The W brand has landed in the UAE capital with the opening of W Abu Dhabi – Yas Island.
Located in the heart of Abu Dhabi’s bustling entertainment epicentre, the hotel is the brand’s second W Hotel to open this year in the UAE after W Dubai – The Palm, and has the bragging rights to be the only hotel in the world located atop a Grand Prix racetrack.
With a buzzy new interior transformation that includes nods to local culture, geography and fashion, W Abu Dhabi sits between the racetrack and local marina.
In its new avatar as the reflagged W Abu Dhabi – Yas Island, the interiors of the renovated spaces of the hotel i.e. The Living Room, W Lounge, WET Deck and Garage have been designed by DWP (Design Worldwide Partnership) Dubai, who also designed W Dubai — The Palm.
“W Hotels seeks dynamic destinations that are multidimensional and ever-evolving, and Abu Dhabi, with its cultural DNA that honours a millennium of tradition while boldly embracing what’s new and next, is an ideal fit for the brand,” said Anthony Ingham, global brand leader, W Hotels Worldwide.
Abu Dhabi's diversity are celebrated by the hotel’s tone-setting vibe. Guests are greeted by Bedouin-inspired tents, large columns and seating inspired by local mangroves. Custom-designed Welcome Desks mimic the form of oil droplets and jewel tone furnishings, depicting the colours of liquid gold, a distinctive historic trade in Abu Dhabi. The signature Whatever/Whenever desks are canoe-shaped, a visual reference to the Abu Dhabi waterways that were once the mode of movement across the island city.
Originally, this property was the Yas Hotel, a 500-room, 85,000-sq-m complex built in 2009 and an anchor architectural feature of the ambitious $36-bn Yas Marina development and accompanying Formula 1 raceway circuit.
It was designed by Asymptote Architects who envisioned an architectural landmark embodying various key influences and inspirations, ranging from the aesthetics of speed, movement and spectacle to the artistry and geometries, which are the basis of ancient Islamic art and craft traditions.
Of architectural and engineering significance is the main feature of the project's design, a 217-m expanse of sweeping, curvilinear forms constructed of steel and 5,800 pivoting diamond-shaped glass panels.
This Grid-Shell affords the building an architecture comprised of a 'veil' that contains two hotel towers and a link bridge passing above the Formula 1 track that makes its way through the building complex.
The Grid-Shell visually connects and fuses the entire complex together while producing optical effects and spectral reflections that play against the surrounding sky, sea and desert landscape. The entire jewel-like composition of the project creates a distinct and powerful sense of place and backdrop to the Formula 1 and other events that the building celebrates.