The world’s lowest-lying hotel opened in Shanghai’s Songjiang district late last year.
The five-star InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland has only two floors above ground level, with 16 floors underground and two floors underwater with an aquarium. It is also dubbed a “quarry hotel” because it was built on the side of an 88-meter deep, water-filled quarry.
The luxurious complex, which is also known as the “Deep Pit Hotel,” has 336 guest rooms and suites offering a panoramic view of the former Shenkeng quarry, virtually a giant hole dug into a sweeping plain. Each room boasts curved balconies where guests can enjoy views of waterfalls cascading from the surrounding cliffs.
Local papers in Shanghai have reported that the hotel is constantly overbooked, so much so that its operator has stopped accepting walk-in check-ins at the counter.
Of course, you will need a deep pocket to dive deep into the one-of-a-kind experience the hotel offers. The standard room rate is 3,600 yuan (US$530) per night.
“I designed many different types of buildings in the UK, Europe, Dubai, and so on but this one was totally different and became almost [my] life work, so that’s why I’m saying it’s probably the most important building that I have designed,” said chief architect Martin Jochman, who is known for the sail-shaped Burj Al-Arab skyscraper in Dubai.
The team faced delays and a host of technical challenges, including adhering to strict earthquake regulations and maintaining water levels.
The developer of the hotel is the Hong Kong-based Shimao Group, which hails the project as an ambitious architectural and engineering feat.