space between your waist and the bed, and minimize spaces between the back of your knees and the bed.
Sleep Cycles and Brain Activities
Stage 1: (4-5%)
Light sleep - Muscle activity slows down - Occasional muscle twitching.
Stage 2: (45-55%)
Breathing pattern and heart rate slows - Slight decrease in body temperature.
Stage 3: (4-6%)
Deep sleep begins - Brain begins to generate slow delta waves.
Stage 4: (12-15%)
Very deep sleep - Rhythmic breathing - Limited muscle activity - Brain produces delta waves.
Stage 5: (20-25%)
Rapid eye movement - Brainwaves speed up and dreaming occurs - Muscles relax and heart rate increases - Breathing is rapid and shallow.
To avoid any misunderstanding, we want to reiterate;. there are no good or bad mattresses. Due to the fact that every person has it unique body structure, sleep rhythm and personal preferences. So you have to search for a mattress that fits you well as a person.
When you begin to compare mattresses, you have to consider a number of things:
Slatted bottom Not all mattresses are suitable for adjustable slatted bedframes, so be careful. For example, pocket lining mattresses can not be used with adjustable slatted bedbases but polyether foam mattresses do fit.
Sleeping and body weight You have those abdominal sleepers, back sleepers and silk sleepers. This is also important when comparing mattresses. Belly sleepers can best choose a sturdy mattress to support the spine. Side lighters can best choose mattresses with more comfort zones like the Matras Adaptive Bonnel Spring.
Heat regulation Do you get it hot or cold, and you're very busy? These are also important aspects. Would you like to sleep well? Then a cold foam mattress like the mattress comfort is suitable for you. For people who are very outspoken, a pocketspring mattress like the Matras Outlast LV is actually the best choice. A matt foam mattress is the best for the true cold color.
Allergies When you are quickly allergic, it is important to choose an antiallergic mattress. It's also good to watch a printable jacket (the cover) so you can wash it. Wash it at least 60 degrees, because then the dust dust mite will be killed.
Buy mattresses at SofaSale.com.hk
We buy that you continue with these tips with your search for the best mattress. If you do not mind, just call our customer service. We can always help you with bed bases , mattresses and beds.
What can we learn from the Ibiza lifestyle?
In Ibiza of course, the lifestyle is being outside most of the time, but in winter or evening it’s also nice to be able to enjoy it inside. It’s really nice to have an outdoor living room or a indoor garden, a green interior. The relation between in- and outside can be used freely! In a way similar to the Hong Kong climate..
An easy and effective way is to incorporate plants. They have a way of adding some dimensions into a room, bring colour and texture, but most important making any space feel lively and bright.
A large plant can sit in their pot, and be the statement piece whilst other plants can be hoisted up slightly on a small pedestal to add height to a room. They can also create contrast and are great when you have a white canvas, it adds a pop that draws the eye. It’s easy to create your own unique little greenhouse with mixing some of your favourite ones.
Want to learn more about furniture which can be used both indoors and outdoors in Hong Kong, like these Ibiza style furniture, please visit our SofaSale website.
Want to update a piece of furniture, without spending a lot? Try reupholstering, with these secrets to success.
Start by using a seam-ripper to remove the old fabric to make the job easier on your hands.
If the cushioning has seen better days, add an extra layer of polyfibre fill and cover with quilt bedding for a cushy uniform seat. When adding fabric rather than stapling one entire side, insert a staple on one side, pull the fabric tight and than move to the opposite side and insert a staple directly opposite the previous one. When it come to corners folding edges neatly and uniformly is key to a polished look. To create a clean vertical pleat, cut a nudge in the fabric, fold over the raw edge of the fabric of the bottom and tuck the side around the leg, now staple it to place. Now fold over the raw edge of the other side, and lay over the piece you just stapled. Cut a small slit on the edge of the fabric, use a butter knife to tuck in excess fabric, this will create a nice vertical pleat in the corners.
A cardboard strip will help create a clean edges on the banking piece. When piecing together fabric, make sure your pattern is aligned, check it as you are stapling.
A metal tag strip will also help to create a clean finished edge, place the tag strip on the very edge of your fabric, with the tags going through the front of the fabric, fold the fabric over, and pound the strip into place.
Follow these easy tips and tricks and your old furniture will look like new!
A Hong Kong bachelor pad gets a bold, bright and blue updateHigh-end hotels provide the inspiration for a Sheung Wan bolthole for a student studying overseas. BY OLIVER GILES Interior designers may dream of having a free rein on projects. But as Wesley Liu recently discovered when creating a bachelor pad in Sheung Wan, working without a brief can also be a burden. “There weren’t really any processes of approval,” says Liu, founder of PplusP Designers. “The client just passed the whole project on to me. I didn’t know what he’d think of it.” But the designer need not have worried. “When it was all done,” Liu remembers, laughing, “he came in and was like, ‘Wow!’ It was just like a TV show.” One of the first things Liu did was to knock down a wall between the living room and the kitchen, creating a sleek, open-plan space for entertaining. One request from the client, who likes to cook, was that he wanted to be able to serve his friends food and drink easily. “So an open-bar concept was best,” says Liu. Parties can also spill outdoors because the room opens to a balcony with sweeping city views of Poho (the area around Po Hing Fong) and Sai Ying Pun. Living room The sofa (HK$11,000) and single-leg coffee table (HK$1,200) came from SofaSale. The rug and the stool-like coffee table were gifts from designer Wesley Liu. The dining table (HK$9,000), dining chairs (HK$1,200 each) and bench (HK$5,800) The full story you find on the SCMP Post Magazine website
One is better than the other: sleep! But in general, we can say that everyone deserves and good night of sleep. It is always nice to be able to crawl inside your bed after a long day (or night).
