"For those who wish to breathe in culture even when asleep, Aman at Summer Palace in Beijing is a retreat from the bustling city, steeped in history."
The Wall Street Journal, UK 2011
When you step in an Aman Resorts property, know for a fact , that your experience will be sensorial and certainly life changing.
Mine started as soon as I entered at dawn the tranquil retreat adjacent to the East Gate of the iconic Summer Palace , just 15 kilometres northwest of Beijing’s city centre.
Aman at Summer Palace, Beijing is housed in a series of pavilions dating back over a century, and provides guests with unparalleled access to four UNESCO World Heritage Sites including the Summer Palace, the Forbidden City, the Great Wall and the Temple of Heaven.
The original complex was used by guests of the Summer Palace awaiting an audience with the Empress Dowager Cixi at the turn of the 20th century.
Rooms and suites reflect traditional Chinese architecture and celebrate the courtyard style of the Summer Palace with a dignified ambience throughout. Whilst every modern comfort has been provided, the design embraces Imperial Chinese layouts, materials and fabrics.
Many ancient monuments stand in pristine condition, and one such historic site is the Summer Palace. Just outside this 260-year-old World Heritage site resides Aman at Summer Palace, Beijing. Amanresorts' new city-based resort is a peaceful retreat from which to explore the many exciting faces of China's capital and soon featured in one of my next posts.
We are lead to several corridors with arcades painted bright red . My suite is in nb 4 courtyard ,crisscrossed by pathways shaded by bamboos and indigenous trees . The other concubines are in courtyard nb 5 courtyard and nb 6.
I enter my suite. I am surrounded by trellises, ceramic vases containing orchids and natural hand soaps on a lacquer tray close to an old style bath tub separated from the bedroom by another trellis. On the table near the frosted windows lays a tea pot in metal with freshly brewed Jasmine tea and a plate with an assortment of beautifully decorated Chinese delicacies waiting to be savored.
A winter sun is rising through the thin shades in bamboo, I can see through nothing else but a few servants passing by silently, dressed in dark blue long robes ready to come to assist anytime I 'd light my lantern outside the door. A gentle sound of traditional Chinese flute coming from an old Chines cabinet is taking me slowly into the king size canopy bed , especially prepared with an orchid on my pillow, Chinese vintage fabric sleepers and some sort of essential oil.
I am going to take a nap gently falling into a dreamless sleep breathing silence and history at the same time.
The Hotel : Aman at the Summer Palace , Beijing