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In China, an underground luxury hotel

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In China, an underground luxury hotel

| architecture, buildings, built environment, Green Architecture, Green Built Environment, Landscape Architecture, modern architecture, modern buildings, Sculpture | April 12, 2012

While many architects and engineers have been vying to construct the world’s tallest tower, a group in China has looked to build in the opposite direction.

Construction began last month on Shanghai’s first “groundscraper”—a structure built almost completely below the surface. The massive project will eventually take form as the InterContinental Shimao Shanghai Wonderland, a 19-story, 380-room luxury hotel surrounded by a 428,000 square-meter theme park.

The hotel broke ground about 30 miles from the city of Shanghai in an abandoned quarry at the foot of Tianmashan Mountain. The building, located in the district of Songjiang, will be grafted onto the side of the quarry with 16 floors descending down and three floors resting above the crater.

Just as the top levels of a skyscraper are often filled with elegant restaurants and the most luxurious of rooms, the bottom two floors of the groundscraper will include an underwater restaurant, an athletic complex for water sports and 10-meter deep aquarium.

The quarry’s surrounding cliffs will be used for extreme sports like bungee jumping and rock climbing.

The project’s developers at the Shimao Property Group worked with British engineering firm Atkins to bring the idea to fruition and expect to near completion in late 2014 or early 2015.

The theme park and hotel are expected to cost at least $555 million and nightly room rates should start at approximately $320.

Existing quarry

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About the author

After working at various design practices on a full-time and freelance basis, and starting his own design firm, David McFadden saw that there was a gap to be filled in the industry. In 1984, he created an expansive hub for architects and hiring firms to sync up, complete projects, and mutually benefit. That hub was Consulting For Architects Inc., which enabled architects to find meaningful design work, while freeing hiring firms from tedious hiring-firing cycles. This departure from the traditional, more rigid style of employer-employee relations was just what the industry needed - flexibility and adaption to modern work circumstances. David has successfully advised his clients through the trials and tribulations of four recessions – the early 80’s, the early 90’s, the early 2000’s, and the Great Recession of 2007.

5 Responses to "In China, an underground luxury hotel"
  • umanbn April 12, 2012

    Love it! That’s so cool and a great re-use of a huge eyesore…..they should turn all old quarries into something else….underground towns, business centres, holiday parks…..

  • Cabbie Notes April 12, 2012

    What a novel concept of a “groundscaper.” I agree with umanbn that repurposing of resources, especially old quarries, is a great idea. I look forward to when that project will be completed. Thanks for sharing. Cheers.

  • David C. McFadden April 12, 2012

    One thing that’s weird is the amount of new landscaping that surrounds the hotel. If you look at the quarrys location it seems pretty desolate – I guess the draw will be the novelty of the project itself.

  • scott April 13, 2012

    I notice that the renderings don’t show the expansive network of power lines and electrical towers shown in th ebackground of the quarry photo. Do they plan on moving all of those underground, or are they hoping visitors will just ignore them.

  • vijayachandran a April 21, 2012

    Great!. There is a similar quarry at the international tourism destination at Kovalam, Trivandrum, India, which could be utilised similarly

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