Top 8 Stunning Facts About The Al Hamra Tower

One of the most fascinating skyscrapers in the world can be found in a small country in Western Asia. It has won numerous awards and holds a remarkable record as well.

In this article, you’ll discover some of the most fun and interesting facts about the Al Hamra Tower, an incredible building in Kuwait!

1. It’s located in the utmost northern tip of Kuwait City

The Al Hamra Tower, also referred to as the “Al Hamra Firdous Tower,” is one of the most astounding skyscrapers in the world and can be found in the northern tip of the capital of Kuwait, Kuwait City.

This means that it’s perfectly situated to provide amazing views of both Kuwait Bay to the north and the Persian Gulf to the east. It features both a luxury shopping mall and office space.

The tower is owned by Al Hamra Real Estate Co. and cost a hopping $500 million USD to build.

Kuwait City skyline
Kuwait City skyline / Source

2. It’s by far the tallest building in this small country

This fascinating tower features a total of 83 floors (80 above and 3 below ground) with the top floor being located at a height of 368 meters (1,207 feet). The tip of the structure reaches a height of 414 meters (1,358 feet).

This means that even though it’s far from being the tallest building in the world, it’s by far the tallest building in Kuwait. It surpassed the Arraya Tower and NBK Tower (both have the same height) by quite a bit.

The second-tallest buildings in the country stand 300 meters (980 feet) tall.

Al Hamra Tower facts
The tower under construction / J. Stiegler / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en

3. It took 6 years to complete this remarkable structure

The construction of this $500 million project started at the end of the year 2005 and wouldn’t be completed by December of the year 2011.

By the time that the tower was completed, it had already won an award as one of the “Best Inventions of the year 2011,” an award given by TIME Magazine.

4. It was designed by a renowned architectural firm

The main reason why the tower was instantly praised is because of its unique design. It was constructed in such a way to minimize the heat of the sun and maximize the astounding views of the Kuwait Bay and Persian Gulf.

The asymmetrical form of the tower was also done intentionally to become an icon of Kuwait as it resembles the traditional clothes worn by the people of the country.

The tower was designed by one of the most renowned architectural firms in the world called Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, which collaborated with both Ramshir and Callison.

This company was founded in Chicago in the year 1936 and apart from designing some of the most iconic skyscrapers in their hometown such as the John Hancock Center and Willis Tower, they were also engaged in some of the biggest projects in the world, including Burj Khalifa in Dubai and One World Trade Center in New York City.

One world trade center skidmore
One World Trade Center designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. / Pixabay

5. The skyscraper holds a very interesting record

One of the most fascinating facts about the Al Hamra Tower is that it features flared walls rising up from both the southeast and southwest corners. The heat of the sun is prevented by the use of wrapped glass on the east, north, and west sides of the building, as well as Jura limestone.

The carved concrete walls run all the way to the top of the building and result in a fascinating sculpted architectural design. This also means that the Al Hamra Tower is the tallest carved concrete skyscraper in the world!

Detail of the south side of Al Hamra Tower
Detail of the sculpted design of the tower / Source

6. The lobby of the tower is an attraction by itself

When you enter this magnificently sculpted skyscraper, you will find yourself in a 24-meter (78 feet) high lobby. This space is an attraction by itself because it’s not supported by columns.

This grand space is created because of the fact that the columns of the north side of the tower slope away from the building’s core in a circular way. This creates a remarkable design, that’s for sure!

Al Hamra Tower sideview
Sideview of the tower / Source

7. The tower has won numerous architectural awards

One of the most intriguing facts about the Al Hamra Tower is that it not only has won multiple awards but that it won these before it was even completed. Some of the awards include:

  • 2007 – Miami Architectural Bienal – Bronze Unbuilt Projects.
  • 2008 – MIPIM/Architectural Review – MIPIM Future Project Award: Tall Buildings.
  • 2008 – MIPIM/Architectural Review – MIPIM Future Project Award: Overall.
  • 2008 – Chicago Athenaeum – International Architecture Award for best new global design/
  • 2008 – Chicago Athenaeum – American Architecture Award.
  • 2010 – Cityscape • Commercial / Mixed Use Built.

The year that the building was completed in 2011, it also won the Emporis Skyscraper Award, together with 8 Spruce Street in New York and the Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi.

Al Hamra Tower sunset
The tower at sunset / Ghala Alrefaei / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en

8. The Al Hamra Tower looks amazing at night

The Al Hamra Tower is by far the most impressive and prominent skyscraper in Kuwait City. It towers above the second-tallest building in the country, the NBK Tower, which is located just next to it.

Because of its towering presence in the Kuwait City skyline, it also looks astounding at night, don’t you think?

Al Hamra Tower at night
The tower at night / Photo credit: Al Hamra Business Tower