Abu Dhabi – what was once a lonely desert, is now an international hotspot for architects and building companies. On Saadiyat Island, a peninsula on the northwest coast of the emirate, an impressive building project is currently underway, in the form of the 1.5 million square metres Hidd Al Saadiyat villa community right next to the white sand beach. The project is being completed in several phases. The first phase with over 460 villas is scheduled for completion in December 2016. The designer bathroom manufacturer Duravit is involved in the project. Its local branch in Dubai is providing over 1,000 washbasins and toilets from the company’s best-selling Vero range. Some of the sea-view villa bathrooms will also be fitted luxuriously with other ranges such as 2nd floor washbasins and WCs, Starck 3 WCs and Starck bathtubs.
“Hidd” is an ancient Arabic name for a tongue of land projecting into the sea. An ideal name for this major building project on the Saadiyat Island peninsula with its unspoilt 9 km long sand beach on the Persian Gulf, not far from downtown Abu Dhabi. The project comprises four different villa types offering new homes for around 4,000 people.
The project is being overseen by Saadiyat Development and Investment Company (SDIC), a real estate development company in Abu Dhabi. It attaches particular importance to ensuring that both Mediterranean elements and traditional Arab building styles are incorporated in the architecture. This symbiosis has resulted in modern low buildings with large well-lit rooms and selected fittings. Mediterranean sandstone meets high-grade marble elements. Apart from the designs by Duravit, the interior will feature wooden surfaces as a warm contrast to the heavy stone floors.
The buildings are adapted to the climatic conditions so as to minimize the need for air conditioning and reduce costs in that way. The lighting of the outside of the buildings, streets and public areas is controlled by a central mechanism, which reduces not only energy consumption but also light pollution in the surrounding area. This is important because apart from the inhabitants of the villas, Saadiyat Island is also a turtle habitat and breeding ground and the sensitive ecosystem of the island needs to be preserved as far as possible. The project was awarded the Estidama Pearl 2 Rating for its respect for Abu Dhabi’s sustainability standard.