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  • IN PICTURES: Jean-Michel Gathy’s plans for Amaala Island, Saudi Arabia

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
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    IN PICTURES: Jean-Michel Gathy’s plans for Amaala Island, Saudi Arabia

    Design and architecture studio Denniston’s Jean-Michel Gathy has been announced as the master planner of the ultra luxe AMAALA Island in Saudi Arabia…

    Denniston’s internationally multi-award-winning architect, Jean-Michel Gathy, has released the first rendering showing what Ultra Luxe Amaala Island will look like.

    Designed to evolve and elevate the very best in travel, AMAALA, located along Saudi Arabia’s northwest coast, is an ultra-luxury destination that focuses on curating transformative personal journeys inspired by arts, wellness and the purity of the Red Sea.

    Rendering of 'The Palace', which will be situated on The Island

    Image caption: A rendering of ‘The Palace’, which will be situated on The Island

    Set in the Prince Mohammed bin Salman Nature Reserve across three unique communities, the 3,800-square kilometres (1,460-square miles) year-round destination will include 2,500 hotel keys and more than 800 residential villas, apartments and estate homes, alongside 200 high-end retail establishments, fine dining, wellness and recreation.

    “This is truly unique, nothing like it has ever been planned before.” – Jean-Michel Gathy

    “The Island development will be an immersive and interactive art-inspired jewel,” explained Gathy. “Its lifestyle components, its landscaping, the museums, and art installations together with the art community will transform this island into the ‘Diamond of the Red Sea’. It will feature many different venues for permanent installations or temporary exhibitions and artistic performances. The graphic layout of its spine will be distinctive from the air and will be recognised internationally as an iconic landmark. The project features all elements programmed and reflects the areas, numbers and facilities. This is truly unique, nothing like it has ever been planned before.”

    Image caption: A rendering showing the open-air design scheme of a 'seven-star' hotel room

    Image caption: A rendering showing the open-air design scheme of a ‘seven-star’ hotel room

    Representing one of AMAALA’s trio of communities – Triple Bay, Coastal Development and The Island – ‘The Island’ will be the tranquil home of an exclusive art community, and an Arabic botanical garden filled with sculptural pieces. The new destination will house masterpieces across four key design elements: a contemporary art museum and academy, a Riviera-lifestyle artists’ colony, immersive artistic experiences, and art and sculpture co-creation opportunities.

    The active community of The Island will be anchored by an artists’ village of working studios, artisanal shops, galleries, plus exhibition and performance facilities hosting a year-round calendar of immersive, and transformative works, representing the pillar of arts and culture. Fully aligned with Saudi Arabia’s ambitions for the future, the development of AMAALA is being rolled out across three key phases, with completion of the destination aimed for ahead of the realisation of Saudi Vision 2030.

    AMAALA carves a unique positioning within the global hospitality portfolio, catering to select travellers looking for innovative experiential escapes,” said Chief Executive Officer of AMAALA, Nicholas Naples. “Our ambition is to create personalised experiences, catering to the individual needs of each guest. Entrenched in the philosophies of art, wellness, and inspired by the purity of the Red Sea, we are excited to be working alongside Jean-Michel Gathy and Denniston to bring to life our vision for The Island. It is here where our guests will embark on a transformational journey and feed the soul through arts and cultural offerings, with opportunities for philanthropic art co-creation.”

    In addition to the The Island, Triple Bay will offer a fully holistic wellness retreat, state-of-the-art diagnostic medical facilities and authentic treatments designed to feature the local environment. Triple Bay will also be home to a fully integrated sports and entertainment community.

    Elsewhere, The Coastal Development is set to become the defining hub of contemporary art in the Middle East, playing host to a dynamic programme of exciting events from the global arts and cultural calendar.

    All image credits: Denniston/AMAALA

    Hamish Kilburn / 01.04.2020

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