Ron Arad Completes "Upside Down" Toha Tower in Tel Aviv
In the center of Tel Aviv, Israel, at the intersection of two business streets, the ToHA building rises 29 stories. Its unique faceted volume, shaped like an iceberg, was designed by Ron Arad of Ron Arad Associates in London, with the local team of Avner Yashar from Yashar Architects in Tel Aviv. The ToHa building offers a unique office complex fit out with a public garden, an observation deck and a restaurant.
More than 28,000 square meters of Dekton® by Cosentino clad the ensemble, and appear on the ventilated facades, flooring, elevators, ceilings and interior partitions. The Dekton pieces, of 10,000 different dimensions and types, were produced and cut at the Cosentino headquarters in Spain, and then transported by sea to Israel.
One of the main strategies in the design of the project was that of reducing the built area at street level to create a large park, with the idea of giving the surroundings a public character. The building emerges, therefore, atop two large legs that widen gradually and create a twisting volume. Because of its geometric versatility, Dekton manages to adapt with precision to this formal complexity thanks to its endless range of formats, with minimum thicknesses and maximum areas.
In the building’s intermediate levels, the jagged perimeter of the concrete slabs is clad with 12-mm-thick panels measuring 2 meters wide that, with their careful detailing, define the vertices and edges, conveying an image of perfection.
From the functional point of view, this ambitious project inverts the organization of the conventional office block, placing all the infrastructure and machinery on the first floors to clear the roof, which becomes a public space and accommodates an upscale restaurant with views of Tel Aviv and the Mediterranean Sea. In this way, the top floors are freed up and can be dedicated only to recreational uses and the offices start at the seventh floor, which favors sunlight and views. The technical levels are clad with a unique permeable facade of cross-mounted panels, creating an “X” pattern. This arrangement allows air to pass through the gaps between the large slabs, which measure 320 x 70 cm, and produces a uniform front that gives the facade texture and depth. Cosentino also offered the option of producing a range of six custom colors based on the Strato model, creating a striking color gradient from the bottom to the top.
Inside, a large 30-meter atrium functions as lobby and gathering place. The office spaces look outside towards the city, through the glass facade, and also enjoy views of the central courtyard illuminated by a large skylight. The finishes have been carefully selected to create a comfortable workspace and a coherent corporate image. The possibility of manufacturing large-scale Dekton pieces for floors, walls, and ceilings permits reducing the number of joints to a minimum, creating a smooth continuity.
Tel Aviv, Israel
Architects: Ron Arad Associates, London, United Kingdom; Yashar Architects, Tel Aviv, Israel
Material Supplier: Cosentino, Cantoria, Spain (Dekton)