ArchDaily | Broadcasting Architecture Worldwidethe world's most visited architecture website

Sign up now and start saving and organizing your favorite architecture projects and photos


Find the most inspiring products for your projects in our Product Catalog.


Get the ArchDaily Chrome Extension and be inspired with every new tab. Install here »

  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Office Buildings
  4. REX Designs Conjoined Media Towers with Retractable Facade for Middle East

REX Designs Conjoined Media Towers with Retractable Facade for Middle East

REX Designs Conjoined Media Towers with Retractable Facade for Middle East

Two sister Middle Eastern media companies have commissioned REX to design a conjoined headquarters that references traditional Arab iconography. The result, two ultra-thin, stone-clad towers that are shielded from the Middle East’s “unrelenting sun” by an array of retractable sunshades whose shape was inspired by the Arab Mashrabiya pattern. 

Measuring nearly 15 meters in diameter, these sunshades can be quickly deployed, transforming the building’s glass facade into a “blossoming” shaded tower within minutes.

“The headquarters’ instantaneous transformation forges a new kind of powerful iconography, one that rejects the tired—and ephemeral—pursuit of being the tallest,” described REX.

When shade is not an issue, the towers' translucent exterior is designed to have an x-ray effect that exposes the structure’s unique components to its surroundings. 

From afar, the towers' form a jumbo television screen, broadcasting the companies’ content to their environs in real-time.


The simple tower slabs also effectively create a huge sun screen for their adjoining landscapes. The shadow path on the Summer Solstice defines the extents of inhabitable courtyards, which are exposed when in shadow and covered by 6 meter square, retractable umbrellas when in sunlight. 


Once complete, offices will be stacked above broadcast and news studios at the top half of the tower. The lower portion will be dedicated to common facilities, including an agora, amphitheater, auditorium, café, canteen, employee lounge, executive lounge, fine dining, gallery, health club, majlis, and theater.

Large studios, which require permanent blackout, are submerged below grade.

Cafeteria. Image © Luxigon
Cafeteria. Image © Luxigon
  • Architects

  • Key Personnel

    Alberto Cumerlato, Tomas Janka, Gabriel Jewell-Vitale, Roberto Otero, Joshua Prince-Ramus, Aude Soffer, Alex Tehranian, Cristina Webb
  • Consultants

    Barker Mohandas, Front, Magnuson Klemencic, !melk, str.ucture, Transsolar
  • Area

    240200.0 sqm
  • Photographs

Cite: Karissa Rosenfield. "REX Designs Conjoined Media Towers with Retractable Facade for Middle East" 16 Apr 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


genasrallah · April 18, 2014

Day blooming MoonFlower. Great!!

Gëzim Radoniqi · April 18, 2014

Aedas did this type of facade first & much better and beautiful in my opinion

Abdelrahman Azmi · April 17, 2014

It's so Ugly :( , why do the west Architects loose there ability to sense the beauty when they design for the gulf people ?

Jonathan Barnes · April 17, 2014

well, that should work as well as Nouvel's Arab Institute mechanical apertures.


Comments are closed

Read comments