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Ethereal Mosque Looks Like it's Levitating Above Water

All photos via HOK Design and Gizmodo

Built three feet above the structures around it, this glassy mosque in Saudi Arabia is surrounded by a reflective pool that glows at night. At certain angles, the mosque—which visitors enter by crossing a glass bridge and ascending a "moat" of granite steps—appears to be floating over the water. Designed by the American firm HOK, the monolithic mosque and 115-foot minaret combine Islamic design elements with contemporary ones, most notably in the layered geometric façade and punched windows and skylights. The firm intended the building's interior to be a "technological interpretation of a traditional mashrabiya screen wall," the architects write. "At night, the glass box acts like a lantern washed with light at the bottom, and punctuated with points of light near the top."

· The Coolest Churches, Mosques, and Synagogues of the Year [Gizmodo]
· All Houses of the Holy posts [Curbed National]