The Hotel in a Quarry: JADE + QA’s Groundscraper Hospitality Scheme

Designed by JADE + QA, the Intercontinental Shanghai Wonderland Hotel in China is the world’s first hotel located in a disused quarry. We look at the remarkable project

Nestled in a former quarry, the Intercontinental Shanghai Wonderland Hotel is 18 levels high, yet only rises two stories above ground level, affording it ‘groundscraper’ status.

Designed with strong sustainability credentials by Martin Jochman’s studio JADE + QA in collaboration with ATKINS, it features a host of luxury facilities, including an underwater restaurant, a ballroom, swimming pools and an aquarium. 

Access to lower levels is afforded by a ‘glass waterfall’ at the core of the building, creating a division between the two guest wings. This hosts observation lifts alongside a vertical circulation core.

The project features a low profile grass roof, which, in combination with its minimal verticality, allows it to exert a minimal impact on the surrounding area.

The two lowest levels are submerged in water, which alongside the rock mass of the quarry creates a microclimate for the site. This in turn aids cooling in the summer and heating in the winter, boosting the project’s sustainability.