Located in the northern Chinese city of Qinhuangdao, two hours drive east from Beijing, the coast – ‘Golden Coast’s rising popularity over the past decade parallels the country’s ‘urban escape’ movement, as overworked urbanites dream of rural simplicity. One of the resorts on this coast called ‘Aranya’ has gained significant popularity. It was built on an abandoned property and has been transformed into a laid-back seaside community attracting youngsters and overstressed city dwellers to its beach activities, art exhibitions, music festivals, minimalism landmark architecture edifices, and gourmet seafood. It has become an oasis for those seeking a peaceful and simple lifestyle surrounded by sand and surf.
Since 2018, there has been a remarkable increase of visitors to Aranya, creating a beach that is easily overloaded, especially during the summer months. Due to the crowded beaches and, as the sea is not always safe for everyone to play, more spaces in proximity with water amenities and play facilities are in high demand. Therefore, the developer searched for a site to provide interactive water amenities that could be easily managed. A 2-acre site directly adjacent to the beach was identified to accommodate amenities that cater to families with children seeking a more leisurely experience.
The water attraction encompasses several design elements including: a children’s pool, swimming pool, trellis,lounging areas, and a swing set. These programmed elements offer a consistently simple and modern appearance.They accommodate all user groups and provide a relaxing experience next to the sea. The water features were designed to minimize their environmental impact, featuring a circulating water filtration system that minimizes water usage. The hardscape surfaces are permeable and are colored to meet LEED requirements to minimize heat absorption.
The design of the children’s pools starts with a ‘lemon slice’, which is reminiscent of a lemon juice drink people typically enjoy while on beach vacations. To enhance the likeness of the pool to a lemon slice, the floor is comprised of crystal mosaic tiles made from recycled materials in three colors – ‘white, light yellow and yellow’. The multi-colored detailed mosaic tiles are strategically placed to graphically represent a lemon and are highlighted by the rippling water of the pool. The detailed richness of the mosaic tiles enhances this effect at close viewing angles. The pool is about 1.5 feet deep along its edge and gradually becomes shallower towards the centralized interactive water fountain. It has become a popular destination for families with younger children, as it is a safe and fun place to experience and enjoy the water.
In contrast to the bright yellow of the lemon pool, the neighboring pure white trellis structure and blue rectangular lap pool offer coolness and moments of tranquility. The infinity swimming pool offers picturesque views of the expansive sea and is designed to accommodate adults and older children. The nearby swing set provides a unique and playful experience on the beach with sea front views.
The project has been well-received by its users following the pandemic, as continued fear of the virus’s impact has heightened the demand and desire to explore safe outdoor environments. Its quality materials and construction, accommodation of varying age groups, and environmentally sensitive water system have made the project a model for resort design and attracted thousands of users. It has become a new landmark for Aranya Resort along the coast.
landscape architect: Ying Lou, Wei Guo, Peng Yan, Ailin Liu, Weixin Hu, Wenyi Gao,Yufeng Liu
developer : Aranya
Project Location : Qinhuangdao,Hebei,China
Year Built:July 2020