KSA Architectural Marvel: Pavilion at Expo 2025 Osaka, Japan


Embark on a journey into the future as we unveil the visionary design of Saudi Arabia’s Pavilion at Expo 2025, crafted by Foster + Partners. From traditional inspirations to sustainable innovations, this blog explores the fusion of culture, technology, and sustainability shaping an immersive experience unlike any other.

KSA Architecture: Embracing Tradition with Modern Flair

At Expo 2025, Foster + Partners showcases their mastery in integrating traditional Saudi Arabian architectural elements with cutting-edge design techniques, offering visitors an immersive spatial experience that transcends time and culture. The pavilion’s design narrative is a testament to the rich heritage of Saudi Arabia, drawing inspiration from the organic shapes and intricate detailing found in traditional Saudi villages.

One of the most striking features of the pavilion is its massing, which recalls the vernacular architecture of Saudi towns and cities. This homage to tradition is not merely aesthetic; it is also functional. Computational fluid dynamics simulations have been meticulously employed to optimize the pavilion’s design, allowing for the seamless flow of cool winds from the west during the sweltering summer months. Additionally, the landscaped forecourt serves a dual purpose, acting as both a barrier against harsh northerly winds in cooler seasons and a verdant oasis that welcomes visitors into the pavilion.

Beyond its architectural aesthetics, the pavilion offers a journey through Saudi Arabia’s cultural landscape. Visitors are invited to traverse narrow streets reminiscent of bustling Saudi markets, leading them to the heart of the pavilion – the Saudi Courtyard. Here, amidst lush greenery and the sounds of trickling water, visitors can partake in moments of quiet reflection during the day or witness captivating performances and events under the starlit sky.

This seamless integration of tradition and innovation extends to the pavilion’s sustainability features as well. From low-carbon materials to energy-saving luminaires and rainwater recycling systems, every aspect of its design is geared towards minimizing its environmental footprint and achieving the highest standards of sustainability.

Sustainable Innovation: Designing for a Greener Future

The pavilion at Expo 2025 stands as a beacon of sustainable architecture, exemplifying a commitment to environmental stewardship and innovation. Central to this ethos are its eco-friendly features, meticulously curated to minimize its ecological footprint while setting new benchmarks in sustainability.

At the core of its design philosophy lies the conscientious selection of materials. The pavilion is constructed using low-carbon materials, chosen for their durability, recyclability, and minimal environmental impact. From responsibly sourced timber to recycled steel and eco-friendly composites, every component is chosen with sustainability in mind.

Energy efficiency is another cornerstone of its design. Innovative technologies such as energy-saving luminaires and advanced HVAC systems are seamlessly integrated to minimize energy consumption while maximizing comfort for visitors. Moreover, the pavilion harnesses the power of renewable energy sources, incorporating photovoltaic technologies that generate electricity from sunlight. This renewable energy infrastructure not only reduces its reliance on conventional power sources but also contributes to a cleaner, greener energy ecosystem.

Water conservation is also prioritized within the design. Rainwater harvesting systems are employed to capture and reuse rainwater for various purposes, reducing dependence on potable water sources and alleviating pressure on local water resources.

Furthermore, the pavilion’s commitment to sustainability extends beyond its physical infrastructure. Educational initiatives and interactive exhibits within it aim to raise awareness about environmental issues and inspire visitors to adopt more sustainable lifestyles.

By seamlessly integrating eco-friendly materials, energy-saving technologies, and water conservation measures, it not only exemplifies sustainable design principles but also serves as a catalyst for driving positive change in the built environment. As a visionary exemplar of sustainable architecture, it sets new standards for environmentally conscious design and underscores the potential for architecture to mitigate climate change and promote a more sustainable future.

A Journey Through Saudi Arabia: From Courtyard to Village

Step into the enchanting world of the Saudi Arabia Pavilion at Expo 2025, where every corner unveils a tapestry of culture, innovation, and wonder. Your journey begins at the verdant forecourt, adorned with lush Saudi Arabian flora, welcoming you into a realm of tranquility and exploration.

As you traverse the pavilion’s narrow streets, reminiscent of bustling Saudi markets, you’ll find yourself immersed in the vibrant tapestry of Saudi life. Each alleyway offers a glimpse into the rich heritage and traditions of the Kingdom, with intricately designed facades and interactive exhibits showcasing the wonders of Saudi Arabia’s past, present, and future.

The heartbeat of the pavilion lies within the Saudi Courtyard, a serene oasis amidst the hustle and bustle of Expo 2025. Here, visitors are invited to pause and reflect, surrounded by the soothing sounds of trickling water and the fragrance of blooming flowers. As day turns to night, the courtyard transforms into a dynamic venue for cultural performances and events, offering a captivating fusion of tradition and modernity.

