Tag Archives: Architecture

Los Angeles Airport Gets Swanky New Terminal

When the Los Angeles International Airport opens its newly renovated terminal in August, passengers will travel through one of the most technologically advanced and splashiest airports in North America.

During a recent preview of the Tom Bradley International Terminal, 10,000 Angelenos got a taste of the $1.9 billion overhaul which includes interactive multimedia experiences splashed on giant LCD screens, monumental art installations, fine dining restaurants helmed by local celebrity chefs like Michael Voltaggio and Suzanne Goin, and strips of luxury retail shops inspired by Rodeo Drive.

The new terminal was designed by Fentress Architects, the same firm behind the multi award-winning Incheon International Airport in South Korea.

Tom Bradley International Terminal

Greeting inbound passengers arriving at LAX will be a giant 80-foot tall Welcome Wall created to ‘refresh’ tired passengers’ senses with visual displays of flowing cloudscapes and the LA shoreline.

In the Great Hall, a Story Board measuring 120 feet (37 meters) will feature a variety of ‘ambient narratives’ including visuals that take passengers on virtual tours through destination cities, panoramic images of Los Angeles and evocative still images of nature.

Multimedia experience LAX

The centerpiece of the terminal, meanwhile, will be the 72-foot (22-meter) tall digital Time Tower, an interactive motion-sensitive structure that reacts to passenger movements. Though designed to tell time as a world clock, it’s also meant to “reveal time” as part of the travel experience.

The newly renovated terminal will also offer passengers substantially more dining and retail options than its previous incarnation.

Bon Voyage Wall

With 31 dining outlets — three times more than before — the new terminal will provide a mix of local and global flavors including gourmet sandwich creations by LA celebrity Michael Voltaggio (winner of US reality TV series “Top Chef”) and and James Beard Award winner Suzanne Goin.

High flyers can also sip on bubbly and nibble on caviar at a new champagne bar.

And in a nod to one of the most famous shopping strips in the US, Rodeo Drive, the new terminal is also billed as a premier retail destination, with 36 outlets including LA brands like Fred Segal and Kitson.

Time Tower LAX

twister tower

Dubai inaugurates world’s tallest ‘twisted’ tower

cayan tower dubai

Dubai has inaugurated the world’s tallest twisted tower built at a cost of $272 million, setting yet another record for skyscrapers and other engineering marvels.

The 310-metre, 75-storey residential Cayan Tower is twisted at 90 degrees from top to bottom and was inaugurated earlier this week in Dubai Marina — a man-made canal overlooking the Gulf.

Developer Cayan Real Estate Investment and Development Company said 80 percent of its residential units have already been sold. Construction began in 2006, but was delayed due to major technical problems and the 2009 economic downturn in Dubai triggered by the global financial crisis.

The tower was designed by Chicago-based Skidmore Owings and Merrill, the masterminds behind Burj Khalifa, which is the world’s tallest tower and also in Dubai.

Dubai twisted tower

penthouse Residences W Hollywood

W Hollywood penthouse on market for $45 million

penthouse Residences W Hollywood

The 15th-floor penthouse at the Residences at W Hollywood in Los Angeles is on the market for $45 million.

The 25,000 sq. ft. penthouse has four bedrooms, eight bathrooms and 340-degree views of the Hollywood Hills, downtown Los Angeles, Century City and the ocean.

It includes a ballroom that can fit 250 people, a wine room and wine vault, a screening room with LCD projection, a solarium, a gallery and a pub-style tap room.

The nearly 4,000-square-foot master suite has a fireplace, entry foyer and oversize walk-in closet and dressing room designed to look like a Ralph Lauren store, says Richard Robertson III, the apartment’s architect.

The unit also includes a fitness center with an attached beauty parlor, a library, 17 valet parking spaces and a reception area with separate women’s and men’s powder rooms.

Mr. Robertson says he designed the space, which is still raw, to emulate the golden era of Hollywood with a streamlined Art Deco look.

The owner can work with Mr. Robertson and interior designer Sue Firestone to customize the penthouse or bring in his or her own designer.

Sixty percent of the 143 units in the W Hollywood residences, which range in price from $800,000 to $3 million, are sold as of early May.

Via WSJ PropgoLuxury

penthouse W Hollywood

Hermès Pavilion at BaselWorld 2013

hermes pavilion baselworld 2013

La Montre Hermès joined forces with architect Toyo Ito to create its BaselWorld 2013 pavilion located in the heart of the venue.

Its design is a testament to Hermès’ values: craftsmanship, a commitment to work carried out by hand and to the noble elegance of natural materials, and an appreciation of precision and innovation.

