World’s largest duty-free shopping complex in China’s Hainan economically and ecologically sustainable

It has been little less than a month since the opening of the world’s largest stand-alone duty-free complex in Haikou, Hainan

World’s largest duty-free shopping complex in China’s Hainan economically and ecologically sustainable
The world's largest stand-alone duty-free shopping mall, which opened on Oct. 28, 2022, in Haikou, the capital of south China's Hainan province. (Photo by Zhang Junqi/People's Daily Online)

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Although the island is yet to be discovered by tourists from outside Asia, it is becoming increasingly popular with Chinese residents and visitors from the neighboring countries who go there for shopping trips to its 11 offshore duty-free shops or as a holiday destination for its sandy beaches and natural beauty.

According to People's Daily, the developer’s intention to integrate modern architecture without disturbing the island’s essence is visible both on the exterior and the interior of the building. The shopping mall takes the shape of a colourful begonia flower, its atrium has a large glass curtain wall with flora and fauna elements, which makes customers feel as if they were in the midst of the island’s rainforest. Jungle and marine inspired motifs reflect the importance of the island’s natural environment, which is home to a biodiverse monsoon forest with over 4,000 plant species, almost 100 mammal species and 300 bird species. Moreover, as the complex is located in the seaport city of Haikou, elements of its architecture are inspired by the sea, which makes the building integrate very well in Haikou’s vibrant, urban, seaport landscape.

                  Citizens are attracted to the tropical rainforest-themed atrium (Photo by Zhang Junqi/People's Daily Online)

Nevertheless, the importance of the building’s design does not only lie in its aesthetics. If anything, its visual aspect brings shoppers closer to nature and reminds them of the importance of conserving natural heritage and protecting the Earth. In fact, energy management, building materials, and pollution prevention and control were all carefully considered in the design of this shopping complex.

During the planning and design period, the facility adopted a good number of design concepts for energy saving measures, implemented within the complex, including good use of natural light through rooftop architecture which helps save more than 10 percent on indoor lighting, sponge city, rainwater harvesting, smart lighting, and contactless payment.

The collection of Big Data through sensors and from the shopping mall’s system through integrated data analysis platforms helps save maximum energy and reduce carbon dioxide emissions, as well as timely resolve any malfunctions within the complex.

            Customers shop at a liquor shop in Haikou International Duty Free Shopping Complex (Photo by Zhang Junqi/People's Daily Online) 

On the opening day, the mall’s online shopping platform received two million users while over 40,000 visitors attended the new shopping mall in person. That day, total sales reached a total of 700 million yuan ($96.18 million) among the 11 offshore duty-free shops in Hainan. With the aim of boosting tourism, Hainan has planned to issue 53-million-yuan worth of shopping coupons since the opening of the new complex until 31 December.

It is estimated that in the coming years, the new shopping complex will significantly boost Hainan’s economy and the tourism sector.

Source: People's Daily

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