Design Information Kuwait Sneak Peek

Sneak Peek: Kuwait Cultural Centre


Last month when I posted my photographic journey of Salam Palace I mentioned that right next door to the palace a huge project is currently under construction. I was shown renderings of the buildings and they looked out of this world but due to the secretive nature of this project (they want it to be a surprise to everyone) I wasn’t allowed to take any photos to share on the blog. Luckily with a little help from a friend of mine (thanks Khaled!), I was able to source out the images of the project online.


The site of the huge project is the old flag square opposite the church in Kuwait City [Map] and when completed will house four structures, an opera house, a music center, a theatre and a library. The official name for this cultural centre I believe will be “Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Cultural Centre”. The buildings will be made out of titanium shells and will have no pillars at all on the inside. When I met with Al-Diwan Al-Amiri they told me the project was expected to be completed in 18 months and I truely believe that will be possible due to the amount of resources they’ve assigned for this project. The project is already two months ahead of schedule.


As you can see from the images this project looks really stunning and like nothing else we have ever done in Kuwait. Its also located on the coastal road so it’s in clear sight for everyone to see. This is the quality of design all government projects should have but sadly don’t and I personally can’t wait until the project is completed.




Enjoy the renderings, I found them [Here]

48 replies on “Sneak Peek: Kuwait Cultural Centre”

I know that there are many Kuwaiti opera singers, but not sure which language they use when they perform.

hhhmmmm an opera house, a music center, a theatre and a library there is bound to be a fast food or restaurant in one of those building.

Reading and laughing, library and opera laughing again, our government loves us so much laughing, I’m sure when its done we will have 4 or 5 more billionaires in Kuwait, to surprise the Kuwaiti people hahahaaa

We can’t have Arab singers perform here like they do in Dubai and they are building an opera house? At least it’s not shaped like a vajayjay like the stadium in Qatar. Since when does Kuwaiti culture include an opera house, a music theater and libraries? They are really trying to get those 2 million tourists by 2015 aren’t they.

Are you being silly or serious I can’t tell? You must be naive to think Kuwaiti culture never had music or theater. And you’re also complaining about the fact they’re building a library? Come one, what you were hoping it was the largest Starbucks in the world?

“what you were hoping it was the largest Starbucks in the world?” – can’t stop laughing after reading this…

If you want 2 million tourists by 2015, which will never happen because the door swings out in the country, not in, is that you begin your development plan with a new airport. But it would take 3-4 years to build a new airport which has not begun. Then your tourists need something to see, so you should be developing the outer islands like Failaka which has ruins on it at a 5 star level. But every country should have a cultural centre, and this project is long overdue and is the duty of government to build these types of projects for the nation, not really for tourists.

Kuwaiti theater was well known in the entire Arab world in the 80s. Maybe you’re 15 and never knew that.

I am tired of people in Kuwait looking backwards and not forward – actually that the core of your problem in Kuwait. Quit reminiscing about the 70’s and 80’s and start viewing your nation in the current century. Nobody in the GCC is looking backwards, but they are preserving memories of the past by formulating historical committees that renovate and preserve historical buildings. You could easily do that in Kuwait city and I do see you did with a few along the Gulf Road, but there are many other buildings that could be renovated within KC and would make your capital more appealing instead of it looking like an eyesore. There are key develop projects that must immediately go forward in order for this country to get it’s feet firmly positioned in the sand, and one of those is a new airport. But if you research who is blocking these projects, then you will realize who is responsible for the stagnation.

Kuwaiti theater is well known in the entire GCC, many Emiratis visit Kuwait just to watch Kuwaiti theater

Kuwaiti actors are the most famous people in the GCC

Kuwaiti music is the most famous in the GCC

Kuwaitis are the pioneers of arts and entertainment in the GCC

Guys, it hasn’t even been opened yet. Jeez. With any luck the opera house will probably be multi functional.

The way things work here, it will probably turn into a huge concession stand. There will be Starbucks and Pinkbury, and eventually it will become a shopping mall with an IMAX theater and Kidzania. Opera Shmopra, here in Kuwait?

Just one more lavish squandering of the public wealth. Build us a connecting railway with the rest of the gulf, or how about a bridge to Failaka (which btw has the oldest historical structures in all of kuwait). or how about reducing the nonessential job positions in the ministries so that you dont’ need to visit 15 centers to get 1 thing done ( it would also free up parking space that was originally for those visiting the minitries and not the employees).

just my 2 cents worth

The problem is some people just like to hate. Actually what am I saying, the MAJORITY of the people are just haters. No matter what it is people always find the negative and hate. You see someone successful? they start talking crap about them or start spreading rumors. The government isn’t doing anything? You talk crap. The government is doing something? You talk crap.

There is no winning in Kuwait, you’re going to get hated no matter what you do.

I for one am glad the government is spending on culture. Who the fuck cares about a bridge to Failaka? There is nothing on Failaka and if you want to go there take a boat. Who cares about a railway connecting us to Saudi Arabia? I would rather have a local metro first before even caring about a railway to to Saudi. What Kuwait lacks is culture and they’re doing something about it.

FYI: Opera house doesn’t mean they will just have opera singers there. That would be stupid. You think thats what they use the Sydney Opera House for? Just opera?

Reality is, we don’t have successful people in its true meaning. We have what we call successful banker, who built his success on government support and throwing fathers in jails and having their family buy their freedom. We have media tycoon that built his empire from stolen oil tankers, we have successful telecommunication companies and telecommunication managers, malls and businesses that came to existence thanks to market monopoly.

