The spirit of street life is the source of inspiration for the architecture of Emaar Square. It choreographs a new way of organising the large-scale built environment which brings the parts of the master plan into a seamless whole. Emaar Square involves over 400 indoor and outdoor shops – 100 of which are restaurants, cafés and entertainment outlets – spanning three levels below the ground and two levels above it. Moving away from the tendency toward introversion of conventional shopping malls, the design team turns the shopping mall inside out and proposes a system of paths as ‘streets’ to connect its ‘plazas’ and ‘public squares’.
The circulation route of Emaar Square on the ground is a clear loop which incorporates the main pedestrian boulevard. The architecture and landscape design integrates contemporary aesthetics with traditional architectural proportions for the comfort of visitors, creating a richly textured and inviting urban environment. The sequence of activities and details such as skylights, terraces and fountains along the route are carefully arranged for the aesthetic pleasure of the moving observer. There are a series of distinctive nodes in the complex, for example, at the core is a two-storey subsurface gourmet village inspired by Istanbul’s lively streetscapes. The skylights bring natural illumination and reveal the daily weather and seasons of the year. The large sunken plaza located in the centre of the mall operates as a constantly active theatre for people-watching, becoming a focal point of activity. The underground shopping area is organised in a continuous loop that passes through four retail zones themed after the seasons.
The design of Emaar Square inspires visitors to reveal their most interesting activities and rediscover the spirit of exploration and the joy of shopping.