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The inspiration for Suzhou Center’s roof was that of the mythical phoenix: “We envisaged the structure as a bird resting above an oasis with the striking curved architecture mimicking its wings,” explained Benoy Director Winnie Tsang. As the phoenix is said to appear in places that are blessed with happiness and prosperity, it’s an apt symbol for what will be one of the most expansive luxury complexes in the country. Three interconnected buildings will contain high-end clothing boutiques, designer studios, and a gourmet supermarket, as well as children’s attractions, an IMAX Cineplex theatre, and even an Olympic-sized skating rink.

Related: Benoy Architects Top Taiwan High Speed Rail’s Hsin Chu Station Mall with a Lush Green Roof

Suzhou from Above

Water also features prominently in Suzhou’s design, paying homage to the nearby lake and integrating the complex with its natural surroundings. Landscaped bridges will intertwine from the retail area to the lakefront, with fountains and a cascading water curtain leading to outdoor terraces and public spaces.

In addition to the giant retail complex, there will be four office towers, two world-class luxury apartment towers, and a top-rated hotel tower integrated into the Suzhou compound. It’s estimated that this striking example of modern architectural innovation will see over 8 million tourists annually, and will serve the needs of 13 million Greater Suzhou residents.

+ Benoy Architects