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Al Khobar, Saudi Shopping Centre

This shopping and entertainment block, now on site on Prince Turki Street, a com­mercial district in Al Khobar, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, is designed to stand out and draw attention to itself. The design takes account of the harsh climate by providing shade and ventilation for shoppers, cinema goers and leisure seekers.

The building has two tall storeys and a roof top. It has an atrium which is protected from the sun, with escalators as the focal point. The roof accommo­dates restaurants and bars as well as a playground area and a small open-air cinema. There is also a cinema and gym to the rear of the block. The base­ment accommodates car parking and the plant rooms.


The principal elevation facing the main road is de­signed as a perforated skin made of ceramic blocks which opens up at the bottom to reveal partially what is going on behind as well as indicating the entry. The skin is further punctuated to create large win­dows for retail display.