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  7. The Yas Hotel / Asymptote Architecture

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote Architecture

  • 00:00 - 10 December, 2009
The Yas Hotel / Asymptote Architecture
The Yas Hotel / Asymptote Architecture, © Unknown photographer
© Unknown photographer

© Unknown photographer © Unknown photographer © Unknown photographer © Unknown photographer +17

From the architect. The Yas Hotel, a 500-room, 85,000-square-meter complex, is one of the main architectural features of the ambitious 36-billion-dollar Yas Marina development and accompanying Formula 1 raceway circuit in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Asymptote envisioned an architectural landmark embodying various key influences and inspirations ranging from the aesthetics and forms associated with speed, movement and spectacle to the artistry and geometries forming the basis of ancient Islamic art and craft traditions.

© Unknown photographer
© Unknown photographer

Of architectural and engineering significance is the main feature of the project's design, a 217-meter expanse of sweeping, curvilinear forms constructed of steel and 5,800 pivoting diamond-shaped glass panels. This Grid-Shell component affords the building an architecture comprised of an atmospheric-like veil that contains two hotel towers and a link bridge constructed as a monocoque sculpted steel object passing above the Formula 1 track that makes its way through the building complex. The Grid-Shell visually connects and fuses the entire complex together while producing optical effects and spectral reflections that play against the surrounding sky, sea and desert landscape.

The architecture as a whole “performs” as both an environmentally responsive solution as well as an architecture of spectacle and event. The entire jewel-like composition of the project responds visually and tectonically to its environment to create a distinct and powerful sense of place as well as a breathtaking backdrop to the Formula 1 and other events that the building will celebrate. The Yas Hotel is designed to be a significant landmark destination on Yas Island for Abu Dhabi and the UAE at large.

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "The Yas Hotel / Asymptote Architecture" 10 Dec 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


zaid · October 16, 2016

how do they clean all this glazing ??

rohan · January 17, 2014

i am an junior architect, and was going through the hotel design and have to say the design is great, i was wondering if i could get the floor plans of the hotel, it they could be arranged somehow, it would be a great honor.
Ar.Rohan agrawal

cy · June 21, 2013

anyone know any of the detail about the node construction system?

ammar · January 25, 2013

pleas i need to help me .. i want to send me plan for lobby yas hotel interior design .. pleas and thank you

Armando Campos · May 12, 2012

RT @Enviro_Contract: Yas Hotel en Abu Dhabi, por Asymptote

Enviro Contract · May 12, 2012

Yas Hotel en Abu Dhabi, por Asymptote

Jasem Nadoum · March 28, 2012

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote via @archdaily

Kelvin · February 10, 2012

Abu Dhabi: The Yas Hotel / Asymptote | ArchDaily via @archdaily

BLAH CITY · February 10, 2012

Abu Dhabi: The Yas Hotel / Asymptote | ArchDaily via @archdaily

teuly · February 10, 2012

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote via @archdaily

Daniela Didier · February 10, 2012

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote via @archdaily

Satoshi Watanabe · November 14, 2011

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote | ArchDaily via @archdaily

alaa dalleh · October 07, 2011

It is more to architecture than just the outside appearance of the building,Interior design is a huge part of why people find it so beautiful.the outside is the part that initially grabs the attention but the interior is what makes the building memorable and functional.

sharwe · April 15, 2011

????????????YAS????#????# Yas Hotel in Abu Dhabi

ikkairi · February 12, 2011

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Viktor · February 12, 2011

that is look like Fuksas's Surface but in more original way)

tian gujing · January 28, 2011

what a great and imaginative design

Harry · January 16, 2011


denisenko olga · December 03, 2010

The Yas Hotel / Asymptote | ArchDaily via @archdaily

narges · November 25, 2010

I find your website.
I need to have hotel yas plans to complete my project at university. thank you.

vahid sheikhloi iran · November 15, 2010

it is only think!

