David A. Seglin
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Rafael Vinoly Architects
Located at the heart of Abu Dhabi’s Mina Zayed Waterfront Entertainment District, the MGM Grand Complex unifies the programs of three separate buildings within one singular form. Three hotels, a cultural center, retail spaces and residential apartments are gathered into the circular horizontal landmark anchoring the waterfront site in a manner that is respectful of the cultural context while progressive in design features.
The MGM Grand, Bellagio and Skylofts Hotel and Residences encircle a central oasis containing landscaped gardens, a visitor’s center, theater, retail and restaurants, covered by a suspended translucent canopy. Roof screen shading and natural ventilation generate a comfortable sustainable microclimate within the radial design that is intimate in orientation while being dynamic and public in function and scale.
The modern fully glazed curtain wall maximizes outward views and is veiled by a monumental metal mesh rotating sun screen. While tracking the desert sun as it crosses the sky, the screen provides shade while affording residents privacy and exterior views. At night, the screen enlivens the city skyline via images displayed onto its surface.
At 450,000 square meters, the construction budget is $1.3 B.