NC Design & Architecture Ltd: CosMax, located in a modern high-rise office building in the centre of Hong Kong, is the latest inception of a cosmetic medical centre, with interiors inspired by an underground mushroom cave symbolising growth, renewal and longevity. When patients arrive, the ethereal theme transforms their busy urban lives into a serene, relaxing and spiritually enlightening harmony as they go through medical procedures. These professional, reassuring interiors – a world away from the usual clinical environment - reflect the CosMax moral philosophy and discerning values.
The design brief called for a futuristic yet meditative sense of place, and in the 400sqm are a reception lounge, and consultation, treatment and cocoon-like aftercare relaxation rooms. The cave-like reception lounge sets the scene, its strong links to nature inspired by the delicate curves and soft strength of a mushroom, whose mystery, resilience and healing properties, are reflected in the mushroom lamps.
Two large illuminated skylights framed by extruded plaster tubes in the ceiling suffuse the reception lounge in a soft glow, and then patients enter a futuristic tunnel framed by travertine columns. Privacy is at the heart of the design, and meticulous attention was devoted to lighting and to the passage linking the rooms.
Finally the cocoon-like relaxation pods provide a sense of emotional security. Despite the strong contrast between nature and technology, everything contributes to the feeling of peace and tranquillity, and to redefining the experience of a cosmetic medical centre. The geometric metallic reception counter is juxtaposed with the cavernous lounge, whereas the curved plastered passage ceiling with inset lights is a contrast to the strong metallic materiality and scientific feel of the corridor, so that subtle nuances add to the patients’ personal and spiritual comfort, and sustain their confidence and trust.
“We wanted to challenge the old concepts of a cosmetic medical centre,” says NCDA founder Nelson Chow. “It does not have to be a stark, clinical experience.
You should feel cherished and cared for from the minute you walk through the door.”