Studio Gioforma venue designed to ‘reflect surroundings rather than compete with them’

Italian practice Studio Gioforma has completed a mirror-clad concert hall in the Saudi Arabian region of Al-Ula that is literally designed to reflect the area’s natural beauty and heritage, rather than compete with it.

The 500-capacity venue is covered with mirrors on two sides and is named “Al Maraya” – mirror in Arabic – in recognition of the design. Inside it boasts what bosses describe as state-of-the-art audio, lighting and digital-projection technology.

Al-Ula contains a range of heritage sites, incuding the Unesco World Heritage Site of Mada’in Salih which features rock-carved tombs described as second only to Petra in Jordan. It also boasts a walled old town with an ancient sundial as well as surrounding countryside with unusual rock formations.

Al Maraya’s opening season of concerts runs until February 9 and includes performances by French classical violinist Renaud Capuçon and Italian singer Andrea Bocelli.

Al-Ula heritage village in Saudi Arabia

Al-Ula heritage village in Saudi Arabia