Kuwait Towers have stood as the undisputed national symbol and one of the most recognizable landmarks in Kuwait; an embodiment of the nation’s dramatic economic and urban development after the discovery of oil.
Today, the Towers have become an integral element of the Kuwait City skyline, occupying a focal position on the Sea Front along the Arabian Gulf Road. Known to residents fondly as “Al Abraj” (simply the Towers), they are a must-visit destination for residents and tourists alike.
The Making of an Icon
The Kuwait Towers were not originally intended as a touristic destination. At the beginning, the Towers were simply meant to be the sixth site for the nation-wide network of water towers that was being constructed around Kuwait.
However, given their prominent location along the country’s coastline, His Highness the Amir, Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah, had a different vision for these towers. In 1975, the Kuwaiti government signed a contract with a Swedish architectural firm to design the Kuwait Towers according to traditional Kuwaiti architecture style. The tallest towers design represented the shape of a censers, as for the medium tower, it was designed as a water sprinkler and the smallest tower was designed in the shape of the traditional Arab women eyeliner.
After concluding the design, a Yugoslavian construction company handled the execution of the project. A staggering 55,000 enameled steel discs were used to cover the three iconic spheres, creating a dazzling, pattern of eight bright shades, reflecting the colors of the sky and the sea.
Opened in 1979, today, the Main Tower serves as the site’s main public attraction. Its Main Sphere offers a number of quality dining experiences, whilst its Viewing Sphere provides an incomparable panoramic view of Kuwait City and the Arabian Gulf. The Middle Tower still functions as a water reservoir, holding up to one million gallons of water. Meanwhile, the smallest of the towers – known as the Minor Tower – illuminates the other two and supplies electricity to them.
The striking design melded together contemporary architectural concepts, western technology, and traditional Islamic patterns to create this architectural work of art, which now stands as a symbol of Kuwait’s cultural heritage and its modern prosperity.