Dezeen Magazine

Neom skyscraper

Zaha Hadid Architects designs crystalline skyscraper above Neom ski resort

UK studio Zaha Hadid Architects has designed a 330-metre-tall skyscraper as part of the Trojena ski resort at Neom in Saudi Arabia.

On display as part of the Neom stand at the Cityscape conference in Riyadh, the 330-metre-tall skyscraper will form part of Trojena, which is being masterplanned by German studio LAVA architects.

Zaha Hadid Neom skyscraper
Zaha Hadid Architects has designed a skyscraper for Trojena

It will stand on a mountain opposite the main ski area, overlooking an artificial lake that will form the centrepiece of the leisure development.

Renders of the skyscraper show a crystal-like structure made of numerous columns that taper towards the peak. It will be connected to the lakeside development by a cable car.

Although full details of the building's use have not yet been revealed, the tower will contain shops, restaurants and exhibition spaces along with observation decks at three different levels.

Zaha Hadid Neom skyscraper
It will have a crystalline form

"Elegant and monumental, this iconic tower will combine high-end retail, dining and the dream-like experience of living in the clouds," read the display.

"This iconic commercial, high-rise tower will provide a rich platform for groundbreaking and tech-infused artistic content and experiences," it continued.

The skyscraper forms part of Trojena, which is one of the four regions of Neom that has been announced.

Masterplanned by German studio LAVA architects, the region will contain a building topped by ski slopes along with numerous hotels and other attractions. Along with LAVA and Zaha Hadid Architects, other studios working on the project include UNStudioAedas and Bureau Proberts.

Trojena skyscraper
The skyscraper will stand on a mountain overlooking a lake

Announced in 2022, the developers of the project intend for it to be fully complete before the region hosts the Asian Winter Games in 2029.

The Neom development in the northwest of Saudi Arabia is one of the world's largest and most controversial projects. The plan includes a 170-kilometre-long city called The Line, which has been widely criticised on liveability, sustainability and human rights grounds.

Human rights group ALQST reported that three people who were evicted from the Neom site have been sentenced to death and earlier this year, UN Human Rights Council experts expressed "alarm" over the imminent executions. Saudi Arabia responded to the UN by denying abuses had taken place.

Speaking to Dezeen, Amnesty International's Peter Frankental said that companies working on Neom were facing a "moral dilemma" and should "think twice" about their continuing involvement in the project.

The photography is by Tom Ravenscroft.

More images

Zaha Hadid Neom skyscraper
Zaha Hadid Neom skyscraper
Zaha Hadid Neom skyscraper
Zaha Hadid Neom skyscraper