The ‘Dystopian’ Apartment Block in China Where Residents Never Go Outside

Finding the perfect place to live can be a daunting task. You want it to be in a decent location for work, easy to visit friends and family, affordable, and maybe even close to some entertainment.

But what if you never had to leave your apartment block and could get everything you need right at home? Would that be a utopian dream or a dystopian nightmare?

For at least 20,000 people in China, this is a reality. Welcome to the Regent International complex, a colossal building in Qianjiang Century City, located in Hangzhou’s central business district.

The Building

The Regent International is one of China’s largest buildings, standing at an impressive 675 feet tall and covering 260,000 square meters of space. Designed by Alicia Loo, the chief designer of the world’s second seven-star hotel, the Singapore Sands Hotel, this building was originally intended to be a six-star hotel.

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However, it now serves as a residential complex, accommodating up to 30,000 residents, though it currently houses around 20,000.

Life Inside

The sheer scale of the building and its facilities means residents have little reason to venture outside. Everything they need is within reach, making it a self-contained city. Depending on which side of the building you live on, you’ll find a variety of amenities just like in any local town. These include:

  • Massive Food Court: A wide range of dining options to suit all tastes.
  • Barber Shops and Nail Salons: Personal grooming services are readily available.
  • Medium-Sized Supermarkets: Convenient grocery shopping without leaving the complex.
  • Swimming Pools: For fitness and relaxation.
  • Internet Cafes: Stay connected and entertained.

The Viral Sensation

The Regent International complex has gone viral on social media, particularly on TikTok, where user @fatheristheone showcased the building’s immensity with stunning drone footage.

The impressive design and scale have captured the attention of millions online.

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Living Conditions

While the facilities are undeniably impressive, the living conditions can vary significantly.

Small apartments without windows are available for around 1,500 RMB per month ($210), making them affordable for students, graduates, and young professionals. Larger properties with balconies, offering more space and comfort, go for about 4,000 RMB per month ($570).

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The Cost of Convenience

Living in such a well-equipped building comes with its own set of pros and cons. On the one hand, the convenience of having everything at your doorstep is unmatched.

On the other hand, the lack of fresh air and natural light in some of the smaller, windowless apartments can be a significant downside.

Despite the building’s extensive amenities, residents still need to step outside occasionally to get some fresh air and stretch their legs.


The Regent International complex in Hangzhou is a marvel of modern urban planning, offering a glimpse into a possible future where cities are designed to be entirely self-sufficient. For its 20,000 residents, life within this colossal structure is both a convenience and a confinement.

Whether this is a utopian dream or a dystopian nightmare depends on one’s perspective. However, one thing is clear: the Regent International complex is a fascinating example of how urban living is evolving in the 21st century.

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