Beirut’s luminous entertainment complex
The Souks Entertainment Center, located in the northern reaches of the old souks of Beirut, Lebanon. features a moving light façade, which has become a popular evening tourist attraction.
The project is a joint venture between Caï Light, Valode et Pistre Architects and Annabel Karim Kassar architects (AKK) and features film theatres, restaurants and retail outlets.
As a finishing touch 5,000 LED polycarbonate modules were embedded within the structure. When in use it becomes a luminous, shifting texture that switches colours and patterns throughout the evening and night.
The lime stone recaptures the old buildings of the French mandate period, while the upper part of the main volume is composed of metal golden ribbons wrapping the four big cinema theaters. The ribbons generate a dynamic sculptural form that gives the Entertainment Center a powerful image.
The four theatres are grouped in pairs at the edges leaving a free space between them that forms the main lobby. It is glazed on its east and west facades to offer a visual continuation of the adjacent Fakhry Bey Street.