Tianzhoushan Tea House
by Archiplein

| 3 comments
 

The folded concrete walls of this lakeside visitor centre in China's Anhui Province were designed by architects Archiplein to mimic the uneven surfaces of the surrounding mountains (+ slideshow).

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

The two-storey building sits at the base of Jiǔhuá Shān, one of the five Sacred Mountains of China, and provides a restaurant and rest stop for the many pilgrims that visit the landmark each year.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

Architects Feng Yang, Leroux Marlène and Jacquier Francis of Archiplein wanted to design a building that merges with the landscape, like in traditional Chinese landscape paintings.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

"In this kind of painting, the building and the nature are not two separated systems stuck together; they are represented as an integrated whole where the architecture is not the main focusing point of the composition," they explained.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

The building is constructed from concrete, which was formed against wooden boards to give a rough texture to the exterior surfaces.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

The walls zigzag in and out on both levels, creating a series of facets along the lakeside facade.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

"The strategy is to consider the building as the continuity of the existing topography so as to reduce its impact on the land," said the architects. "The building is bended by following the natural movement and defines a set of different faces that minimises its size."

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

Dozens of square windows are scattered across the elevations and matching skylights dot the rooftops.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

An internal ramp connects the two floors inside the building, which both contain large dining areas filled with tables and chairs.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

The architects have also added a shallow pool of water with steps leading down to its surface.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

Photography is by Frédéric Henriques.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

Here's a project description from Archiplein:


Tianzhoushan Tea House

The project is located in Anhui province, in one of the five sacred Taoist mountains of China.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

To define the new relation between this building and the surrounding nature, the project has been inspired by the typical Chinese painting.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

In this kind of painting, the building and the nature are not two separated systems stuck together, they are represented as an integrated whole where the architecture is not the main focusing point of the composition.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

It reproduces in a way the natural form and follows the general movement of the landscape.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

For this specific situation we develop this philosophy of vanishing. The strategy is to consider the building as the continuity of the existing topography so as to reduce its impact on the land.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

The building is bended by following the natural movement and defines as set of different faces that minimises its size.

Concrete Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein

Status: realised
Type: architecture, touristic infrastructure
Data: 2009-2012, 1000 m², 3M €
Location: Anhui, China
Team: Feng, Jacquier, Leroux

Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein
3D building model
Site plan of Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein
Site plan - click for larger image
Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein
Floor plan - click for larger image
Section of Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein
Section - click for larger image
Elevation of Tianzhoushan Tea House by Archiplein
Elevation - click for larger image
  • bluelikeanorange

    Timber is more suitable for a tea house.

  • jolo

    Looks a bit like a highway lost in nature. The interior is really great though. The light reflection and light beams combined with the minimalistic style really makes you feel you’re in a cave complex next to an amazing river between the mountains. It really reframes the surroundings; in a good way.

    • kdf

      I thought the whole point of making buildings was so that we didn’t have to live in dark caves anymore?