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Foster + Partners designs Coral Bloom resort on Saudi Arabia's Shurayrah island
Saudi Arabia Architecture News - Feb 11, 2021 - 16:33 5814 views
Dubbed as Coral Bloom, the new resort development, designed by global British architecture firm Foster + Partners, will be blended in the island’s pristine natural environment.
According to the TRSDC, the new development will offer "a barefoot luxury experience" to its visitors when they arrived to the island. As John Pagano, CEO of TRSDC, said, Foster + Partners' design draws inspiration from "the incredible flora and fauna found uniquely in Saudi Arabia".
The Coral Bloom project will comprise 11 hotels on Shurayrah, which will be operated by some of the most distinguished hotel brands in the world, and Shurayrah will be one of 90 islands that are being developed along Saudi Arabia’s west coast as part of The Read Sea Project.
The island’s 11 hotels will be adapted to suit traveler expectations in post-Covid-19 era, the hotels will include more space, and be immersed into the landscape to effectively form part of the sweeping dunes, allowing the island’s natural beauty to reign supreme.
The design takes biodiversity approach into the core of design and is planned to avoid any disruption of the island’s mangroves and other habitats. The scheme provides natural defenses from erosion, while new habitats are created through landscaping to enhance the island’s natural state, according to a press release.
"Our vision for Shurayrah is inspired by the island’s natural state, with the hotels designed to give the impression that they have washed up on the beaches and nestled among the dunes almost like driftwood," said Gerard Evenden, Head of Studio at Foster + Partners.
"The materials we use and the low impact they have ensures that the pristine environment is protected, while the additions we make to the island serve to enhance what is already there – hence the name, Coral Bloom," Evenden added.
Situated on the dolphin-shaped island along with a new lagoon, "these enhancements will contribute to raising the level of the land, providing a defensive layer from the global threat of rising sea levels," stated in a press release.
"Importantly, the changes aim to preserve or enhance what already exists on the island, without damaging any habitats or natural shores."
Comprised of hotels and private villas, the complex doesn't include any high-rise building to ensure the spectacular vistas, while creating a sense of mystery for guests as the island slowly reveals itself.
As stated by the TRSDC, the hotel designs have also been designed as responsive to the changing world and traveler demands over the last 12 months.
The complex will not include internal corridors, in response to a growing demand for space and seclusion following the coronavirus pandemic.
The resorts will be made of lightweight materials with a low thermal mass and be manufactured offsite to create more energy efficient construction and to have less impact on the environment.
"Shurayrah Island is the gateway to The Red Sea Project so it’s important that it sets the standard in groundbreaking architecture and sustainable design, not just for our destination, but globally too," said John Pagano, CEO of TRSDC.
"This is achieved by going beyond simply protecting the environment, to applying a regenerative approach," he added.
TRSDC described its project as a "regenerative tourism" and said: the company expects to deliver a 30 percent net conservation benefit by 2040.
The destination’s master plan is informed by an extensive marine spatial planning exercise and leaves 75 percent of the project’s islands untouched. Shurayrah will be one of only 22 islands selected for The Read Sea Project.
TRSDC expects to welcome the first guests for the Coral Bloom resort by the end of 2022, alongside an international airport, designed by Foster + Partners, the mirage-inspired airport is expected for completion in 2023. The company added that the remaining 12 hotels planned in phase one will open in 2023.
Upon completion in 2030, The Red Sea Project will comprise 50 resorts, offering up to 8,000 hotel rooms and around 1,300 residential properties across 22 islands and six inland sites. The mega development also includes Kengo Kuma-designed new 100-villa development as part of The Red Sea Project.
The destination will also include luxury marinas, golf courses, entertainment and leisure facilities.
All images courtesy of TRSDC
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