Iconic presence on the buzzing Sheikh Zayed Road.
Words by Aneesha Rai in Design & Architecture · Jul. 21st, 2015
Hosting one of the most beautiful green glass facades on Sheikh Zayed Road, the Rolex Tower stands at 235m, making it one of the most unique contemporary buildings on Sheikh Zayed Road. Owned by Ahmed Seddiqui & Sons, the mixed use tower appears opaque at the ground level, then meteorically rises to a more transparent as the tower rises. The tower also hosts two sky terraces. Horizontal slots at the base of the building reflect the movement of the street and provides shade on to the pavement. The tower won an award in 2011 for Best Overall Project at Middle East Architect Awards.
Designed by the architects of the Burj Khalifa, Chicago-based Skidmore, Owings and Merill (SOM), the Rolex Tower is a product of the real estate arm of the popular UAE-based luxury watch retailer, Ahmed Seddiqui & Sons. The tower was designed as a tribute with the company's 50 year relationship with the Rolex brand. The building stands as the only one in the world not owned and managed by the luxury watch brand. The tower hosts 25 floors of two-and three-bedroom apartments, as well as 31 levels of premium commercial space, and a ground floor for high-end retail offerings. The cherry on top happen to be two stunning penthouses with amazing floor to ceiling panoramic vistas of the urban Sheikh Zayed road and financial district at DIFC.
The tower's contemporary and simplistic look has been created with over 40,000 meters of aluminium and glass being used in its exterior, with 3385 tonnes of steel and 29,150 cubic metres of concrete underneath all baths and public areas. The idea for the Rolex Tower arose from the vision of a "desert mirage," and the tower clearly fits that bill. Regaling elegance in the facade, the same amount of panache extends into the lobby, which features a sculpture by Dubai-based artist James Clar of the Traffic gallery called Soundwave. The sculpture represents the waveform ofa voice saying "Rolex Tower." It features 2.5m above the ground and is nothing short of impressive.