However where some people can easily sleep in, in just 10 minutes others are struggling to catch the sleep and may fight to get their well deserved night rest.
In this article you will find some simple tips to sleep well!
It sounds logical, but inner peace is very important. Once you are in bed, you often you mind is spinning and goes through all kinds of thoughts. A shopping list, an important event, a birthday you should not forget ... To get some rest and peace of mind, you can try some bed yoga exercises. For those of you who do not like yoga, meditation may work better for you, or alternatively read a few easy going pages and listen to some calm down music.
Leave your mobile
In order to keep your inner peace, you will not be able to look on your mobile once you are in bed. It's even better to leave this friend away for a while before going to bed. We have previously written a blog post about taking your mobile. The bright light of your monitor wakes you up and all reports of your apps do not bring down your mind to a sleeping mode.
Once you are calm and ready to go to sleep, it can help to get some lavender into your bedroom. The smell of lavender has a calming effect on your senses. For example, you can apply some lavender body lotion on your upper body or put lavender under your pillow. If you like it, you can even drink a cup of lavender tea before bedtime. Do remember, what goes in, must come out. Don’t drink too much, you may have the chance that you have to go out and visit the restroom during the night.
A good quality mattress
At SofaSale we tell our customer, do invest in a good night sleep, do find yourself a good quality bed. It is wise to adjust your bed to your wishes and your way of sleeping. Everyone has a unique sleep character and once you know, you can choose a suitable mattress,which will fit you. We are ready to advise you.
Hopefully, from now on, you'll sleep with these sleeping suggestions. Sleep well. Goodnight!
Summer is officially here. The season of sunshine, lounging and sizzling barbecues has begun! So this year, don’t waste glorious summer days slaving over a hot stove in your tight indoor kitchen – take the party outside and cook up a culinary storm in the great outdoors.
Nothing says summer like outdoor entertaining, complete with ice cold beverages, good music, great company and the smell of snags and skewers fresh off the barbie. Investing in a trusty BeefEater BBQ from SofaSale.com.hk, such as the portable BeefEater Bugg, is the perfect solution to summer entertaining. Whether you’re cooking for four or twelve friends and whether you’re a seasoned entertainer or an excited beginner, the BeefEater Bugg BBQ will help you host a successful soiree and impress your guests, time and again!
Brighten your outdoor space with the stylish BeefEater Bugg BBQ in Amber.
Don’t be fooled by its stature. Compact in size but big on features, the BeefEater Bugg packs a punch when it comes to cooking and scores ten points for versatility. Witness the Bugg’s high-performance Quartz Start Ignition – the BBQ fires up the first time, every time. Fitted with two powerful, independently controlled stainless steel burners and an extra large, rust-resistant cooking surface with a grill plate, there’s plenty of room and power for everything on the menu. Dual temperature controls ensure even heat without flare-ups, while an integrated thermometer allows you to check on the temperature of your food so you can cook your steak just the way you like it.
The best part?
The BeefEater Bugg features an innovative vitreous enamel-coated dome hood with spring-assist so you can choose to cook with the hood up for crispier results, or down to achieve mouth-watering succulence. No need to get the oven going for slow-cooked tenderness – the Bugg can do it for you!
Another big plus of this BeefEater BBQ is its portability, which lets you take your gourmet barbecuing anywhere – from your backyard to the beach! Designed for convenience, the Bugg is lightweight so it’s easy to store and carry, making it the perfect cooking companion wherever you are. It also features a smart wheel-lock for extra stability, a locked-in grease tray to avoid spills, and handy side trays that lock in to offer extra preparation space and then conveniently store away once you’re done. Stylish, functional and jam-packed with clever features? We think so!
Convinced, by the Bugg at SofaSale, guaranteed for the best price in Hong Kong.
Enter the world of minimalistic, simple Scandinavian designer furniture. Scandinavia is known for its beautiful environment, endless forests, lakes, beaches and beautiful people. No wonder Scandinavian furniture designers are using natural element in their furniture designs. It will give character to the furniture. Given our immense density and tight floor spaces in Hong Kong, it does make sense to bring in tranquil Scandinavian elements into our interior design plan. We have created a short introduction photo of our latest range of Scandinavian designer furniture. On the sofa, we used natural fabrics in soft, calm colour tone. The sofas are being matched with easy to use, coffee tables, finished with some retro style art on the wall and easy going carpets.
For more Scandinavian designer furniture, please visit our website: www.SofaSale.com.hk
Today Cathay Pacific announced a major restructuring and will find ways to make around 600 Hong Kong hardworking staff redundant from its head office, in the biggest round of job cuts by Hong Kong’s flagship carrier in 20 years. The local economy is facing a challenging time, at the moment, given the economic uncertainties many large corporations focus on cost cutting and restructuring. In general this means 2 things for the staff of those companies: 1) Stress due to career uncertainties. 2) Long working days, since the same amount of work needs to be done with less staff. In order to service in this kind of harsh business climate, it is off utmost importance to keep the mind fresh and recharged day in, day out.
After a long day of work, coming home, you need to create the right environment to slow down, let go, and recharge. Do invest in this daily 1-2 hr down time, the more comfortable your furniture set up, this easier it will be to relax and wind down. At SofaSale we understand the importance of this moment, so we designed a range of relax furniture, which can be added into your living-room set up and complement our lounge sofa. Do note that an investment in creating the perfect downtime for your body and mind, will definitely pay-out in the long run. Keep in mind, in today harsh business environment, the corporates will need to make selections in their key staff. Better make sure you are the energetic workforce they want to keep, at every expense!
Below an overview our range of relax chairs to recharge the body and mind.