There are millions of buildings all over the world, many merely boring clones of others. Office blocks can be the worst offenders, often opting for efficient yet dull aesthetics. Thankfully when certain companies become successful they’re willing to push the boat out and commission far more exciting designs for commercial buildings across the world.

Tour CMA CGM, France

Standing at 147m tall in Marseille’s central business district, this building is the headquarters for major shipping firm CMA CGM and was designed by acclaimed architect Zaha Hadid. Bringing together over 2,000 employees in one place the building also acts as an architectural symbol for the company and its nature by forming the shape of a giant ship’s sail.

Aldar Headquarters, UAE

The Middle East’s first circular designed building, located in Al Raha, Abu Dhabi, is also home to offices for Aldar Properties. Completed in 2010 the building has 23 stories, reaching 110m in height. Along with 12 passenger and three service elevators it also features a circular hydraulic lift to help employees get around. Next to the water’s edge just outside of Abu Dhabi, striking views are achieved from its eighth, let alone 23rd, floor.

ING House, The Netherlands

Nicknamed ‘the shoe’ or ‘the dustbuster’ for its unique shape, ING House is the headquarters of ING Group found in the Zuidas district of Amsterdam. Designed by native Dutch architects the building features 16 steel legs and an angled roof, creating a huge shoe-like shape.

Magma Towers, Mexico

Located in Monterrey and used as office space by various companies, these two dark grey, monolithic towers rise up in imposing fashion. A dynamic appearance is achieved through different sized windows next to each other and balconies jutting out here and there. The dark colour is in sharp contrast to everything surrounding it but helps it stand out at night too.

72 Screens, India

Located in the Indian city of Jaipur, the abstract design of 72 Screens not only looks impressive but was designed to shield workers from the excessive heat they suffer due to the place’s desert climate. Folded planes of perforated screens take inspiration from traditional methods and help create an energy efficient building.

Petronas Towers, Malaysia

Commissioned as offices for Malaysian petrol and gas giant Petronas, these two towers are joined together by a sky bridge over 550ft above ground. The buildings in Kuala Lumpur remain the tallest twin buildings in the world, holding shops and offices for the company’s employees.


Photo: Ciamabue

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  1. avatar
    Carol McDonald