Chapel of Music / Vector Architects

Architects: Vector Architects
Area: 455 m²
Year: 2023
Photographs: Shengliang Su, Arch-Exist, Hao Chen, Zaiye Studio
Lighting Consultant: TORYO International Lighting Design (Beijing) Center
Acoustic Consultant: JH Theatre Architecture Design Consulting Company
Construction Contractor: Jiangsu Jiangdu Construction Group
Principal Architect: Gong Dong
Project Architects: Liangliang Zhao, Shida Liu
Design Management: Han Zhang, Jinteng Li
Site Architects: Zihao Zeng, Yeqian Tan
Project Team: Zihao Zeng, Mofei Li, Liwen Zhang
Structural Design: Zhigang Ma, SuiPing Zhang, Lei Zhang
Mep Design: Xudong Qi, Fujun Zhang, Yafeng Wang, Xiaojie Liu, Weipeng Yu
Ldi Project Architect: Chuanyu Lin
Ldi Architects: Yue Jiang
Client: Aranya · Qinhuangdao
LDI: Dalian Architectural Design & Research Institute Co.,Ltd
Signage Designer: Beijing SEED Cultural Media
City: Qinhuangdao
Country: China

Chapel of Music, designed by Vector Architects in the Aranya Qinhuangdao community, stands in the heart of Youyi Bay plaza, distinct from its seafront predecessors. The chapel integrates sound, light, and air, creating a unique music hall space. Featuring a Meditation Rotunda and Skylight Music Hall with a retractable roof, it transforms into an outdoor theater in favorable weather. The design harmonizes with adjacent buildings, maintaining the plaza’s open character while providing diverse public spaces.

Chapel of music / vector architects

The Chapel of Music is the fourth architectural project by Vector Architects in the Aranya Qinhuangdao community, following the Seashore Library, Seashore Chapel, and Restaurant y Sea. Unlike its predecessors, which are located directly on the seafront, the chapel is situated within the heart of the community plaza, Youyi Bay. Positioned slightly north of the plaza’s center, it is adjacent to the canteen and market to the north, residential apartments to the west, and hotels and shops to the south.

Vector Architects envisioned the chapel as an exquisite musical instrument within the plaza. By orchestrating sound, light, and air, they aimed to create a unique music hall space. The design originated from the section, with the Meditation Rotunda arranged at the lower level and the Skylight Music Hall above it. The Music Hall features a sunken stage at its center, appearing as a suspended disc when viewed from the Meditation Rotunda. Surrounding the stage are seats for forty-eight spectators, arranged in two levels. Sound from performances fills the hall and transmits down to the rotunda through nine brass sound transmission tubes embedded among the seating. The Music Hall is crowned with a large retractable circular pneumatic roof, allowing natural light to flood the space. In favorable weather, the roof ascends, transforming the Music Hall into an outdoor theater.

Chapel of music / vector architects

The Meditation Rotunda on the lower floor is nine meters high, with a fifty-centimeter-wide gap and operable glass panels at the corners of the walls. Natural light diffuses through these gaps and from upper gaps around the suspended stage. Polished concrete seating along the wall resembles lounge chairs, inviting people to recline and immerse themselves in the music, natural light, and breeze. A large view window on the eastern façade offers a glimpse of the sea horizon beyond as the audience exits after a concert.

Centrally located within the community, the chapel features three distinct building facets responding to the flow of people entering the plaza and the sea. The three concave curves of the chapel’s outer walls harmoniously coexist with the adjacent buildings, creating various public spaces with diverse atmospheres and scales. The elevated building maintains the open character of the plaza while providing shelter for rest. The entrance lobby, on the raised first floor, is accessible via a long ramp parallel to the building’s curving east wall, facing the canteen and market on the northern side, inviting people into the chapel for an exploration of music and space.

Chapel of music / vector architects
Project Gallery
Project Location

Address: Beidaihe District, Qinhuangdao, Hebei, China

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