The adventure begins on Panda Plaza. A meandering path leads through a green, water-rich landscape modelled after China’s Sichuan Province, home of the pandas and Panda World’s guiding design theme.
For the South Korean zoo and amusement park Everland Resort, we designed a 7000-square-metre immersive complex – featuring a modern building with exhibition and caretaker areas as well as classrooms, a cafe and a shop – and an adjoining show house. Panda World offers not only a special encounter with the giant pandas, but also a number of other highlights. On their way to the show house, visitors stroll past Otter Falls, move through the educational and entertaining exhibition on the life of the pandas and are whisked away into Twilight Experience presenting the nocturnal habitat of the animals, the only exhibit of its kind in the world.
A path through the daylight-flooded show house winds its way along the panda enclosure, whose corpus of glass and polycarbonate gives it an airy and transparent external appearance. The landscape concept also continues without any perceptible breaks into the outdoor enclosure, where red pandas and golden snub-nosed monkeys can be observed.
Early on in the design process we consulted with fifteen international panda experts in order to gather as much information as possible on the giant pandas. Because the animals are particularly sensitive, the show house had to be designed to provide enough shade and the animal dens were situated on a separate foundation to reduce vibration and noise.
The solitary animals are kept apart except for a few days a year. To facilitate contact, each enclosure at Panda World features two trees for climbing, allowing the animals to view one another.
South Korea is the fourteenth country China has greatly honoured by loaning it a panda pair. Including the immersive environment of Lost Valley, Panda World is the second project we’ve realized at Everland Resort.