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World's Most Beautiful Airports

Terminal 3, Beijing International Airport

Lou Linwei/Alamy

Terminal 3, Beijing International Airport

Opened in time for the 2008 Olympics, the vast Terminal 3 (two miles long and one of the largest buildings in the world) is supposed to represent a dragon. Architects Foster + Partners color-coded the ceiling—a dizzyingly complex mesh that allows sunlight to filter in—with red zones and yellow zones. Not only does the traditionally Chinese color scheme heighten the building's drama, it also helps passengers navigate the building.

Beauty Mark: Arriving passengers disembark at the airport's highest level: "You're walking through a massive, massive space which is the gateway to China," says Foster + Partners CEO Mouzhan Majidi.

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