Plot # 1342-1343 is located in the vicinity of the French Lycée in Beirut and within walking distance of major institutional public projects such as the French embassy, its gardens, The French cultural center and its stadium, the Maronite and the Armenian Catholic cemeteries, the new St Joseph university extension and the French medical faculty. The surrounding context being predominantly and permanently institutional with relatively low rise buildings; unobstructed views are granted on the northern, eastern and western orientations.
The plot is accessed from its eastern edge which marks the end of an access road that connects to El Moutran Street. The periphery of the site is treated with a continuous blind property wall that holds the edge of an internal 1,320-square-meter garden and isolates the ground floor from its immediate surroundings.
The 20-floor building comprises four simplex apartment typologies and a penthouse typology. The simplex apartments range from a 110-square-meter one-bedroom apartment to the largest four-bedroom apartment of approximately 500 square meters. The last three floors house two triplex penthouse apartments of 560 square meters.
The building floor plate has elongated proportions of 35 by 12 meters, allowing for the exceptional exposure of all spaces in the plan due to the double orientation of all rooms and their proximity to the peripheral edges of the slab (less than four meters at any point in the plan). Unlike typical residential building typologies which are developed on deeper slabs, the Plot # 1342-1343 apartments benefit from ample natural light, generous natural ventilation and exceptional continuous exposure to the outside.
Resembling a galvanized steel armor, the façade of the building is based on a very precise geometrical grid of frames and sub-frames which act as support for a secondary skin of vertical and horizontal galvanized steel elements. This secondary lattice serves as a guiding framework for the generous openings in the façade, spanning wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling in all glazed rooms. This same structure also ingrates the galvanized steel grating panels, which shade the opaque walls as well as the building’s zones of transition.