• Inspired interiors illuminate Shanghai’s premier hotel

    28 August 2013

    Gracing the banks of the Huangpu River in the Luijiazui financial district, the luxuriously appointed Mandarin Oriental Pudong Shanghai forms part of Harbour City, a new 25-hectare, mixed-use development with direct access to the riverside promenade and the new Shanghai Metropolitan Marine Yacht Club.

    Lobby at Mandarin Oriental Pudong, Shanghai webThe Mandarin Oriental Pudong Shanghai includes 318 guest rooms and 44 suites, many with clear views of the river. There are also six different dining venues, an indoor pool and luxury spa.  A unique collaboration between Hong Kong’s BUZ Design and China’s Jiang & Associates Design Co., Ltd (J&A) in conceptualising the hotel’s public spaces has resulted in sumptuously appointed dedicated areas. The team’s scope included the lobby, lobby lounge, Qi Bar, ballroom, function rooms, executive lounge and the hotel’s luxurious spa, fitness and pool facilities. The design is enhanced by an extensive art collection of original works by China’s leading creative talents, which is widely displayed throughout the property.

    function1“Over the years, BUZ Design has worked on Mandarin Oriental properties in Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok, Macau, Geneva and now Shanghai,” states BUZ Design Principal, J Lee Rofkind. “Each project has been unique, but Mandarin Oriental’s sense of style and sophistication is unwavering, so being involved in each project has been a pleasure. Creating a luxury hotel that features so much wonderful contemporary Chinese art has been yet another outstanding experience.”

    “The collaboration between BUZ Design and J&A was mutually beneficial,” states Rofkind.  “With over 300 staff in multiple offices across China, J&A has large in-house resources, an in-depth understanding of the clientele and knowledge of locally available products. They proved to be an excellent partner, enabling us to meet a very tight pre-opening schedule.”

    Founded by Frank Jiang 15 years ago, J&A is one of China’s largest design firms with more than 300 designers and offices located in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Beijing and Dalian. J&A specialises in designing multi-use urban developments which includes branded hotels & shopping malls. The firm has earned unanimous praise from CITIC, China Resources, Vanke and other developers. BUZ Design and J&A anticipate many successful collaborations in the future.

    New Waterfront art destination

    MOPUD Photography Part 1Glistening like a rare jewel from a distance and in keeping with BUZ Design’s concept of a gallery-hotel showcasing up-and-coming Chinese artists, Mandarin Oriental Pudong Shanghai is set to become an new art destination in its own right. The property is enhanced by an impressive collection of 4,000 original works of contemporary Chinese art sourced from 50 world renowned artists displayed throughout the property’s public spaces and guestrooms.

    Spa Double Room at Mandarin Oriental Pudong, ShanghaiMore than 3,500 works of art are bespoke commissions for the hotel. Among the prestigious names featured in the collection is Chinese artist, Lai De Quan, a national-level master artist whose pieces have been presented to several world dignitaries.

    Master Lai has created 43 porcelain artworks especially for the hotel and invented a new technique of glaze painting directly onto traditional Jingdezhen porcelain for his panel collection, Scenes of Jiangnan, which are on display in the guestroom corridors, the executive lounge and the presidential suite.

    “China is home to some of the most creative and inspired artists in the world today,” continues Rofkind. “Works featured throughout Mandarin Oriental Pudong Shanghai showcase the country’s leading and upcoming artistic talents, making Mandarin Oriental’s first hotel in Shanghai a unique, must-see destination in Pudong.

    Public Spaces: The Jewels of the Hotel

    The striking lobby is graced by a series of oversized crystal rings and an enormous, floor-to-ceiling mosaic wall comprised of 71,459 glass tiles.  Illuminated from behind, the mosaic becomes a glowing art installation visible some considerable distance from the hotel and seemingly beckons to be explored. Created by Chinese artist, Miao Tong, the mosaic depicts an ancient forest scene that shimmers as the ceiling lights and people traffic moving through the lobby play upon the glass tiles.

    _58A7456The hotel lobby also features customised contemporary screens, as well as sculptural reception and concierge desks seemingly carved from large blocks of beautifully patterned marble. The warm bronze and earth tones incorporated within this stunning entry were inspired by, and reflect, sunsets on Shanghai’s Huangpu River.

    The unique three-layered special finish sculptural wall behind the reception desk leads visitors to the Riviera Lobby Lounge, an oasis of calm and comfort.  Sofas and chairs overlook the tranquil scene beyond of the river promenade and the hotel’s outdoor terrace and gardens. Contemporary Chinese paintings completing this tranquil ambiance are integrated into each column and abstract polished steel plinths create pedestals for sculptural pieces.

    Overlooking the lobby area is the sleek Qi Bar, a cosy and welcoming bar imbued with warm, welcoming colours complimented by metal and glass. BUZ Design included comfortable oversized seating, a bar with a leather elbow rest a la the Captains Bar at Mandarin Oriental Hotel Hong Kong and a sparkling chandelier visible from the lobby.  Floor-to-ceiling windows and a large outdoor seating area overlook a private scenic courtyard – a truly unique space in this hectic financial heart of the city and one that has resulted in Qi Bar becoming the nightlife destination for discerning patrons and multiple private parties since opening.

    DSCN0590Catering to events of every kind, Mandarin Oriental Pudong Shanghai’s Grand Ballroom features a rich contemporary design with double high ceilings, linked rings of crystal chandeliers, back-lit onyx panels and plush carpet and caters for up to 500 guests.

    The additional Oriental Ballroom of a similar design caters to 250 guests. The spacious ballroom foyer soars upwards, with eight-metre-high ceilings and back-lit stained glass detailing. An additional five function rooms of varying sizes are also available for meeting and event options.

    On the second floor, the contemporary executive lounge takes inspiration from the sophisticated library of a scholarly Chinese Mandarin of old.   Wood panelling, onyx screens and more contemporary Chinese art make the space inviting.

    A variety of seating for dining, cocktails or lounging offers comfort for all patrons.  A modern buffet area also provides breakfast, cocktail snacks and treats for executive floor guests.

    The Spa: an oasis in Pudong

    MOPUD SPA TEPIDARIUMUndoubtedly the city’s most luxurious spa, this expansive 2,415 square metre space comes with 13 treatment suites, as well as a crystal steam room, aromatic experience showers, and a tepidarium. There is also a 24-hour, state-of-the-art gym and a stunning 25-metre swimming pool and sauna facilities.

    “We chose butterflies as the concept for the spa, inspired by the beauty and metamorphosis of butterflies and their transformation into graceful beauty.  Mandarin continued the concept and named each of the treatment rooms “butterfly” in 13 different languages,” states Rofkind. “Each treatment room includes its own shower, changing and treatment areas.

    The VIP rooms also include the unique Mandarin experience shower, a custom made bathtub and his and hers treatment beds.  Various images of butterflies are rendered throughout the Spa, with superb sculptural and ceramic installations by Chinese artists Kang Qin, Shi Hai and Zhou Wu. The spa also features pale oak floors, sandy-coloured marble and mother of pearl. The resulting surroundings are a haven of peace and serenity.”

    BUZ Design was founded in Hong Kong in 2001, mandated to provide a high level of service and creativity on hospitality projects around the world. Treating each project and client individually BUZ Design is noted for creating luxurious interiors with thoughtful and original concepts.  BUZ Design Bangkok is poised to launch in early 2014.

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