China’s fourth largest city may have problems with smog, but you’d never know it sitting at the urban centre’s beachside resort. Of course, Chengdu, doesn’t have a beach, and the resort is indoors.
The city has just opened the New Century Global Centre, a structure that China touts as the “World’s Largest Building.” The giant structure has 1.76 million square metres of floor space and is half a kilometre long, 400 metres wide and more than 100 metres tall.
Contained inside is a 14-screen IMAX theatre, two five-star hotels, a shopping village and a long stretch of offices. The developers claim that you could fit more than 20 Sydney Opera Houses inside the Global Centre.
“We have borrowed a Japanese technique,” guide Liu Xun told the Sydney Morning Herald. “There is an artificial sun that shines 24 hours a day and allows for a comfortable temperature.”
The sun shines down on a manufactured beach-side resort built to hold over 6,000 people.
When people first enter into the massive structure, they are met with an 18-storey concourse, with giant escalators highlighting the building’s huge glass ceiling.
The entranceway alone is shocking in its opulence, the Guardian reports:
“Lined with a stratified cream cake of hotel balconies and zig-zagging escalators, visitors are blasted with artificial sea breeze, designed to ‘make one intoxicated, as if he were enjoying himself in the fabulous heaven.’ Moving past aquarium walls and through a strange hybrid townscape of Polynesian huts crossed with a middle eastern kasbah, tourists arrive at the 400 m-long coastline, where the largest artificial waves in the world break in front of the longest LED screen in the world – on which ‘the alternating morning cloud and twilight afterglow extend the horizon limitlessly in the temporal and spatial directions.’”
“It is Manhattan, not Chengdu,” Zhau Yun, who heads the British Chamber of Commerce, told the Sydney Morning Herald.
Zhau said that the city is building new superbuildings faster than Shanghai and that she hopes the city knows what it’s doing.