Neri & Hu’s Suzhou Chapel combines textured brick base with ethereal white cube

Perforated metal surfaces form a white “veil” around the main hall of this chapel designed by Neri&Hu for a hotel complex near the Chinese city of Suzhou.

Lyndon Neri and Rosanna Hu’s Shanghai studio designed Suzhou Chapel for a site within the Sangha resort, which is described as “a life learning and wellness community on the shores of the beautiful Yangcheng Lake”.

Located around 15 kilometres from Suzhou and 70 kilometres from Shanghai, the resort comprises a hotel with spa, 87 serviced apartments, 109 serviced villas, a clinic, education complex, retail facilities, amphitheatre and conference space.

The chapel occupies a prominent plot by the waterfront that is visible from the main road. Its combination of brick walls and a floating white volume references other buildings found on the site, as well as the local vernacular of white rendered walls and black roofs.

The dark-grey brick walls surrounding the chapel are of varying heights and intersect with one another to create a non-linear route leading through the landscape and into the building.

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