Toyo Ito has imagined a two-storey box measuring 34 metres long and 19 metres wide, with a total area of 1,040 sq.m. Its steel framework is clad with 624 wooden strips, some straight, some curved.

hermes pavilion baselworld 2013

These interlocking slats form an outer mesh, and this façade covers a second inner structure made of wood, glass and metal. Between these two “skins”, 167 plants form a corridor of greenery.

The design is organic, brought to life with movement akin to the swell of the sea. It appears to tremble in the wind. Its skin of wooden slats, hanging like a skirt, moves with broad and dynamic undulations.

With its entrance positioned in the corner, the pavilion appears to cut through the waves like the bow of a ship. As they enter, visitors will sense the serenity of the atrium. A staircase in wood and metal takes visitors up to the mezzanine. Naturally dyed fabrics, so evocative of the world of Hermès, line the spaces like the bark of a tree, giving them a sense of warmth and intimacy.

hermes baselworld 2013

Finally, glass cases dotted around the edge of the room and within display Hermès latest watch-making creations. Blossoming like metallic flowers, they take their place in the perpetual creative cycle.

Hermès booth at Baselworld 2013 is located at Hall 1.1, Booth B55 – Source: Cosmone.com.

hermes baselworld pavilion lounge

venice grand canal

Benetton launches megastore on Venice’s Grand Canal

Fondaco dei Tedeschi

Venice has given permission for one of its most famous buildings on the Grand Canal to be converted into a Benetton ‘megastore’ amid fierce protest from conservationists. The Fondaco dei Tedeschi, a 13th century palazzo, was bought by the international clothing retailer for 53 million euros in 2008.

Despite promising to spend millions to restore the crumbling facade, the company faced strong opposition from heritage campaigners who claimed it would damage Italy’s ‘historical identity’.

According to the Dailymail, thousands of tourists stop every day to take photos of its magnificent facade, once painted by 18th century landscape artist Canaletto.

Benetton have enlisted the services of Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas to turn it into a shopping centre and public area inside the building’s 10,000 square metres of floor space.

fondaco dei tedeschi venezia

LA MAISON 1888

The 10 most beautifully designed new restaurants

5-CINCO

Restaurants spanning Doha, Paris, Berlin and Vietnam have made Architectural Digest’s top 10 list of the most beautifully designed new eateries in the world.

TROLL WALL ROMSDAL

Chosen for “going beyond the ordinary,” the magazine shines the spotlight on recently opened dining destinations such as The Troll Wall in Romsdal, Norway, which does an architecturally admirable job of competing against its stunning backdrop, a location set against the highest vertical rock face in Europe.

TROLL WALL

At the foot of the towering slate grey Norwegian mountain, a pyramid-like structure of dramatically angled glass walls rises out of the ground – angled so as not to impede any sight lines to the sky.

ASTOR GRILL

Other restaurants that got an AD nod include the Astor Grill at St.Regis Doha, a steak and seafood restaurant where guests are greeted with a striking 5-meter tall, curved, silver sculptural art piece that wraps around the entrance wall.

ASTOR GRILL RESTAURANT

Philippe Starck-designed restaurant Ma Cocotte, located in the biggest and most famous flea market at the edge of Paris the Marché aux Puces Saint-Ouen, was also singled out for its eclectic interior, furnished with vintage and modern finds from the surrounding minefield of antiques.

ma cocotte restaurant

And French chef Michel Roux’s Vietnam outpost La Maison 1888 at the International Danang Sun Peninsula Resort also made the list for its stunning, contemporary take on French Colonial architecture.

LA MAISON 1888

Guests take their seats on opulent Louis XVI-style chairs, and dine on classic French dishes in a clean, black and white setting with leafy green plants which never let diners forget they’re in tropical Asia.

VOLKSHAUS BASEL

Other addresses which made the top 10 list include NoMad and Atera in New York; 5-Cinco, Berlin; Brasserie Zédel in London; Volkshaus Basel in Basel, Switzerland; and French Blue in St. Helena, CA.

NoMad Hotel Bar

kingdom tower

Saudis Set to Build Kingdom Tower

kingdom tower

The record for the world’s tallest tower is set to be broken yet again… The new skyscraper will measure one kilometre high and will be located in Saudi Arabia.

Mace, the firm behind London’s now famous Shard, will build the skyscraper in a joint venture with construction company EC Harris in Jeddah.

Plans for the tower, known as the Kingdom Tower, were announced 18 months ago, but Mace, the builders of the Shard and construction company EC Harris were only named as the firms behind the tower’s construction on February 21.

The tower will reach a height of 1,000 meters, nearly 3 times the height of the Shard and would overtake the Burj Khalifa in Dubai as the world’s tallest skyscraper.

