We’ve seen this done with football stadiums, amusement parks and shopping complexes (with the last two examples having already happened in San Antonio), but architect
Martin Jochman and his studio JADE + QA had gone ahead and designed a hotel in a quarry. In fact, the International Shanghai Wonderland Hotel (a.k.a. the Shimao Wonderland Intercontinental) — located in Songjiang, Shanghai, China and opened on November 15th of last year — is the world’s first hotel to be designed and built in a quarry, in which only two levels are above ground, while the other 16 levels rest among and into the quarry below. The building’s international award-winning design (which won said award all the way back in 2006) includes amenities such as an underwater restaurant and aquarium (located in the two lowest underwater levels), all set within a form aiming to minimize its impact on the local environment.
A grassy green roof resides at the top of the quarry, helping the structure keep a low profile (with help from the aforementioned two above-level stories, while the remaining 16 slide down the quarry in the style of a “glass waterfall” with a vertical circulation, observation lifts, and two guest wings flanking at either side. At the bottom surface level floor, the hotel holds a
conference/ballroom center and swimming pools. The hotel’s design and site orientation, low profile, green roof and other thermal features from the quarry rock and nearby body of water allow for passive sustainable feature on the site, resulting in a micro-climate unique to the building, allowing summer cooling and heating in the winter.