HOK unveils latest renderings of Yas Arena



Linkedin Twitter

Yas Arena

HOK Design has unveiled the latest renderings of Yas Arena, a new multipurpose sports and entertainment venue on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. The facility is part of a $12-billion mixed-use development that will include adjacent retail and dining on a boardwalk.

The new 18,000-capacity arena, which can contract to a 500-seat theatre, is the first on the island to be designed to accommodate a wide variety of events. HOK is working with ESP and Pascall+Watson to deliver the arena. The team was engaged by Miral Asset Management, the entity responsible for the development of the broad southern part of Yas Island.

“This is a fantastic project, and we’ve been working with our client for some time,” said John Rhodes, a director of HOK’s Sports + Recreation + Entertainment practice.

The goal of the project was to create an intimate, highly flexible and efficient venue with excellent acoustics that can be used year-round for a variety of sport and entertainment events.

This focus on flexibility carries over to premium and back-of-house spaces. The arena is designed to adapt to a diverse set of events, including community gatherings, concerts, performances, sporting events, and meetings and conventions. Premium spaces include a VIP lounge that can be transformed into a grand ballroom for events, hospitality boxes and unique terrace bars for receptions and parties.

Additional amenities, including food and beverage, will be located adjacent to the arena to create a linear street that stretches down the waterfront promenade. This outdoor concourse will create a festival-like atmosphere to generate year-round activity. The outdoor concourse will provide connectivity to the surrounding district on Yas Bay.

Yas Island is a new multipurpose leisure, shopping and entertainment destination that includes a hotel cluster, the Yas Marina, F1 circuit and a growing number of theme parks. The new venue will be located directly on the waterfront and serve as an anchor for the promenade that will feature more than 50 cafes and restaurants, 20 retail outlets, a recreational pier, two hotels and a beach club.

“Abu Dhabi has specific requirements, and the scale of events is much different than in the U.S. and Europe,” said Rhodes. “The building is tailored to the market, which demands a lot more hospitality, and also to the nature of how shows are set up. We’ve optimized premium and exhibition spaces [with this design].”

In addition to a unique typology, which is different from traditional North American arenas, what also sets the new arena apart is its location on the waterfront by the sea.

“It runs alongside the waterfront, so the actual building layout is symmetrical to respond to that,” said Rhodes. “The lower concourses can act as a mall, so this will be a very active building on non-event days.”

Rhodes said a start date and date of completion have not yet been set, but construction on the arena is anticipated to begin in the next few months.

Coliseum is a global series of stadium and arena business conferences and a sports venue news online-platform dedicated to the various challenges of designing, constructing and operating of sports venues all around the world.

Continue to follow Coliseum for latest updates on stadium business.

Watch 150 member-exclusive videos with valuable tips for your venue



« Previous News:
» Next News:


More News

FIFA starts venue visits to US

FIFA visits to US Cities for 2026 showcase on

Published: September 17, 2021

A series of FIFA visits to American Cities wishing to stage matches during the 2026 World Cup is... » Read more

Bahrain Al Dana Amphitheatre opens doors

Al Dana Amphitheatre set to ‘rock’ Bahrain

Published: September 17, 2021

Al Dana Amphitheatre, Bahrain’s newest and most exciting live entertainment destination, will be... » Read more

Edgbaston Warwickshire CCC event calendar for 2022

Cricket carnival at Birmingham in 2022

Published: September 17, 2021

Most of the biggest games in world cricket are coming to Birmingham (UK) in 2022 with the England... » Read more

Lourdes Salinas on Coliseum LATAM

Mexico tech firm’s Green geometric

Published: September 17, 2021

Mexico-based THREE Environmental Consulting is a technology-based firm that offers environmental... » Read more


Receive global sports venue NEWS twice a week in your inbox