Some people say “If the West Lake is the symbol of Hangzhou City, the Grand Canal is definitely the essence.” Comparing to the alluring and famous West Lake, the Grand Canal that flows quietly for ages seems more representative of the locals’ daily life. Served as the main artery between northern and southern China, the Grand Canal not only boosts prosperity, but also provides a peaceful and cozy environment. Therefore, the two banks of the canal have become the most livable place very early.
Project name: DOTHINK · DAJA ELEGANT MANSION Experience Center
Category: sales center & property owners’ club
Clients: DOTHINK, DAJA
Location: Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
Interior design firm: GFD
Design coordination: Ye Fei
Chief designer: Lin Jiaxiang
Design assistant: Jin Mingjie
Area: 1,081 m2
Completion time: December 2019
Main materials: stainless steel, sintered stone, marble, resin board, wood veneer, fabric covering
Photography: YUJI ART
The Grand Canal has nurtured people from one generation to another and also witnessed changes and development of the city. As dim lights once scattered along flagstone roads are replaced by dazzling lights of numerous homes nowadays, the dwelling culture related to the Grand Canal has been updated as well over the years. However, the locals’ affection for the canal hasn’t been changed at all. People who grew up along the canal aspire to relive the old days.
Hangzhou is a place that boasts both dignity as well as a living atmosphere. ELEGANT MANSION is a local residential property development, which features three kinds of low-density architectural forms including Oriental private house, innovative stacked villa and high-rise building. The project is the sales center of the property development, which also serves as a club for the occupants. Stepping into the foyer, a sedate reception desk comes into view, which adds a peaceful ambience to the area.
The ultra-clear laminated glass screen presents a landscape painting that depicts a peaceful view containing mountains, a boat and a small pavilion, etc. The ceiling is clad in rippled stainless steel, and lights on it shine down on the black art installation beneath, which has ripple-like patterns as well. As walking into this area, people would feel close to nature. Between the foyer and the negotiation area is the space for property model display. With simplistic lines and clear layers, this area well showcases diverse architectural forms of the residential property development near the Grand Canal.
The negotiation area is spacious, filled with bright light. The grey marble flooring that extends from the foyer, and sintered stone walls featuring dark hues and clear grain, together inject a sense of flexibility into the placid environment. Different combinations of chairs and tables and subtly arranged spaces offer multiple choices for different groups of people. The water bar on the side is given an elegant ambience, enabling people to relax.
In the elevator hall, the ceiling uses rippled stainless steel sheet as well, which resembles the flowing Grand Canal. Besides, the walls of walkways are covered with artistic fabric with ink-wash patterns, thereby presenting diverse forms of the Grand Canal water within the entire space in a unique way.
The VIP room, i.e. contract signing room, is endowed with elegant and delicate adornments. Wood-grain wall panels keep the room serene and solemn, while the ink-wash fabric with a sense of layering adds the finishing touch to the space, and also inherits the spirit of the Grand Canal.
Beside the staircase, multiple regular blocks characterized by wood veneers constitute a wall with concave voids. Lamps are dotted in those concaves and emit varying beams of light, which shows a sedate sense of history as well as the art of light and space. The underground space is mainly used as a fitness center, with a meeting room and a janitorial room arranged at the ends of the floor respectively.
Different from the one beside the staircase, wood-clad walls in this area have a flat surface. Besides, lights are arranged in order, which creates a soft atmosphere. Behind the geometrically shaped reception desk, artistic resin panels generate gentle interplay of light and shadows. As taking a closer look at those panels, people can see the delicate textures, which enhance the quality of the space. This material can also been seen in the elevator hall, which softens the light source and echoes the theme and artistic conception of the whole space.
In the swimming pool, there is a large wall that interprets the beauty of Jiangnan landscape in a modern way. And the ceiling is dotted with lights, presenting interesting and fascinating visual effects. The grey sintered stone wall in the resting area can reflect light, brightening the overall space. In the gym, a large area of wood grain helps to bring in a natural ambience. A warm and grey hue set the overall tone of dressing rooms, where marbles and wood grain are well matched, together highlighting elegance and a low profile.
As the Grand Canal boasts a lasting appeal, ELEGANT MANSION has its elegance and artistic conception. Showing respect for natural resources, echoing architectural forms and living styles along the canal, and incorporating the local culture context of several thousand years, it welcomes urbanites to enjoy an Oriental-style serene life.
GFD, founded more than a decade ago, is dedicated to working on interior design of real estate projects, hotels, commercial spaces and upscale private residences. The two design directors both obtained a bachelor’s degree in China Academy of Art, and then had further study in Politecnico di Milano and University of the Arts London respectively. In addition, they have been engaged in teaching activities in college for many years. The creative team members all graduated from design colleges at home and abroad.
GFD emphasizes integrated design quality control, from spaces to furnishings, schemes to construction drawings. And its works have been published on multiple international design media platforms and won various design awards at domestic and global levels. GFD established a branch company called QIANDU Home Furnishings, with a view to integrating prime design and product resources worldwide. So far, GFD has carried out design practices in various mainland Chinese cities, and branched out globally. In recent years, its team has completed many upscale private residence projects in New York, Sydney, Vancouver, Los Angeles and Hong Kong.