Editors' Picks

The Opposite House

Funky, modern, chic

33 Sanlitun Road, Chaoyang, Beijing, China, 100020

(86) 10-6417-6688

See Website

At a Glance

Designed by star Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, the glass-and-steel boutique hotel in the fashionable expat area of Sanlitun was the first design hotel in China’s capital when it opened in 2008, and is currently renovating its accommodations.

Indagare Loves

  • The lobby filled with rotating selections of modern art
  • The 22-meter steel-clad swimming pool
  • Japanese architect Kengo Kuma’s chic design


When hip designers or architects come to Beijing, they check into The Opposite House, sister hotel to Hong Kong’s Upper House.  There is no lobby, but rather a vast, glass box of a room accented with edgy art from local galleries. The hotel's cadre of hip, tablet-carrying staff will greet you and check you in as you sit in the living room, or if you are jet-lagged, will whisk you right up to your room and check you in there. The 100 rooms are set in a circle around a mammoth courtyard, inspired by a traditional hutong, with light streaming in during the day from the high atrium.

The 100 rooms and suites were designed to feel like contemporary lofts; with pine flooring, walls of glass and simple, spare furnishings. There are four different sizes of rooms, from a 500 square foot studio to a sprawling penthouse with a large terrace that has become a popular party space. Modern, urban living seems to be the overarching motif, and that message continues in the public spaces. Even the corridors feel like part of an art gallery tour. Just off the lobby is Union, a sophisticated, lively bar that stays occupied late into the night. From the glass-box elevator, you can view the 22-meter, steel-clad swimming pool that turns an afternoon dip into a version of performance art. Jing Yaa Tang, one of the city’s trendiest restaurants, is located below the lobby,  and features a sumptuously-decorated ambience with a menu that highlights Beijing’s traditional roast duck.

Who Should Stay

The young, the cool, and the design-conscious. There’s a happening vibe to the hotel from dawn, when the café buzzes with breakfast meetings, to late night when its popular bar and below-ground restaurants lure sophisticated locals and businessmen. Anyone who cringes at the thought of form over function should look to one of the city’s grand dame properties.

Written by Indagare

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