Rooftop Oasis by V Studio Enlightens Beijing’s Golden Resources Mall
No one would ever guess that this oasis exists on the roof of Beijing’s enormous Golden Resources Mall—at 6 million square feet, it’s nearly twice the size of the Mall of America. But the indoor-outdoor aerie by V Studio founder Hu Quanchun takes up just 3,500 square feet.
Enclosed by high mortar walls planted with a perimeter of bamboo, a glass cube houses meeting and dining rooms with minimal furnishings for the company that operates the mall and its corporate guests. Full-height glazing blurs the boundary between interior and exterior as light filters into the 10-foot-high space, creating ever-changing shadow patterns throughout the day. Snowy painted-wood doors and solid-surfacing flooring are intended to disappear, eliminating all traces of materiality, so the U-shape space remains pure. “The overall use of white allows the natural elements—sunshine, bamboo, wind—to be the focus,” Hu says. “Plus, it’s like a traditional Chinese ink painting, with a large white space and few strokes.”
This contemporary adaption of the ancient concept of a Chinese scholar’s garden requires little maintenance other than the occasional trimming and watering of the bamboo. As an added bonus, the slender trees dampen the consumeristic noises below.