Radisson Blu Hotel in Dakar, Senegal
Having been completed back in 2009, the Radisson Blu Hotel is one of the most beautifully designed buildings to have ever been raised in Dakar, Senegal. It was superbly brought to being by SAOTA, architectural practice from Cape Town, together with AARS Architects.
The architects have come with an interesting description of it, saying: “Overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and tucked away in the Fann Corniche, the new Radisson Blu Hotel is a contemporary expression of Senegalese style. The hotel was commissioned by the Teylium Group and forms part of a larger development which includes designer retail stores, apartments, spa, cinema and a bowling alley. The brief called for 180 suites, a fine dining restaurant, an all-day restaurant, conference facilities, meeting rooms and admin facilities.”
One intriguingly hard issue was the planning that had to be done for the corniche, a very important public facility, which meant that the main portion of the building had to be built below road level. Furthermore, those venturing inside the Radisson Blu must be able to enjoy the vistas towards the west, therefore the designers have had to think of this as well. Even the entrance is rather astounding, consisting of a huge foyer with spiral staircase as the primary node to tie together the rooms, the pool, the restaurant and the conference facilities.
Overlooking the pool and the prime entertainment terrace lies the Filini fine dining restaurant, further opening up to a vantage point from where guests are able to appreciate the sunsets of Dakar. Bringing significantly more efficiency into the project are also the aluminium screens that articulate the façades and prevent the gain of excessive heat.
As for the interiors, they are exquisitely adorned by Antoni Associates. They act as fusions between an emphasized contemporary African look and minimal contemporary architecture. They’ve also made extensive use of rock, stone, wood and sandstone in contrast with all sorts of African motifs, themes, garnishes and strikingly elegant earth-like tones. The list of key elements related to this gorgeous African destination is being rounded by massive neutral toned canvases displaying artifacts and Pan African artworks.