studio LFA was commissioned to design site was formerly used by the National Beverages Company. The site is located in Al Kuwhair fronting Sultan Qaboos Highway, about 20 minutes drive from the Muscat International Airport. It is a five-minute drive to the beach and Shatti/Qurum esplanades, the Grand Mall and surrounding shopping centres, and the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque. It is generally in a very central, accessible and prominent location.
The proposed plan arranges four distinct buildings to form an interior turbine plaza. Their positions provide a set of spectacular vistas to the ocean, which also connect to the multi-level framed interior courtyard and passages. Light and shadow dance across the articulated facades and lush greenery. A variety of commercial activity ultimately lead to a transition to residential uses, where dwellers will have a range of retail, offices, hotel, cinemas, restaurants, and other opportunities for passive recreation.
The proposed style lends itself to an aesthetic, which is common in Oman. Each of the buildings is a pure form of simple and elegant construction carefully organized to maximize views and solar orientation. Multi-level terraces, sky balconies, and loggias create a harmonic fusion of interior and exterior spaces. Deep arcades frame open spaces around glazed interiors, allowing for natural cooling and a flood of natural light to create a comfortable and brilliant building interior.
Large and massive facades will be mitigated by the compositional articulation of facades. Incorporating vertical elements such as towers, balconies, and loggias should reduce horizontal scale. Vertically proportioned shutters will cover window openings.
Flexibility within the plan allows for building use and massing transforming according to the needs of the users. Capacity within the block may also be adjusted according to market demands without affecting the integrity of the plan. A roof top terrace is to be used as an outdoor pool and bar/Shisha lounge both for residents and hotel guest.
Al Khuwair represents the latest effort between studio LFA in association with Plus Urbia and Gerardo Valle, along with a team of local and international consultants.