‘The Bow’ featuring a hotel overhanging the mountain’s valley below Trojena.

Webuild (previously Salini Impregilo), a leading global player in the construction of large and complex projects, has announced that it has won a major contract from Neom, the developer of Saudi Arabia’s futuristic city in the northwest, for the construction of three dams to create the 2.8-km-long freshwater lake at Trojena.

It will also develop ‘The Bow’ – an architectural marvel featuring a hotel overhanging the mountain’s valley below Trojena and the region, which will host the 2029 Asian Winter Games.

The main dam will be made of roller-compacted concrete (RCC) and will be 145 m high, 475 m long and capable of holding a volume of 2.7 million cu m. The second dam will also be in RCC, while the third will be in rock, with a volume of 4.3 million cu m.

The Lake, which will be the largest architecturally-crafted body of water in Saudi Arabia, is a central feature of Trojena’s Lava-designed masterplan. The artificial lake will cover an area of 1.5 sq km and will have an island reserved for botanical dives and walks, it stated.

Sitting at the heart of the development, the 2.8-km-long, man-made, freshwater lake will be key to Trojena’s ambition to sustain and regenerate the area’s vibrant natural environment, offer clean, serene outdoor mountain living, and become a global hub for water sports and entertainment.

Pietro Salini, Webuild CEO said more than 10,000 people, including direct and third-party personnel, will be involved in the construction.

Aquellum, the luxury and experiential space embedded within the mountains.

Aquellum, the luxury and experiential space embedded within the mountains.

For Neom, Webuild is already constructing 57 km of the high-speed railway line between Oxagon and The Line.

Philip Gullett, Executive Director – Region Head at Trojena, said: “The appointment of Webuild is a significant milestone in our construction progress. We have already completed around 3 million cu m of excavation at the lake site, and we continue to excavate 90,000 cu m of rock per week.

Meanwhile, following the recent announcements of Leyja, Epicon, Siranna, Utamo, and Norlana, Neom has launched two more striking destinations within the futuristic city: the Aquellum lifestyle community and Zardun, a restorative nature and wildlife retreat.

Aquellum, the luxury and experiential space embedded within the mountains will boast avant-garde architecture and forward-thinking concepts.

Neom said the project is hidden within a breathtaking, 450-m-high mountain range and represents a futuristic ecosystem that is harmoniously integrated into the natural surroundings.

Concealed from the outside along the Gulf of Aqaba coastline, Aquellum is crafted to inspire originality and imagination. The novel project will push the boundaries of conventional design and construction possibilities, it stated.

A dynamic boulevard winds through the courtyard, connecting diverse social spaces, world-class hospitality, immersive arts, events, shopping and dining.

A signature space, dubbed ‘The Generator’, houses unique research labs for disruptors, innovators, and creative thinkers, offering a platform where the future is reimagined, said the statement from the developer.

An omnidirectional internal transit system facilitates easy access to upper floors, transporting residents and visitors to their homes and hotels, ascending to rooftop gardens with breathtaking coastal views, it added.

“To access Aquellum, visitors will embark on an extraordinary journey, beginning at the world’s first floating marina. Here, guests will board a specially designed vessel to enter Aquellum through a concealed underground canal, unveiling a hidden community that offers an incredible sensory journey,” said a company spokesman.

Once inside, visitors will be treated to an exhilarating, 100-m-high vertical experience with an impressive courtyard space stretching from the water to the sky. This subterranean digitalised community creates vibrancy and interconnectivity through seamlessly blending hotel accommodation, apartments, retail spaces, leisure and entertainment zones and innovative hubs, he added.

Zardun, which overlooks the crystalline waters of the Gulf of Aqaba,  is a nature-based resort that will host four ultra-luxury signature buildings, all of which will merge harmoniously with the surrounding landscape.

Covering an impressive 4 sq km, Zardun will be a carefully restored haven filled with native plants and animals. Stretching down from the mountains to the seashore, its breathtaking beauty will be experienced on arrival by visitors at its state-of-the-art experience centre, which includes a 360-degree observation deck.

Zardun will comprise three distinct and luxurious boutique hotels, offering in total 100 rooms and suites, all of which are informed by a vision of a more sustainable future within this newly restored environment. Each hotel will have a different theme so that guests can enjoy an array of experiences that take in amazing views down a stunning valley and out over the sea.

Among other developments, Neom has reached an agreement with global hospitality major Marriott International to set up its hotel apartments complex within its luxury island destination Sindalah in the Red Sea off Saudi Arabia’s northwest coast.  It has also appointed a consortium of Saudi Archirodon, a leading construction group with expertise in the marine and infrastructure fields, and leading Belgian offshore energy and dredging contractor DEME to carry out work the second phase of the Port of Neom, the primary seaport of entry to northwest Saudi Arabia.

Based in Oxagon, Port of NEOM is strategically located along the coast of the Red Sea and is adjacent to the nearby Suez Canal.

According to DEME, the project work was due to kick off last month and involves setting up the basin that will enable the world’s largest ships to call at Port of Neom. All materials recovered as part of the channel development will be used to support the wider development of Oxagon.