Integrated Resort Rooted in Culture, Nature & Experiences Opens on Hainan Island

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Grand Hyatt Sanya Haitang, designed by Los Angeles-based architecture & planning studio, JERDE, represents a new convergence of placemaking & hospitality

Photographer: Kerun Ip

Grand Hyatt Sanya Haitang Bay main tower and lush landscape at night

“To create a differentiated edge, owners and developers of the traditional resort property are increasingly transitioning to a feasible mixed-use product that is better able to adapt to the fast-changing markets and saturation of hospitality products"

Grand Hyatt Sanya Haitang Bay Resort & Spa opens as one of China’s and Asia Pacific’s premier beachfront destination resorts located in the popular tourist city of Sanya on Hainan Island, the southernmost province in the PRC, and within the South China Sea. JERDE, an international architecture and urban planning studio, served as the project’s master planner and architectural designer. Established in 1977, the creative boutique firm has been pioneering placemaking and experiential design for nearly 40 years. The new hotel and resort is a significant achievement in integrated resort hospitality design & development, further adding to JERDE’s diverse, mixed-use portfolio of highly visited places around the world.

Master planned on a prominent oceanfront site of approximately 190,000 square meters (19 hectares, or about 47 acres), the overall integrated land use strategy introduces holistic and nature-inspired spaces that inform the various building locations to ensure an environmentally sustainable sense of place. The main land uses and facilities include: 440-room Grand Hyatt Hotel; Banquet & Meeting Rooms; Restaurant Village; Crater Island Children’s Club; Three Swimming Pools & Beach Club Grille; Events Pavilion; 50 High-end Residential Villas; Private Spa Village; and a multi-level Retail & Lifestyle Village – all intricately integrated within a plan of lushly landscaped gardens plan and maximized ocean views.

“While the oceanfront locale is desirable, the narrow, deep site presented a number of challenges relative to the planning solutions for this type of integrated resort destination, including carefully balancing site coverage and development program with spatial quality” said Jeri Oka, JERDE SVP, Senior Design Principal. “We started by establishing the public and open space sequences; the hotel, pools, spa and amenities will be the escape and oasis elements, but we also wanted to introduce a unique series of discovery paths and soft programs that would promote wandering and social connectivity in this type of resort setting.”

Grand Hyatt Sanya Haitang Bay also introduces a distinctive tropical contemporary style within a vertical development format. The centerpiece is the 440-room hotel tower with carefully crafted interior spaces to create a seamless relationship between indoor and outdoor environments. Terracing water features, gardens and mature landscape provides guest immersion immediately upon arrival and throughout the sequential program offerings that are carefully interwoven into the gardens setting. Inspired by tropical vernacular of South China, lantern forms delineate the resort skyline and establish the project’s unique identity as one of the tallest in the area. The use of natural woods and stone material provides a sense of warmth and calming quality of a hotel to elicit elegant luxury. The multiple buildings are set within the landscape garden of the overall site, and highlighted by metaphorical gestures such as the branches and glass façade that are reminiscent of a glowing lantern within a bamboo forest.

“We wanted the look and feel of the design to be reflective of the culture and surroundings, but not in an architectural form making way that is so prevalent throughout China. The aesthetic is contemporary but authentic, while the feel is immersive and organic, delivering a layered collection of unique experiences,” said Eduardo Lopez, JERDE SVP/ Senior Design Principal.

As many hospitality operators and developers are wondering what the future holds for the industry, and as objectives for resorts, hotels, retail, leisure, and residential seek to accomplish concepts of interconnectivity, health & wellness, and lifestyle, Grand Hyatt Sanya Haitang brings many of these aspiration qualities to fruition through a mixed-use destination that creates a new competitive model of integrated resort placemaking.

“To create a differentiated edge, owners and developers of the traditional resort property are increasingly transitioning to a feasible mixed-use product that is better able to adapt to the fast-changing markets and saturation of hospitality products,” said Phil Kim, JERDE Managing Director, Asia.

JERDE’s other major hospitality & resorts places include: Bellagio and Palms Resort & Casino in Las Vegas; Morongo Casino Resort & Spa in Cabazon, CA; Qetaifan Islands in Doha, Qatar; City of Dreams in Macau; and a new resort master plan in Vietnam.

Additional high resolution photos and/or drawings available upon request.

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