Project Overview

"There is a picture in my mind of a large corner of rock in the lush greenery." The client's ideal mountain guesthouse is a minimalist gray and white space filled with sunlight. This project is a classic example of an old house renovation. The base was originally an old guesthouse in Jiufen, but through the designers' ingenuity, the interior and exterior are completely renovated turning the outdated style into a modern design with good lighting.


TO Design Co., Ltd.


Chih-Chieh Liu

Project Brief

We are gifted by nature and live with nature. The visual image of this project is the boulder surrounded by lush greenery. The light gray color is the main color to provide a relaxing resting place for guests among the forest and sea view. In this project, large glass windows are used to improve lighting, and modern style furniture is used to create a minimalist atmosphere, while the artworks in the rooms are made by the designer according to different room types. Besides, the designer selected native species of Jiufen for planting to echo the scenery of the mountains. On the other hand, the designer set up a window in the bathroom on the top floor, so that the guests can enjoy the view of Jiufen while bathing. The designers hope that every guest in this guesthouse can enjoy a relaxing time with the changes of sunlight.

Project Need

This project is a classic example of an old house renovation. Located in the Jiufen, the building is about 50 years old. The design is old, and the plumbing and bathrooms need to be improved. The client hopes the design can be connected with the mountain town image and the local culture of Jiufen. To incorporate the surrounding scenery into the design, the designer carried out a complete renovation with the consent of the client. The designer redesigned the partitions, enlarged the windows, heightened the podiums, and widened the staircase entrance. In addition, the designer carefully considered the orientation of the windows, such as the location of the sea, hillside, and sun, and planned meditation corners in each room. At the same time, the designer also greatly improved the lighting, ventilation, and humidity of the house. The designer used light gray stone paint on the exterior wall to fit the inspiration picture "the stone facing the sea in the lush green." With the enlarged windows, the guests can see the sunrise and sunset through the window. The unique location of this project combines the elements of mountain, sea, and people to create a peaceful atmosphere.

Design Challenge

The project is a 50-year-old house that needs to be completely renewed because the facilities are unserviceable and do not meet modern standards. Modernizing and presenting an innovative design on a limited budget was a challenge, and the designer needed to select elements carefully.


The old building had problems of dampness, darkness, and obsolescence. The designer reorganized the traffic flow and planning and updated the facilities and functions of the building to solve the dampness and the old facilities. Moreover, the designer has enlarged the windows on the sunny side, so that all the views of Jiufen can be seen. The plants are kept in their natural state, with sunlight, air, and water (humidity) to maintain their best condition. This not only gives the guesthouse a new business brand image but also enhances its business value. Outdoor plants are native species of the Jiufen Mountains and transplanted to the exterior walls and garden in their original state. The designer has tried to maintain the plants on the walls in their natural state so that the guests can be more immersed in the local environment and have a deeper understanding and exploration of Jiufen's human and geographical environment.

Open to all international projects this award celebrates innovative and creative building interiors, with consideration given to space creation and planning, furnishings, finishes, aesthetic presentation and functionality. Consideration also given to space allocation, traffic flow, building services, lighting, fixtures, flooring, colours, furnishings and surface finishes.  

More Details