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Aficionado Realizes His Vision

ALEXANDRA A. SENO The New York Times 06/11/2010 05:07
Erwin Rudolfo, an investment manager and design enthusiast, put his hobby to work in renovating his 1,350-square-foot Hong Kong apartment.

Erwin Rudolfo, an investment manager and design enthusiast, put his hobby to work in renovating his 1,350-square-foot Hong Kong apartment.


Erwin Rudolfo readily identifies the living room as his favorite spot in his 1,350-square-foot apartment. That part of his 125-square-meter residence, in a tower block on Kennedy Road, has floor-to-ceiling glass windows and a 180-degree sweeping view of landmarks in the Hong Kong business district — from I.M. Pei’s Bank of China Tower in Central to the iconic Central Plaza skyscraper of Wanchai.



Mr. Rudolfo, an investment manager in his 40s who moved from the Philippines to Hong Kong almost 20 years ago, bought the property in 2006 “because rents were going up and interest rates were falling.”

A design aficionado who sometimes helps friends and family build or decorate homes, he decided to supervise the renovations and the interior design himself. “We knew what we wanted,” he said.

After what he called “years of Architectural Digest,” it took him two weeks of planning and four months of working with contractors — along with 1.6 million Hong Kong dollars, or about $205,000 — to realize his vision. Although Mr. Rudolfo declined to reveal the purchase price of the apartment, records show a property at the address was sold for 12.3 million dollars at around the same time.

In January, the most recent sale in the building, a buyer paid 38 million dollars — about 32,000 dollars a square foot — for a 2,700-square-foot apartment.

 

 

Mr. Rudolfo had rented for 15 years before buying the apartment. “We found that feeling like you belong in Hong Kong is a function of owning your own apartment,” he said.

As an art collector, he said he and his wife “wanted a warm place that would house the art and furniture that we like to have around us.”





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