Arc Middle East 2018

The Leading Middle East Architects Forum

February 2-5, 2018

Oman, Sultanate of Oman


The program below is from 2018

Seminar timings and/or content may be varied at our discretion.

Thursday, February 8

12:00 pm

Delegate Arrivals

7:30 pm Main Beach

Welcome Drinks Reception

8:15 pm Main Beach

Welcome Dinner

Friday, February 9

6:30 am Al Tanoor/Samba Restaurant

Breakfast at your leisure

8:40 am Theater

Seminar - GCC Real Estate Development and Investment: Where are the Opportunities?

Martin Cooper | Head of Development Strategy and Investment, Real Estate and Construction Middle East, Deloitte

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This presentation will provide an overview of the demand fundamentals driving each of the real estate markets within the GCC – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The demand fundamentals assessed will include population, demographics, economics and tourism indicators. This presentation will then go on to identify real estate investment and development activity within the GCC’s tourism and hospitality, residential, retail and office markets. This presentation will conclude by reviewing emerging risks within the GCC’s real estate market, with an overall view on investment activity and risk-reward profiles.


Martin is Head of Development Strategy and Investment for Deloitte’s Middle East Real Estate and Construction team. Martin has been based in the Middle East for 10 years and has advised on the market and financial feasibility of major mixed-use development projects in Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Over the past 10 years Martin has delivered over 100 real estate market and financial feasibility assessments for corporate and government clients.
9:40 am Ballroom A-C Foyer

Collect Final Meeting Schedule

12:40 pm Ballroom A-C

One-to-One Meetings

12:40 pm

Group Photograph

12:50 pm Ballroom Terrace


1:40 pm Theater

Seminar - Why and How: A Focus on Wellbeing in the Built Environment

Lida Lewis | Director of Wellbeing Design, HKS

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As designers of the built environment, we all believe in and understand the importance and the power of the built environment. In that environment there exist influencing factors that can range in impact from negative, or pathogenic, to positive, or salutogenic. In a space or building in which true wellbeing is possible, our work as designers will fall on a scale of environmental impact wholly beyond the point at which we “do no harm”. But do we truly understand where this point lies? When we reach the true pinnacle of wellbeing design, we will be creating spaces which foster self-actualization, with a deep and profound sense of meaning. The environment will connect with the needs of a wide variety of occupants, interconnecting them in a place which visually and figuratively communicates and promotes feelings of comfort, community and inspiration. Let’s start the conversation on providing spaces that do more than just function efficiently, which start to find ways to regenerate and elevate the body and spirit. Let’s use the environment to care for people.


One of the first WELL APs, WELL Faculty, and Fitwel Ambassadors, Lida is an architect by training and an interior architect in practice with a strong focus on sustainability and its impact on the people in the spaces we design.  Lida serves as HKS’ Director of Wellbeing Design, utilizing her years of design and sustainability expertise to spearhead thought leadership and efforts incorporating the best of scientific and medical research into the firm’s design strategies across all of HKS’ offices. She currently serves as a WELL Faculty member, was a reviewer for the WELL AP test development, and is an SME for Greenbuild in Health and Wellbeing.  A firm believer that the design of space has a profound impact on physical and mental health, she supports all HKS design staff with tools and information to truly elevate design and the occupant experience,  
2:45 pm Ballroom A-C

One-to-One Meetings

6:00 pm

Free Time

7:30 pm Turtle Beach

Drinks Reception

8:15 pm Turtle Beach


Saturday, February 10

6:30 am Al Tanoor/Samba Restaurant

Breakfast at your leisure

8:40 am Theater

Seminar - Leadership in the Context of Followership

Gerry Woods | Regional Director Middle East, Inspirational Development Group

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The session will focus attention on two key questions that leaders at all levels need to consider.

“Why would anyone want to follow me?”

The thrust here is to examine leadership behaviours that inspire others to respond positively towards enhancing performance at all levels.

The second question is:
“Why would anyone want me in their team?”

No matter how high we are in an organization, there are usually stakeholders above us that require us to perform well. The focus upon followership is to reflect on the behaviours that enhance team performance at all levels and to identify the characteristics of different types of follower. In turn, a deeper understanding of followership components will enable the leader to select better courses of action to deal with leadership and organizational challenges. Put simply, an effective follower and an effective leader are two sides of the same coin.


