The next time you’re on a flight to Seoul, keep an eye out for a golden spot before you land at the Incheon International Airport. Visible from aerial view, the distinctive golden circle marks the entrance of the Chroma nightclub at the Paradise City integrated resort in Incheon, South Korea.
Designed by Amsterdam-based firm MVDRV, the club at Paradise City, forms part of the resort’s ambitious plans for its art and design-driven concept. “Passengers in the incoming aircraft can already see this ‘sun’ from above the ocean, as a kind of welcome to South Korea,” says Winy Maas, principal and co-founder of MVRDV.
First opened in April 2017, the Paradise City integrated resort is a US$1.7 billion joint investment between Korean hospitality group Paradise Group and Japanese entertainment enterprise Sega Sammy. “We believe that art should be accessible,” explains Elizabeth Chun, vice president and chief design officer of Paradise group. “You can stay for a weekend, or visit Paradise City during your transit and be exposed to over 3,000 artworks.”
This building features a surreal, gravity-defying facade that appears to float in mid-air. Located next to the Chroma nightclub, Wonderbox was designed by MVRDV to house a family-friendly theme park. Slated to open in 2019, the venue will feature various rides including a Ferris wheel, merry-go-round and carnival games.
3. Paradise Plaza
The group roped in Italian architect and designer Alessandro Mendini to dress its hotel interiors, while integrating its diverse art collection throughout the property.
Medini has decorated spaces with playful flourishes, ranging from the jungle theme of the family-friendly facilities in Paradise Hotel, the origami-like roof louvres that float above the Paradise Plaza to the inclusion of a colourful, oversized Proust chair situated at its ballroom wing.
The plaza featured here will serve as a multi-functional venue for public and private events.
4. Paradise Art Space
Opened in September, the Paradise Art Space is located at the plaza area of Paradise City. Entitled Overstated and Understated, its first exhibition features a playful contrast between the works of four artists: Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Lee Bae and Kim Hodeuk. The Farnese Hercules sculpture from The Gazing Ball series by Jeff Koons ponders upon ideas of selfhood with its reflective blue sphere, while the nine-metre-wide Aurous Cyanide painting by Damien Hirst celebrates the joy of colour.
In contrast, the monochromatic works of Korean artists take on a more subdued mood. Lee Bae’s Issu du Feu features charcoal sculptures atop delicate sheets of hanji (traditional Korean paper), while Kim Hodeuk’s installation plays with light and shadow with a row of hanji paper floating above a pool of ink water.
5. Cimer Spa
The Cimer spa at Paradise City comprises themed spa experience zones and various swimming pools and saunas; an array of outdoor and indoor day beds and cabannas encourage visitors to luxuriate in style.
6. Art Paradiso
Located within the integrated resort is boutique hotel Art Paradiso, which brings together a sense of glamour and decadence in its 58 well-appointed suites. Think metallic trimmings, plush velvet seats and oversized bath tubs made for the party-ready crowd.
7. Paradise Hotel
The work of Alessandro Mendini, this colourful bowling alley is part of the various entertainment facilities at the Paradise hotel; the property also features a gaming zone featuring Playstation consoles as well as a children's playground that's also designed by Mendini.