Construction has begun on Richard Meier & Partners Architects’ first building project in South Korea. Located in Gangneung, the 150-guestroom HH Resort Hotel and Spa is nestled in a dense forest of ageing pine trees at the end of a winding track up steep terrain. This majestic retreat overlooks the nearby East Sea of Korea with all hotel rooms benefiting from views out across the water.
The main bulk of the boutique hotel is anchored to the site with a 4-storey base which is sensitive to the gently curving topography of the site. Rising above this is a contrasting 15-storey trapezoidal tower with floating balconies which play with light and shadow throughout the day. A series of supporting volumes will also be constructed across the site.
Alongside the hotel rooms the development will include a restaurant, wellness spa, banquet hall, amphitheatre, exhibition hall, beach house and other amenities. The design of all buildings across the site are characteristic of the practice’s aesthetic, finished in varying shades of white with pre-cast concrete panels, metal, local stone and glass curtain walls.
Design Partner-in-Charge Dukho Yeon comments: “It is quite a challenge to design a good building on a site so spectacular and powerful by itself. The design here embodies our firm’s constant belief in the dialogue and striking the delicate balance of architecture and landscape, while creating a building both graceful and sensuous, and taking every advantage of the inherent culture and heritage of the site.”