Construction development/ Ayla Golf Academy

Oppenheim Architecture
Photographer: Moh’d Musa
Video: herskhazeen, Mohammad Aljabi

Location: Ayla Oasis Development Company

Exclusive photos of the Golf Academy and Comfort Station in Aqaba, Jordan

The Golf Academy

Herskhazeen has recently traveled to Aqaba to visit the new Golf Academy designed by Oppenheim to view the recent development in this boundary-pushing construction site.

The Golf Academy, Construction site

The building is located at the Golf District at the Ayla Oasis Development Company in Aqaba, Jordan. It is planned to host several beaches, housing units, and an 18-hole Golf course. Oppenheim designed and developed three buildings, one is a 40,000 square foot Golf Academy complemented with two Comfort Stations that are hosting cafes and restrooms for the golfers and visitors.

The vaulted buildings were inspired by Bedouin tents to blend with the mountains around the Gulf of Aqaba. The intricate yet delicate building required a complicated steel formwork and cement casting that is new to the region in order to develop a sustainable shape that challenges the extreme weather of the area and mimics the vernacular architecture that was once known in the region.

The Golf Academy roof

From the Architect:

Looking to the natural dunescapes and mountains of the surrounding desert, an un-adorned local architectural heritage and the ancient Bedouin traditions as primary design references, the innovative yet organic design for the Ayla Golf Academy and Clubhouse is sure to become a primary focus and iconic symbol of the highly anticipated Ayla Oasis mixed-use resort development, not to mention the whole region.

The 40,000 square foot structure is part of the first phase of the approximately 17 square mile leisure development currently under construction in Aqaba, Jordan. Its distinct architectural form, which establishes a unique connection with nature by capturing the elemental, vibrant beauty of the rolling desert landscape, is shaped by a massive concrete shell that precisely drapes over the programmed areas-enveloping the interior and exterior walls of each volume in concrete and locally sourced additives to achieve a final shell finish, maintaining the raw, unadorned look that stays true to its context and authentic inspirations.

The comfort Station

A dedicated building that hosts a lounge area, a cafe, and restrooms for players to rest while on the field.

The comfort station building, complete

The Comfort Station

The Comfort Station entrance

The Comfort Station interior.

The client chose this scheme because of the fact that it blends with the site, context, and mountains in the background. Additionally, it is a modern re-interpretation of the Bedouin tent – the authentic Jordanian structure – with a modern definition for sheltering the space.

On the other hand, the new buildings do not look imposed on the site or the golf courses around like any other conventional buildings.

Ayla is a community dedicated to sustainable design, protecting and enhancing its natural environment. Setting the benchmark for large scale renewable energy in the region, a 5.8-megawatt solar plant powers the mainte­nance of the waterways and golf courses.

The Golf Academy approaches sustainability through intelligent passive design. The build­ing is orientated North-South to take advan­tage of the prevailing Northern winds. The building has open air lobby and circulation areas, allowing them to benefit from healthier and more effective natural cross-ventilation throughout hence reducing the volume of internal air conditioned spaces. Other spaces are having insulated roofs and cavity walls utilizing the building’s thermal mass and reducing cooling loads. The windows are double glazed and further sheltered by shading screens, and deep overhangs.

Reducing water and electrical consumption is considered in some of the detail – such water-conserving taps and energy efficient LED lighting. Additionally, Renewable energies are already available in Ayla, as the Golf.

The Academy benefit from a 2.6 MW Photovol¬taic farm that is dedicated to the different component of the Golf Course including the hospitality buildings.

In 2015, Ayla completed a 3.2-megawatt photovoltaic farm above water channels at the edge of the development to feed the project with clean energy. To support the new golf course, Ayla expanded this capacity in the second phase to a total of 5.8 megawatts, making it the largest renewable energy project within Aqaba city.


Project information:

Architect and Interior Designer: Oppenheim Architecture
Team: Chad Oppenheim, Beat Huesler, Aleksandra Melion, Anthony Cerasoli, Tom Mckeogh, Ana Guedes Lebre, Rasem Kamal

Developer: Ayla Oasis Development Company
Golf Consultant: Greg Norman – West Palm Beach, Florida
Landscape: Form Landscape Architects – Queensland, Australia
Local Architect: Darb Architects and Engineers – Amman
Contractor: Modern Tech. Construction – Amman

Photographer: Moh’d Musa

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