Less is more. In the language of home design, simplicity can be one of the most important streams of thinking. But going down this path can be long and arduous, not to mention making tough choices about what to keep and what to scrap.
In the final analysis, it is worth the effort.
"When designing homes people should always know what every area is meant for," said Gaurang Jhunjhnuwala, general manager of business development at Ovolo Group, which owns several serviced apartments and hotels in Hong Kong.
"Though it sounds like common sense, people tend to overlook it all the time."
If an area is meant for working, then try to incorporate what is convenient for working, Jhunjhnuwala added.
In practice, cultivating the habit of thinking is far from easy.
Each Ovolo property will go through 60 design revisions before opening its doors to guests.
This is only to make sure that the principle of effortless living is upheld, he said.
The Ovolo Group, a family owned business, was established in 2002.
Today the group is a leader in Hong Kong's hotel and serviced apartments industry, owning and operating six hotels and serviced apartment properties on Hong Kong Island and in West Kowloon as well as a serviced office property, Izi.
With tons of experience gained from talking to business travelers, Ovolo has been steadfastly loyal to their motto of "effortless living," Jhunjhnuwala said.
First is the attention to detail no matter how trivial. A case in point is the power socket. Spending only a minute to decide where to put these sockets and the number of such power points can save you a lot of stress later on such as having to move heavy furniture to gain access to the point or queuing various electronic devices that run out of battery at the same time.
Simply put, locating a power point right next to your bed means that you can charge your mobile phone without any fuss or bother.
Similar to electricity sockets, determining the height of the clothes rack will save you the hassle of finding your gowns or other clothes all creased or bunched up.
Jhunjhnuwala also follows another cardinal rule: don't clutter things up in your room. The porcelain vase can be an object of desire when viewed in a shopping mall window. But before you whip out the credit card, he said, think for a while about how it will end up on a table gathering dust.
In Ovolo's serviced apartments and hotels, magazines never lie on tables meant for working and writing. They stay where they should be, on the shelves rather than taking up valuable space, Jhunjhnuwala said.
"It is all about how to maximize space and gain flexibility," he said.
Rooms in Ovolo's newest hotel at 286 Queen's Road Central have a Japanese influence with high-tech touches for the comfort of business travelers who are looking for simplicity and functionality.
Jhunjhnuwala has installed the latest Apple TV 3 in hotel rooms where guests can listen to music or watch movies.
Meanwhile, since the device is wireless there are no cables that run zigzag across the floor.
"Everybody has a chance to do it. By making all the features you need available, it calls for effortless living ... a redefined luxury," Jhunjhnuwala said.