A jewel of modern and tropical convergence, set into the scenic promenade of Penang Island’s Gurney Drive.
Situated on the north-eastern edge of Penang Island, at the easternmost end of George Town’s famed Gurney Drive promenade, is the Vouk Hotel Suites – a Balinese-inspired hotel decorated by the Beverly Home interior design firm. Occupying a renovated structure named Mansion One – a 31-storey building that was colloquially known as Menara Northam and was once the site of Penang’s Supreme Court, the Vouk hotel features distinctively modern exterior cladding composed in a band of separated aluminium composite panels that wrap around the building while suspended by minimalist black frames.
Fusion of Styles: High-back armchairs with brass-tacked leather upholstery and winged headrests stand against a distinctly Asiatic background of square trellises.
The modern exterior of the building belies an array of tributes to Balinese aesthetics throughout the interior – at least until the naïve eye is treated to the grand assembly in the lobby, where a shimmering presentation of Buddhist symbolism takes centre- stage. The lobby features a seamless expanse of polished sandstone bearing vaguely wood-like grains, serving as the backdrop for an assembly of golden lotuses sprouting from a wooden dais on the floor. The opulent display is echoed on the ceiling, with four similar assemblies of golden lotus flowers and leaves symmetrically arranged around their counterpart on the floor, hanging from a recessed ceiling gilded with gold leaf and framed in light.
The interplay between tropical and modern elements is visibly extended into the hotel’s restaurant – C’est Si Bon, and the Indulgence Lounge, with both areas joined to the lobby through archways flanked by partitions of bamboo and wood. Asiatic influence is liberally expressed in the lounge, with the incorporation of square trellises of wood across ceilings, lighting fixtures resembling the conical straw hat of this region’s rice fields on one side of the lobby, and industrial bulbs suspended in bird cages on the other. The C’est Si Bon restaurant presents a more contemporary décor befitting its name and its spread of Asian and Western cuisine, with the square trellises on the ceilings turned to linear swathes of wood, and the ceilings bearing a combination of recessed lighting fixtures of modern design and chandeliers vaguely reminiscent of disco balls.
As expected in a business hotel of this calibre, the Vouk hotel provides full suites of meeting rooms and event spaces – each uniquely decorated with floors decked in carpeting bearing delectable splashes of pink, magenta, fuchsia, and violet to evoke imagery of orchids. In contrast to the organic composition of the flooring, the walls and ceilings are decorated with the practical considerations of task lighting and acoustics kept in mind: reflective panels mounted on the walls and ceilings augment the white light while the walls bear fabric panels to absorb sound.
With a characteristic fondness for transitional style and customised fittings, Beverly Home has been elevating the interiors of hotels and other commercial properties for nearly two decades. Their residential projects are built around in-house formulated design concepts, completed with the necessary technical considerations that typically go hand-in-hand with high quality architecture, construction, carpentry, in addition to mechanical and electrical fittings.
From left to right: Ang Wai Wah, Ivein Poh, Wayne Ng, Low Yet Yen, and Sabariah
Venue: King Koil Boutique @ IPC Mall
Photographer: Gavin Yam
No.52-54, 5 1/2 Miles
Jalan Kelang Lama
58000 Kuala Lumpur
Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia