Serviced apartments are gaining attention these days as we move through the transformation of lifestyles caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Serviced apartments have become spaces that meet a wide variety of needs for those who travel between city and suburbs, or for those looking to be refreshed from working at home. Three people who know Roppongi Hills well have stayed at its serviced apartment recently. This is what they have experienced.
Vol. 1. Masato Kawai: Interior Stylist
“I used to come here to see how the project was going during the construction of Roppongi Hills,” says interior stylist Masato Kawai. It is the nature of his work. Kawai often visits the area around Roppongi Hills, where there are a variety of interior-related stores, including Living Motif in the Axis Building. He added, ”I like to walk around and look at the works of street furniture installed in Roppongi Hills. Andrea Branzi has worked on one of them. When he came to Japan, I went to his lecture. When I saw the orange terra cotta tiles on the exterior of the residential building designed by Conran, I found they were rare and fresh in Japan at the time.”
Roppongi Hills Residence D, where the serviced apartments are located, is only a short distance from Keyakizaka. The Tsutaya bookshop is nearby and across the street there are public art exhibits, such as Ettore Sottsass’s “Isola Calma.”
“The space is like a small room surrounded by terrazzo walls, and I feel comfortable being separated from my surroundings. It’s like an air pocket in Roppongi,” says Kawai.
For this report, Kawai stayed in a one-bedroom unit designed by Nicola Gallizia, the art director of leading Italian designer furniture maker Molteni&C. The 56-square-meter space has a kitchen, living room, bathroom and a bedroom that can be separated by a movable wall.
“This room is perfect for Italian design lovers,” Kawai muttered as soon as he stepped into the room. “Molteni&C is one of the companies that launched the furniture fair, the predecessor of Salone del Mobile.Milano that represents Italian modernism. From Gio Ponti to the lighting by a prominent designer in recent years, Michael Anastassiades of Flos, Gallizia has succeeded to combine masterpieces with contemporary designs. Excellent work by him!”
Kawai also took his hat off to Gallizia for the use of color and light in the room, which the designer was particular about.
“The unit is based on a gray color scheme with a hint of orange to give it an extraordinary and special feel. The light from the north-facing window blends in and spreads throughout the space, not too dark, not too bright, but just right. The round-shaped shades also give off a soft glow.”
“I want to focus on my current work while I stay,” says Kawai. “At home or in the office, there are so many things in the space with so much information that it’s hard to concentrate on a single task. A room in a serviced apartment has no unnecessary elements, and it is comfortable. I can concentrate on my work to the fullest.” He added: “It is also convenient to be able to use the lounge when I want to get refreshed or to have meetings.”
About Masato Kawai
Masato Kawai is the president of Bundle Studio. Kawai has been engaged in styling for magazines such as Casa Brutus and Pen, as well as advertisements and model rooms for major housing manufacturers. This fall, he will open Bundle Gallery in Chiba, where he will operate a photography studio and start selling furniture, lighting and art.
This article originally appeared in HILLS LIFE DAILY published by Mori Building. Photos by Kohei Omachi, text by Jun Ishida, translation by Yoshiko Kogi.
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