Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport, Guangdong, China

Cutting edge concepts, bespoke solutions

It’s one of the most stunning airport designs of recent times. Shaped to mimic the appearance of a manta ray, the curved roof canopy of Bao’an International Airport’s newly opened Terminal 3, signals a high point in 21st century airport design.


Located to the north of Hong Kong in the Guangdong region of China, Terminal 3 is the latest addition to Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport, situated 32 kilometres northwest of Shenzhen’s city centre.

The airport’s groundbreaking conception and design was such that every aspect of the build and interior fitting had to match the building’s sleek, contemporary feel. A truly global project, only the finest products were selected for inclusion, and where the choice of public seating was concerned, aesthetic and functionality were key.

10,700 of the inFINITE seats – by public seating specialist, Zoeftig - were chosen to line the corridors and concourse areas of the airport. The inclusion of Zoeftig’s innovative seating range marked the third occasion that its inFINITE solutions have been selected for a Chinese development; following hard on the heels of its inaugural installation of 17,000 seats at the Kunming Changshui International Airport (the fourth largest in China) in 2011 and 3000 seats at Ordos Ejin Horo Airport.

This latest airport installation to choose Zoeftig designs marked a world first for the inFINITE product too, with the standard single seats installed without gaps between backrests as one continuous seating row. This bespoke seating design creates a very different look to the standard inFINITE seat, and fits perfectly with the cutting edge architectural concept of the terminal.

Zoeftig’s award-winning beamless inFINITE range has pushed the limits and possibilities of passenger terminal design and public spaces around the world. The market-leading seating solution can also be fitted in myriad configurations, from the standard (linear) option to its Arc, Duo and Solo solutions.

The breadth of Zoeftig’s product range means the right seating can be adapted to work in harmony with architectural design and function for the benefits of travellers. From traditional rows to convivial arc shapes to functional clusters, Zoeftig’s stylish and functional inFINITE seating enhances passenger terminal spaces, whilst its adaptable design accommodates changing airport requirements. Shenzhen is a fine example of Zoeftig’s ability to provide its clients with bespoke solutions; its versatile range can be tailored to match individual build concepts and themes.

On this occasion, the inFINITE seating was adapted from the company’s standard PU range but other, equally as impressive, designs have incorporated stainless steel, closed stitch upholstery, deep upholstery in leather, PVC or fabric, and laminated wood finishes, using only the finest materials.

The £1.4billion Bao’an project (opened 28 November 2013) was the first airport commissioned by acclaimed Italian architects Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas and the futuristic building is fast becoming an iconic landmark that will continue to boost the economic development of Shenzhen – one of the fastest-growing cities in the world.

A curving roof canopy constructed from steel and glass, wraps around the airport, accommodating spans of up to 80 metres. Hexagonal skylights perforate the surface of this roof, allowing natural light to filter through the entire terminal.

The airport concourse is divided across three levels, allowing separate floors for arrivals, departures and servicing, and voids in the floor-plates create a series of double and triple height spaces. Cylindrical white columns are positioned at intervals to support the arching roof and sit alongside air-conditioning vents, which resemble chunky trees.

The terminal – the largest single public building to be built to date in Shenzhen – encompasses 63 contact gates, with a further 15 remote gates and significant retail space. The opening of terminal 3 more than doubles (58%) the airport’s capacity and further growth is on the horizon, with two phases of expansion planned over the next two decades, ensuring the airport keeps pace with the region’s rapid growth.

Products that are related to this case study

Similar case studies