Meravigliosa island

The World, Dubai (EAU) / 2009
Architecture, Landscape

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The island of Taiwan, recreated in “The World” (an artificial archipelago 4 km off the coast of Dubai) stretches in a line and marks two different areas of the waterfront. On the one side, there is a slightly sloped beach, and on the other, a layered, organic sea shelf that simulates the rugged quality of a crag. The design envisions a grouping of 15 single-family homes on the two long sides of the island, in addition to a small building for facilities. There are three different villa models: Beach Villa (along the beach); Ocean Villa (on the artificial sea shelf); and Water Villa (islands on piles in the middle of the sea). The housing model’s form and structure are a take on the idea of the tent and the desert with its dunes and its wind-shaped roughness. The villas are configured like large roofs conceived continuously with the façades, which merge with the local landscape. The materials were inspired by desert colors: terracotta in a variety of colors and colored cement; the terracotta is shaped using traditional building technologies like the Catalan vaulting technique, and the colored cement is made into curved shells shaped by metal substructures. Each villa differs in its configuration and its design, following a plan far from the speculative approach that has defined recent divisions in Dubai. Yet, each house tries to come into harmony with the adjacent building with an approach based on the defining merging and homogeneity of a desert landscape.

ProgramResidential - Hospitality
LocationThe World, Dubai (EAU)
PurchaserRajaa Trading & Investiments
Terrain Surface16.782 sq m
Building Surface10.062 sq m