Ever since man started building, structures have come a long way in evolution. Originating from very simple structures, civil engineering has now entered the realm of construction challenges; somewhere dictated by architectural requirements and somewhere quite impossible-to-reach places. One such example is of Songjiang Shimao Hotel which is currently under construction in Songjang, China. Only very recently, Atkins, a British engineering firm, propounded erection of a handsome building extending far downward into a 100-meter pit situated near the base of Tianmashan Mountain. The Shimao Wonderful Intercontinental Hotel which consists of 19 floors and 380 rooms is unique in its design as it is being built on the site of an abandoned and otherwise neglected open-pit mine.
The design of this luxury hotel encompasses underwater lounges and guestrooms. The water of the quarry will be utilized to flood some portion of the hotel; giving it a look of submerged edifice in a beautiful lake. The images exhibit an artificial waterfall cascading down into the rock near the front part of the hotel. The main lounge, wreathed in green vegetation and natural rock, would be illuminated through sunlight. Moreover the hotel would have sports facilities; some of its additional features include rock climbing and bungee jumping and also an aquarium almost ten meters deep.
One very interesting characteristic which deserves a special mention here is that the five-star hotel uses geothermal energy to fulfill its electrical and heating requirements. The surrounding rock provides good protection from heat and environment.
Around (US) $555 million have already been invested in the project by The Shanghai Shimao Property Group and the hotel is expected to start functioning between late 2014 and early 2015.