A piece of Italy in Hong Kong
Repulse Bay has become one of Hong Kong’s most popular beaches over the years. The area is located on the island’s south coast, far from Chinese pollution and near the government quarter. Transformed into a beach in the 1910s, Repulse Bay is a favourite destination for foreign tourists and local people for its beautiful half-moon shape, clean waters and free access. Reliable public transport also puts the bay within easy reach of the rest of the island.
Until the 1970s, there were relatively few residential buildings here. Over the last few decades the area has developed into an exclusive residential quarter with numerous skyscrapers but has nevertheless maintained its distinctive urban identity and manageable dimensions. The most characteristic features of Repulse Bay are still the headquarters of the Hong Kong Life Saving Society, built in traditional Chinese style, and the twin statues of the mythical Kwun Yam and Tin Hau overlooking the picturesque gardens that lead down to the beach. The bay remains imbued with the aura of the legendary Repulse Bay Hotel, built in 1920 and demolished in the 1980s to make room for a block of luxury apartments. Some of the hotel’s features are conserved in the development to this day.
At the feet of bold contemporary buildings, the atmosphere is still fundamentally colonial, with roads and squares flanked by small coffee shops, restaurant and shops. A section of Repulse Bay Road characterised by this kind of architecture and urban environment boasts a floor made from two traditional Italian building materials: stone and cotto. The project, completed in 2015, combines the different materials in two-coloured compositions. The resulting stone “carpet” extends the atmosphere of the coffee bars and shops out into the road, creating a welcoming urban landscape in intimate dialogue with the white walls, wooden doors and windows, railings and panels of the surrounding buildings.
The material selected for use in Repulse Bay is Superficie Sannini, a product that exploits modern technology to present a new approach to traditional cotto. The tiles are also finished using Flashsystem, a special surface treatment that gives this extruded material the same velvety finish as traditionally laid, washed and waxed cotto. Thanks to Flashsystem, applied by the manufacturer prior to shipment, the product can be laid either traditionally or using adhesive and does not require any special maintenance other than normal cleaning. Deep surface protection enables these cotto tiles to withstand intensive pedestrian traffic and large temperature excursions without deterioration in their original physical and technical specifications. While maintaining the breathability of the original material, the treated surface resists stains, humidity marks and efflorescence, characteristics that are obviously invaluable for outdoor floors in popular tourist areas like Repulse Bay.
Sannini, Superficie Sannini Flash collection
cm 30x30x cm
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): UNI EN 99 = 5,6
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): Resistente
Resistance to deep abrasion (ISO 10545-6): UNIEN102=218,1 MM3
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): compliant
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): compliant
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): R 10
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): compliant
Crazing resistance (ISO 10545-11): compliant
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): compliant