zaha hadid architects (ZHA) has unveiled plans for a 31-storey tower in malta, which will form part of a major redevelopment project. located on the country’s east coast, paceville has developed over the past 50 years as one of the island’s tourist and entertainment centers. the region was established as a cluster of holiday homes in the early 20th century and developed into a major tourist hub from the 1960s onward.

zaha hadid mercury tower
all images by VA, courtesy of zaha hadid architects



ZHA’s overhaul of the 9,405-square-meter ‘mercury house’ site integrates residential apartments and a boutique hotel, while creating new public spaces and amenities for the island’s residents and visitors. importantly, the destination’s heritage structures will be renovated as integral parts of the project. with the refurbished ‘mercury house’ at its base, the redevelopment incorporates civic amenities including cafés and shops surrounding a large plaza.

zaha hadid mercury tower
the design creates new public spaces and amenities for the island’s residents and visitors



the new tower is aligned at street level to integrate with paceville’s existing urban fabric. the high-rise structure has been conceived as two vertically stacked volumes: a 9-storey block that houses apartments; and a 19-storey volume above, which has been rotated to orientate guest rooms of the new hotel towards the mediterranean sea. this gesture not only reduces solar gain, but is also designed to instill a sense of dynamism within the tower’s silhouette.

zaha hadid mercury tower
the tower is oriented to present views of the mediterranean sea

zaha hadid mercury tower
a new café pavilion forms part of the project

zaha hadid mercury tower
the tower is aligned at street level to integrate with paceville’s existing urban fabric

zaha hadid mercury tower
the structure will top out at 31 storeys



project info:


client: j.portelli projects, malta
architect: zaha hadid architects (ZHA)
design: zaha hadid with patrik schumacher
ZHA project director: manuela gatto

ZHA project architects: alberto barba, carolina lópez-blanco, yevgeniya pozigun, jakub klaska, gerhild orthacker

ZHA head of interiors: kar-hwa ho

ZHA project consultant: branko svarcer

ZHA project team: kutbuddin nadiadi, alejandro garcia gadea, catherine mccann, evgeniya yatsyuk, houzhe xu, jung yeon kwak, mark winnington, rachelle spiteri, tomasz starczewski, olga yatsyuk, yazhu liang, yun zhang, julian lin, sai prateik bhasgi, li jin, john simpson, reza karimi, jose alberto mariano machon, matthew johnston, mattia gambardella, silviya barzakova
ZHA cluster director: charles walker


local architect: annamaria attard montalto, malta
façade and glazing engineers: werner sobek, UK
lighting engineers: bartenbach
vibration and acoustics: ARAU acustica, spain
structure: BAC engineering consultancy group, spain
structure: evolve consulting structural and civil engineers, UK
MEP engineers: ECL consulting engineers, malta
fire protection and life safety: atelier ten, UK
planning consultants: ERSLI consultants, malta
restoration consultant: perit marie louise caruana galea, malta
waste consultant: desiree bajada
landscape consultants: medisun, malta
wind loads / pedestrian comfort: RWDI UK, UK
virtual reality studios: VRs
geological stability / dust and vibration monitoring: terracore, malta
project management consultants: pmanage ltd, malta
operational monitor: perit john papagiorcopulo; perit, malta
tourism consultant: mario loporto, malta
visualizations: VA, UK