Morpheus Hotel: Zaha Hadid’s Final Project

As the “world’s first free-form high-rise exoskeleton,” the Morpheus Hotel in Macau is a stunning geometric marvel, featuring unique sculpted curves and voids carved from the center of the building. Unlike the many other buildings in the area, the Morpheus makes no reference to existing architectural styles, and makes an impressive mark on the city. Macau, a city in China, is home to the City of Dreams, a resort featuring a casino, two theaters, a shopping district, 20 restaurants and four hotels on the Cotai Strip. The Morpheus is the latest addition with 770 hotel suites, meeting and events facilities, gaming rooms, a spa, rooftop pool, lobby atrium and three world-class restaurants. This architectural wonder opened for business at the end of June.

Morpheus Hotel, Photo by Ivan Dupont, Living Etc.
Morpheus Hotel, Photo by Ivan Dupont, Living Etc.
Morpheus Hotel Pool and Spa, Dezeen

Morpheus Hotel is one of the final buildings designed by Zaha Hadid before her passing in 2016. She was intimately involved in the design of this project, and many of her signature details can be seen throughout. Hadid was an Iraqi-British architect, and the first woman to win the esteemed Pritzker Architecture Prize. She was given the title of ‘Dame’ by the queen, and has won almost every prestigious architectural award. The Guardian described her as the “Queen of the curve,” who “liberated architectural geometry, giving it a whole new expressive identity.” These concepts can be seen in the design for Morpheus Hotel. Her firm, Zaha Hadid Architects, completed the project, as well as several others she had begun at the time of her death.

Zaha Hadid, New York Times
Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku, Azerbaijan, The Guardian
Zaha Hadid’s Galaxy SOHO in Beijing, China, 2010, Curbed

According to the architects, the exoskeleton made of aluminum and steel, was inspired by traditional Chinese jade carvings. This emphasized the fluid feeling of the hard construction material. The interior is not crowded by any internal structure like normal skyscrapers, and instead has huge curving windows and beautiful views.

“Morpheus offers a journey of the imagination. From the curved exterior to the dramatic interior spaces, it pleases the eye and excites the senses: a contemporary masterpiece to be enjoyed by many generations to come.” -Lawrence Ho, CEO of Melco Resorts

Interior of Morpheus Hotel, Photo by Virgile Simon Bertrand, Living Etc.
Morpheus Interior, Dezeen
Morpheus Interior, Dezeen

No detail was overlooked, the Morpheus hotel is a incredible architectural work of art and a fitting epitaph for a beloved designer whose work will continue to garner praise.

Macau Skyline with Morpheus Hotel, Photo by Virgile Simon Bertrand, Living Etc.
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