K Galleria Kaslik, Lebanon Building

K Galleria Kaslik, Lebanon Building, Lebanese Architecture Project, Khan El Franj

K Galleria Kaslik

Lebanese Lifestyle Center influenced by ancient khan – design by MZ Architects

6 Aug 2016

K Galleria Kaslik, Lebanon Building

Design: MZ Architects

K Galleria in Kaslik

DESIGN NAME:
K Galleria

PRIMARY FUNCTION:
Lifestyle Center

INSPIRATION:
The architecture and vision of the K Galleria project are inspired by the infamous ancient khan or urban caravanserai, the equivalent of the public marketplace in the Middle East during the Ottoman era.

K Galleria Kaslik building

UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
As both client and architect wanted to avoid creating yet another clone of the traditional shopping mall or department store, capturing the vernacular and social essence of the traditional khans was a primary concern in the design of K Galleria. It was essential to transcend the mere commercial and retail functions, and rather create a space for recreation and socialization, acting as a funnel to collect social crowds from the surrounding neighborhoods.

K Galleria Kaslik building

The project is located in the thriving coastal city of Kaslik (North of Beirut), a small city with a mixed residential and commercial purpose. The civil war has contributed to the growth of businesses in the neighborhood’s commercial strip that became known as one of Lebanon’s most prestigious streets filled with boutiques, restaurants, nightclubs, hotels, as well as a prominent university.

Adjacent to the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (USEK), the new lifestyle center comes as an extension to the main commercial strip, aiming to serve to the social and commercial demands of the surrounding local community of students, residents of all ages, businessmen and tourists, as well as the larger area of Keserwan. Set to become the most distinguished urban attraction center in the area, K Galleria is intended as a place where people could gather, stroll and socialize in a community environment, a center for daily and social activities rather than just shopping.

K Galleria Kaslik building

OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
Conceived as a major entertainment destination, K Galleria offers a robust menu of lifestyle choices where the retail component becomes more or less supplemental, as 35% of the leased space is earmarked for leisure and dining activities. The program consists of a supermarket, a retail zone, a bookshop, coffee shops, an indoor and outdoor food court area housing various types of restaurants, a kids play area and an extensive car parking with a 264-car capacity over five underground floors.

PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
The project was launched in October 2015 and is expected to be completed by end of 2018. It is located in the mixed residential and commercial coastal city of Kaslik, Lebanon.

K Galleria Kaslik building

PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
Architectural elements recalling the ancient khans, such as Khan El Franj which is one of the finest examples of the architecture of its time, serve as the basis for the design vocabulary of K Galleria. Volumetrically, the building presents itself as a solid monolithic cubic element evoking the typical square layout of the khans, with a shifted parallelepiped that breaks up the bulky look of the volume and generates the geometry of the main atrium or central courtyard.

As a reference to the loopholes on the outer walls of Khan El Franj, the K Galleria elevations are partially traversed with vertical openings, creating an inviting and attractive building facade with strong visual relations with its contiguous exterior spaces, and allowing natural light and ventilation to enter the building, thus saving on energy. This contemporary interpretation of the vernacular is complemented with the sober choice of natural local white stone treated in a contemporary aspect, as the main building material.

SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
Total plot area: 2700sqm. Total built-up area: 24983sqm. Number of floors: 4 floors and 7 basements.

RESEARCH ABSTRACT:
During the heyday of overland travel, thousands of khans (called caravanserais in Iran and Central Asia, sarays in India and han, khan or kervansarai in Turkey and the Middle East) had popped up along the trade routes covering Asia, Middle East, North Africa, and southeastern Europe, especially along the Silk Road. Linked to the growth of the land trade between the Orient and the West, khans formed a major phenomenon in the history of this part of the world, from an economic, a social and a cultural point of view. They supported the flow of commerce, information, and people from different backgrounds, thus becoming a place for communication as well as cultural exchange and trade. In Lebanon, a number of khans survive up until today and, in a few, a handful of modern merchants keep the buildings and the institution alive. One of the most renowned and best preserved khans, is Khan El Franj, the most impressive architectural monument of the maritime façade of the city of Sidon, built in the 17th century. The majestic and massive Khan El Franj was the center of social and commercial activities down to the 19th century, and served not only as a place for exchange of goods but also for exchange of culture and ideas.

K Galleria Kaslik building

CHALLENGE:
The scale of the project being very small compared to usual retail centers or department stores, the main challenge was to design a building that was structurally sound and aesthetically appealing with generous space allocated to leisure and entertainment, and at the same time, to fulfill the needs of the retailers, provide them with the space required and obey by the code requirements.

TEAM MEMBERS:
MZ Architects

IMAGE CREDITS:
Images: MZ Architects, K Galleria, 2016.

PROFILE:
The client of the project is a dynamic property development and management company that owns the K Galleria lifestyle center and will specialize in operating and managing all aspects related to the center using its long-accumulated know-how in retailing.

AWARD DETAILS
Winner – K Galleria Lifestyle Center by Mz Architects is Winner in Architecture, Building and Structure Design Category, 2015-16.

K Galleria Kaslik, Lebanon Building images / information from A’ Design Awards

K Galleria Kaslik Building – A’ Design Awards & Competition Winner

MZ Architects


To see all listed projects on a single map please follow this link.




Lebanese Buildings

Lebanon Architecture : chronological list

Beirut Architecture Walking Tours

Architecture News Lebanon

Lebanon Buildings

486 Mina El Hosn
Design: LAN Architecture
486 Mina El Hosn Beirut
picture from architects

486 Mina El Hosn Beirut

Midori Building in Badaro
Design: Paul Kaloustian Architect
Midori Badaro, Beirut
image from architect

Midori Building Lebanon

Office Building in Badaro
Badaro Office Building
image from architect
Lebanese Office Building




Beirut Buildings

Dakota apartments, Ashrafieh
Design: Turner Associates
Beirut Housing
image from architect

Beirut Housing

Marina Towers
Design: Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
Marina Towers Beirut
building photo © Solidere

Marina Towers Lebanon

The House of Arts and Culture
Design: Kaputt!
Lebanese Architecture Competition Entry
picture from architect

Lebanese Architecture Competition : Entry

USEK Student Housing, Kaslik, north of Beirut
Design: Henry Eid Architect + SE.Arch
USEK Student Housing
photo from architects

USEK Student Housing

soma architecture

Comments / photos for the K Galleria Kaslik – Lebanon Building page welcome

K Galleria Kaslik Building

Website: Kaslik, Lebanon