The Intercontinental Group has announced the beginning of construction of the lavish £345-million five-star cave hotel that is being built inside a 100-meter deep, abandoned quarry in the Songjiang District located at the base of the Tianmensham Mountain. It is to be part of the project called the Shimao Shanghai Wonderland, a large-scale theme park being constructed by the Shimao Group. Designed by the British-based Atkins firm, it will have 380 rooms spread out over 19 stories two of which are to be underwater. These two floors will have an aquarium that will look out onto an underwater restaurant, and since atlas has a good selection of ceramics, they’ll be getting the most amazing tiles for their floors. The other 17 stories will be built into the walls of the quarry overlooking the sunken lake. Two more stories will be above ground and the roof will only be 15 meters above the cave.
The unique centerpiece of the hotel is a 100-meter high waterfall cascading from its rooftop down to an atrium at the ground floor. It will be strategically placed so that it will be visible from the bedroom windows of the hotel. Aside from a swimming pool and other regular amenities that hotels usually provide, the hotel will also offer opportunities for extreme sports which will put to good use the steep quarry walls. Sports such as rock-climbing and bungee-jumping to name a few will be included in the list of these extreme sports. Water sports are also going to be available putting the sunken lake to good use as well. Aside from the swimming and sports center though, the hotel will also house several restaurants, a banquet hall and several conference rooms for business meetings.
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Atkins designed the structure such that it will blend in almost naturally with the landscape and they intend to use an eco-friendly green roof that will be covered in lawns and trees. They will also make use of the quarry’s geothermal heat to generate electricity and heating, but just in case, they have standby generators if the electricity goes out. Guests can enter the complex from a walkway above the lake leading to a naturally-lit atrium incorporated into the rocky surface. They will take advantage of the unique landform to create a garden growing in the air. The architectural firm has also promised to make the project as green as possible. It may about three years to build and by 2015, guests may already be accepted in the hotel for as low as $200 a night.
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