BUILT PROJECT / Marka, the UAE’s first publicly-traded retail and hospitality operator, hired Italian Architect Antonio Pio Saracino to design their new corporate headquarters at Dubai Design District. The new project reflects the company’s ongoing growth and expansion, which now sees its complement of employees numbering over 1,000. Also known as D3, Dubai Design District has been inaugurated to stimulate creativity and play a key role in realizing Dubai’s vision to be an innovation-led economy.
Marka’s new presence there reflects its ambition to lead the region’s retail and hospitality sectors and to accrue new premium brands to its expanding portfolio, which it operates under the three divisions: Marka Fashion, Marka Hospitality, and Marka Sports. Its 20,000 square foot corporate offices include meeting rooms, conference rooms, showroom, and staff areas. The architect introduced a bold volumetric core from which greets guests entering the space. The core is sculpted with dimensional, multifaceted diamond shape matrix that increases in size from the entrance. The varying pyramids, generated with parametric software, create a perspective visual interplay, visually elongating the corridors. Around the perimeter of the sculptural core are distributed functional rooms for various work and social activities. The pyramid matrix changes color from white to brass creating a precious multifaceted pattern that was inspired by Marka’s portfolio spanning fashion, hospitality, and sports brands. The reception area highlights a sculpted desk and wall product display with the same triangulated geometry while, in the conference room, the triangulated geometry functions as an acoustical wooden ceiling structure.