Location: paca

of April 16





Alexander Kader is working as an architect since 2000 independently as well as in cooperation with very renowned German architectural offices such as “Von Gerkan Marg + Partners”, “Grüntuch & Ernst”, “Bothe Richter Teherani”, “Hascher + Jehle”. He was involved in the design and realization of various prestigious award winning architectural and urban design projects such as the “Swiss Re Headquarter” in Munich or the “Artmuseum Stuttgart”.  Alexander has studied in Italy and Germany. He has lectured and acted as a guest critic at numerous institutions in Germany, Brazil, USA, Thailand, Great Britain, Albania, Serbia, Egypt and Oman.

Among other schools, he taught at the Technical University of Braunschweig and in the Bauhaus Dessau. Hochschule Bochum, PBSA Düsseldorf, RWTH Aachen, UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) and since 2013 he is teaching at GUtech in Maskat, Oman where he holds a position as associate professor and has been Dean of the Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning from 2015 to 2018.


The Relation between Landscape and Architecture in the Field of Tourism From coastline to mountains, from desert to heritage cities, Oman has a tremendous potential of precious spots for touristic development. The country's magnificent landscape, however, is also threatened to be destroyed by inadequate and misplaced projects. In order to achieve the most suitable outcomes for Oman's touristic development, architecture and environment needs to establish a mutual relationship in which both – landscape and built areas – are supplementing each other in a beneficial way. The "spirit of the place" of each individual project site, the so called “genius loci”, needs to be understood and integrated into the architectural design idea. This lecture explains the processes of the development of a unique design approaches which are essential for composing truly successful landscape and architecture projects in the field of tourism. Further more the lecture illustrates the relation between landscape and architecture with successful built examples of touristic projects in Oman as well as in other countries. Bio: Alexander Kader is Associate Professor of Urban and Architectural Design at the German University of Technology (GUtech) in Muscat, Oman. He has graduated at Polytechnic University of Milan in 2000 in the field of architectural and urban design with the degree „Dottore di Architettura“. His research focus lies on energy-efficient design methods for architecture and urban planning. Prior to working in Oman, he taught at the Institute of Sustainable Settlement Planning at the Technical University of Braunschweig, and at the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences. In addition, he has worked as an architect and urban designer for more than ten years.




It’s been 9 magnificent years since I started working in the fashion industry – under the name of Dar Al Aseel, I first started designing traditional Omani dresses and went on to abayas and jalabiyas. I have a lot of success stories to tell and can count a number of failures as all part of my history and brand today. I have since started a new fashion venture with By Amal Al Raisi My RTW collection has a touch of couture and is a tribute to women that are feminine but not delicate. I admire today’s power woman who prioritizes family but also pursue’s their career dreams. “by Amal Al Raisi” is designed to honor Arab traditions but my goal is for the pieces to be worn far beyond the borders of Oman.

It is here that the collection is produced and overseen by myself to ensure the highest quality and an impeccable finish. 


Amal Al Raisi will speak about the family and tradition and her sentimental journey as a fashion designer, which began a decade ago. 




Ebtissam Farid Is an architect and associate Professor at Faculty of Fine Arts, department of Architecture of the Faculty of Fine Arts, Alexandria University. Farid received her PhD in architecture from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Alexandria University, around Mass Customization and the Future of Housing. Farid has masterminded and orchestrated a number of local and international multi-disciplinary workshops to explore new grounds for the architectural practice through tools and her research interests lies in Design education. She is investigating various digital and physical computational tools exploring the potentials of digital design and production techniques to correlate education, profession and design industry.

Ebtissam is also a co-founder at Encode design studio in Alexandria, Egypt, where she collaborates with Encode team to develop the design industry and production in Egypt by linking practice (Architecture, interior, product design ) and education through research and prototyping. She has led the creation of a multi-disciplinary design network between many local and international disciplines, along with local factories, with the aim of developing the industry in Egypt through research to include Egypt on the international creative design Map, offering an opportunity to discuss the value of design to innovation and build communications with other teams and professional practices.


The presence of Advanced Architectural Geometry buildings within historic urban contexts as a source of tourist attraction.

The Contemporary digital design tools and practices are in a state of rapid evolution. The computer intervention affected the design and production process dramatically in creating different hybrid forms in addition to the computerised precision in design and construction, becoming part of an experimental exploration of topological and computational geometry, robotics orchestration and constant materials development offering a new kind of experiences and sensations. A new approach to design and construction is a global phenomenon. These new forms and process have introduced to many solutions to new buildings in historic context as a sort of dealing with contradicting with the context. The presentation presents an overview of the introduction of contemporary advanced geometric architecture presented within a historic context that lead to a new spatial language in the urban tissue and context of the city .This introduction which corresponds to the artistic consciousness, the attitude of information and digital technologies era opens up new possibilities not only in shaping the architectural forms, but also in the interference with the existing urban context and present building structures acting as a tourists attraction.




