Light of CHAO

GD-Lighting Design as Architects

Light of CHAO Investor : CITI(Beijing)Construction Co., Ltd Lighting Design: GD-Lighting Design ( Chief Designer: Yenchih Wang IALD Professional Member Design Team: Tim Cheng, Hui Ren, Xin Qi Location: Sanlitun, Beijing, China Completion Time: 2016.08 Photographer: He Shu

CHAO, the "nest", a social, lifestyle experience and private customization platform; provides for lifestyle connoisseurs a new way of life, and another ”nest habitat” outside of their private lives. In addition, high-quality light environment further develops the sense of magic and mystery.

Light of CHAO

CHAO is a boutique-style hotel located in the bustling Sanlitun. The design inspiration for the 180 rooms and five kinds of room types is from the "Nest" of animals. Its design uses a multi-level, diversified space strategy, through the use of different materials, colors and elements to present the historical charm and vitality of times. The transformation of CHAO hotel has become the model of hotel renovation.

CHAO is different from the general hotels, in addition to the traditional hotel functions; book walls, underground exhibition room, and stages were also designed for exhibitions, receptions, and a variety of future activities. This makes CHAO closer to humanities, art and life; adding senses of culture and society into the atmosphere. Lighting design takes full account of basic hotel functions and artistic demands; designers fully integrated changes between light and shadow, artistic trends and cultural aspects. Approaching and walking through the hotel, lighting creates spacial surprises for guests in every subtle detail.

Hotel Entrance On the Red Street, through a long European-style corridor, and after a clever turn; it is the entrance of CHAO Hotel; finding its serenity in chaos. In contrary with the cold and minimal architectural style, the entrance doorway design is quite unique. For lighting, the choice of low temperature warm yellow light attracts passengers with the cleverly revealed interior warmth.

Lobby Atrium With the bright and dark contrast from the entrance to the interior lobby space, a sudden sense of openness is felt immediately after the guest enters the hotel. If the hotel room is the soul of a hotel, then the public space is the veins connecting a hotel. The stair space of Chao hotel is designed to be a unique open space; it organizes and connects to other interior spaces. Lighting design also breaks all the traditional boundaries, drawing on design practices of public interiors, and integrated with the design concepts of exterior and art galleries; abandoned the traditional hotel lighting methods of decorative lighting. The pixel-like fabric ceiling design has become the focus of spatial vision; through the linear backlight treatment, the entire ceiling floats up, forming a complete post-modernist painting.

First Floor Restaurant Bar

Design can be like music, or like poetry. CHAO’s restaurant is designed to deliver more emotions, building an atmosphere, creating an exquisite feeling of openness, and makes full use of building space. The exposed ceiling on the first floor bar area is made of metal materials and decorated with candle-like luminaires, creating a strong modern industrial sense. For lighting, the use of track lights adds flexibility, while decorating ceilings and table surfaces. Large-scale illuminated ceiling on top of the bar table is designed to create a night of fantasy and intoxication.

Second Floor Book Bar Restaurant The second floor restaurant serves mainly guests staying at the hotel. Book shelves and wine cabinet in the interior space gives neatness and variety onto restaurant elevation. Lighting takes focus on elevation details, filling the space of food and beverage with “scents” of culture and heritage.

Daylight Hall Sunlight Hall is the hotel's most chic space; lighting designed for simplicity, avoiding destruction of the top space’s permeability. There is not even one downlight used in the architectural ceiling. The space aesthetics is fully revealed by wall luminaires on both sides. The illuminated walls provide an impressive range of possibilities for a variety of events or art exhibitions.

Presidential Suite Different from other presidential suites, this is the choice for any fashion gatherings. The space design is very suitable for parties. Step lighting uses linear luminaires to evenly brighten the step junction, creating a warm and home-like atmosphere.

Presidential Suite Restaurant The restaurant’s white style design gives a sense of solemnity; leaf-shaped luminaire is light-hearted and poetic, adding towards the ultimate romantic atmosphere.

In Summary Today, the overall light environment of a hotel has become an important factor in determining the hotel quality. Within a habitat, the distinctive lighting environment perfectly blends in with architecture and the environment. In this creative space of cultural and art, lighting design is no longer simple or ordinary; the use of bright and dark, strong and weak, with the vivid rhythm and dazed colours, created for this attractive interactive social experience platform a pleasant or even psychedelic “CHAO” flavored extraordinary experience.

Chao Hotel Beijing in a New Cloak

gmp · von Gerkan, Marg and Partners Architects as Architects

Play of Light and Shadow

The new facade by von Gerkan, Marg and Partners Architects (gmp) imparts a lightness and a sculptural effect to the modernized hotel tower, which can be seen from afar. Its angled vertical elements and the alternating closed and glazed panels create a play of light and shadow. Horizontal ledges are inserted every two stories, thus creating a calm facade geometry with balanced proportions. In addition to the external envelope, gmp designed the multifunctional “Glasshouse” to add a venue with a special atmosphere to the hotel complex.

Since its modernization and reopening in 2016, the 80-meter-high hotel tower is one of the popular destinations in the Sanlitun business quarter of Beijing. The former “Beijing City Hotel” was created in 1990 as China began to open up. The former appearance of the building and its scant relationship with the urban design context were a result of Beijing’s fast urbanization process. The design by gmp represents a contemporary and yet long-term functional hotel architecture that reestablishes the position of the tower in the urban context.

The three-dimensional zig-zag-like building envelope reflects the triangular footprint of the 26-story tower and reinforces the recognizability of the building. Curtain-wall elements in light gray glass fiber reinforced concrete alternate with gray-tinted glass panels and the angled arrangement of these panels and elements means that, depending on the viewing angle, the sides of the building appear to change between open and closed. Slender horizontal ledges made of glass fiber reinforced concrete have been inserted every other story, thus creating a harmonious rhythmic division of the facade. The geometric arrangement and the story-high glazing opens the formerly introverted building to the surrounding urban space and creates a new spatial quality in the hotel rooms.

The materials and structure of the high-rise facade continue in the new extended entrance area of the hotel. A colonnade on the west and south sides of the building consisting of ten-meter-high glass fiber reinforced concrete elements visually defines the entrance and screens the semi-public forecourt to the south of the hotel. The vertical panels with triangular cross-sections are positioned at different angles, which has the effect of guiding hotel guests intuitively from the noisy Workers’ Stadium North Road to the recessed, formerly very hidden, hotel entrance.

Likewise, the venue modernized by gmp and now called “Glasshouse” reflects the clear geometry of the facade design. Supported by an arched structure, a double-skin roof with an external layer of glazing and internal louvers admits daylight into the space below, which has aptly been named “Glasshouse”. The louvers function as solar screening devices, softening the natural light, and as a means of attenuating sound. The interplay of colors of the concrete arches and wooden louvers in combination with the play of light and shadow create a nearly spiritual atmosphere in the space below.

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