The group is planning to open a hotel in Shanghai using stones salvaged from ancient houses and transplanted camphor trees from Jianxi province.
The hotel will be the group’s fourth in China, adding to hotels such as Amandayan which opened in Lijiang in February.
Located 30km outside Shanghai, it will be set on 100 acres of land overlooking ornamental lakes and gardens and will include 24 suites, along with 26 villas, built using the reclaimed stone.
The ancient homes and 1,700 giant camphor trees could have been lost a decade ago beneath the waters of the Liao Fang Reservoir in Jianxi province but in order to conserve what the owner saw as a rich part of China’s heritage, the painstaking task of moving the trees and 26 houses stone-by-stone was started, moving them from Fuzhou to the outskirts of Shanghai.
The hotel won’t be ready until the end of 2017, but it is being created by Kerry Hill, the architect who designed Aman Tokyo, the group’s first “vertical” hotel which opened this year at the top of the city’s Otemachi Tower.
The Shanghai hotel has yet to receive its name - typically something locally relevant created alongside the word Aman – but it will also have a private club and spa.
Before that, the group’s second Japan hotel will open. Amanemu (pictured) will make its debut on March 1 as an onsen resort in Shima, close to Ise-Jingu, one of the nation’s most sacred Shinto shrines. Shima will host the G7 summit on May 26 and 27 and it’s thought many dignitaries will stay at Amanemu during the event.
Chief executive Olivier Jolivet said: “We have access to a lot of capital, which is allowing us to expand at a steady pace. We have no problem opening two or three hotels a year, but we don’t necessarily want to do even that many as it’s not about quantity."
The group has also just opened Amanera, a cliff-top property in Dominican Republic designed by London-based architect John Heah. The opening means the group now has 30 hotels in 21 countries.
Jolivet said Mexico, Costa Rica and “another Caribbean island” could also be on the cards.
He added that following its first “vertical hotel” in Tokyo, Aman would be keen to open more city centre hotels.
“Many of our guests tell us that they don’t just want to stay in our resorts on vacation – they would like to stay at an Aman ‘pied a terre’ in cities when they need to as well,” he said.