Ercan Ağırbaş is co-founder of AĞIRBAŞ EITTORF FRIENDS, Architecture & Urban Planning. Before establishing his own architecture practice with Frank Eittorf in 2013, he was head of „Ağırbaş / Wienstroer – Architektur und Stadtplanung“ from 1995 to 2013 in Neuss. His award winning works have been published in various international books and journals and have also gained recognition through a number of exhibitions in Germany and abroad. Ercan Ağırbaş has lectured and acted as a guest critic at numerous institutions in Germany and abroad.

Among other schools, he taught at Hochschule Bochum, PBSA Düsseldorf, RWTH Aachen, UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) and since 2016 he is teaching at GUtech in Muscat, Oman where he holds a position as associate professor. 

He studied in Germany, Italy and Switzerland, received his‚ Vordiplom‘ at TU Berlin and his “Diplom“ of Architecture at ETH Zürich. As planner, architect (ETH Zürich) and professor, he continues his work on several private and public projects dealing with the relationship between art, design, architecture and engineering, together with his partner Frank Eittorf.


Designing Spaces for Tourism in Oman
The development of tourism in Oman still is only at its initial phase. But within the next years, countless touristic projects might be planned and realised. Besides their purpose of offering tourists the possibility to enjoy the beauty of Oman’s nature and culture, they will also support the country's economic growth and facilitate the transition from oil to post oil era. During this lecture, the art of designing tourism projects will be explored. At first, the design process of a series of international examples of tourism projects will analysed. Second, their functional and aesthetic qualities will be illustrated and compared among each other. Subsequently follows an exploration of the challenges which occurred during the planning and realisation phases which followed the design phase. The final part of this lecture will consist of a series of guidelines which illustrated how a comprehensive holistic design approach of spaces for tourism can be achieved. Bio: Ercan Agirbas is Associate Professor of Urban and Architectural Design at the German University of Technology (GUtech) in Muscat, Oman. He has graduated at ETH Zurich in 1993 and was head of „Ağırbaş / Wienstroer – Architektur und Stadtplanung“ from 1995 to 2013 in Neuss/Germany. As planner, architect and professor, he has worked on several private and public projects dealing with the relationship between art, design, architecture and engineering, together with his partner Frank Eittorf. His award winning works have been published in various international books and journals and have also gained recognition through a number of exhibitions in Germany and abroad.




Registered first grade consultant in the Omani Tender Board with 17 years’ experience in Architecture, Master Planning, Project Management and Real Estate Development Management.

Graduated from The University of Bedfordshire in 2001, Luton, UK, Started my Career in the Royal Court Affairs Spending the first 5 years providing architectural and interior design services up to the highest standard. 

Then, joined Moury a Tourism Development establishing the project management department handling the procurement services and approvals for prestigious ITC developments in Oman.

After that he moved to WS Atkins completing a number of design projects for the firm and gaining international experience during that time. With the public and private experience gained, the opportunity to establish an independent architectural and engineering consultancy firm was a natural career development move to service the Local Omani Market associating with international consultancy firms to deliver distinguished services through Resolution Engineering Consultancy. Recently, appointed as the CEO of JBH Real Estate Development leading a specialized team to deliver a very unique ITC development. Also, a partner with Ronesans Holding in Oman.


A comprehensive Approach to an Integrated Tourism Complex Development Design Strategy

The greatest challenge facing large scale mix use developments is the liquidity crunch after the global economic events after 2011 and 2016. This caused for many large-scale developments in Oman to be put on hold. The challenge for Architects and Urban Planners is to approach and plan their projects maintaining the value of design principles in a secure financial, sustainable and environmentally responsible way.

To address the issues above, Rawasi as ITC (Integrated Tourism Complex) successful project design management process will be used as a case study on how to approach a large-scale development.

The lecture will highlight a pragmatic methodology followed to create a Development vision and concept. Explaining how the developer envisages the proposed development to be within the national and international tourism contexts, Identifying the short, medium- and long-term goals of the development. By following a scientific approach, a planner can support the developer to adopts planning and design principles in order to meet the development objectives and place Oman as a new destination for wellness, adventure, sport and luxury living in the international tourism map, which will work in line with the Sultanate 2040 tourism plan.




Mamdouh Galil has been working for the University of Nizwa in Oman since 2013. He profoundly believes that the Green design can improve the tourism business.  He got the Master’s degree in Environmental Design in 2002 and his thesis title was  The Effect of EIA Studies on Designing Tourism Projects  Until 2007 he was working on his PhD to develop a new system aiming to improve and integrate the sustainable tourism business and projects management to take over the sustainability from the conceptual stage to the reality. 

His PhD thesis topic was  The Environmental Management Systems Towards Executing Sustainable Tourism Projects - Case Study: Red Sea Cost  As a sustainable development consultant, he initiated the Sustainable Building Center-SBC in 2002, providing a lot of EIA studies, trainings and several consultation services in architecture, landscaping and project management to a big number of well recognized tourism investment entities in Egypt and Arab Region such as Blue Sky, Mountain View, AA and Etlalah. In addition to many housing projects, commercial buildings, hotels &tourist resorts. 


Omani Hara, The Legacy of Ancestors

A proposed methodology to merge the archaeological buildings in the tourism system in Sultanate of Oman.



