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Construction underway on five-star quarry hotel

The concept for the Songjiang InterContinental Hotel – otherwise known as the Shimao Quarry Hotel, the Shimao Wonderland and the Quarry InterContinental – has been bandied about for years. Atkins, the international architecture firm behind the innovative idea, won an international design competition for the concept back in August 2006.

However, the proposed five-star hotel is now becoming a reality. Construction is underway and multiple media sources recently reported that Chinese developer Shimao Group was expected to complete the project by 2017.

The complex, which will be operated by global luxury hotel company InterContinental as a sport and leisure-oriented spa resort, is being built within a 90m deep, water-filled quarry pit in the Songjiang district near Shanghai, China.

{{image2-a:r-w:300}}According to Atkins, the hotel concept reflects the natural landscape of the quarry. The area’s hills and rocky cliffs were said to have inspired the hotel’s “waveform” architecture, and the nearby waterfalls have been incorporated into its design.

The hotel’s position within an abandoned quarry inherently poses environmental benefits by repurposing a brownfield site but Atkins has included additional eco-friendly features in the design as well. One such feature is the resort’s “green roof”, which will “seamlessly” incorporate the complex into its surrounding topography. The building will also be powered by geothermal energy.

It was reported that once finished, the resort would have an altitude of -80m with a total of 19 floors – two aboveground and 17 below. The two lowest levels will be underwater, with a restaurant and guest rooms facing a 10m deep aquarium. The bottom-most level will house a leisure centre, offering a swimming pool and water-based sports activities.

The hotel will also make use of the quarry’s sheer rock faces. “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,” the Atkins website stated.

In total, the hotel is expected to have more than 350 rooms that will be able to accommodate up to 1000 people.

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