Shanghai’s bustling and fashionable Xintiandi district is the hub of countless trendy events such as the Design Shanghai @ Xintiandi Festival held in March 2017. UPM teamed up with the faculty and students of Tongji University’s College of Design and Innovation to create a serene and tranquil exhibit for the event: the Biofore Tea House. The bright yet slightly mysterious space delighted visitors at Xintiandi Style Mall.
Modern tea house with sustainable, recyclable biomaterials
The entrance to the tea house was via the narrowest part of the ten-metre-long structure, where the mesh patterns of the walls also grew denser. Further into the tea house, the room became lighter and more spacious. The distinctive architecture created a fantastic interplay of light and shadow, offering an urban tea experience that was both visually and spiritually refreshing.
The designers utilised UPM’s materials with imagination and skill. The framework and decorative skin were made from durable WISA® plywood, while the main walls were made from environmentally sound UPM Grada® thermoformable wood material, which can be shaped by applying heat. The modern UPM ProFi® composite decking material was made from recycled raw materials. The striking space combined the serene mood of a traditional Chinese tea ceremony with a fresh, modern look inspired by nature. The innovative use of sustainable, recyclable biomaterials also aligns perfectly with UPM’s Biofore vision.
The relaxing tea house was an oasis of peace and calm in the heart of the bustling city, offering visitors a moment of soothing contemplation. During the Design Shanghai event, UPM also hosted tea ceremonies for its key stakeholders in this one-of-a-kind oasis blending ancient tradition and modern design.