Mediterranean design with Arabic influence for St Regis Saadiyat

Hirsch Bedner Associates (HBA) has completed the design of the St. Regis Saadiyat  Island, Abu Dhabi, drawing on Arabic influences to produce a Mediterranean style.

For the hotel, HBA took inspiration from its surroundings and made use of local products and elements.

The overall pallet is very light and airy with a number of natural and earthy materials, colours and shapes  including sand roses and sea swells.


A stone floor, reminiscent of sand, was used throughout and hand-selected  from local quarries. Lighter woods with a wide grain and a natural finish were picked to create a calming ambiance through the food and beverage outlets, the guestrooms and the public spaces.

The ceiling is a golden, recessed dome, typical of Italian architecture. Concentric circles of the custom designed crystal in the grand chandelier cascade resembling a delicately curving seashell.

Natural sea shapes and colours are also found in the patterns of the rugs and in the art on the tall lobby walls.

HBA senior designer Ira  Imerlishvili said: “The most distinguishable feature is the million dollar view you see upon entering the  property. The entire back wall ofthe  hotel’s lobby is made of frameless glass overlooking the sea offering amazing unobstructed views unlike any other in Abu Dhabi.”

With Mediterranean-influenced architecture and the surrounding natural environment, the resort’s living spaces range from the intimate to the grand, from 55-square metres ‘Superior Rooms’ and 85-square metres suites to a 2,000-square metres Royal Suite.

High recessed-ceilings with a natural pallet make the  rooms feel large. The stone is honed rather than polished, and finishes are rustic instead of highly polished lacquered rooms.

Each room features a slightly arched balcony, creating a contemporary Mediterranean feel.

In the spa, natural materials create a pallet of pale gold, cream and darker tones of slates and marbles.

Recesses of domes are finished in a silver leaf, recalling the gold leafed domes in the resort, while the luminous sky-­like surface help light up the natural hues of the  spa.

With the St. Regis Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, HBA has aimed to create a blend of Arabic hospitality and contemporary design.

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