In light of some recent recognition and the completion of a landmark project, it seems a good time to reflect on the ground KAZE has made over the past ten years, and in particular the last twelve months. Vietnam is both a challenging and hugely inspiring place to be practicing interior design and architecture in 2017, and we are enormously proud of what we have been able to achieve, thanks to our talented team, pioneering and forward-thinking clients, and trusted local partners.
In 2014, KAZE accepted a BID Gold Award for World Quality Commitment, awarded in honor of our commitment to quality, management and innovation. It is a multidisciplinary award, and winners are selected from a broad cross-section of industries including media, banking, commodities trading and aviation, making the recognition all the more valued. It symbolizes our firm belief in innovation, not as a vehicle for elaborate design but as a core tenant of a successful and sustainable business.
If we have learnt one thing over the past ten years, it is that it is possible to innovate anywhere, within every budget and in every context. And not only is it possible, but it is essential. Part of our success has been our ability to reimagine and reinvent local materials in original and exciting ways – and it is in the way that we push boundaries. Our ability to do this, has proven so effective, it has become something of a rule at KAZE – use only local materials, and use as few a materials as possible. Not only is this a logistically sound strategy, but it has helped shape our clean and instinctive aesthetic, for which we are now being recognized.
This mantra was particularly important in the completion of our latest landmark project, Liberty Central Saigon. Following the success of the Liberty Hotel Riverside project, we were delighted to be invited to work with the clients again on Liberty Central Saigon, a project that exceeded its predecessor in both scale and scope. We had just 12 months, from initial concept to the hotel opening its doors, which it did on September 1st 2014. Never was it more important to adhere to our belief in innovating from within. We used the perceived limitations to our advantage adapting, the abundant resources we have on our doorstep in contemporary and innovative ways to produce a finish that is simultaneously local yet global in scale.
It was also an opportunity for us to utilize the relationships we have forged over the past seven years. Our designers work closely with the local contractors and have a unerring willingness to achieve, irrespective of the obstacle – of which there are often many! KAZE is and has been from the start, committed to achieving within the culture – be this using familiar materials in unfamiliar ways or playing to the skills of the local workforce rather than following a design trend beyond their expertise. This is how we achieve quality and consistency in a market where many believe it is not possible.
This extends to detail and décor. Where possible we work closely with local designers and suppliers and this becomes a two-way learning process. We as a team are realizing the capabilities and potential of the resources we have around us and local designers are raising their standards to meet the new demand. The resultant design is plugging a cultural gap many see as insurmountable.
In doing so, we are part of a new era of hotels in Vietnam, where local expertise, materials and design are championed. As a result, there is much greater synergy between stakeholders, and this is passed on to the consumer who benefit from beautifully realized, confident spaces. KAZE has done the first project In Phnom Penh - Cambodia 2015-2018 with Courtyard by Marriott. This has lead us to work with other Marriott brands like Renaissance, Marriott Hotel and Spa and the last added brand, Le Meridien. This is changing the way we are working. KAZE is stepping into a new era of multi discipline and collaboration with giants. We are humble towards the new challenges and we are working hard to achieve results. Amidst we know our strength is to convert and adopt an International design to local conditions – therein lies our strength.
This Philosophy was recognized by the Asia Pacific Property Awards, who has up until today, awarded KAZE with several awards for Best Hotel and Resort Project. Best office and Leisure project.
Ms. Fong Chan Paw Zeuthen