Penthouse Mountain: Stone Villa Tops Chinese Condo Tower

Over six years, one dedicated man has constructed his dream house, complete with (presumably fake) boulders, trees, gardens, pools and ponds. It is the kind of luxury home (or man cave) you might expect to set into the side of an actual mountain … rather than perched atop an urban apartment building.

mountaintop penthouse on roof

The Daily Mail  reports that Chinese eccentric Zhang Lin slowly assembled this structure in Beijing despite disruptions and dangers caused to those residents below, apparently without planning permission and in defiance of zoning laws (not to mention common sense). The many tons of material required were hauled up the building, then transformed into a faux mountaintop. In turn, the industrious top-floor owner tucked his unique private penthouse retreat into the resulting rock face.

mountain rock condo sprawl

A number of residents have complained about the noise from construction, and one has experienced flooding, either from fake mountain pools and ponds above their place, broken drainage due to displaced infrastructure, or perhaps both.

mountain condo in context

Meanwhile, the penthouse – originally slated to be a small shack added to the top – has sprawled in all kinds of creative and (to those below, at least) unexpected ways. There are various outdoor decks, viewing platforms and winding paths that make their way through and around the stone mountaintop and its outgrowths of greenery.

mountain on condo tower

mountain shaped carved apartment

And what comes next? Well, no one in the city has stopped the project so far, but as complaints mount from other residents, and as the weight loaded on the roof grows, one has to wonder what will happen first: government intervention or a tragic structural collapse. Update: the government has now stepped in to demand the demolition of this penthouse, which must now be carefully deconstructed, piece by piece.