The influential French architect Jean Nouvel has carried out several impressive projects in the Middle East, but his latest idea could easily surpass them. As part of the Sharaan project, Jean intends to build a resort and hotel inside sandy cliffs in the middle of the Arabian desert.
The resort will be located in the Shara’an Nature Reserve in the Al-Ula Mountains, and will draw inspiration from the finest examples of local Nabataean architecture that dates back several thousand years. The tribes of the Nabataean culture began to carve their homes and religious buildings in the massifs of local sandstone cliffs that are millions of years old as early as 2000 years ago. Nouvel intends to take the preserved heritage of local peoples and rethink it in line with the traditions of modern architecture.
Now the project is at an early stage of development and details are still scarce. It is known that the hotel will include 40 rooms and three villas. Inside the peak of the selected mountain, 14 private pavilions will be located, and an observation elevator will also work here.
Unwrapped natural stone and fine carvings will be actively used in the interior decor. On the existing renders of the future resort, you can see the rooms and balconies overlooking the Arabian desert and the hotel’s indoor pools. The timing of the start of construction is still unknown, but Nouvel expects to complete the project in 2024.