The Temple House

by Sophie Cullen on Oct 8, 2015 in Architecture
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Located close to the thousand-year-old Daci Temple, a striking restored exterior means the Temple House sits well within the context of its surroundings

Located close to the thousand-year-old Daci Temple, a striking restored exterior means the Temple House sits well within the context of its surroundings

Located in the heart of Chengdu — the provincial capital of Sichuan province, China — The Temple House is a hotel whose design is steeped in history and tradition

With both architecture and interiors by Make Architects for Swire Hotels, The Temple House in Chengdu is the third in Swire's flourishing House Collective portfolio, following The Upper House in Hong Kong and The Opposite House in Beijing. The hotel is part of a large-scale mixed-use development by Sino-Ocean Land and Swire Properties, forming part of Chengdu's Daci Temple Cultural and Commercial Complex.

The Temple House_Courtyard

The beautifully restored century-old Chinese courtyard building, first built in the Qing dynasty, welcomes guests on arrival

Acquiring its name from the nearby temple, the inspiration for the design came largely from the surrounding area of Chengdu itself. Katy Ghahremani, Make partner and lead architect on the project, states: "The design was not a linear process. It was an iterative dialogue with Swire Hotels which made the process much more interesting. We could look at the design holistically and this
created a really dynamic relationship between the design of the hotel's external and internal spaces."

The Temple House_Staircase

The recurring, stepped light well brings the striking magnificence of the terraced Chengdu landscape into the interior spaces

Entry for the guests is through a magnificently restored Qing dynasty heritage building, Bitieshi. Here, traditional brickwork, wood carvings, timber ceilings and floors, step stones, overhanging roofs and flying eaves have been preserved and enhanced, so that visitors encounter a real arrival experience, transitioning through the two-storey-high courtyard into the reception area. The restoration of the courtyard itself was one of the greatest challenges for the firm as it had sat derelict and unused for many years, but with the help of a heritage consultant, they managed to transform the space to its traditional former glory.

This is an excerpt from the “A Sense of Place" article from the October 2015 issue of Perspective magazine.

To continue reading, get your copy of Perspective.

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