PART 1: DESIGN INVESTIGATION OF THE OPUS BUILDING IN DUBAI
- Ideas and concepts related to the under-investigation design
The Opus building is one of the magnificent works of art that stands in the desert town of Dubai. The building is quite a spectacle to any person’s eye given that it has a unique architectural design that is incomparable to other ordinary buildings. The building has been designed to look like a cube which has a fluid-like opening through its middle, which is commonly referred to as the ‘void’(“The Opus in Dubai Designed by Architect Zaha Hadid”, 2007). This ‘void’ has been clad with a tinted curved glass that enables a more remarkable view. The building is a multi-purpose building that serves as a retail and commercial center. Designed by architect Zaha Hadid and developed by the Omniyat Properties, the Opus Building is a landmark design project which will be analyzed in this report (“The Opus in Dubai Designed by Architect Zaha Hadid”, 2007).
- Design principles guiding the creation of the building/interior that is to say how the ideas and concepts are translated into design principles (Unity, Variety, Balance, Scale, Proportion, Emphasis, Pattern, Hierarchy)
The Opus is a 21 storey building that is mainly made up of offices which take up about 17 floors of the same. The whole structure consists of two discrete towers that are inter-linked to look like a single cube-shaped building (Ramola, 2016). From the foundation the towers are one and have five floor basement which then continues to a four storey podium from where the void starts. The towers have been joined by a steel bridge which involved complex Engineering calculations. The bridge spans 40 meters and was designed to ensure the earthquake loadings were taken in consideration hence its complexity. This was a learning experience to most of the Engineers and designers as the building’s integrity had to be kept in all stages of the design. These towers also have a central core that serve the two with lifts and communal restrooms.
PART 2: RECOGNITION AND REPRESENTATION OF THEORY
2.1 Principles of the design: site, exterior, interior space, and furniture
The building is located in the Burj Khalifa District of Dubai and will house the ‘ME by Melia hotel’ –which is a world-class hotelier in that region (Rinaldi, 2017). A paramount section of the Opus is the void which enhances the spectacle of the building. According to its architect Zaha, this void, is supposed to give visibility of other fascinating buildings in the city such as the Burj Dubai, which is adjacent to it. Zaha described the void as a window to the city (“The Opus in Dubai Designed by Architect Zaha Hadid”, 2007). To achieve this art in the building, the designed were posed with the challenge of ensuring the fluid-like void was well incorporated without compromising the structural strength of the building. Also, it would be covered with glazed-glass which enhanced this. As such, the designers came up with a pattern of glass façade which formed pixelated striations that provided good reflectivity from the building (“The Opus in Dubai Designed by Architect Zaha Hadid”, 2007). It was necessary to ensure that the glass do not reflect solar light at one point such as to cause glaring. At night, the glass façade would light-up in beautiful colors which brings the building to life.
The interior of the building is furnished with unique type of features like furniture that offer ultimate comfort and usability to the user. This is particularly achieved in the hotel rooms as well as the apartments. In addition, the building has integrated its own digital music system that ensures quality entertainment to the occupants (Leech, 2017).
2.2 Top view image of the Opus Building
2.3 Investigation and photographs of different features of the Opus
A lounge room at the Opus Tower
An Office Room at the Opus Tower.
Furniture arrangement at the Opus in an apartment
A bedroom in an apartment at the Opus building
The furniture in the building is unique as can been seen in the image above as designed by the architect Zaha. It is evident that the architect has introduced new designs and concepts that have revolutionized the ordinary office, apartment, and general room arrangement and outlook of the furniture. As can be seen from the photos the rooms do not have corners as is the norm in other buildings but have peculiar fascinating shapes. Also, there are no ornaments or pictures on the walls as tradition but this has brought out the quality of confidence, purity and artistry in the rooms. Zaha is well known and celebrated for many of his outstanding and excellent designs, but the Opus building exceeded everyone’s expectations in the field of architecture.
2.4 Principles and features of the Opus Building
The fact that the Opus does not have columns running across the floor plates enables more lighting to the offices. The building was also designed to house other facilities including restaurants, apartments, and a five-star boutique (Leech, 2017). Add to this, an atrium is left at the center of the building which also has well designed lobbies. All the rooms in the building have a unique look which distinct them from the conventional type of buildings from its external appearance as well as the interior decoration and arrangement.
2.5 The main concept intended by the designer of the Opus
The design of the building has revolutionized the concept of office rooms as they have the most modern set-up that incorporates both art and workability of the offices. The offices are unique and are designed as freehold rather than the traditional type of offices. This has enabled the architect to design better quality spaces which are incorporated with the latest technological appliances. The offices have spectacular natural lighting owing to the intrinsic design of the whole structure. As such, the architect aimed at providing the best quality of utility packaged in a modern and futuristic outlook.
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Ferrari, Z. H. P. S. C., & Peyrer-Heimstaett, J. E. L. P. (2010). The Opus Office Buildings, Dubai, UAE. Urbanism and Architecture, 10, 039.
Leech, N. (2017). Zaha Hadid’s The Opus is ahead of the curve. The National.
Rinaldi, M. (2017). Zaha Hadid’s first Dubai project The Opus costruction go ahead.
The Opus in Dubai Designed by Architect Zaha Hadid. (2007). Design Build Network. Retrieved 8 November 2017, from
Welch, A. (2017). The Opus, Dubai building. E-architect.