Internationally renowned architecture firm Kohn Pederson Fox Associates, of New York, has designed a striking modern building that will become the new gateway to Xintiandi, Shanghai’s entertainment hub.
The 24-storey tower curves gently to create an elegant profile with the building distinguished by its window wall patterns in Chinese granite, based on traditional Chinese latticework from the Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD). The result is very contemporary but unmistakably Chinese.
Paul Katz, Principal at Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates said ‘Our aim for the Conrad Shanghai was to design a property which advanced the city’s new role as a global hub of commerce and culture, while echoing the vibrancy and prosperity of the Han Dynasty’.
‘We also wanted to ensure that the hotel related well to the largely low-rise architecture of the surrounding Xintiandi area. Xintiandi is a stunning example of restored traditional Chinese architecture and we wanted the Conrad Shanghai to honor this masterpiece of architectural expression.
‘We therefore used grey granite which mirrors the renovated grey brick townhouses with carved stone gates that are a feature of Xintiandi. At street level, many of the hotel’s restaurants and cafes will face onto a central plaza, replicating the outdoor café culture of the neighborhood.’
A total of 2,900 windows were individually handcrafted.
The Conrad Shanghai’s interiors will be contemporary but draw on the materials and patterns that were a feature of the Han Dynasty.
Peter Remedios, President and Managing Principal at Remedios Siembieda, said, ‘The challenge of the designer is to go beyond the obvious reproductions of a particular style. For the Conrad Shanghai, we used a sophisticated and modern interpretation of the Han Dynasty to evoke the look and charisma of that style.’