First Look: Inside The Murray, Hong Kong
Niccolo Hotels, the new luxury hotel brand, has catapulted into the limelight with its exciting new flagship property in Hong Kong. The Murray, part of the government’s Conserving Central Project, opened for soft launch on January 15 of this year, on Cotton Tree Drive in Central, and will officially open its doors to the public in May.
As well as being the first significant new luxury hotel to open in Hong Kong for several years, The Murray is breathing new life into one of Hong Kong’s most iconic and historic buildings. The tall white landmark structure, with its distinctive arches and unique recessed windows, was built in 1969 and has since won many awards for its ground-breaking and energy-efficient design.
World-renowned architects Foster + Partners, whose works in Hong Kong include The Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank headquarters and the Hong Kong International Airport, have been engaged as designers for the project.
With its unique location in a stand-alone building positioned between the Central business district and the green oasis of Hong Kong Park, the 336-room hotel offers a sophisticated, urban chic sanctuary in the heart of the city.
Seasoned British-born hotelier Duncan Palmer has been appointed as the hotel’s Managing Director, and brings his many years of experience with The Savoy, The Connaught, Mandarin Oriental and Langham Hotels amongst others to create a truly world-class new hotel for Hong Kong.
“I am quietly confident this will become the preferred hotel in Hong Kong for visiting dignitaries, captains of industry and leaders in style. They will appreciate the sophisticated and international standard of hospitality that the Niccolo brand delivers.” said Mr Palmer.
At the hotel’s lofty and light-filled lobby, the chilled-out vibe of Murray Lane is ideal for kicking back and reflecting on the day that was. A vibrant addition to Hong Kong’s bar scene in the heart of Central’s financial neighbourhood, Murray Lane showcases an exceptional range of premium artisanal spirits, wines and craft beers along with refined small plates of bar favourites. Guests are invited to sample The Murray Lane’s collection of signature cocktails from The Tape and The Cassia lists. While the former draws inspiration from Murray Lane’s “Wall Street” neighbourhood, the latter is named after the hotel’s majestic Cassia Javanica, an Old and Valuable Tree (OVT).
Located at the hotel’s Garden Level, Garden Lounge offers an elegant atmosphere to enjoy The Murray’s Signature Afternoon Tea and the hotel’s handpicked selection of champagnes and wines. A treat for the senses, the menu includes sweet and savoury light bites along with a curated offering of speciality teas by Jing. Guests can also enjoy a wholesome breakfast of Western and Asian favourites as well as a refreshing all-day menu featuring soups, salads and sandwiches. The lounge exudes a contemporary aesthetic of cool greys and gold accents with floor-to-ceiling glass windows over-looking the picturesque St John’s Cathedral and the surrounding skyscrapers of the Central district.
The Tai Pan, also at the Garden Level, offers an extensive menu of international and pan-Asian classics and familiar favourites to entice the appetites of discerning diners. Conveying subtle luxury through its warm and welcoming design, the modern dining room is decorated with monochrome black and white marble which contrasts with the burgundy leather furniture and geometric chandeliers in metallic hues, creating a stylish yet relaxed dining experience.
One-Michelin starred Chinese restaurant Guo Fu Lou, renowned for its modern Cantonese dishes. Designed by AFSO, Andre Fu’s internationally acclaimed design studio, the restaurant will serve exquisite local fare with renewed style at the restaurant’s dining room or alfresco on its beautifully landscaped terrace.
A unique lifestyle destination for the city’s fashionable crowd, Popinjays, occupies the rooftop and will delight guests with panoramic city views and an energetic atmosphere. A contemporary upscale restaurant showcasing European gastronomy, the menu will celebrate the best of seasonal ingredients. Guests seeking a more exclusive experience may opt to dine at The Aviary, a beautiful glass pavilion for the ultimate private dinner party. At the bar, guests can enjoy an international tapas menu alongside creative cocktails conceived by expert mixologists against a backdrop of live music featuring a line-up of local and international DJs.
Overseeing the various culinary concepts is Fabrice Lasnon, the hotel’s Executive Chef. Originally from France, Chef Fabrice brings over 30 years of international hospitality experience to his role. He has worked in some of the world’s most distinguished luxury properties, including Palazzo Versace Dubai, Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum, and La Mamounia in Marrakesh.
For more information on The Murray, visit themurrayaniccolohotel.com.