The Kingdom Tower will be the centerpiece of the $20bn Kingdom City urban re-development project taking place in the north of Jeddah by the Red Sea.

According to Mace, the Kingdom Tower will serve as “a mixed-use building featuring a five-star luxury Four Seasons hotel, Four Seasons serviced apartments, first class office space, luxury condominiums and an observatory that will be higher than the world’s current highest observation deck.”

Construction will take five years and is expected to begin by the middle of this year.

highest towers

3D Printed House

Dutch architect to build house with 3D printer

3D Printed House Amsterdam

A Dutch architect has designed a house “with no beginning or end” to be built using the world’s largest 3D printer, harnessing technology that may one day be used to print houses on the moon.

Janjaap Ruijssenaars, 39, of Universe Architecture in Amsterdam, wants to print a Mobius strip-shaped building with around 1,100 square metres (12,000 square feet) of floor space using the massive D-Shape printer.

The printer, designed by Italian Enrico Dini, can print up to almost a six-metre-by-six-metre square (20-foot-by-20-foot), using a computer to add layers 5-10 mm (a quarter to half an inch) thick.

Ruijssenaars says the building could serve as a home or a museum and would have parts usually made from concrete printed using broken up rocks and an emulsion binding, while steel and glass would provide the facade.

“It’s our ambition to have the first printed house, this printer has made art or objects for sea defences, but this is the first time to build something that can be lived in,” he told AFP.

Ruijssenaars said the plan was not initially to print the building but the hi-tech medium turned out to be the most appropriate.

“We started to ask the question if a building can be like the landscape, in order to make a building that would not harm the landscape, or at least learn from the landscape,” he said.

“We analysed that the essence of landscape is that it has no beginning or ending, so it’s continuous, not only the fact the world is round but also water goes into land, valleys into mountains, it’s always continuous.”

The Mobius-strip shaped result bears a striking resemblance to the art of another Dutchman, 20th-century designer and illustrator M C Escher.

“In this design he’s definitely been an inspiration, I would say he’s the king of Mobius strips in drawing,” Ruijssenaars said.

When trying to make a small model of the building, Ruijssenaars realised that whatever material you use, from paper to lead, “you have to make a strip and then bend it in order to make this Mobius strip.”

“But with a 3D printer, even a small model, we could make the whole structure from bottom to top without anyone seeing where it is beginning or ending,” he said.

Working with Dutch mathematician and artist Rinus Roelofs and Dini in Italy, “we put the whole thing in the computer,” the architect said.

A Brazilian national park has expressed interest in the building, which would cost around four million euros ($5.3 million) to construct, the architect said, or it could be built as a private home in the United States.

The project would take around 18 months to build and the printer “might be active for half a year,” Ruijssenaars said.

“The challenge is demonstrating that it’s possible to print real buildings in 3D and affirm that there is a new way to manufacture buildings,” Dini, 50, said by telephone from Italy.

Dini, who gave up his well-paid job in robotics designing prototypes for the footwear industry to build his monster printer, said that 3D printing of buildings remains a hybrid process with other building techniques for reinforcement.

“And it’s about being competitive with other construction techniques,” he said.

One advantage of using printing is that you can easily build-in empty spaces for plumbing and electrics — and that you can use rocks found in situ at the construction site, which could be almost anywhere.

“The great thing about the printer is that you can take it somewhere and then print with the ground you find on location,” Ruijssenaars said.

“So you could take the printer to the moon, assemble it there and print with moon material.”

Burj

Dubai: land of the tallest, largest and the mosts

burj khalifa photo

News that the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai, the tallest hotel in the world, will be opening the doors to its dining rooms for guests next month is a reminder of Dubai’s many architectural and engineering wonders.

Check out some of the city’s world record holders, including the largest indoor ski resort, the tallest building and the largest shopping mall in the world.
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New York by Gehry Residential Tower

Living inside New York by Gehry Residential Tower

New York by Gehry Residential Tower

New York by Gehry – the first residential tower designed in New York City by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry – has redefined the skyline of Lower Manhattan.

The skyscraper is located a few blocks from Ground Zero, and near important historic structures such as City Hall, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Woolworth Building.
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Venice night

Pierre Cardin’s Plans To Build Venice Tower

Pierre Cardin Venice tower

French designer Pierre Cardin outlined his plan on Monday for a 255-metre (837-foot) tower called the Palais Lumiere that he wants to build in an industrial port area on the famous Venice lagoon.

“I want to offer Venice a big garden for eternity,” the Italian-born Cardin told reporters in the city, where some locals are horrified by the project.
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