The late, great architect Zaha Hadid didn’t live to see the realization of her first project in Dubai. But the Opus, a spectacular mixed-used development in the heart of the upcoming Burj Khalifa district, will no doubt rival the Pritzker Prize winner’s most acclaimed structures around the world.
Designed as two separate towers that coalesce into a 300-foot-high cube with a free-flowing curved central void, the Opus will be home to the ME Dubai, which, slated to open in 2018, is the first and only hotel designed both inside and out by Hadid. The hotel, which is part of the Spanish-based Melia Hotels International, will offer 93 lavish rooms and suites—including the ultra-luxe Suite ME—as well as 98 serviced apartments on the upper floors, including four penthouses with private roof terraces.
The hotel’s dramatic lobby lounge and art gallery, vertical café, and reception area will all showcase furniture that was either custom-designed or hand-selected by Hadid. Aiming to push the boundaries of imagination, public spaces will also include a sprawling 260,000-square-foot entertainment zone and nightclub, an outdoor swimming pool, a spa, and a rooftop terrace with stunning views of Dubai’s ever-changing skyline.
The Opus will also offer outstanding dining experiences, with a collection of 15 restaurants, including an outpost of London’s contemporary Japanese robatayaki restaurant, Roka. Culture-seeking guests in search of new luxury experiences and first-rate service will find them at the ME, where a dedicated “aura manager” will enhance each guest’s visit by sharing the best the city has to offer. ME Dubai’s facilities and Aura service will also be extended to the owners of the Opus’s residences.
Of course, the biggest draw to Opus and the ME Dubai will be the legacy of its creator. One of Hadid’s first projects to be realized posthumously, the structure will no doubt serve as a reminder of the achievements of one of modern architecture’s greatest minds.