Sarner’s multi award-winning team have extensive experience telling stories of iconic trains and trams for a new generation. Sarner helped transform one of Hong Kong’s most popular tourist attractions - the Peak Tram. The brand-new immersive experience opened to the public in August 2022, marking a new chapter in the history of one of Hong Kong’s most beloved icons.

Hong Kong, China
- Story, Research & Interpretation - Concept Design & Visualisation - Architectural & MEP Coordination - Scheme & Detailed Design - Project Engineering & Technical Design - Interior Design, Set and Staging Design - Lighting, Audio, Video, Network Design - Graphics - Tender Administration - Art Direction - Installation Supervision - Consultancy

Ticket hall

Client's brief

Operational since 1888, the Peak Tram is one of the oldest and most famous funicular railways in the world. Running along a 1.27-kilometer track with front row seats of the city’s famed skyline, it carries both tourists and residents to the upper levels of Hong Kong Island as the most direct route from Garden Road to The Peak.

Following a creative tender, Sarner have been awarded the Experience, Artwork, Audio-visual and Entertainment contract for the prestigious Peak Tram upgrade to deliver an exciting new experience for over 6 million passengers a year on their way to enjoy beautiful views from the Victoria Peak. We were tasked to create technically innovative edutainment experiences, placing emphasis on place (flora & fauna of the Peak), history of the Peak Tram, and people, technology, and culture, past to present. Our brief was to provide a seamless, entertaining, and informative visitor experience for passengers from arrival at the Lower Terminus, to boarding the Peak Tram and enjoying the ride experience to disembarking at the Upper Terminus and beyond.

Our Solution

The result of four years of creative and technical direction by Sarner, the brand-new in-station entertainment experience ensures the funicular Tram is at the heart of the narrative. The dynamic and engaging audio-visual shows enrich the passenger journey with informative entertainment for 1000+ waiting passengers at any one time, whilst respecting the tramway as a functional mode of public transport. Using floor to ceiling LED screens, theatrical effects, and various immersive technologies, the revamped visitor experience introduces 5 engaging zones at the Central Terminus which include: Eye of Infinity, The Beating Heart, An Icon is Born, Once Upon a Tram, and Go Wild at the Peak.
Eye of Infinity
Eye of Infinity. Photo: The Peak Tramways Company, Limited

Eye of Infinity

Our brief from the Client was to propose an eye-catching iconic sculpture to give more visibility to the location and entrance of the Peak Tram. Created by Lindy Lee, an Australian artist of Chinese ancestry, the 10-metre-tall Eye of Infinity sculpture installed at the Peak Tram Central Terminus features a constantly evolving lighting display. Inspired by Hong Kong's “spirit of ascension", Eye of Infinity is made from cast bronze with a black patina finish and has been crafted with thousands of tiny apertures to allow light to sparkle through. The internal lighting will change throughout the day to reflect the changing light of the Peak and the daylight transitioning to evening, as well as growing in lighting intensity to signal the approaching arrival of the Peak Tram to the Central Terminus.
The Beating Heart
The Beating Heart. Photo: The Peak Tramways Company, Limited

The Beating Heart

The Beating Heart is a historical haulage equipment display. The static historical equipment is brought to life in an evocative AV presentation through projection mapping, lighting effects and audio, depicting the transformation of haulage and operational systems from 1888 to the present over the course of its four technological eras: steam, electric, microprocessor, and modern. This installation creates the appearance that the vintage machinery is once again dragging the tram up the mountain by casting projection mapping and lighting effects on haulage equipment.
Peak Tram Replica
1st Generation Peak Tram Replica. Photo: The Peak Tramways Company, Limited

An Icon is Born

Here visitors have a unique opportunity to take photographs with the wooden 1st Generation Peak Tram Replica and immerse themselves in the history of the world-famous funicular. The display is complemented by an adjacent case showcasing the Peak Tram ticket office interior, ticket uniform and other ephemera from the Client's historical collection.
Audio-visual experience
Once Upon a Tram. Photo: The Peak Tramways Company, Limited

Once Upon a Tram

In the waiting area between the main entrance and the ticketing counters, Once Upon a Tram is an audio-visual experience revisiting key moments of the history of Hong Kong and the Peak Tram. Sarner proposed an overarching storyline of ‘Moving Moments’ to anchor themes like social history, historical milestones and technological development to create an animated timeline that allows future updates of the content, to remain current.
LED screens to all wall and ceiling surfaces
Go Wild At The Peak. Photo: The Peak Tramways Company, Limited

Go Wild At The Peak

Other than the ride on the tram, the highlight of the visitor experience is the full-immersion show Go Wild At The Peak, where visitors are surrounded by LED screens to all wall and ceiling surfaces depicting the hyper-real rendering of woodlands, flora and fauna found at the Peak. The brief was to create an animated, magical space of growing flora and fauna, a calming dreamscape lasting around 8 minutes as part of the queue management process to inform the waiting visitors and build excitement for the Peak Tram experience ahead. The wraparound full-immersion video experience is designed to inspire visitors to learn and protect the diverse wildlife found at the Peak. Each show is timed and synchronized to the tram’s timetable.
'We are incredibly excited to launch the 6th generation Peak Tram, marking a significant milestone in the history of this much-loved icon which has served Hong Kong residents and visitors since 1888. The Peak Tram has always been a must-see attraction and with this upgrade project, we believe we have taken it to the next level, and it can take its place among the world’s best visitor experiences.'
Martyn Sawyer Group Director, The Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels Ltd.