CatchOn to Ed Ng, Co-Founder of AB Concept

Schooled and trained in Hong Kong, Ed Ng is co-founder of AB Concept, one of Asia’s leading architectural and design studios.

While co-director Terence Ngan oversees the structural and architectural elements, Ed Ng brings his innate sense of style to the interiors.

AB Concept has been behind some of the world’s most buzzed-about hospitality projects including the W Retreat & Spa in Bali, Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza Hotel, Tainan and the spa at the Mandarin Oriental Singapore. Upcoming projects include the W Hotel Beijing, China.

In 2011, AB Concept earned international recognition for their design of the W Retreat & Spa in Bali. Aside from winning the ‘Best Guest Room’ trophy at the prestigious Gold Key Awards in New York, the company earned the Best Design prize at the International Hotel and Property Awards in the ‘Hotels Over 200 Rooms’ category.

Which project are you most proud of?

ED NG: Although it is always hard to choose a favourite, W Bali is perhaps the most representative of our work. With this project, we wanted to pay respect to Balinese style and architectural traditions but give them a new twist. We wanted to redefine what a Balinese resort should look like. The challenge was to invent a new style, one that is unique but still respectful of Balinese style and culture.

Describe your design style.

Our work reflects our genuine respect for a place’s history, culture and arts scene. Whenever you look at our designs, we hope this source of the inspiration comes through. Our designs are clean and uncluttered, aiming to integrate form and function without being gimmicky.

Where are you most creative?
When I’m travelling. All of the world’s greatest cities – Shanghai, Paris, New York – inspire me with their architecture, creative history and wonderful art scene. These vibrant, cosmopolitan cities never fail to surprise you with their hidden treasures. When I travel, I’m always observing new design innovations, lifestyle trends and fashion styles.

What does your home mean to you?

Since I travel so intensely for such long periods, home is my private sanctuary. It’s my cocoon where I can relax and feel rejuvenated. It’s also the place where I love spending time with my two lovely Shiba dogs.

What will be the next big design trend?

About 20 years ago, minimalism was the big trend. That was a distinct movement, but there doesn’t seem to be a seismic shift in design trends today. If anything, people are now exploring the big concept behind each project and creating a narrative around it. Once you have a strong narrative, it becomes the core of your design and everything else falls into place. There’s no point designing just for the sake of following a trend. It simply won’t last and the finished product won’t resonate with any soul.

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