It is her first and only structure in Dubai and the late Zaha Hadid’s local masterpiece, The Opus, has opened its doors on January 15 2019 earlier this year. The designs were first unveiled in 2007 by Hadid, who died in 2016. It was originally due to complete in 2018, but was pushed back due to construction delays. The design conveys the remarkably inventive quality of ZHA's work. The Opus is a stroke of genius from Hadid, who was the first woman to receive the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2004 and was known in the world of architecture for her distinctively neo-futuristic buildings.
The Opus will be located near the Burj Khalifa, the 828-metre-high supertall skyscraper designed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill that remains unchallenged for the title of the world's tallest building. The Opus is Dubai's only building which has both the interior and exterior designed by the late Zaha Hadid. The Opus in Dubai by Zaha Hadid Architects, a mixed use building formed of conjoined towers with an irregular void in the middle. Two glazed adjacent 100 metre high towers form a cube shape, with a curving eight storey void that appears as if it has been carved from its centre. These towers are connected by a four storey atrium ground level and an asymmetric sky bridge that is 38 metres wide and three storeys tall, suspended 71 metres from the ground. It expresses a sculptural sensibility that reinvents the balance between solid and void, opaque and transparent, interior and exterior.
The already iconic building in the Burj Khalifa district will also feature signature furniture designed and selected by the Iraqi-British visionary, who died aged 65 in Miami in March 2016.
The 20-storey development from Omniyat is also houses 12 restaurants and a rooftop bar, as well as office spaces.
Designs for the Opus' interiors, which were unveiled at the 2014 London Design Festival, include sculptural balconies, angular beds, and a sculpture of dangling glass balls in the lobby.
Overall, The Opus will boast 56,000 square feet of commercial space, 162,000 square feet of hospitality space and 97,000 square feet of entertainment and food and beverage areas. The head-turning cuboid building has already won awards for its stunning design, including Leisure & Hospitality Project of the Year for 2017 at the Middle East Architect Awards. There will also be a swimming pool, state-of-the-art gym and ESPA spa on-site for residents and hotel guests, as well as a ballroom and various cafes and lounges.
The architect, who was known as “Queen of the Curve”, was also the first woman who was awarded the Royal Gold Medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects. Born in Baghdad in 1950, Hadid studied mathematics at the American University of Beirut before starting her architectural journey in 1972 at the Architectural Association in London. Her most famed works are spread across the globe, from Germany to the US, with many Hadid designed structures. Aside from The Opus, she was responsible for the Sheikh Zayed bridge in Abu Dhabi and the Al Wakrah Stadium in Qatar. In 2002, she was appointed by the Queen of England as Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) and Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2012 Birthday Honours for services to architecture.