The Opposite House in Beijing Unveils A Reimagined Experience
Beijing, October 2020 - The Opposite House, located in the heart of Beijing within the bustling Sanlitun neighborhood, unveils the completion of an inspired renovation, creating new experiences at its public spaces as well as dining and bar venues. Originally designed by acclaimed Japanese architect, Kengo Kuma in 2008, The Opposite House was the first House of The House Collective by Swire Hotels, a group of refined, highly individual properties, each with its own distinctive character. Standing as the brand’s “House of Art,” the reimagined spaces at The Opposite House offer guests an urban sanctuary blending bold contemporary art with Chinese traditions that draw inspiration from Beijing’s creative energy, complementing to Sanlitun’s lifestyle hot spot and fashionable atmosphere.
The House’s redesign blends contemporary art with present-day culture, from the new lobby concept, to three new dining and bar venues as well as an immersive gallery space. The addition of Union, a modern-day salon and bar concept, invites guests to exchange ideas over craft cocktails inspired by the ancient Silk Road, while Jing Yaa Tang, Chef Li Dong’s Michelin-starred masterpiece, reflects the connection between traditional and modern Chinese cuisine. Superfly, the new casual Sichuan bar and restaurant features vibrant interiors inspired by local street culture and pop art, which is juxtaposed by Frasca, a sleek trattoria serving Italian classics by chef Marino D’Antonio.
“Each House within The House Collective portfolio tells its own story through their unique architecture, design, art and cuisine,” said Dean Winter, Managing Director for Swire Hotels. “In Beijing, we’ve reimagined this concept for The Opposite House and curated a new experience, allowing us to further emphasize the property’s standing as a contemporary art gallery while also introducing a more vibrant selection of not only art, but local and international cuisine.”
The Opposite House’s new experience begins with Kengo Kuma’s “Origami” installation in the lobby area, which serves as the new reception wall and a beacon of light. Based on a lightweight suspension structure made of acrylic plates and metal frames to maximize light transmission. Kengo applied Tyvek, a translucent synthetic textile resembling hand-made paper, to create a screen of light with organic texture and shades.
The redesigned lobby space also includes the Atrium, which acts as a gallery space. The House curates new installations throughout the year, displaying works from talented Chinese and international artists, sharing a world of contemporary art, steeped in fresh cultural insights. Every installation is intended to stand alone, unique on its own but in harmony with the surroundings, to bring a sense of intimacy and resonance within the space.
In addition to Beijing’s globally renowned art scene, the capital also boasts a dynamic culinary landscape. Adding to the property’s famed restaurant Jing Yaa Tang, The Opposite House has launched three new dining and bar concepts:
Designed by critically acclaimed design firm, AvroKO, the sleek new bar embodies the spirit of 1920’s modernism, showcasing artwork and objects reminiscent of International Expos with copper architectural frames and metal mesh sheets. Taking inspiration from the ancient Silk Road, Union serves up a diversity of crafted cocktails that combine an array of flavours from China to the Mediterranean. Hidden elements such as a mini bar cart, the copper Expo wall display at the main bar, and DJ booths enable a seamless transition from day to night.
The most recent addition, Superfly, was created to serve as an everyday hangout for culture makers. A creative spin on Sichuan’s buzzed about “Fly restaurants” - casual eateries known for their delicious specialties – Superfly presents Sichuan inspired comfort food and childhood favorites, paired with specialty craft beers made with locally sourced ingredients through a partnership with renowned Beijing craft brewery Great Leap Brewing. The craft cocktail menu includes reinventions of nostalgic Chinese childhood beverages like the Arctic Ocean Soda and Salty Lime Seven, unexpected twists that balance perfectly with the bold flavours of Sichuan cuisine.
Taking elements from pop culture, Superfly’s eclectic design, also led by AvroKO, captures the energy and attitude of daily life in China, with a subtle nod to Chinese street culture. The restaurant’s laid-back atmosphere is complemented by ornate pottery dishware and vintage details including retro-inspired granite countertops with a tiled backsplash, providing patrons with a comfortable neighborhood retreat paired with excellent food, drinks and company.
To round out the House’s global culinary offerings, The Opposite House tapped Chef Marino D’Antonio to bring hearty regional Italian cuisine to Beijing with the opening of Frasca. Celebrating the rich, authentic flavours of Italy in the heart of China, Frasca sources ingredients with the utmost care to delight diners.
The Opposite House’s distinctive character and sense of style is further reflected at Commune, the property’s new multifaceted arts and event space. Featuring a Gallery, Studio and Sunken Garden, Commune provides the ultimate canvas for creating interactive pop-ups that breathe life and culture into the space. The Gallery is an extraordinary venue for corporate, social and private events that opens up into a contemporary ballroom with natural light from the adjoining garden. With its sleek modern feel, the Studio is ideal for cocktail parties and pop up events. Commune also includes the Sunken Garden, which serves as an extension of the Gallery space and provides an outlet for more intimate events surrounded by natural greenery.
"We are very excited about the new spaces at our House," said Olivier Dumonceaux, Hotel Manager of The Opposite House. "With ongoing art installations, pop-ups and refreshing new restaurant and bar concepts, we believe that The Opposite House is a destination in its own right, bringing unique experiences to Beijing. We've always been a place for guests to discover something new to appreciate from every angle, but as we take our celebration of art, culture and creativity a few steps further, we look forward to delivering even more."
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The Opposite House