Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li in Chengdu, Sichuan

Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li, Chengdu Shopping Mall Interior, Chinese Architecture Images

Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li in Chengdu

3 Aug 2020

Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li

Design: Design: Elena Galli Giallini Ltd and Spawton Architecture

Location: Chengdu, China

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu is a lower ground Shopping arcade forming part of a mixed-use development which includes a luxury boutique hotel and Grade A office uses. It sits in a prime location in the city centre of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province located in southwest China.

Chengdu is now a burgeoning second tier city, renowned for its social, leisurely lifestyle and tea houses. The development is becoming the centre of Chengdu’s major shopping and cultural district, a place imbued in tradition and history. Directly connecting to Chunxi Road metro station, it links with the popular Chunxi Road area in Jinjiang District.

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

“The brief of this retail project required an innovative approach that could set this shopping mall apart from conventional images and formulas. We started from the consideration that modern shopping malls need to change the role they perform in peoples’ lives, becoming hubs for urban lifestyle that includes work, play, eat and shop. Our scheme exemplifies this new approach, introducing novelty in design and strong individuality”.

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

The retail complex is spread over three floors above ground and a basement shopping mall-arcade;
it features a low rise, open air plan and lane-driven scheme defined by outdoor shopping mixed carefully with dining, drinking, entertainment and live performances. The site features traditional courtyards and buildings throughout with the Buddhist DACI TEMPLE, first built in 618AD as the composition focus.

Around, heritage led architecture embraces the traditional Sichuan style with modern interpretation. Visitors mingling and gathering amidst lanes, courtyards and plazas can enjoy unique experiences.

The client brief aimed to define an interior design for the lower ground arcade (GFA 18,000sqm) which would complement the development and its uniquely distinct site, whilst providing a strong interrelationship with the upper retail complex.

Juxtapositions of old and new, heritage and nature, place and history were the essential themes for this project. The design created an environment which relates precisely to the place’ history and culture, its local spirit (its “Genius Loci”), avoiding the trap of making an indistinct shopping mall. It finds a language which defines its character amongst the repurposed, traditional architecture above. The lower arcade layout privileges interconnectedness, linking key areas above whilst working as a functional network below. It forms a loop of public space flanked by high street retail. Significant elements anchor the corners cinema, supermarket, bookshop and a Metro station.

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

The design aimed to generate dynamism and distinction, while maintaining an atmosphere of coherency and serenity. A vibrant environment, attractive visual elements and multiple amenities are key to providing leisure and entertainment for compelling experiences for the customers. Materials, colours and lights enhance quality through subtle elegance, defining the mall identity. Spatial layout and features emphasize naturalness with sophistication.

“Our project refers to the underground world of the Chinese landscape, rocks symbolism and “caves” imagery with their complex system of “worlds within worlds”, underground streams, lakes and “skylights” as reference for the compositions. Caves are containers for mystery and are believed to be places of special purified “QI”. Our design aimed to evoke that special kind of energy with its mysterious qualities”.

A subterranean stream, the arcade loop flows with a fluid, seamless design eroding the clusters of shops. The ambiance exhibits warmth and a tranquil quality encouraging inhabitation. The ceiling is a key element characterized by rhythmically distributed fissures and holes that incorporate lighting and signage systems.

Strategical skylights lined with copper mesh and theatrically lit act as focal points and facilitate navigation. The arcade has a counterpoint in the dramatic, sculptural design of functionally specific areas that generate memorable unique spaces, immediately recognizable.

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

The Metro entrance, the main access for people arriving by public transport, is a modern gateway. Envisaged as massive cave with angled stone walls and light penetrating from the plaza above, the Entrance hall leads to the core of the arcade loop through a digital corridor, a place unfolding like a traditional folded scroll for visual, digital art and exhibitions.

As metaphorical, massive caves, escalator lobbies display organic forms and striking proportions. Lobbies allow vertical circulation and invite people to linger. They open up toward the arcade, eliciting a feeling of expansion and openness. Inside, carefully defined geometry of stone-clad walls display a variety of man-made “rock” formations in granite and lava-stone rods with a variety of surface finishes. This system of bespoke prefabricated panels, factory –made and mounted on site achieved accuracy and cost control whilst the stone palette relates to the local materials of surrounding heritage buildings.

Sculptural frames in GRC, encased within illuminated back drops of glass rods and copper, showcase the advertisement panels as jewellery boxes.

Throughout the scheme, natural materials, stone, meshes and metals combinations with different colours, textures and finishes, blend in harmonious interplay.

Delicately detailed metalwork highlights the key features with a mix of grey steel and naturally burnished copper. A split rectangle forms the door handles, the inclined glass balustrade held with brackets crafted from solid metal, hanging shop signage, all are balancing the boldness of the scheme with clear-cut detailing. Strong shapes generate eye-catching points and visual interest.

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

The washrooms display a dynamism complementing the liveliness and sculptural qualities of the overall design. While fulfilling functionality and user-friendliness, the design focuses on attractiveness and novelty, encompassing a playful dimension. Vigorous shapes hewn in a white and dark grey solid surface material and unconventional lighting set them apart from the typical washroom ambiance.

A collection of freestanding sinks are clustered beneath mirror units suspended from the ceiling, folded planes line up to form cubicles, urinals purposely disguise their function with angled, multifaceted partitions, other standard units provide function variety, seating, makeup counters or baby change areas, through subtle diversification.

The designers focused on creating a World-Class environment that would attract and retain consumers, and the leasing team set ambitious targets for brands that are not yet in Chengdu.

The development is becoming Chengdu’s new lifestyle epicentre contributing to its growth. Chengdu was listed by Forbes Magazine in 2010 as one of the fastest growing cities in the world.

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li, Chengdu – Building Information

Client: Swire Properties and Sino-Ocean Land
Lead Interior Designers: Elena Galli Giallini Ltd and Spawton Architecture
Project Location: Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China
Area: overall Retail complex: 114,000 m2; Shopping Mall Arcade: 18,000m2
Status: built

“Urban Land Institute (ULI)” – Global Excellence Awards 2015: Winner
“Society of British and International Design 2015 (SBID)”- New Build and Development: Winner
“Asia Property Awards (China Property Awards 2015) – Best of the Best ‘Best Commercial Development
in China’: Winner
“Architizer A+ Awards 2016”: Finalist
“HKIA – Merit Award 2015”: Winner (with Architectural Team)
“FX Awards 2015” Retail Design: Finalist
“FX Awards 2015” Global Design: Finalist
“FX Awards 2015” Public Space Design: Finalist
“WAN – Commercial Awards 2015”: Finalist

Sotkl Sino Ocean Taikoo Li Chengdu

Photography: Virgile Simone Bertrand

Sotkl – Sino Ocean Taikoo Li in Chengdu, Sichuan images / information received 030820

Location: Chengdu, China

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Chengdu, China is the capital of southwestern China’s Sichuan province.