Home Architecture Design Ideas, Pictures and Inspiration Hotel set Within a Beautiful Water-Filled Quarry

Hotel set Within a Beautiful Water-Filled Quarry

If you are looking for really something different, this might be it. Atkins has won an international competition to design a five-star resort hotel set within a beautiful 100 meter deep quarry in the Songjiang district close to Shanghai in China. I know that from these pictures the hotel looks almost unreal, but this project is expected to be completed by May, 2009. Its stunning concept designs inspired by the natural water and landscape features of the quarry captured the imagination of judges to quash competition from two other international firms. The quarry will provide protection from the weather, and reduce the energy needs of the hotel. The complex will contain restaurants, cafes, sport facilities, and will even include underwater public areas and guestrooms.

songjiang shanghai atkins Hotel set Within a Beautiful Water Filled Quarry

The innovative design of the 400-bed resort hotel stands two levels higher than the rock face of the 100 metre deep quarry and includes underwater public areas and guestrooms. It will incorporate conference facilities for up to 1,000 people, a banqueting centre, restaurants, cafés and sports facilities. Sustainability is integral to the design ranging from using green roofing for the structures above the ground level to geothermal energy extraction. An aquatic theme runs through the design both visually and functionally. Two underwater levels will house a restaurant and guestrooms facing a ten-metre deep aquarium. The lowest level of the hotel will contain a leisure complex with a swimming pool and water-based sports. An extreme sports centre for activities such as rock climbing and bungee jumping will be cantilevered over the quarry and accessed by special lifts from the water level of the hotel. – Via – Greenroofs & E-Architect

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songjiang quarry songfronte Hotel set Within a Beautiful Water Filled Quarry

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30 responses to “Hotel set Within a Beautiful Water-Filled Quarry” - Add yours!

  1. lis said:
    April 11, 2008

    That is fantastically beautiful.

  2. Lone said:
    April 11, 2008

    This is something I can appreciate. Its an excellent location and the man-made facets of it blend into the surrounding environment for the most part. Could they have done more towards that goal, yes certainly; Id certainly have cut down on the paved roads and the waterfall/fountain structure (I wish it really did supply that kind of feature) seems over the top. Considering the few locations that you might find available for this kind of setup, it looks like an excellent space.

  3. Qydo said:
    April 11, 2008

    Truly amazing work! I could spend the rest of my life attempting to find the creativity to produce something like that.

    The price tag will be equally impressive I’m sure…

  4. Mic_Hall said:
    April 11, 2008

    I see one problem. How to hell these sailing boats are going catch a wind in such a deep crater.

    Besides, I see a risk of a lot of bad quality air got stuck inside if there is no efficient ventilation. I imagin the air quality near Shanghai if far from perfect.

  5. arief said:
    April 12, 2008

    I just could only hold my breath seeing that design. I could imagine that there is a massive demolition on the rock. It’s an impressive design though. I like the design a lot, but not the environment damage caused by it, at construction period.

    Maybe it would become beautiful within first century, but what will happen if that hotel isn’t used anymore? They will demolished it? Can they restore the original rock back to it’s natural fineness? I doubt that

    Why can we human let the nature be as beauty as it is.

    But great job for the design and the money impact, but not for the earth

  6. Arip said:
    April 13, 2008

    I have attended the presentation of ATKINS by Thom Wright once in Jakarta. I could get the point from his presentation that ATKINS always wants to produce an “Iconic” Design all over the world such as Burj Al Arab in Dubai. It’s quite interesting for me to see all ATKINS building design but I feel that their design is not quite concern for environmental issues. What they want is only Iconic design in order to make them more bigger and known as a best architectural firm.. It’s a pity for me.. Architecture is not only for iconic design.. it’s merely more architect’s ego than the better design solution for environment. I believe that architecture should be making a better environment for people and community.. not a bigger name for the architect..

  7. tururu said:
    April 14, 2008

    congratulations, i love your blog!!!

    tururu from (cheap ideas to your home)

  8. will said:
    April 14, 2008


    You do realise this is being built in a quarry? It’s man made anyway. Restoring the original rock back to it’s natural unseen fineness would involve filling in the quarry… And what do we fill quarry’s with? Yup! Rubbish. So somehow I think this is the better alternative.

    Ya’ damn hippy!

  9. lion-gv said:
    April 14, 2008


    The setting isn’t natural in the first place, it was a man made hole to excavate rock. The place probably looks ravaged right now. This project will probably be an improvement.

