line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel – Designboom

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line+ Revitalizes Ancient Village with Stray Birds Art Hotel

line+ architecture office, led by Meng Fanhao, revitalizes a cliffside ancient village in China, introducing Songyang Stray Birds Art Hotel. In 2016, Songyang was designated as the sole pilot county for the ‘Save Old Houses Campaign’ in China, marking the beginning of significant efforts toward cultural preservation and renewal. Chenjiapu Village, with 640 years of history and a selection of rammed-earth and timber-framed dwellings, became part of these endeavors. The project’s design approach aligns with line+’s mission to classify and preserve local architectural features, including frames, roofs, and structural details. 

line+architecture office’s refurbishment of the Stray Birds Art Hotel in Chenjiapu Village began in 2018 with the renovation of two guesthouses on the town’s southern cliff. This work established a foundation for the region’s rural tourism revival. The project later expanded to encompass eleven guest rooms, a panoramic lobby, a cliffside café, and a restaurant, significantly boosting the village’s attractiveness as a rural tourism destination.

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
all images by Xi Chen + Chris King unless stated otherwise

line+’s Adaptive Renovation Balances Heritage and Modern Design

The project highlights the challenging yet fulfilling process of adapting rammed earth dwellings while respecting the area’s architectural heritage. Key spaces include the reception lobby, where a sunken relaxation area is integrated into the existing structure, and the restaurant, which combines lightweight steel and glass elements for panoramic views. The cliffside café and tearoom utilize the natural slope to create unique perspectives on the valley and surrounding landscapes.

line+‘s adaptive renovation involved a careful selection of guest room sites, integrating them with the terrain for optimal views and privacy. Traditional materials such as rammed earth and rubble stone coexist with modern glass and aluminum elements, creating a harmonious blend of old and new.

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
the Songyang Stray Birds Art Hotel revitalizes a cliffside ancient village in China

line+ merges Traditional Techniques with Modern Development

The project was realized in collaboration with the village construction team, benefiting from the villagers’ knowledge of traditional building techniques and their shared experience. This approach not only rekindled the villagers’ sense of belonging but also maximized the protection and inheritance of cultural memories.

Stray Birds Art Hotel contributes to rural revitalization by supporting local villagers and their economic endeavors, such as selling agricultural products. It serves as a model for preserving traditional villages while accommodating new functional formats and introducing external resources to ensure sustainable development. line+’s Songyang Stray Birds Art Hotel demonstrates the potential of revitalizing ancient villages through thoughtful architectural design and community collaboration.

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
the project aligns with cultural preservation and renewal efforts in Songyang County

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
line+architecture office renovated guesthouses on Chenjiapu Village’s southern cliff

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
the renovation established a foundation for the region’s rural tourism revival

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
the project includes eleven guest rooms, a panoramic lobby, a cliffside café, and a restaurant

line+ revives cliffside ancient rammed-earth village in china introducing songyang art hotel
adapting rammed earth dwellings respects the area’s architectural heritage

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