Marfaa 1506
beirut, lebanon

Strategically located on the northeast edge of the Beirut Central District, plot 1506 sits directly on Beirut Waterfront along the edge of the port. Together with the CMA-CGM headquarters on the opposite side of the road, it serves as one of the northern gateways to central Beirut. 

The plot benefits from outstanding panoramic views to the sea and the mountains as well as to the city center behind, as it opens up onto a pedestrian plaza to the west and presents an opportunity to build a landmark at the harbor entrance.

The program called for office and retail components, with the possibility of taking advantage of harbor views by turning the roof and upper terraces into a restaurant.  The project itself consists of three basements, a ground floor and mezzanine with 8 upper floors of large, open plan office plates with 3.15-meter high ceilings, a decentered core and peripheral columns to maximize flexibility. The last two floors can either be used as an executive office with a panoramic terrace or alternatively, as the penthouse restaurant, with interconnected rooftop terraces overlooking the sea and the city skyline.

The sculpted mass, which makes use of fair-faced concrete, glass and vertical aluminum blades, presents a play on solidity and transparency, a reference to the fortress that originally stood at the tip of the city. Fully glazed façades open up to the views and flood interiors with natural light but given the prominent location, privacy and direct sun, screening is provided through translucent frit glass and brushed or polished, marine aluminum alloy louvers, which catch the light and play with its reflections.  A soaring 32 meter-high atrium lobby opens onto a public plaza that extends the building’s courtyard, creating a series of transitional spaces between the private and public realms.


architecture: nabil gholam architects
3D images: nabil gholam architects