The Teaching Hotel for the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (Hotel ICON) retains the original staff residential function, but subsumes it into an overall composition that now comprises a 262-room hotel as well as a teaching complex. The site is opened up horizontally both visually and spatially with glass atria at various levels allowing visual permeability connecting either sides of the site.
The design of Hotel ICON dismantles the typical school / hotel / residential typology, creating not three separated architecture in isolation but instead a tower with multi-disciplined functions that melds with its hyper-dense urban context, at the same time resolving the paradox of having separated entries for each component, not only to fulfill the design brief, but create an ambience appropriate to its functions.
Responding to the site environments, the 3 functions are placed strategically with the Hotel lobby facing the main vehicular road, providing the necessary drop-off and arrival plaza for the guests. The Hotel school is on the opposite side of the site linking to existing campus, while the quarters are facing a local park to the side. Vertically, the organization of the building allows the hotel to have the open views to Victoria Harbour, with its spa and pool resting on top of the school portion.
Hotel ICON is the direct result of integrating the needs of a heterogeneous programme with a very complicated site to create a building that is unified even as it is compartmentalized, and which establishes its own individual identity, largely as a result of its response to the city and the desire to make a unique Hotel for the Hong Kong Polytechnic University.