A small valley, bordered by a dense bamboo forest, forms the site for this luxury housing development, situated near the Qiang Tang River in Hangzhou, south-eastern China. The particular charm and beauty of the place are the determining factors. Twelve individual volumes are arranged in a chessboard pattern to create the maximum amount of open space for each building. Through planting new vegetation, each apartment building is set in its own clearing in the forest.
The buildings adapt to the topography, creating a flowing landscape through a slight turning of the blocks. The grounds will be accessed from the southern entrance via a network of lanes. All buildings are linked to an underground car park, enabling the site to be free from vehicles above ground.
Within the development there are six types of building differing in size and floor plan depending on the location, view and light conditions. The individual apartment buildings contain five generously proportioned apartments, each accommodating a full floor of approximately 400 sqm. The floor plan concept creates a flowing interior space defined by solid elements which accommodate auxiliary functions. The selection of materials for the living and sleeping areas provides an elegant, calm atmosphere, whilst the enclosed elements are envisaged as cabinets using precious traditional materials.
The loggia zone, which runs around the whole building, provides a transition area between the interior living space and the surrounding nature. Based on a traditional principle of Chinese housing, an exterior skin using wooden elements protects the privacy of the residents. This skin differs in density, depending on the interior functions, sunlight and the conditions of the site. Moveable elements allow the resident to further decide on the degree of privacy desired.
A clubhouse with an outdoor pool is located at the northern tip of the site. This small building follows the irregular shape of the steep slope of the hill, forming a kind of a retaining wall that continues to define the border of the property. The interior is shaped like a cave carved into the hill. Skylights let natural light deep into the rooms. In front of the clubhouse lies a raised platform with an irregular shape following the natural borders of the site. The building is made out of coloured concrete and Chinese volcanic stone.
Location: Hangzhou, China
Project Date: 2004
Completion Date: 2008
Gross Floor Area: 23,500 m2
Client: Joyon Real Estate Investment Co., Ltd
Architect: David Chipperfield Architects
Principal: David Chipperfield
Director: Mark Randel
Project Architect: Hans Krause
Projekct Team: Christoph Bartscherer, Libin Chen, Ulrich Hannen, Christian Helfrich, Lijun Shen, Natalia Vinuela
Structural/Services Engineer: ZSADI, Zhejiang South Architectural Design and Survey Ltd.
Landscape Architect: Levin Monsigny Landschaftsarchitekten