Beirut Marina & Town Quay by Steven Holl Architects
All images, drawings and information courtesy of Steven Holl Architects. © by Steven Holl Architects.
The new Beirut Marina designed by Steven Holl Architects.
Beirut Marina & Town Quay
2002 – 2009
Program: apartments, restaurants, outdoor public spaces with site specific art
installations, specialty stores, harbormaster, yacht club, and public facilities
Project type: direct commission
building area (square) 220000sf/20439sm
The Beirut Marina building takes its shape from strata and layers in forking vectors. Like the ancient beach that
was once the site, the planar lapping waves of the sea inspire striated spaces in horizontal layers, as distinct from
vertical objects. The horizontal and the planar become a geometric force shaping the new Harbor spaces. The
form allows a striated organization of public and private spaces which include; restaurants and shops, public
facilities, harbourmaster, yacht club, and apartments above. The apartment building hinges to create a “y”. The
form produces a high ratio of exterior surface area offering a maximum amount of views, rising to form a public
observation roof to the sea.
The building is situated along a new fabricated terrain, that is extended from Beirut’s Corniche, the seaside
promenade, to create an ‘urban beach’ of public spaces overlooking the Marina. Stairs and ramps are integrated
to provide access to the waterfront level. The syncopated rhythm of platforms is achieved by constructing the
overall curve of the Corniche in 5 angles related to the 5 reflection pools. Due to the variations in height along the
Corniche, the platform levels and pools vary slightly in height allowing quiet, gravity-fed fountains to connect each
Celebrating the sea horizon, the terraces are sculpted in local stone. The simple geometry of the upper platforms
is in contrast to the colourful activity of restaurants below. The coloured walls and fabrics below have their
monochromatic and organic complement in awnings over the tables by the reflecting pools on the upper level. The
building roof forms a public observation platform for the sea horizon.
Steven Holl Architects Steven Holl (design architect) Tim Bade (associate in charge, design phase) Masao Akiyoshi, Edward Lalonde, JongSeo Lee, Brett Snyder (project team) L.E.FT Mohammed Ziad Jamaleddine, Makram El-Kadi, Naji Moujaes (project architect)
Nabil Gholam Architecture (associate design architect)