Luxury hotel developers have long made the most of the planet's most beguiling locations. However, with competition for well-heeled guests and lucrative business conferences ever greater, some are taking the creation of unique, pristine environments to the next level.
Featuring 12 boutique hotel destinations, Yanqi Island sits alongside Yanqi Lake a beautiful, scenic site at the foot of Yanshan Mountains in Northern China. The Sunrise Kempinski Hotel is perhaps the most dramatic, rising 21 floors above the verdant landscape. The design evokes the shape of the sun appearing from the distance to rise from the waters of Yanqi Lake symbolisingharmony, unity and infinity. From the side view, the building evokes a scallop, representing fortune' in the Chinese culture, while the main entrance, shaped like the mouth of a carp, symbolises prosperity.
The hotel's structure comprises concrete-filled tubular columns together with steel beams, and a concrete core. The whole building is supported vertically and horizontally by the core and steel beams. The resulting structure can withstand up to a level eight earthquake, and creates the sunrise' design.
The interiors are no less thoughtfully rendered. Interior designer Giana DiLeonardo says the client expressed the importance of designing spaces to reflect the hotel's natural surroundings and the concept of being at one with nature.
"While geared for relaxing, it was also intended to accommodate large meetings that could be held throughout the year such as the international APEC forum.
"With this in mind, the hotel's public spaces are grand in scale and are balanced with intimate seating areas for quiet conversation. Since this is a resort destination, amenities such as the pool and fitness and food and beverage outlets are dramatic spaces that have many moments of discovery.