Wilson Associates wins Saudi interior design deal

Company will design interiors for 19 hotels at Jabal Omar project

The Jabal Omar development will feature 26 hotels.
The Jabal Omar development will feature 26 hotels.

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Interior design firm, Wilson Associates has been selected to design the interiors of 19 of the 26 hotels that make up Jabal Omar Development Company’s (JODC) latest development in Makkah.

The development is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2011, and is part of Makkah Development Authority’s plan to develop Makkah’s central region by 2020.

Wilson Associates’ scope of work covers an area of two million m², including 25 towers, ranging from 20 to 48 stories, 17 grand lobbies and 40 food and beverage outlets, each offering views of Makkah and surrounding holy sites. Hotel brands confirmed to date include the Conrad, Westin, Marriott, Hyatt and Sheraton.

“After 39 years in the business, we are thrilled to be selected as the designers of this prestigious and spiritual development,” said Trisha Wilson, founder and CEO, Wilson Associates. “As a firm we have designed and installed over a million guestrooms and we are honoured to be selected to design over 10,500 rooms simultaneously for one client.”

Allowed only 12 minutes to make the original pitch for all 19 hotels, Wilson Associates communicated its philosophy of combining cultural and historic traditions with a contemporary refinement, whilst capturing the spirit of a place.

“We don’t have one look; we design for the client and for the market, incorporating the culture, traditions and topography of the project’s location,” said Wilson. “Here in Makkah, our design focus is to create a balance between contemporary elegance and strong architectural elements punctuated with luxurious finishes.”

Each hotel location will be connected by a vehicular ring road for easy accessibility. The complex will also be served via separate pedestrian walkways connecting all the hotels.

Wilson Associates is working closely with a range of industry professionals, including project management company, Abnia Consulting Engineers; hospitality consultant, Equinox Hospitality Group; architecture firms, Dar Al Handasah and OGER International; purchasing agent, Benjamin West and construction development companies, Saudi Binladin and Saudi OGER.

“There are few hospitality design firms worldwide with the depth of design talent and technical and production resources to handle such a huge creative challenge for a fast track development,” said Michael Linczyc, Wilson Associates’ principal in charge and corporate director of development.

“Each of the 19 hotels and nearly three dozen restaurants has a unique and original interior design presentation,” added Linczyc. “It’s a testament to our company culture of collaboration and client service.”

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