Sheikha Salamah Grand Mosque


Al Dar Properties


UAE – Abu Dhabi



Project Description

Shaikha Salamah Mosque is one of the key Islamic icons in the city of Al-Ain. It is a unique addition to the downtown horizon, giving a modern look to the city's skyline without altering the traditional Arabian character and the cultural uniqueness.  
The developed structure is a mosque that has replaced the old Shaikha Salamah Mosque. The new structure is two floors high, with a capacity of almost 4,800 worshipers including a prayer hall designated for 700 females worshipers. In addition to the requested capacity of the prayer halls, its support services, as well as extra underground car parking, the vision for the mosque was to develop an architectural design which blends the modern with the traditional, and remains in harmony with the surrounding traditional features of the urban context in which it resides.  
Daylight and nightlight is to be a distinctive influence of design, playing on the different notions of symbolism and enhancing the concept of a city landmark, day and night. An interplay of light and shadow communicates means of perception for each individual space as intended by design and function as well as emphasizes the relationship between the indoor and the outdoor. 
Symbolism lies in the definition of Islam; as light, purity and tranquility.  The design is inspired from these values and attempts to reincarnate them in the space and composition of different elements of the mosque; as an honest expression of the spirit of Islam.  A space that engulfs the believers in its light to abolish discrimination, unify the hearts and purify the souls.  
The evolution of design is seen in the variously-scaled interpretations and stitching of space and architectural elements. From the basic envelope and vertical structures encompassing outdoor as well as indoor space; to the extension and connection of different horizontal platforms, creating gradual transitions from space to space; to the finely incorporated elements and details that further manipulate light, shade and shadow, and enhance symbolism and the contemporary Islamic, modernized traditional character of the mosque. 
The volumetric composition of the mosque allows for the spatial hierarchy of the interior to be highly expressive and extended to outdoor spaces. Particularly through layering of transitional spaces; gates {portals}, arcades {riwaq}, courtyard {sahan}, multi-level volumes, and staircases that extend the exterior to the interior and then vice versa in a continuously changing experience of space and light. As these complex elements and interpretations are defined, unified and connected; the realized composition portrays a simplistic journey within site. the open courtyard is highly accessible from whichever point of entry a person chooses, flow is filtered through the arcaded pathways, and the landscaped elements remain respectful of human-scale. The Main prayer hall with its expanded space and gradual-ascending of roof allowing the flow of natural light is a space of purity, tranquility, and light. 
The realized image of the mosque -as initially intended- combines a contemporary interpretation of the traditional Arabic architecture and reflects the historical and cultural uniqueness of Al-Ain. As natural stone cladding, granite flooring and abundant light in the completed structure produce the intended icon that communicates the Mosque's exquisite symbolism. 

Services Provided
  • Concept Design
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