Prayer hall sits inside a cluster of rock-shaped buildings - architecture and design

Prayer hall sits inside a cluster of rock-shaped buildings



CEBRA has completed a cave-like prayer centre in Abu Dhabi housed in a landscape of jagged, rock-like forms.
Al Musallah prayer hall is also a new park for the city.
Commissioned by the city's Department of Culture and Tourism, the prayer centre is part of a wider masterplan for a site adjacent to the Qasr Al Hosn Fort ? Abu Dhabi's oldest stone structure.

Drawing on the mud-crack patterns of Abu Dhabi's coastal desert landscape, the rock shapes rise out of a small pool of water.
Together they form a mixture of walkways, gardens, seating and even bollards, with the largest housing the spaces of the prayer complex.

"The geometries intentionally land somewhere between building and landscape," said CEBRA.
"Along the transitional zone, the landscape changes from horizontal planes to slanting surfaces and gradually grows into actual buildings, culminating with the Musallah."
The prayer hall spaces themselves are a series of interconnected forms surrounded by water.
These ponds separate them from the public park and provide a greater sense of privacy and seclusion.

"Walking from the open landscape of the park along the narrow passages between the 'rocks', the noise and bustling life of the city slowly fades away and visitors enter the cave-like entrance halls, where you can rest and talk before prayers," said the studio.
A roughly symmetrical plan creates two routes into the prayer area.

Separate sequences of spaces for men and women lead throu...
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