A
B
O
U
T
  • Exhibitions
  • Presentations & Texts
  • Teaching
A.
C.
Al Hadiqa
Saudi Arabia

One hectare landscape, under construction.

Al Hadiqa is a private commission for a one hectare garden in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia surrounded by a perimeter wall. Three small buildings sit within the perimeter wall; a gate house, a diwanyah and an occasional room. The design derives from an existing site condition; the presence of brackish water just a metre below ground level. The landscape is an overlay of different ecologies; brackish, sweet, arid and productive. The three perimeter buildings are conceived as worlds within worlds that mediate between the scale of the villa and a human scale.

1:100 model

Naturalistic, salt tolerant planting is juxtaposed with formal elements such as a paved allee of flowering trees and a hybrid palm screen that veils the main villa within the garden.

1:100 model
Main entry, with gate house. Brackish path and occasional room beyond

1:100 model
Tiered landscaping with diwanyah beyond

On site. Hybrid palm screen under construction

On site. Stone detail test for paved allee

The hybrid palm screen is composed of different species of palm trees of varied height and character and runs north-south in front of the villa. There is an interplay between the palms and the elevation of the villa that allows for views out whilst also maintaining privacy within.

On site. Brackish path under construction

Due to the site’s proximity to the sea there is a high water table and the water is brackish (slightly salty). This naturally occurring condition is the basis for a brackish ecology within the garden. Here the planting is naturalistic and willowy and is dense so as to frame a sweeping path. A specification for salt tolerant planting was developed in collaboration with Kew Gardens.

Plan

Site

Occassional room, known as the bureau
View from paved allee

Diwanyah, view from hybrid palm screen

The three perimeter buildings, the gate house, the occasional room and the diwanyah, are simple double height spaces each with a smaller scale element within; a stair, a mashrabiya screen and a mezzanine. Each are situated at the end of one of the key, formal landscape elements; the entry ramp, the palm screen and the paved allee.

concept diagram, layered ecologies