Beijing: future is today

Photo by Natalia Maiboroda

Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

You don’t need a space machine to travel in time. Take Beijing metro (Line 2 or Line 6) and head to Chaoyangmen station. Just at the exit you will face the future.

Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

And the future looks like a spaceship, made of glass and alliminium. It was parked near Beijing’s 2nd Ring Road in 2012. Its name – Galaxy SOHO – also indicates its outer space background. But actually it was constructed by a human-being – world’ famous British-Iraqi architect and Pritzker Prize winning Zaha Hadid.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

They called her “Queen of Curves”. I call Zaha Hadid as the one and the only, the architect who shaped the future. Galaxy SOHO, indeed, not the only construction, created by her in Beijing. There is another Zaha Hadid building, called Wanjing SOHO. But for me it was the first one that I have personally seen. And it totally blew my mind!

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

The building itself comprises four oval domed towers that remind me of eggs. They are connected with curving bridges and platforms. You will not find any corners – all of the lines flow smoothly. I guess this is how Qi energy must run in the space. Chinese believe, that everything in our environment is being permeated with Qi. Just like our body is being permeated with veins. So Galaxy SOHO must fits with this philosophy well. Its shape allows the energy flow and do not stuck in the corners.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

It’s hard to indicate the size of the building until you enter inside. There are 18 floors in total. Three floors are hidden below ground for parking. Other three are occupied with shops. The rest 12 floors are given to different companies.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

I found my way to the office area. Sterile white corridor together with curving lines reminded me of fiction movies. But for locals, who has been working here, it’s just a trivial reality. I wouldn’t mind to work here myself. Maybe some other day. But this time I enjoyed futuristic Galaxy SOHO from a cosy cafe. And while I had my coffee break, busy Chinese rushed downstairs to construct their future.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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Galaxy Soho, Beijing. Photo by Natalia Maiboroda.

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