The streets of China may not yet be lined with gold, but its Sheraton hotels are.
I spent a portion of yesterday afternoon circling a golden hotel. Sheratons in China are sometimes completely plated in gold. They stand out from the drab whitewashed generic city landscape like the golden grill in the mouth of a Fulton Mall watch slinger, and likewise say just one thing: “bling.” If China is obsessed with architectural monumentality to commemorate its global political and economic rise than the Sheraton hotel chain is literally building trophies across this land. There is a golden Sheraton in Chongqing, there is one in Xiamen.
I went to the one in Xiamen yesterday and took a closer look. Both of the two 30+ story towers were completely covered in golden one way windows. I went inside and asked one of their managers about the
gaudy excessive display of opulence.
“We made it gold because China’s colors are gold and red, so we wanted to match the country’s colors.”
Whatever. Though one thing is for certain: matching the country’s colors did nothing to make this place blend into the landscape.
Though the golden Sheraton in Xiamen may have nothing on the golden Sheraton in Chongqing.
About the Author: VBJ
I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. VBJ has written 3679 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.
VBJ is currently in: Papa Bay, Hawaii
June 5, 2014, 8:36 pm
Hey, there’s a gold plated building in Toronto too, RBC headquarters I believe.
June 6, 2014, 1:28 pm
That’s one way to make the typical glass and steel look more interesting.
June 6, 2014, 10:49 pm
I agree. Though I jest about this building above, I really appreciate it when architects create something attractive or at least different than the mono-culture that most cities resort to.
- June 6, 2014, 10:49 pm
June 9, 2014, 3:32 pm
Wade , can u write an article of the slums in China?
after all, there are slums in major cities in Asia…
is there any slums/shanty town in China?
where do the 200+ millions migrant workers live in the cities?
will appreciate it…thanks
June 9, 2014, 6:15 pm
Thanks for the suggestion! Slums in China are different than they are in most other countries. I wrote a little about it here http://www.vagabondjourney.com/shanghai-migrant-worker-village/. There’s also a section on it in my book that is coming out.
- June 9, 2014, 6:15 pm
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