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Brief Published: 9 Aug 2011

Tianmen Mountain Restaurant


For visitors to the Tianmen Mountain Restaurant in southern China, culinary feats are only half the attraction. Threatening to steal the show is Chinese architect Liu Chongxiao’s triangulated glass and steel space – an impressive but sensitively positioned structure, nestled in a gorge at the foot of the Tianmen Mountain National Park.

The design functions more like a large-scale viewfinder window than a conventional space, by placing windows not only around the edges, but above diners too, allowing exceptionally spectacular (and unusual) views of the valley above.

Based on the concept of combining the natural (environment) with the manmade (surfaces) in order to create something in perfect equilibrium, the space is an exemplary piece of harmonious design.

Liu Chongxiao