Alex Fernández V. · November 13, 2010

waiting for the end of the @formula1 > @ASYmptote_

shady sydes · March 12, 2010

this is completely retarded. god help us

Rob · May 14, 2010 12:09 PM

To all of those who are against it...I was part of the design and branding team for The Yas Hotel and the Gridshell itself was a gift from one of the Sheikhs and it is an incredible piece of architectural design...architecture of this type (by Asymptote) DOES look the same because they use the same principles in all their designs...the 'asymptote'...a mathematical sequence that creates endless's particularly prevalent at the moment which is why someone said they all look the same...well they don't, it's just that Asymptote Architecture is popular at the moment and Lise is the pioneer and therefore used very frequently for projects all over the world.

brooke · March 05, 2010

thought it was amazing when i saw formula 1 on tv last year especially nite view. love it

M91 · March 03, 2010

Absolutely stunning building. I had the privilege of spending a day on the site during construction and hearing about engineering behind the shroud was fascinating. The fact that the whole thing is separate from the building and held up at just 6 points makes it such an amazing accomplishment. Flashy? Yes, but why shouldn't it be? I think its a great approach to shading the building

WiBu · March 03, 2010

More like façade of the year.

Just goes to show that in the minds of the masses, this stuff works. Shame.

Chiaro Scuro · March 03, 2010


rmissin · February 10, 2010

Stunning building, I wouldn't like to be the window cleaner tho' ;o)

Could anyone point me to more black and white plans/blueprints for this building?
I'm needing more details/viewing angles for a 3d project I'm working on. I have the 5 posted here, but could do with more views. Are these available any where ?

rmissin at

Many Thanks

john · December 30, 2009

this building looks like the esplanade in singapore, doesn't it??

Rembo · December 30, 2009

Rembo wants to know why the design team is not credited!! Surely, Rashid and Couture didn't build this thing with their own two hands. They credit some obscure photographer but not their staff nor list their consultants?

Perhaps this speaks to ego, or ignorance, or even better - inexperience at this level of the game. It seems those that spread the love earn a lot more respect in the end.

peter .f · December 31, 2009 09:15 AM

I agree with you Rembo to a point however as often is the case the architects have not been credited at all in several building and marketing videos which I find continually disturbing.

janardan · December 28, 2009

hey i just wnt to whats yhe function of the external laminating shell that has been applied on this building?

alan · December 26, 2009

Nice renders !

mr gaga · December 23, 2009

great tech and light use. but volumetric seams a bit borred because horizontality are not articulated with the curve cover.

Modern Zen Architecture · December 18, 2009

Like anything cutting edge, there will be some that vehemently oppose to this type of design. I think only when you consider all variables: form & function, usability, "wow" factor, I can see how this project made if past the drawing board. Risk takers reap the rewards. I imagine the nay sayers in this project; ultra- conservatives living in their boxy homes, with no cable, no internet access, yadi, yadi, yah...

roger · December 18, 2009

Does it only have one nut?

SuperMacro · December 16, 2009

it would be best if those glass are solar panels..

peter · December 17, 2009 03:04 AM

interesting... that is an idea that I am currently working on and yes it offers great potential. A student of mine also used solar cladding on a hybrid bus to assist with generating power.

thomas · December 15, 2009

I won't argue on the unethical aspect of the project, but I'm surpised, as someone mentioned it earlier, that there is no view of the hotel rooms or interior spaces as a matter of fact. With such a specatular envelope, it's kind of frustrating, if not worrying, to have no idea of the consequences of the structure, the light given by the skin through the windows... on the inner spaces of the project.

peter · December 29, 2009 04:37 AM

I would like to have seen more info on that also

skl · December 15, 2009

I think this is a rather cleaver way to make an iconic exterior without messing up hotel functions.

I worked on some big casino hotels and the client would change their mind every week on overall hotel footprint, individual room sizes, and room type mix like how many x type of rooms to be located on floor y and face to view z. If you try to tie the exterior form to the hotel function and room modules, you either end up designing big bars (which is fine) or you broke yourself (plus consultants) along with client’s budget and time frame and you got fired.

Not every building has to be a great architecture creation. A hotel has to attract travelers as well as make profit to the developer/investors. When you spend half a billion on a building, what you care the most is how fast your investment returned and how much profit, to that point, this project is great enough.

shadi osyli · December 12, 2009

nothing interesting without the cool looking nonfunctional shell, & it's block the transparency of some windows !!!

peter .f · December 31, 2009 09:10 AM

martin, if you did your 'research' you might know that there is an interesting video that explains the whole scheme ....and no I am not going to post the link for you... but maybe it might be educational and worth your while to find things out before you start typing away!

peter · December 16, 2009 02:39 PM

Oh please use your brain (you seem to be indicating you have one?) and research a little more! the skin is very functional!

