Like the plains that spread out from the east and west to connect with the mountains, Ulaanbaatar is a city defined by contrasts, bringing together in harmonious unison the speed of modern life and the deliberate pace of the traditional Mongolian lifestyle. The design and layout of the city itself serves as bridge between the past and the present, representing continuity as well as modern priorities. Since the late 18th century the capital has expanded in concentric circles, like the ripples on a pond, from its historical and cultural origin in a distinctively Mongolian style known as Khuree. As such, the first ‘Big Circle’ which occupies the centre of the city contains many modern buildings and businesses, including government offices, luxury brand stores and high-rise apartment complexes. The outer circle remains in touch with the traditional style, with some districts made up entirely of the nomadic dwellings known as Gers. However, like the ripples on a pond, the modern and the traditional are found throughout the city to always settle into one harmonious reflection of Ulaanbaatar.