  10. swaz said:
    April 14, 2008

    that place looks awesome. i read in a book ages ago about a hotel in a similar situation, with extreme sports being held on the water too. Looks like the future’s here. What a great way to use a wasted area. As to the earlier posters worry about stale air within – surely the scale of this place will be enough for a natural flow of air? anyway – looks like a cool place to visit – lets hope the builders are capable of achieving the highly airbrushed artists view of the proposed… :)

  11. SCAQ-Tony said:
    April 14, 2008

    Looks great on paper but note that the water therein has no inflow or outflow. Thus, how will they move around or circulate that much water to prevent massive algae plumes, mosquitoes and the filtration of debris.

    Form without function is lame.

  12. Lilly said:
    April 15, 2008

    This place is beautiful!!! They used the space well and the environment is important, but the people are what concern me. What with China building all of these olympic buildings, demolishing the homes of the people…The general populace is so poor (disregarding certain businessman and elite) and they spend their money on a huge structure like this when they could help the people. I believe they’re trying to appear wealthy and at the forefront of design, when in reality, they displace people just to build olympic buildings and shove them into little homes without their consent. I love these beautiful buildings, but too bad they don’t care for their people more…

  13. lakshmi narayana swamy said:
    April 16, 2008

    wonderful idea

  14. Dobie said:
    April 20, 2008

    What I like is that whether you’re on the top floor or the bottom, the views could be impressive. From the top you can see down into a hole in the ground, a similar experience to the grand canyon. Or from down below with soaring cliffs like the alps or something (okay not quite like the alps, but cool nonetheless I’m sure)

  15. keyvan in iran said:
    May 15, 2008


  16. lanie in US said:
    May 18, 2008

    I DO have a HUGE question; In light of recent events, what about earthquakes?

  17. May 19, 2008

    Such a nice hotel really!!

  18. muhammed ashraf said:
    June 13, 2008

    now my dreem to stay this hotel for me this is not hotel this is paradies

  19. G said:
    August 4, 2008

    absolutely breath-taking!
    now, i really have to go to china!

  20. WillG said:
    September 26, 2008

    I read an article about this called “China’s Green Resort” at

    The article states that there is going to be a later article with an interview between the author and Atkins Design.

    Now if China would just put more green roofs on buildings!

  21. MEEP said:
    October 8, 2008

    i think its cool but random and wtf-ish

  22. muhammad waseem said:
    November 6, 2008

    That is fantastically beautiful & great work, i love it.

  23. Michael Spiby said:
    December 4, 2008

    This is a fantastic idea and place, it is certainly one way of useing a dissused quarry. I would like to see some of the profits of quarrying put back into the landscape as we tend to ignore the destruction of it.

  24. shibs said:
    December 7, 2008

    I doubt there will be much of an issue. Water will circulate in the rocks. In addition, many former quarries do not support life in the water for various reasons, which is why many of them are crystal clear.

    @lanie in US:
    I could be wrong, but I have heard that buildings built underground tend to be safer than those above ground, something about them moving with the ground, not acting as a mass damper.

  25. helen said:
    May 25, 2009

    It’s May 2009 right now… I don’t see this being built

  26. Martjo said:
    May 26, 2009

    Construction started last year in July but stopped due to the economic slowdown.In October the client Shimao signed contract with Intercontinental and completion is now planned ‘before2013′. The important point is this project will be built. It is meant to demonstrate many sustainable features not just a whimsical idea but as a model of what can be done to consider environment.

  27. eng.nasser juraiban said:
    February 18, 2010

    i think this is a bad idea becose all what been mentioned above of air circalation and earthquackes and
    misquedos but the begest hiding problem is if there is
    an eanuogh amounet of rain or a herricane that hit the
    area so the buildinds and people will be submerged espicially if hit suddinglly at night,,evacuation will be too late and will have similar situation like the tusonamy ,,,,

  28. Tomika Uglum said:
    January 28, 2011

    Useful piece, this is very similar to a site that I have. Please check it out sometime and feel free to leave me a comenet on it and tell me what you think. I’m always looking for feedback.

  29. the dude said:
    February 11, 2011

    this is the worst project i have seen in a long time. i can’t believe you like this shit. it is so damn ugly. how can you destroy such a beautiful place? Just incredibly horrible. thanks humans, you have done it again.

  30. the dude2 said:
    March 12, 2011

    Yea definantly an example of making one area crappier to make one nicer for people who can afford it. Its a money driven project. The problems not that their getting rid of something that happened naturally, and using it to make money, but that to build it their gonna make towns look like crap to mine the shit, and then all the garbage from here will be taken somewhere else to make it worse. I mean theyre making one place nice and livable for rich people and only making the rest of the world worse, like people with money have greater right to the things of Earth.

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