Text description provided by the architects. The tea gardens in the Damushan area of Songyang are situated in a hilly landscape before the backdrop of imposing mountains. The tea plantations extend over the ridges of the hills in smooth sweeps and have shaped the landscape space with their linearly planted bushes for centuries.
The Xujing pool was constructed between the tea plantations for irrigation purposes in 1968, and was later equipped with a circular path for pedestrians. At the edge of the pool, Xu Tiantian designed a teahouse for visitors, from which the view over the pool stages the scenic charms.
The new building is embedded linearly between the edge of the pool and the boundary of the site in such a way that it was possible to preserve five large sycamores, which provide the forecourt with shade thanks to their leafy canopy. The difference in the height of the terrain between the path and the edge of the pool is now filled with the new teahouse, which disappears between the trees and the natural topography.
The tea pavilion, which was erected using black-dyed concrete, consists of a series of different spaces. The two-storey, open main room has a skylight and a glass front towards the pool. The owner here imparts aspects of tea culture and a contemporary form of the tradition that also attracts interest in urban centers.
Connected to the main room are spaces for private tea ceremonies. At the periphery follows the meditation room, through whose round opening, the sunlight reflected by the surface of the water enlivens the interior space. Small courtyards and views, which raise awareness of both the landscape and aesthetic phenomena of nature, interrupt the sequence of spaces.
The building itself is so well embedded in the landscape situation that the spectacular view first becomes apparent from the interior: the pool in the foreground serves as a mirror for the tea garden and the mountain scenery in the background.