We don’t spread rumors… we ask questions. A man that was one day hitch-hiking and all of a sudden started to own most of the lands in Salmiya.. how did he get all that money which made turned him into “successful” business man that buys lands and build malls? In other countries… this kind of men will write books about their expertise. Not in Kuwait. Why?

Now… you’ll say we’re haters.. but we are not. Simply we have given up. We see and hear about our country’s wealth being spread across the globe. Yet we still have no chance to own a plot of land to build a house and call home. We know our country’s wealth is…… not even dug out of the ground… it just comes out flowing… so much money, so much wealth… yet they tell you we have no future. No electricity, no water, no jobs…

What are we going to have for our children? Heck… I don’t want anything from them for the future.. just let me continue my education so I can seek a job anywhere else in the world for my kids future… they put barrier there too. No scholarships, no funding for further education.

We have a saying in Kuwait… الأولي لاعب، والتالي تاعب

Now we’re in the grey area in between.

Sorry about the rant… but they really managed to take the taste of living out of our mouth.

Building is just the first step. Let’s hope it’s managed well without the “Ministry of Information regulations concerning musical events”.

For real, I think a lot of people are clinically depressed and want someone to blame. Live your life and stop fretting about things that you probably don’t care about you’ll be happier

right in front of our house.
view will be blocked and we won’t be able to look at the sea anymore 🙁

Who the f*** did they hire as the architect?!? Going for the cheap engineering office to design a country’s CULTURAL CENTER?! Why couldn’t they hire an actual design office or renowned architect to put the country on the world cultural map. The design is just angular blocks for gods sake…..

Wow. I never thought I’d see people complain about libraries and theatres being built in Kuwait. Just goes to show that people can whine about anything.

It shows that the level of your understanding is really shallow.

People are not hating the libraries and theaters. They’re just depressed of hearing talks in the air.

Maybe you see this propaganda and think OK something good is happening. But we know this propaganda… and we’ve been living it since the eighties. Like Kuwait University which is being built since my mother was in high school and never completed. Like Jaber Hospital which was being built since before my little sister got married. Now she has a 7 years old daughter. Like Jaber Stadium, which was completed many years ago… half a decade or more? never seen a single match take place on it. And the new bridges and highways to Slik City… actually highway to nowhere. cuz we know silk city will never come to life. I’m not saying that because I’m negative. I’m saying that because the Ministry of Electricity said they will not be able to power it or supply it with water.


The hypocrisy here is that they are proposing to build a library in a country where I can’t even buy an ‘Emirates Woman’ magazine??? And a few years ago when it did come to Kuwait, before the publishers in Dubai had a rift with the Kuwait agent who did not pay them for a year, it was re-censored. Really? The UAE is a far more conservative country than Kuwait and NO publication produced in the UAE should be re-censored! Period. Who do you think you are? So what kind of books would be in this library? I have to fly to Dubai to buy a book or a magazine, so you need to address censorship before this library is opened, but it will take time to build this if it is ever built.

if you want magazines head to the kuwait bookshop in muthana. they have the largest collection and are responsible for importing them into the market.

Oh wow the amount of negativity above is bizarre. If this post was about the same project being built in Dubai, we’d see the comment section full of rants about how our government doesnt care about culture and how dubai is way ahead of us!
I for one am very happy to see the government trying to revive the culture kuwait lost over the years, yes there are alot of other things that need taking care of like the airport and public transport, but that doesnt mean all other projects are insignificant or have to be put on hold!

Kudos to KUWAIT for finally kick starting … ‘A Cultural centre’, ‘New airport’ , ‘New flights’ !!! They sure are trying to make a difference.

No matter how many cultural centers or grand structures the Government of Kuwait builds; all of these are useless unless something is done to change the culture/mentality of the general Kuwaiti population. The broad sense of entitlement and general lack of motivation to do anything at all levels of Kuwaiti society is shocking. I have never seen this anywhere else in the world. To be fair, there are a small percentage of motivated and sincere people who genuinely care to bring a change in their society, however these are far and few between. In my experience, given enough time, such motivated Kuwaitis realize they are fighting a losing battle and permanently leave Kuwait.

So what’s my point in relation to the construction of this cultural center? Its success depends on how it is eventually used and implemented. Will this cultural work towards instilling any values of humanity within the population? Will it be accessible to everyone? Or will it end up just being a place where groups of guys harass women and occasionally stab someone in broad daylight?

I can see why there are “haters” for this project, but hopefully there is a clear vision that the government has, which results in a positive impact on the population. If not, then it’s just another fancy building that does nothing to address the real social issues of this country, which in Kuwait is called: business as usual!

I for one am glad they are building something that down the line every Kuwaiti will be proud off. Better late than never is what I say. And if the MP’s have their way and hike up fuel and utility prices for expats, only the upper class, elitist and cluturally aware classy expats with higher income will be around to visit it. So that way no greasy smelly low income Asian or Arab Expats to tarnish the beauty of a Titanium Domed Cultural Center and Opera House.(Please note my sarcasam on the last sentence) Also yeah fix the internal transportation issues first before thinking over the sea bridges and international overland rail way links. This isnt Europe with a scenic view through the mountains to take a train ride. The desert is the same everywhere you go.. brown and endless. I have been to Failaka really as well not much to see there either except for ruins and chalets to rent out for parties.. so yeah you want to go to Failaka rent a boat. The Governmet wants to try to come out a clutural rut so in the least they need to get points for trying..

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