South West Hotel Competition proposal / Henn Architects

Courtesy of Henn Architects

Henn Architects have won second price in the international competition to design the new South West Hotel in Beijing, China. The proposal was designed by Henn Architects Design & Research Studio HENNStudioB. You can see more images and architect’s description after the break.

Context The site of the South West Hotel is located next to a major traffic junction of the West Fourth Ring Road and Lianhua Road in Beijing. The project is a multi-functional building complex, integrating three major programs: hotel, commerce and office. The South West Hotel sets new standards for contemporary sustainable building design creating a green landmark for the city of Beijing.

Courtesy of Henn Architects

Design Concept – Oasis The basic functions of the five-star hotel include accommodation (340 rooms) for business clientele with supporting facilities such as conference rooms and a multi-function hall. The commercial part comprises street shops, flagship stores, a department store, cinemas, restaurants, clubs and cafés. The office part is intended for short term leasing of high end enterprises.

Courtesy of Henn Architects

All the program units loop around a central courtyard peaking in a five-star hotel. From the distance the overall complex creates a clearly identifiable landmark. The ascending curves of the volume are a reference to the dynamics of the context. The internal courtyard shields from the noise and the hectic pace of the city creating a retreat for guests and customers- a green oasis. It is a shared communal space connecting the various programs.

Façade The different spatial qualities between the exterior (city) and the interior (courtyard) are reflected in the building envelope. The inner façade appears open and transparent. Horizontal bands form balconies and outdoor gardens – secluded getaways for exchange and relaxation.

Courtesy of Henn Architects

The outer façade is a double layered multifunctional skin. It consolidates the miscellaneous programs behind a homogenous, large scaled surface. This surface serves as the screen for media and light installations during day and night. A matrix of LED light units supplements and surrounds a central high-end LED screen displaying commercials. The low resolution media installation (LED lights) works as a visual amplifier augmenting and abstracting the commercial content over the entire building façade.

For enhancing the visual presence and transmittance of advertising to the surrounding, Henn Architects proposes the construction of an “Architectural Advertising Amplifier” (AAmp). A very large scaled matrix of LED light units supplements and surrounds a central high-end LED screen displaying commercials. Specialized artistic software is used to automatically analyze and transform the moving images on the commercial LED billboard into an ever changing visual color-echo displayed on the surrounding low resolution AAmp screen installation in real time. By overlaying the displayed content with an aluminum mesh, the light gets abstracted while focusing the eye on the sharply displayed images and videos of the high resolution screen. In this way the low resolution media installation works as a visual amplifier augmenting the commercial content over the building’s facade and reaching a scale which is relevant to the architecture as well as to its urban context.

Courtesy of Henn Architects

Architects: Henn Architects Location: Beijing, China Design Team: Leander Adrian, Daniel da Rocha, Martin Henn, Markus Jacobi, Daniel Kraffczyk, Klaus Ransmayr, Max Schwitalla, Rainer Sladek, Sun Wei, Wang Zhenming

Courtesy of Henn Architects

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Cite: Sebastian Jordana. "South West Hotel Competition proposal / Henn Architects" 11 Aug 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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