Dubai: Saudi Arabia's pavilion at the Expo 2020 Dubai is garnering attention after the celebrated opening ceremony last night.
The sloping pavilion's rectangular facade looks like it is about to fly high. The pavilion has six stories, spans the size of two football pitches, and has a 1,3250 square-metre inclined mirrored screen. Designed by UK-based Boris Micka Associates, it is the second-largest pavilion at the Expo, reported Arab News.
Hussain Hanbazazah, the Commissioner-General of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Pavilion, said that the pavilion will be the Kingdom's window to the world. It is designed to " showcase Saudi Arabia's ancient culture, heritage; the wonders of its natural landscape - as well as the rapid drive and innovation of its present and future ambitions".
"It also showcases the towering ambition of the Saudi people and unlimited drive of our nation as well as the myriad opportunities under our national transformation plan, Vision 2030," he added.
Visitors can walk onto an outside terrace area via a staircase and come face to face with an award-winning circular water feature. Guests will also see images of the Kingdom's diverse landscape, unspoiled coastline, vast deserts, mountainous terrains, and biodiversity, on 68 square-meter screens.
Visitors will be taken to the top floor in an escalator to see projected scenes of the flora of Al Bardani Valley Rijal al-Mal and its traditional flower festival in the Asir Region. The Great Tabuk Mountains, Sand dunes of the Empty Quarter, and clear waters of the Red Sea also make an appearance.
Hanbazazah told Arab News that the Saudi Pavilion's architecture encapsulates the wonders of the Kingdom. "Saudi Arabia has developed an outstanding architectural landmark, embodying a bold ambition to shape the world for the better". The design reflects the country's past and aspiring future, he added.
Many of the cultural landscapes featured in the pavilion, At-Turaif District in Ad-Diriyah, Hegra Archaeological Site in AlUla, Historic Jeddah, Rock Art in the Hail Region, and Al-Ahsa Oasis, are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Visitors are also treated with an audiovisual guide that prompts visitors to explore 23 additional destinations in the Kingdom that showcase the country's drive for sustainable development - Qiddiya, Diriyah Gate, and King Salman Park. The Saudi Pavilion at Expo 2020 has been awarded LEED Platinum Certificate by the US Green Building Council (USGBC), calling it one of the most sustainable designs in the world.