..........................Mr Mao's Hostel...........................................................................................................................................................................................


 

Fact sheet

JOINED PROJECT :
BaO & aYa

 

PROJECT :
Hotel strategic planning

 

SITE :
Xingping // Guanxi // China

STATUS :
Study

 

SIZE :30 000m²

 

TEAM :
Benjamin Beller, Xu Yixing, Tang Jie

 
COLLABORATORS :
Veldon design Shenzhen
 

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Xingping is a small village near Yangshuo in Guangxi province very famous all across China for its magnificent scenery that can be seen on every 20 yuan bills. We were asked to conduct a study for Mr Mao who planned to do a hotel on the banks of splendid Lijiang River that was wandering amongst the karst peaks just on the edge of the village. Considering the beautiful settings and the village potential development, we proposed a study that seeks to define the hotel programs and the strategic role it could play in the public realm.

We wanted avoid by any means the fascist autonomous walled hotel for the happy fews and transform the whole project into a pulsar for the village evolution. In other terms, we tried to advocate a tourism that activates public spaces, a hotel that would embrace its urban responsibilities.

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:: Ho(s)tel(s) ::
A hotel is a very versatile type of program which can take many different built forms. Since the settings of this project were very particular and the brief indeterminate, the questioning and challenging of the hotel typology was crucial. Our discourse emphasized how the city and the hotel were inter-nourishing elements and how a hotel could be planned as an urban development. We intended to break apart the idea of the autonomous block with its exclusivity, boring uniformity, rooms repetitiveness, endless corridors, and programatic inefficiency. The conceptual dismantlement of the program was taken a step further when proposing that the whole typology could be disunified and exploded into a series of smaller structures.

:: Spreading ::
The site was to become a public embankment, a park on top of which a low density bridge hotel would float (floods) and shelter activities shared between inhabitants and visitors. The park was thought as the activity base of the hotel. Scattered iconic green building would signify its presence and most of the accommodations were spread in the village either by restoring old fishermen houses either by building new small structures within its fabric. The project thus was more like an urban network of rooms immersed within the village instead of a segregationist defined walled entity.

:: Village hotel ::
On one hand Xingping would profit of acupuncture-like renovations and reactivations while gaining a public park infused with touristic and community structures. On the other hand, the hotel would lower their basic capital investment while proposing an immersive cultural and spatial experience to their clients. The hotel is the village, the village is the hotel.