A Singapore developer known for its upmarket condominiums has inked a deal to build what it says will be the world's largest integrated indoor winter resort in Shanghai.
Called Winterland Shanghai, it will boast the world's longest indoor ski trail, KOP Properties said in a statement. The resort will cost 13.5 billion yuan (S$2.8 billion) to build.
Chairman Ong Chih Ching told The Straits Times, however, that the project will offer more than just winter activities.
The ski resort area will be connected to other facilities within the development including a water park, a tree-lined hiking trail and a "beach club" - an arena resembling a beach - at 100m above ground, she said.
Ms Ong added that Winterland Shanghai will be the world's only "integrated" indoor winter resort, meaning it will also include housing, office, retail and hotel space amid the attractions. The nearest comparison, she said, would be a 2.25ha indoor ski resort in Dubai called Ski Dubai.
"You can compare us with Dubai but in our case we are building a whole alpine village with ski-in ski-out hotels, restaurants and a half-pipe; while Dubai has one restaurant in the cold area with a penguin petting area," said Ms Ong.
Winterland Shanghai will be built on an 18ha piece of land in a new development zone in Shanghai with access to the city's railway system, and cover a gross floor area of about 80ha.
The firm said it has signed a framework agreement with a local district government in Shanghai, and construction is expected to start in the third quarter of next year and finish by 2018.
KOP is known here for developing posh pads such as Hamilton Scotts in Orchard, whose units boast "sky garages" that let home owners park their cars next to the living room. It also has resorts in Bali and Batam in Indonesia and hotels in London, and manages hotels, resorts and yachts through its KOP Hospitality arm.
Ms Ong said the firm was building the mega resort in response to "demand for lifestyle experiences" from consumers.
She said it picked Shanghai to locate the winter resort because of its "global audience".
"The city must have the affluence to enjoy lifestyle experiences."
The concept could also be replicated around Asia, she added.
Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to straitstimes.com for more stories.