embassy of egypt



embassy of egypt
Avenida Dom Vasco da Gama (Lisbon), Portugal, 2010 – 2012
Location Avenida Dom Vasco da Gama (Lisbon), Portugal
Client EBFA (Egyptian Building Fund Authority)
Programme Offices for embassy and consulate services
Building Cost N/A
Plot Size 1,359 sq.m
Gross Built Area 1,510 sq.m
Project Status 2010 (competition, 1st-prize) – 2012 (estimated completion)
Main entrance
Section thru the lobby
Section thru ambassador room
Avenida Dom Vasco da Gama (Lisbon), Portugal, 2010 – 2012
Roof plan and section
Avenida Dom Vasco da Gama (Lisbon), Portugal, 2010 – 2012
Site plan
Study model
Avenida Dom Vasco da Gama (Lisbon), Portugal, 2010 – 2012
Ambassador room
The new building for the Embassy of
Egypt will be located on the Vasco da
Gama avenue, in Lisbon’s affluent quarter
of Restelo. This avenue is typologically
characterized by a string of large freestanding villas, of which the existing
embassy building is one, albeit of no
particular architecture value.
As a programme, an embassy building
should somehow embody the spirit of
a nation. It is just as much a harbour
and a safe-haven for its citizens, as
it is the state’s foreign representation
at the highest level. It must combine
the idea of sheltering and safety, with
the symbolic values of the country’s
history and culture. In this case, the
compactness and massiveness yielding
from the plot’s regulatory constrains
ultimately served as an interesting
concept design strategy for an embassy
building, considering Egypt’s notable
and founding tradition of architectural
massiveness and stereotomics.
With this in mind, PROMONTORIO
created a building that is essentially a
monolith composed by three thick slabs
combined with an interweaving mass
of patterned walls discreetly evocative
of ancient Egyptian geometric motifs.
Following the classical post-and-lintel
system, these walls are interrupted at
specific positions to form windows, while
on the upper-floor the corners form a
BALCONY by receding and revolving
from one angle to the next.
The facade is in white concrete basrelief cast in situ, contrasting with the
window frames, which are in certified
solid mahogany. In the interiors, care
has been taken to choose materials that
weather nicely; finishings that, like in
old palaces and villas, get patina over the
years, instead of looking rundown. With
that in mind, the higher footfall and public
areas will have stone floors, while for
cabinets and meetings rooms a solid oak
boarding has been the choice. Also in the
public areas, a fluted walnut wainscoting
Clearness of private and public circuits, was proposed for acoustic and physical
as well as full visibility of visitors’
comfort. In addition, acoustic gypsum
access, is a critical security issue at the
board in all rooms and circulation areas
core of the embassy’s concept design.
will also contribute to reduce noise and
Positioned like a large 19th-century villa reverberation. Finally, in terms of ceilings
in the centre of the plot at its highest
we have devised a system of coffins and
level, the Embassy building is surrounded skylights for the upper floor key areas;
by a garden with soaring trees accessed
notably, the stairway hall, the ambassador
by a generous ramp from the security
suite and the meeting room. In all of these
gateway at the Vasco da Gama avenue.
cases, they emphasize a certain idea of
The latter also surveys private access to solemnity, which is an essential element of
the underground parking level.
embassy protocol.

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