Morpheus, a new flagship hotel designed by Zaha Hadid Architects for the City of Dreams resort in Macau, opens Friday 15 June 2018.
Located in Cotai, Macau, City of Dreams is a leading integrated resort including casino, two theatres, shopping district, 20 restaurants and four hotels. Informed by the fluid forms within China’s rich traditions of jade carving, the Morpheus’ design hotel combines dramatic public spaces and generous guest rooms with innovative engineering and formal cohesion.
Conceived as a vertical extrusion of its rectangular footprint, a series of voids is carved through its center to create an urban window connecting the hotel’s interior communal spaces with the city and generating the sculptural forms that define the hotel’s public spaces.
Linked at ground level with the surrounding three-storey podium of the City of Dreams resort, the Morpheus houses 770 guest rooms, suites and sky villas, and includes civic spaces, meeting and event facilities, gaming rooms, lobby atrium, restaurants, spa and rooftop pool, as well as extensive back-of-house areas and ancillary facilities.
Zaha Hadid Architects designed the Morpheus as a simple extrusion of the existing abandoned foundations; using this rectangular footprint to define a 40-story building of two internal vertical circulation cores connected at podium and roof levels where the many guest amenities were required.
This extrusion generated a monolithic block making best use of its development envelope that is restricted to a 160m height by local planning codes. This block was then ‘carved’ with voids. The underlying diagram of the hotel’s design is a pair of towers connected at ground and roof levels.
“Morpheus combines its optimal arrangement with structural integrity and sculptural form. The design is intriguing as it makes no reference to traditional architectural typologies.” – Zaha Hadid Architects‘ project director
This arrangement maximizes the number of hotel rooms with external views and guarantees an equal room distribution on either side of the building. In-between the free-form voids that traverse the atrium, a series of bridges create unique spaces for the hotel’s restaurants, bars and guest lounges by renowned chefs including Alain Ducasse and Pierre Hermé.
The atrium’s twelve glass elevators provide guests with remarkable views of the hotel’s interior and exterior as they travel between the voids of the building. As one of the world’s leading hotels, the Morpheus’ interior spaces necessitated a high degree of adaptability to accommodate the many varying requirements of its guest amenities.
Morpheus draws on a Zaha Hadid Architects‘s 40 years of research into the integration of interior and exterior, civic and private, solid and void, Cartesian and Einsteinian. Space is woven within a structure to tie disparate programmes together and constantly make connections.
“From the very beginning, we shared Zaha Hadid Architects‘ vision and determination to push boundaries. Morpheus offers a journey of the imagination. From the curved exterior to the dramatic interior spaces, it pleases the eye and excites the senses: a contemporary masterpiece to be enjoyed by many generations to come.” Lawrence Ho, chairman and CEO of Melco Resorts.
image © virgile simon bertrand and © Ivan Dupont