Le Meridien | Zhengzhou, China | Shma

Le Meridien Hotel is in an urban intersection of Zhengzhou City, China. It is a small-scale renovation project with around 6,000 SQM of landscape area in front of an existing five-star hotel completed in 2013 by Neri & Hu. The client’s brief is looking for a stunning hotel frontage landscape to improve the overall appearance as well as resolving the ground parking spaces and vehicular movement at the same time. With the location that is in a quite densely populated area, we set to achieve a landscape that is interactive, imaginative, and artistically crafted to become the new landmark for this neighborhood.

With respect to the historical weaving textile industry of Zhengzhou, the designer created sculptural-like landscape weaves and folds to reveal an aesthetically pleasing public space. A series of undulating lawn stripes represent the silk being woven – up and down – into fabric sheets by traditional machines. Interval space is defined by matching the existing lobby pillars and architectural orders to stitch the landscape and building together in the master plan, seamlessly integrated with the car parking layout. Water feature stripes with sculpture is proposed in front of the lobby drop-off as the main welcoming elements.

The use of two different colours for the finishing stainless steel for the planters is to play with the unique public/private characters of the urban hotel. When viewed from the public roadside, brilliant bronze colour is used to project outgoing and fun energy signifying this urban corner, while black mirror material is selected to achieve a calmer and more relaxing when perceived from the hotel side looking out.

With the fact that there is a massive structure of a new underground metro station beneath half of the landscape spaces, the designer took great care in the coordination of paving patterns, manholes and planting soil depth to achieve a simplistic design result. This includes camouflaging the four ventilation shafts and emergency staircase structure that pops up in the landscape with mirror finishes making them disappear visually.

After the landscape was completed, it lightens up the whole hotel district with the wavy lawn stripe, the unified reflective water feature, and the interplay of reflection from mirrored planter finishes. It’s a privately owned public space that becoming a new gathering spot catered for various activities from meeting up with friends, and Instagram selfies to wedding photoshoots. The landscape is being perceived as a new landmark of this intersection and draws many interests from people in the neighbourhood and beyond.

Le Meridien | Zhengzhou, China | SHMA

Location: Zhengzhou City, China

Landscape Architect:  Shma Company Limited

Landscape Area: 6000 sq.m.

Design Director: Prapan Napawongdee

Landscape Architect: Qiwen Huang, Thanapol Masuchand
Graphic Designer: Thanaphum Thongprasert , Warunya Rujeewong

Horticulturist: Tanee Sawasdee

Client & Developer: Central China

Architect: Neri&Hu

About Damian Holmes 5729 Articles
Damian Holmes is the Founder and Editor of World Landscape Architecture (WLA). He is a registered landscape architect (AILA) working in international design practice in Australia. Damian founded WLA in 2007 to provide a website for landscape architects written by landscape architects. Connect on Linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/damianholmes/