Basao Causeway Bay
Our second Basao teahouse is a 1,200 sqft venue that serves single-origin teas sourced directly from farmers across Asia. Building Narrative integrates Basao’s story in the design by infusing feature tiles with soil from a Basao tea plantation. Saturated with the hue and texture of plantation soil, the atmosphere grounds the costumer in a tactile expression of Basao's story.
Soil for the tile is sourced from a plantation in Anxi, China, a region known for oolong tea cultivation. The soil is set in cement, then pressed – a process that retains the character of the soil including traces of plants. We tested soils from three plantations and adapted a century- old manufacturing technique with the help of a Xiamen artisan to produce the custom tiles .
Fashioned by a local carpenter, wood slabs invite customers to linger at tables, window sills, and a street-side bench. In the spirit of wabi sabi, inlaid brass crosses stitch together the tables at natural weak points in the wood grain.
The atmosphere rich in natural materials aspires to offer a counterpoint to Cauaseway Bay, Hong Kong's premier shopping district.
Client: Basao Limited
Design firm: Building Narrative
Design team: Emma Chan, Kelvin Chan, Jeffrey Cheng, Natalie Lau, Zhencheng Liang, Timmy Lo, Noah Wen
General Contractor: Crownwell Group
Millwork: Hardwood Hong Kong Limited
Landscaping: WuYong Useless Garden
Loose Furniture: Wool Studio; Menu A/S; Afteroom Studio
Lighting Fixtures: Wool Studio; Menu A/S; Tim Rundle Studio
Tile Maker: Nanchow Cement Tile
Photography: Kris Provoost