Manama: The Latest Architecture and News
Buddhist Monasteries and Spain's Islamic Palace-City Among 19 New Sites Added to UNESCO's World Heritage List
After carefully deliberating in their annual session, UNESCO's World Heritage Committee selected 19 new sites to inscribe on the World Heritage List in the city of Manama in Bahrain. Featuring 13 cultural sites such as Buddhist mountain monasteries in Korea, the industrial city of Ivrea in Italy, and the Caliphate city of Medina Azahara in Spain, alongside three natural sites and three mixed sites (classified as both cultural and natural heritage), the list now aggregates to 1092 sites in 167 countries.
From the historical Sultan Ahmed Mosque in Istanbul to the contemporary city of Brasilia orchestrated by Oscar Niemeyer, the World Heritage List has continuously exhibited varied examples of architecture and urban planning from different eras and movements from around the world. Amongst the new additions, there are several sites of religious importance, city organization, and natural conservation.
Wiel Arets Architects (WAA) has revealed plans for a mixed-use "Bahrain Bay Tower" in Manama. Reaching heights up to 170-meters, the project is comprised of two residential towers connected by a plinth of retail, office, parking and public park space.
"The plinth’s ground floor is publicly accessible and is mostly composed of retail and public lobby space," says WAA. "Due to a division of these ground floor spaces, along the site’s southern edge, a breezeway was created that allows the public to traverse the tower’s entire site - without entering its interior - which serves to infuse the tower’s immediate context with pedestrian life. In this way, the ground level frontages of the tower’s retail spaces are maximized."
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill's (SOM) latest endeavor, a Four Seasons Hotel called Bahrain Bay, has been officially opened. Occupying a private 12-acre island, the hotel creates a dynamic new focal point and a thriving destination for the developing Bahrain Bay district. As part of SOM's masterplan, the hotel is an important milestone in activating the waterfront area.
Read on after the break for more on the hotel's program.