The Opus

The Opus

Zaha Hadid Architects
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
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Stories By
Zaha Hadid Architects

Laurian Ghinitoiu

Opus Office Tower

Zaha Hadid Architects as Architects

The Opus shortlisted for 2019 WAF Awards

The Opus in Dubai is one of four projects by Zaha Hadid Architects shortlisted for the World Architecture Festival 2019 WAF Awards.


The World Architecture Festival is dedicated to celebrating, sharing and inspiring outstanding architecture, with the WAF Awards at the heart of the festival.


Located within Burj Khalifa district of Dubai, the Opus is designed as two separate towers that coalesce into a singular whole—taking the form of a cube. The cube is then ‘carved’, creating a central void that is an important volume within the building in its own right—providing views to the exterior from the centre of the building. These two towers are linked by a four-storey atrium at ground level and also connected by an asymmetric 38 metre wide, three-storey bridge that is 71 metres above the ground. The free-formed fluidity of the Opus’ eight-storey void contrasts with the precise orthogonal geometry of its surrounding cube.


“The design conveys the remarkably inventive quality of ZHA’s work; expressing a sculptural sensibility that reinvents the balance between solid and void, opaque and transparent, interior and exterior,” explained Mahdi Amjad, Executive Chairman and CEO of the developer Omniyat.


With interiors currently being installed for the ‘ME by Melia’ Dubai hotel that will welcome its first guests in 2020, the Opus will house 12 restaurants, rooftop bar and 56,000 sq. ft. of office space. Operated by Melia Hotels International, one of the world’s leading hoteliers with more than 350 hotels in 39 countries, ‘ME by Melia’ hotels are defined by their progressive, design-driven approach.


“You always expect to be surprised by ZHA’s designs, but the Opus building to house ‘ME by Melia’ Dubai goes beyond what we could ever have anticipated. There’s no doubt that ME Dubai will raise the bar for Dubai’s hotels. We are proud to have this amazing project in our portfolio,” explained Gabriel Escarrer, Vice Chairman and CEO, Meliá Hotels International at the announcement of ME Dubai.

The Opus

Duravit as Manufacturers

She was a master of organic architecture and was the first woman worldwide to receive the prestigious Pritzker Prize - the Nobel Prize in the world of architecture. Today, Zaha Hadid’s buildings rise around the world, span rivers, roads and squares, or cling to the edge of Russian mountain plateaus. Her concrete structures pile seemingly weightless protruding or set back floors of residential buildings on top of each other, smoothly connect assembly line production and intellectual work at the BMW plant in Leipzig and make ski jumps and exhibition halls a study in dynamics.

One of her last and most remarkable designs is the Opus Tower in Dubai. However, the term “tower” only applies to a certain extent: The imaginative building complex seems like a cube that was hollowed out in the center. The building obtains its unique character from the tension between the outer, accurately-rectangular facade and the apparently organic holed part.

The futuristic building offers bright offices and in the upper floors hotel suites and modern apartments with amazing views of Dubai. The suites and lofts by Zaha Hadid are characterized by rich detail and imposing elegance, which is considered typical of her interior design projects. Every piece of furniture in the living units of Opus Tower was either designed by her or was personally selected by her. The bathrooms feature the designs of Philippe Starck and Duravit: Starck 1 urinals, Starck 2 WC’s and Starck 3 handrinse basins make a clear statement for durable and sustainable design. Large glass elements allow a lot of natural light to enter the building and make the premises appear deeper. Turning and sliding panels provide additional privacy and allow the rooms to be arranged individually.

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