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.

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