Pit hotel eliminates flood risk

Floodwalls, safe variations in water levels and flood discharge facilities safeguard InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland from potential inundation, according to hotel staff.
Pit hotel eliminates flood risk
Jiang Huihui / Ti Gong

InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland, a 5-star hotel constructed in a disused quarry in Sheshan, has become a new tourism landmark of the town since it opened at the end of last year. 

Floodwalls, safe variations in water levels and flood discharge facilities safeguard InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland of Songjiang District from potential inundation, according to hotel staff.

The world’s lowest 5-star hotel — known as the Tianma Pit Hotel or Shimao Quarry Hotel as it sunk into a disused quarry — opened to the public on November 15 last year and within 30 minutes the majority of rooms at the hotel some 88 meters below ground level had been booked out.

The hotel has one part above the ground, one part below the pit and above water and a third part below water. Two floors are above the ground and 15 below the pit or below water. The total construction area covers over 61,000 square meters and there are 336 guest rooms or suites.

Since three rivers run across the south, west and north sides of the hotel, the construction side put great emphasis on flood control.

Based on the statistics, the hotel built 4.2-meter-high floodwalls and a lake and made sure the variation in water levels were within the safety zone of 500mm. Six discharge facilities will be initiated if water levels ever exceed the safety zone.

In addition to its anti-flood capacity, the hotel can resist a 7-magnitude earthquake and has a firefighting water supply stored in the pit.

Each of the hotel’s guest rooms and suites have a garden view terrace from which guests can appreciate a cataract falling from a cliff.

“The hotel has more than 1,400 artworks. I hope it can be a hotel growing out of nature, instead of being a bionic architecture. The hotel speaks to the cliff, the waterfall, the lake and the mountain. It grows from the quarry,” said Martin Jochman, the hotel’s chief designer.

“Once I happened to visit Sheshan Hill and saw the disused quarry, which looked like an eyesore against the beautiful surrounding scenery. Then it occurred to me that I can build a hotel out from the quarry and transform a scar of the city into a treasure,” said Xu Rongmao, Shimao Group chairman.

Dream City, a theme park built by Shimao Group near the hotel, was unveiled on December 18 last year.

Pit hotel eliminates flood risk
Zhang Zhelun / Ti Gong

A file photo shows InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland in construction in August 2016. 

Pit hotel eliminates flood risk
Zhu Lin / Ti Gong

A file photo shows the quarry where InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland is located in October 2007. 

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