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Habyt Launches Iconic Co-Living Experience in Collaboration with Hong Kong’s Urban Renewal Authority

Habyt Launches Iconic Co-Living Experience in Collaboration with Hong Kong’s Urban Renewal Authority

Habyt, the world's leading flexible housing provider, announced the launch of its latest project in Hong Kong, Habyt Bridges, in collaboration with the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) at the Habyt Bridges Grand Opening Ceremony today. Breaking new grounds, this charming project aims to rejuvenate the South of Hollywood Road (SoHo) neighbourhood by transforming nine iconic tong laus (tenement buildings) into a vibrant flexible living site, with 38 fully-furnished rooms.

Beyond architectural restoration, Habyt Bridges is dedicated to preserving the original design of the buildings and strengthening the social communities within the neighbourhood. This immersive approach aligns with Habyt's mission to provide affordable and accessible flexible housing solutions with a strong emphasis on heritage preservation.

“Habyt Bridges’ location is an important step in Habyt’s strategic expansion and growth. Transcending ordinary co-living projects, Habyt Bridges provides affordable and accessible housing in heritage tong laus, that celebrate the dynamism and rich history of the neighbourhood,” said Jonathan Wong, CEO of Habyt APAC. He added, "Meeting at the intersection of heritage and modernity, our design methodology for Habyt Bridges was to preserve as much of the existing tong lau as possible while incorporating modern comforts and convenience that are synonymous with the Habyt brand."

Habyt Bridges comprises nine interconnected buildings located across SoHo, featuring a total of 38 fully-furnished rooms in various configurations – from single private rooms to full two-bedroom apartments. The monthly all-inclusive fee (including utilities, Internet, and cleaning), starts from HK$7,888 (after discount, was HK$9,000) on flexible contracts for a minimum lease period of one month, reflecting the commitment to making heritage-inspired living accessible to a diverse community.

During the design phase, meticulous efforts were made to preserve and rejuvenate the original elements of the buildings, in alignment with the mission of the URA. The URA is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life through urban renewal, focusing on the conservation of heritage buildings and the revitalisation of historic neighbourhoods. This resulted in the creation of a distinctive mid-century modern tong lau-cum-co-living space, adorned with furniture in vibrant accent colours, retro wall art, and pendant lights. The seamless integration of mid-tone wood with contemporary elements enhances the overall aesthetic.

Habyt Bridges is deeply committed to Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) initiatives, striving to minimise its environmental footprint and promote responsible living practices. This commitment is reflected in the installation of solar panels to power communal spaces, the implementation of a comprehensive recycling programme with easily accessible recycling bins for members, and active participation in Hong Kong's plastic reduction program, including ceasing the issuance of single-use plastic bags. Frequent communications will be sent to remind residents of the importance of the 3Rs – Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle – in their daily lives. Through these initiatives, Habyt Bridges aims to create a sustainable and socially responsible living environment that benefits both residents and the broader community.

The project, launched in phases starting in end January and concluding in March 2024, has already begun its journey toward transforming these historic buildings into vibrant community spaces. As the project progresses, there is a growing anticipation for these revitalised structures to gain recognition as heritage landmarks in the future, further solidifying their significance in the cultural landscape of the SoHo neighbourhood.

Beyond accommodation, Habyt Bridges aims to be a vibrant community hub. In addition to retail and food & beverage spaces, dedicated community programming launched in early-April and offers an array of events not only for Habyt members but also for the general public. The events will revolve around four main pillars: wellness, knowledge-sharing, community building, and impact engagement.

As part of its commitment to strengthening a culturally rich environment, Habyt Bridges will introduce an innovative Artist-In-Residence Programme. Local artists are welcomed to stay at Habyt Bridges at a discounted rate, underscoring Habyt's dedication to supporting and actively participating in the local arts scene. To inaugurate its debut, Habyt Bridges participated in the annual event, HKWalls Festival 2024, that aims to create opportunities for local and international artists to showcase their talent in Hong Kong and internationally through the mediums of street art and street culture. American artist, Rabi, was invited to paint a wall mural at Wa In Fong, which sets the stage for future artistic expressions.

Augmenting these initiatives, the inclusion of two community farms adds a sustainable and communal aspect to Habyt Bridges. The events, combined with the community farms, are designed to enhance the lives of Habyt members and extend the project's positive impact to the local community. This approach bridges the gap between Habyt members and the neighbourhood, creating a harmonious blend of shared living and active community engagement.

Managing Director of the Urban Renewal Authority, Ir Wai Chi-sing (right), presents “The Community Makers’ Guide” to CEO of Habyt APAC, Mr Jonathan Wong (left)

Delivering his remark at the ceremony, Managing Director of the URA, Ir Wai Chi-sing, said, “I am delighted to have Habyt, a very good partner who shares the same vision as the URA, to jointly manage and operate the co-living spaces at our Staunton Street/Shing Wong Street revitalisation project.

The project name, Habyt Bridges, symbolises the project’s role as a ‘bridge’ connecting the residents and the community, while also linking with Bridges Street in the vicinity. In addition to 'co-living’ spaces, we provide a Community Room where neighbours are welcome to mingle with friends, both old and new.

Today, the URA is entrusting Habyt with the important task of cultivating 'community-making' in the neighbourhood. I envision Habyt and the residents working hand in hand to unlock the full potential and value of this community.”

At the ceremony, Ir Wai also presented to Mr Wong the Community Makers’ Guide (the Guide), a publication developed by Social Ventures Hong Kong, commissioned by the URA. The Guide highlights the 4C community-making approach – Converge, Cocreate, Collaborate and Covert – that provides a model for neighbourhood development to inspire more people and organisations to join the journey of community-making.

Expressing his appreciation of the collaboration on behalf of Habyt, Jonathan said, "We’re honoured to play a role in this transformative collaboration and express our deep gratitude for the opportunity extended to us by the URA and the local community. We look forward to contributing to the rich tapestry of this unique neighbourhood and are excited to embark on this new chapter with the support of the community."

Early Bird Promotion

Prospective private room (co-living) tenants have the opportunity to avail special prices for the Standard (HK$5,888) and Regular (HK$6,888) room, valid till 31 May 2024. Prospective apartment tenants have the opportunity to avail a 10 percent off on their entire lease by moving into Habyt Bridges before 31 May 2024.

This offer is exclusive to new members, with a minimum lease period of three months. In addition to the limited-time promotion, new Habyt Members can enjoy the convenience and flexibility of a deposit-free rental option. This deposit-free option eliminates the need for a substantial upfront payment, offering new members the flexibility to pay just a nominal fee on top of the agreed rent, easing financial burdens and facilitating smoother transitions into their new living spaces. Terms and conditions apply.

For high resolution images of Habyt Bridges, Grand Opening Event and community facilities, please click here.

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