Venture further into the pavilion, and you’ll discover a ‘village’ of meandering streets, each corner revealing a new marvel to behold. From immersive multimedia experiences to hands-on demonstrations of Saudi craftsmanship, every space is designed to captivate and inspire, leaving visitors with a deeper appreciation for the rich tapestry of Saudi culture.

Performance and Reflection: The Heart of the Pavilion

The Saudi Courtyard within the pavilion is not merely a physical space; it is a dynamic cultural hub that pulsates with life, energy, and emotion. By day, it serves as a stage for a myriad of performances that showcase the richness and diversity of Saudi Arabian culture. From traditional music and dance to theatrical productions and interactive demonstrations, the courtyard becomes a vibrant tapestry of sights, sounds, and experiences that captivates visitors and immerses them in the essence of Saudi Arabia.

As the sun sets and the day gives way to night, the Saudi Courtyard undergoes a transformation, becoming a sanctuary for quiet contemplation and reflection. Illuminated by soft, ambient lighting and adorned with flickering torches, the courtyard exudes a sense of tranquility and serenity that invites visitors to pause, unwind, and connect with their surroundings on a deeper level.

Here, amidst the gentle rustle of palm trees and the soothing sound of flowing water, visitors can escape the hustle and bustle of Expo 2025 and find solace in moments of introspection and introspection. Whether alone or in the company of others, the courtyard offers a space for quiet contemplation, allowing visitors to ponder the beauty of the present moment and the mysteries of the universe.

In this way, the Saudi Courtyard transcends its physical dimensions to become a timeless nexus of culture, community, and spirituality – a place where past and present converge, and where the human spirit finds solace, inspiration, and renewal.

Engineering Comfort: Balancing Climate and Design

Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations played a pivotal role in shaping the design of the pavilion at Expo 2025, ensuring optimal comfort for visitors throughout the year while harnessing the natural elements to enhance their experience. By leveraging advanced computational techniques, Foster + Partners meticulously analyzed the airflow dynamics within and around the pavilion, allowing for the precise manipulation of air currents to create a microclimate conducive to comfort and well-being.

During the scorching summer months, when temperatures soar and humidity levels rise, the pavilion’s design utilizes CFD simulations to facilitate the influx of cool winds from the west. By strategically positioning openings and apertures, it acts as a natural conduit, channeling refreshing breezes into its interior spaces and providing much-needed relief from the sweltering heat. This passive cooling strategy not only enhances visitor comfort but also reduces the reliance on mechanical cooling systems, thereby minimizing energy consumption and environmental impact.

Conversely, during the cooler months of April and October, when northerly winds pose a potential threat, the landscaped forecourt serves as a protective barrier, shielding the interior from harsh weather conditions. By carefully manipulating the surrounding landscape and topography, Foster + Partners ensures that the pavilion remains resilient in the face of adverse weather events, safeguarding both its structural integrity and the well-being of its occupants.

In this way, the integration of computational fluid dynamics simulations into the design process enables it to harmonize with its natural surroundings, offering visitors a comfortable and immersive experience year-round while setting a new standard for sustainable architecture and environmental responsibility.

Beyond Beauty: Enhancing Well-being with Design

The pavilion stands as a beacon of architectural excellence and a testament to a holistic approach to design that prioritizes the health and well-being of its occupants. Central to this ethos is the integration of WELL design principles, which aim to create spaces that foster physical, mental, and emotional wellness.

From the moment visitors step foot into the pavilion, they are enveloped in an environment designed to promote health and vitality. The use of natural materials, such as sustainably sourced timber and stone, not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of the pavilion but also contributes to a sense of biophilic connection, fostering a deeper connection with nature and promoting stress reduction.

Indoor air quality is another key focus of the pavilion’s design, with advanced ventilation systems and air purification technologies ensuring that occupants are surrounded by clean, fresh air free from pollutants and allergens. Additionally, ample access to natural light throughout the pavilion helps regulate circadian rhythms and promote a sense of well-being, while minimizing the need for artificial lighting.

The pavilion’s layout is thoughtfully curated to encourage physical activity and movement, with opportunities for walking, stretching, and relaxation scattered throughout the space. Interactive exhibits and immersive experiences further engage visitors, stimulating cognitive function and promoting a sense of curiosity and exploration.

Beyond the physical environment, it also incorporates elements that support social well-being, such as communal gathering spaces and areas for contemplation and reflection. By fostering a sense of community and connection, the pavilion creates opportunities for meaningful interactions and shared experiences, enhancing overall satisfaction and well-being.


As the curtains draw on our exploration of Saudi Arabia’s Pavilion at Expo 2025, we leave inspired by its harmonious blend of tradition and innovation. Foster + Partners’ masterpiece not only captivates with its design but also sets a benchmark for sustainable architecture, promising a brighter, greener future ahead.

Omar Al Nafisah
Omar Al Nafisah