Gerry Woods leads the IDG Oman team, delivering leadership and team building programmes to an increasing range of clients and developing the business in the region. He joined IDG in 2013 and utilises his extensive leadership experience as a Senior Military Officer and as a former company Managing Director to develop and deliver thought-provoking development programmes.
Having spent 25 years as an Army officer culminating in his appointment as Head of Training Development. He Led the design, delivery and accreditation of training for Venue Security Force personnel at the London 2012 Olympics, led research proposals for innovative mobile learning possibilities within Defence sector and training requirements analysis and design for Afghanistan Officers’ Academy based upon the Sandhurst model.
Gerry has a Masters degree in Training Development and Human Resource Management and holds a Chartered Fellowship of the Chartered Management Institute (CMgr FCMI).
Clients comment on Gerry’s remarkable ability to promote relationship building and galvanise programme delegates into positive action that impacts upon their business. His focus is performance enhancement at all levels.
12:45 am Ballroom A-C

One-to-One Meetings

12:35 pm Ballroom Terrace


1:30 pm Theater

Seminar - Re-evaluating Architecture in the Gulf

Sumaya Dabbagh | Owner & Architect, Dabbagh Architects / Chair, RIBA Gulf

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1.Role of Architecture

The main and most fundamental purpose of architecture is a means to define ourselves. Architecture gives form to our experiences that create meaning. It contains the collective acts that forge community. It allows for the evolution of civilizations.

2. The reality of our Gulf Cities

What our architecture in our cities failed to do is to allow us to have the seamless experience of who we are in any given day. What the outer mirrors to the inner, what we have projected, is a fragmented sense of self as well as community.

We have created cities that are made up of stand-alone objects that are disconnected and are only in relationship with other objects such as the car. We have created cities that are made up of a series of disjointed spaces. The type of experience that is created as result of this is flat, disorientating as well as alienating.

3. Understanding Context

Creating meaningful experiences through architecture comes from an understanding of the place, the people that it is addressing, from understanding context.

4. Case Study of Contextual Architecture

Mleiha Archeological Centre, in Sharjah UAE.


Sumaya Dabbagh is the founder of Dabbagh Architects. She is a Saudi architect educated in the UK with diverse experience in architecture, interior design, and project management spanning over 20 years. Following an education at Bath University under the guidance of the late Peter Smithson and Sir Ted Happold,  Dabbagh began her career in London and Paris in the early 90’s. Her return to the Gulf region in 1993 was part of a quest to gain a deeper understanding of her own identity, a unique mix of influences and sensitivity towards both western and middle eastern cultures. In 2002, after completing the Childrens’ City Project while at Schuster Pechtold and Partners, Dabbagh started to carve her own path as an independent architect. Since then she has completed a diverse range of projects which include commercial offices, retail, residential, educational, as well as cultural projects.  Her multi award winning Mleiha Archaeological Centre building is a recent addition to her renowned portfolio of sensitive, contextual designs with a feel-good quality. Through her work in architecture and design in the Gulf region Dabbagh’s quest to bridge the cultural and gender gaps continues. Dabbagh has participated in a number of conferences to share some of her theoretical ideas regarding architecture.  She was an instrumental part of the team who set up the RIBA Gulf chapter in 2009 and is passionate about bringing more awareness to the region on the value of good design. She is the Chair of the RIBA Gulf Chapter. In October 2017. She was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by Identity Design Awards, as recognition of her contributions to date.
2:30 pm Ballroom A-C

One-to-One Meetings

5:45 pm

Free Time

7:30 pm Heritage Village

Farewell Drinks

8:15 pm Heritage Village

Farewell Dinner

Sunday, February 11

6:30 am Al Tanoor/Samba Restaurant

Breakfast at your leisure

Delegate Departures

Interested in attending this year's event?


Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort

Against the dramatic backdrop of rugged mountains and touching the pristine waters of the Sea of Oman, Shangri-La’s Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa is set among stunning scenery and home to three spectacular hotels. Close to the old city of Muscat, Muscat International Airport is just 45 minutes away.

P.O. Box 644
Muscat, Oman Post Code 100, Sultanate of Oman

(968) 2477 6666

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