beijing hutong renovation by DL atelier is 'familiar and strange at the same time'

beijing hutong renovation by DL atelier is 'familiar and strange at the same time'

after two years of design and construction, DL atelier has completed the renovation of a hutong building in beijing. in reviving the site, the design team sought to preserve the memories and history associated with it. ‘we retained the building-yard relationship and the original building scale,’ explain the architects. meanwhile, a new concrete structure stabilizes the building and provides a contrast with the previously existing materials. the renovated design is now insulated, has advanced drainage systems, and even boasts air conditioning.

image by zhai bo (main image by sun haiting)



to ensure privacy from the outside world, DL atelier built a new wall adjacent to the street. this wall includes an almost invisible front door that serves as the entrance to the home. at the top of the otherwise opaque façade is a horizontal window that provides natural light and ventilation. internally, very few partitions are used — a gesture that lends the home an open and spacious quality. throughout, raw materials and surfaces have been left exposed.



looking back now, although it’s a new house, it seems to have been built for 50 years,’ concludes the design team. ‘being familiar and strange at the same time, perhaps it’s a memory from future.’ the first role of the interior, which can be readily reconfigured, is to host a small exhibition of DL atelier’s work. see other hutong renovations on designboom here.

image by sun haiting

image by sun haiting

image by zhai bo

image by sun haiting

image by sun haiting



project info:


location: china, beijing
time: 2016-2019
area: 68 sqm / 732 sqf
design team: DL atelier
team member: liu yang, hu muhuai, liu sisi, bao hui, yang ni, yu tian
photography: sun haiting, zhai bo, zhang yuting, liu yang
materials: brick, wood, metal

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