Located at the foot of Dagan Mountain, just outside Alian Village, Lianyuan Retreat is on a longitudinal site surrounded by farmland. The main building has a huge setback from the street and a forest of trees, with a garage and servant quarters between the house and the main road. The building was designed in a rectangular shape with a courtyard in the middle. As a traditional three-sided courtyard house, Lianyuan enjoys daylight and breezes associated with its shape. An outdoor fireplace in the courtyard acts as a visual focal point and the hearth of the household.
A double-skin design with concrete as the main structure and CMU blocks as outer layer throughout the entire house set the tone of the estate. A linear reflecting pond runs alongside the open side of the courtyard mediating the rough CMU block surfaces and the farmland. The balance between the private enclosure and the openness of the land is regulated by the modules of the CMU blocks that form solid, lattice, and punctured opening walls at various locations around the house.