Sultanate of Oman is rich with an exceptional variety of geographic and touristic sites; on the other hand; tourism industry can play a distinguished part economic, social and environmental development, by providing many job vacancies and improving both trading and industry in Oman.

The ancient Omani Hara had emerged from its location which reflected the heritage life and natural conditions that the Omani people succeeded to deal with; resulting in a beautiful architectural context.

Moreover; the creativity in utilizing natural materials in architecture and integrating all factors form the Omani architectural genes that attracts many tourists.

Although the Ministry of Heritage has founded a major project for documenting the heritage of Oman, and has started to restore and rehabilitate a number of important ancient building and haras; yet; there is still a large number of threats that harm the Omani heritage; apparent in the increasing demolitions of old buildings; that increase over time even; whether natural factors or wrong behaviors.

There are many international experiences that succeeded in rehabilitating ancient buildings in order to reuse them, which have led to preserve their heritage value, and it have also positively affected the community both directly and indirectly.

There are also a number of influences that contributed in these projects' success; such as the nature of the buildings, the site, infrastructure … etc.

 The traditional Omani hara was formed by a number of various factors; such as the historical dimensions, different characters, theme of buildings, sites, construction methods and materials… etc, these factors are what make Omani hara so unique.

Thus, this paper aims to study the most important common features that form the Omani haras, in order to develop a methodology that can merge the tourism investment aspect with the historical value, to create a new vision to develop and preserve these haras and maintain its historical value. In addition to identify investment indicators and opportunities that may help to reuse these buildings, so that they can be imbedded into the strategic tourism plan in Sultanate of Oman.






A consensus has not yet been reached worldwide regarding the concept of creative tourism. Since 2000, it has generally been considered as a kind of tourism that can offer tourists the opportunity to co-create and develop their creative potential. Also, it can be seen as an evolution and as a new approach to cultural tourism which has reached a stage of massification in several world destinations.

Until now there was little research on the networks and platforms/institutions dealing with creative tourism, and that is why we have developed an investigation, from 2017 to 2018, concerned with the identification and analysis of the existing practices at an international level. We intended also to evaluate the contribution of Portugal in what regards networks and platforms. This investigation was conducted within the scope of the CREATOUR project: Creative Tourism Destination Development in Small Cities and Rural Areas, funded under the joint activities of the “Portugal 2020 Programme” by COMPETE2020, PORLisboa, PORAlgarve and the Portuguese Foundation for Science, Research and Technology (FCT). For that we used mainly qualitative methods focusing on content analysis. The main results tell us that the majority of the creative initiatives occur in Southern Europe. In Portugal’s case, the initiatives are “creative experiences” and have, in fact, to do with co-creation.

She is Associate Professor with Habilitation in Human Geography and working in the Department of Geography of the Social Sciences Institute, University of Minho, Portugal. She got her PhD in Human Geography, in 1999, with collaboration of Louvain-la-Neuve University (Belgium).

Paula is at present Head of the Department of Geography at University of Minho and Director of Lab2PT (Landscape, Heritage and Territory Laboratory) at University of Minho. She was Head of the Geography and Planning Research Unit, University of Minho.

Coordinator of the research field called “Organizations, Development and Territory” of the Social Sciences Research Centre, University of Minho (2010-2014). 

She was several times Director of the Department of Geography in  the same University, and also Director of the Master Program in Geography (Planning and Management of Territory) (2013-2015) and Director of PhD Program in Geography (2015-2017). Her research interests are Regional and Local Development, Cultural Tourism, Creative Tourism and Health Geography.




Rui Weiner is a Designer and an educator. He began his lifelong interest in design as a child. His professional career spans over 25 years. In his Pursuit of continuous improvement in design education take him to do two Masters Degrees one in Graphic Design and Editorial projects another in Visual Arts Education. I have experience in teaching in University’s in Portugal, Singapore, Indonesia and Oman.


The importance of cultural perspective through the process of creativity in Higher Design Education The values and culture of designers form part of the design process and can be considered to be of extreme relevance, since the designer›s culture can be a source of creativity and innovation throughout Design Education. That’s where Project Design becomes crucial in the development of designer›s competences. For that reason, it’s important to present and discuss the completed projects during the design classes, applying self-learning techniques.




Thomas Sladko is an expert in international communication and protocol. He holds a Master’s Degree in Communication Science and Philosophy and a Master’s Degree in Advanced Latin American Studies. He has been working as Deputy Chief of Protocol for the Federal Chancellor of Austria since 2007. 

Thomas gathered international work experience in the field of protocol and communication by working with more than 70 nations. He organised more than300 official visits and events.


There is no second chances in hospitality and no second chances in hotels design. One of the most challenging features of organising high level events and managing VIPs is the difficulty to deal with non functional hotels and conference spaces. This fact raises the importance of experimentation in collaboration between different professionals involved in architecture,  interior design, hospitality, VIPs Security and High-Level Events Protocol Experts. This diverse knowledge and approach to space and form brings together new needs in building design. New trends appear in bringing together solutions that harmonize all sides: anthropometrics, security, facility, ergonomics and events services.