Julia Monk, Managing Partner, BBG-BBGM
Julia Monk, managing partner at BBG-BBGM, moved from New York to Shanghai in 2010 “to share BBGM’s global hospitality design expertise.” Here she recounts some of her achievements and impressions.
Tell us about some of your projects:
Last year we completed the interiors of the MGM Grand Sanya and the architecture of the St. Regis Sanya Yalong Bay Resort, both on Hainan Island, China’s primary resort destination. We currently have four team members on site in Abu Dhabi overseeing the installation of experiential interiors for Rosewood Hotel and Residences, an urban resort on Al Maryah Island. In Chengdu, China, we’re completing the interiors of Steven Holl’s Raffles City Center Hotel and Residences.
The spa at the forthcoming Rosewood Abu Dhabi on Al Maryah Island.
Do you have a favorite?
Our Peninsula Shanghai Hotel. The architectural design is remarkably contextual. It creates a seamless ‘bookend’ to the fabric of the historic Bund’s Art Deco tradition, while artfully using the site to create exclusivity for the Peninsula’s high-profile guests. Pierre-Yves Rochon’s inspired interior is the perfect complement to the architecture.
Outdoor dining at the St. Regis Sanya Yalong Bay Resort on Hainan Island.
What do you most enjoy about living in China?
Every day is an adventure. Many things look the same—familiar—but aren’t. I grew up in a country where the pedestrian has the right of way. This is not the case in many parts of the world, including Shanghai. The same with people: Understanding how people think impacts our designs.
What do you miss most about the U.S.?
The lobby inside the Raffles City Center Hotel and Residences in Chengdu, China.