Guangzhou Baiyun International Conference Center Phase II is situated at the western foothill of Baiyun Mountain in Canton, China, spanning 170,000 m². The objective is to establish a top-tier conference venue and showcase Canton’s story to worldwide visitors.
The site borders Phase I to the south, Baiyun Mountain and Dajinzhong Reservoir to the east, and residential areas to the west and north. The architecture spans five floors with a total area of 136,124m², featuring three main internal courtyards, multi-level rooftop gardens, and observation platforms. The four entrances accommodate various traffic streams, including main guests, VIPs, daily operations, and logistics. Challenges include designing a seamless transition between the building and surrounding, shielding the interior from distractions, organizing traffic flow, and showcasing Canton culture through courtyards and garden spaces while providing clear directions.
The context strategy focuses on integrating the mountainous backdrop, optimizing water systems, incorporating greenery, creating visual corridors, and emphasizing the building’s grandeur.
The landscape strategy accentuates the building’s magnificence by addressing the varied circulation requirements of conferences and catering to different attendees, including honored guests, logistics personnel, media, and security. The strategy also includes the creation of three themed inner courtyards based on the core concept of “Scenic Beauty Infused with Cantonese Charm.” The landscape design of the second and third floors adopts a minimalist approach and utilizes elevated viewing angles to direct visitors’ attention towards the stunning mountain scenery.
Exterior Landscape Design:
Continuation of the natural landscape: The mountainous forests extend the topography of Baiyun Mountain, creating a Fengshui pattern and serving as a visual background for the northern plaza.
Use of native plants: The exterior landscape emphasizes the region’s unique characteristics through the incorporation of native flora.
Dissolution of architectural boundaries: A shallow reflective pool outside the building’s boundaries softens the structure’s imposing presence, and the illuminated water surface mirrors the building at night, producing a grand and pure atmosphere.
Framing the architecture: The scale and proportions of the Southern Main Entrance Plaza are designed based on the maximum angle of view of a wide-angle lens (between 94° and 114°), framing the entire architecture.
Preservation of existing trees: The landscape design plan considers the existing site while maximizing the preservation of existing trees, including protective measures like providing adequate growing space, preserving natural habitats, installing barriers to prevent human disturbance, and spreading gravels to avoid standing water around tree roots.
Internal Courtyard Design:
East Entrance Courtyard: Inspired by the Danxia Mountain landform, the only World Natural Heritage site in Canton, the courtyard showcases Chinese natural beauty while highlighting the region’s unique characteristics. The landscape simulates the steep, flat-topped, and gentle-sloping foothills of the Danxia Mountain landform, creating a striking color palette reminiscent of the rich hues of the mountains.
Eastern Courtyard: Drawing from the Fenglai peak at Qinghui Garden, one of Canton’s four renowned Lingnan-style ancient gardens, the courtyard incorporates scenic paths like stepping stones, flat bridges, and rocky paths. Despite its small size, the courtyard captures the essence of mountain landscapes and Lingnan culture. The pavilion features a typical hexagonal design with a graceful, delicate curved roof and high-arched corners. Ten fragrant plants and fruit trees native to Canton are included in the courtyard.
Western Courtyard: Serving as a reception area for foreign guests, the courtyard’s theme is “The Historical Maritime Silk Road of Canton.” The layout incorporates an abstract representation of the ancient Silk Road map, illustrating Canton’s trading history through modern and minimalist design elements.
Multi-level Observation Platforms and Roof Gardens:
The design integrates multi-level observation platforms and roof gardens to create a cohesive atmosphere that extends from the interior to the exterior. The minimalist design of these spaces allows visitors to indulge in the beauty of the greenery and enjoy panoramic views of the magnificent landscape.
The Guangzhou Baiyun International Conference Center Phase II exemplifies a premier conference venue, seamlessly blending architectural and landscape design.This extraordinary fusion not only highlights the rich cultural heritage of Canton but also fulfills the functional requirements of the building，creating an enduring and inspiring space for visitors to experience and appreciate.
Location: 433 Qifu Road, Baiyun District, Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China.
Design year: 2020
Year Completed: 2023