Stan · December 12, 2009

I can see one very old tradition comming back in architecture with the greatest strenght ever: FACADISM....I mean nothing against...but wrapping an absolutely simple and rational plans ( two ellypses in this case) with a highly tecnological glass skin, which basically is just there for its own formalistic sake,is not something that could be called a great architectural creation.
"Les concepts sont morts, vivent les BUBBLES".

Al · December 12, 2009

The shell looks like slime :)
Why it?
Some good pictures, still

himun · December 11, 2009

i am it really needed in the name of architecture? why all are doing so big,so costly things?

Ronny Nunez · December 11, 2009 11:09 PM

I'm wondering if you would personally refuse a load of money from any of those petroleum kings to do "big" and "flashy"? when opportunities like this arrive we can surely leave our theoric depth aside for a little while and sell the crap out of ourselves.

We are always complaining about short budgets, ignorant clients, wrong or right design philosophies... the list could go on forever. Can't we just sit and understand that money DOES HAVE TO DO WITH ARCHITECTURE, for once? Most of you make me think we're some kind of pseudo-superheroe doing design-charity all over the world.


DCHa · December 11, 2009

Having worked on this project I can reassure you unpaid interns were not involved. At asymptote interns, paid and unpaid, are only involved in competition work for the most part. The 30+ staff I worked with in new York and Abu dhabi were pros as are tHani and Lise Anne. I can say having worked for other 'star' firms this is one of the most ethical and upstanding by far.

sammy · December 12, 2009 01:49 AM

so, the bar just set really low then.

moop · December 11, 2009

The design is executed very well.

I'm not too sure about the previous comment of unethical behavior and elitism. To me, architecture is about the work, not about who did it or what car the architect drives. I know elitism exist in our profession, but I just choose to ignore that kind of stuff. If I'm an elitist, then whatever, I just want to go on my drawing table and make good design...

Mo · December 11, 2009

alongside the Formula1 track!

anon · December 11, 2009

Everytime I see their work all I can think about is their use of indentured servitude to do their work. The architectural profession is despicable for its applauding and support for work of firms who promote this kind of unethical behavior in the profession. Its the perpetuation of this practice that prevents the rise in architectural salaries and creates an atmosphere of elitism. You don't see people going to work for Goldman Sachs, Microsoft, or GE for free.

Angel · December 11, 2009 12:02 PM

Yeah, Asymptote uses a lot of unpaid interns. All the time, for all projects. These two priciples are shameless. Lisa paid some intern before. But no more. Such a bi_tch and di_ck.

tony d · December 11, 2009 05:29 AM

it doesn't help that a lot of these firms are not built upon an actual business plan that can sustain itself.... it's a lot of old rich funding their own hobby in which kids do the work

timothy · December 11, 2009

why do "avant-garde" buildings look so much the same lately? Hmmm, maybe everybody is doing the same after all?

Kevin Church · December 11, 2009

Also, I should make this a Design Fetish post but I want to share it RIGHT NOW: OMG YOU GUYS

hmm · December 10, 2009

The cool looking skin serves no function basically other than

M · December 10, 2009 08:29 PM


Aesthetics are functional as well.

WSBY · December 10, 2009


jim-0 · December 10, 2009

is mtv now pimping my hotel? i wonder who the host is?

lisa · December 10, 2009

it's like those light nets my dad puts on the bushes out side his house for Christmas. so what is the architecture? the shell? the hotel? the location of the race track?

B.EID · December 10, 2009

although the buildings demonstrates the highest tech in design, construction, lighting, .... and it is really impressive
but my only concern is, what kind of view I people get when staying in a room , covered with this this glazed screen?

ajay ghai(india) · February 14, 2011 10:11 AM

i agree with u b.eid but we doesn't even know in past time that we will live in concrete structure..

Wing · January 10, 2010 04:58 PM


Rembo · December 10, 2009

Rembo says "holy wow!" Flashy or not, and no matter where this is, that gridshell is an architectural tour de force. Just think of the coordination required to get that built - never seen anything like it at that scale. This gets a "yaaaaarrrr!"

David · December 10, 2009

Are there any plans available? It looked really amazing watching the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with the LED lights changing colour.

N!CK · December 10, 2009

A death city in 20 years

Mookie Wilson · December 10, 2009 09:01 PM

A death city in 20 weeks....

aa · December 10, 2009

Iiiiiiii don't Flashy? Yes. Relevant? Not sure. This only demonstrates that they'll do anything ($) to show-off. And what's up with that restaurant? I'd hate hate to have dinner there!


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