The Makkah Museum will be located seven kilometers from the Grand Holy Mosque, which is visited by millions of Muslims each year. The museum "will offer a unique interpretation and reflection of faith to the millions of Muslims who visit Makkah from around the world and who, up until this point, have had no cultural institution of this kind to enhance their visit to the holiest of Muslim cities," write the architects.
Its program includes a public reception space, 5,600 square-meters of permanent and temporary exhibition galleries, an auditorium, an educational space, a book store, a roof garden, and a restaurant.
The exhibition scenography is placed at the core of the museum. Studio Adeline Rispal designed the core of the building, which is occupied by a void that visitors ascend as they pass through the exhibition galleries. Mossessian Architecture supplemented this by designing a continuous ramp system and a spiral staircase used to circulate the void. In one of the gallery spaces at the base of the spiral, visitors "can gaze up at the 99 Beautiful Names of Allah inscribed on the underside of the cupola formed by the spiral."
"As visitors journey through the museum, they learn about the life of the prophet through exhibits and panoramic films installed to either side of the ramp, ultimately arriving at a ‘garden of delight’ at the top of the building." These geometric gardens form spaces where visitors can comfortably gather even in the hottest months of the year.