Tag Archives: china

design: kossman.dejong urbanium pavilion @ shanghai expo

18 Jun

OK.  So we know it’s a little late . . . but good design should never go unrewarded, no matter how long it takes to get it, just ask Van Gogh.

The kossman.dejong designed urbanium pavillion shanghai expo is dedicated to representing the quality of life for families across the globe at the Chinese pavilion, and given that many of China’s billion strong population will have never travelled outside their state, nor have had much experience of life outside the ‘iron-curtain’ it would be no surprise that after visiting the pavilion they’d be itching to get out there and start using their passport.

Visitors are led through five areas in the pavilion: home, work, connected, learn and health, and each corresponds to a different aspect of family life. Every sub-pavilion has a different layout, using multiple projection screens, lighting and sound. Instead of building actual cities, the designers used everyday objects to build residential areas.

What has been achieved though is truly jawdropping stuff, we just wish we could go back and do it all over again . . .


fashion: AP. is off to Beijing with Burberry, join us?

13 Apr

Join us for a full on fash’ fest to whet those appetites that are starved without a major show schedule . . .

BurberryBeijing today at 13:30  GMT+1.

The countdown has begun . . .


design: Thomas Heatherwick to design London 2012 Olympic cauldron.

7 Apr

Beijing 2008 will go down as the Olympics of spectacle, but already the London 2012 Olympics could be billed as the design Olympics.  With the Olympic park masterplanned by ForeignOfficeArchitects, the Olympic Stadium designed by HOKsport, the aquatics centre by Zaha Hadid, and the velodrome by Hopkins Architects.  It seems Locog have left nothing to chance by working with the best in their field . . .

It seems they have wanted to push this even further though by the appointment of Danny Boyle he of Slumdog millionaire fame to oversee the Opening ceremony, ensuring they are both artistic and relevant – promising to be “epic and intimate“.

Organisers have also announced the designer of the iconic Olympic cauldron.  The cauldron is the iconic emblem of the games, ensuring the spirit of Olympus watches over every modern games, and usually becomes the very symbol of each host city to the millions of television viewers across the globe – step forward to the challenge then Mr Thomas Heatherwick.

You may recognise Heatherwick from earlier projects including the British pavilion for the Shanghai expo (above) or the sculpture ‘B of the Bang’ erected for the Manchester Commonwealth games (below) – if the cauldron looks anything like these two earlier projects then we could be in for something truly special indeed . . .

And here we take a brief look at some earlier cauldrons from the Olympic movement . . .

top row: 1976 (montreal, canada); 2010 (vancouver, canada); 2004 (athens, greece)
bottom: 2002 (salt lake city, USA); 2000 (sydney, australia); 1992 (barcelona, spain)



architecture: waterhouse hotel Shanghai

31 Mar

As anyone who has been to Shanghai will tell you the Bund is where the action happens, and anyone can also tell you that the South Bund has, for some time, been the less glamorous side to be – well not any longer.

Like the South Bank in London, the left bank in Paris,the South Bund has enjoyed something of a renaissance.  There is no letting of the financial might of the chinese government and the money that was literally thrown at the the area along the Bund in time for the expo has brought a new lease of life to the area.  It is this new lease of life that see’s the Waterhouse hotel take form, and my what a form it is too.

Neri & Hu Design and Research Office, one of China’s leading architectural voices, entirely transformed the 1930’s building but maintained the original façade. Lyndon Neri explains the design ethos for The Waterhouse: “This is a hotel that puts the emphasis on the traveller in search of some meaning, and not just the luxury component of living.” A conceptual blending of the antique and the contemporary, The Waterhouse is a complex dissociation and amalgamation of interior and exterior as well as public and private spaces, leading to a unique and entirely new experience for guests and locals alike.


Most major hotels in Shanghai are in the vibrant Pudong district, missing the magnificent view entirely, whilst the Waterhouse puts that view at it’s very heart. The Waterhouse at South Bund prides itself on integrating into the traditional local environment while challenging its boundaries and distinguishing itself absolutely in order to provide each guest with an unforgettable experience.


just for fun: Shanghai Disney takes over the Bund

4 Mar

As London sees the installation of giant rings across the city ahead of the Olympic games being help there next year, could this mock up image be a way to build excitement about the new Disney park in Shanghai due to open in 2014?

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