Sand shades, unique design pieces, cultural heritage and modern surfaces turned a government office into an attractive space with high aesthetic impact. Ideal Work Microtopping® covers the surfaces of The Founder’s Office, a permanent office created in Abu Dhabi.

We’re in Abu Dhabi, a modern metropolis located on the Arabian Peninsula on a group of islands in the south east of the Persian Gulf. Abu Dhabi is the capital city of the United Arab Emirates and, as such, is the centre of government and administrative operations. Amongst the government offices, one has a special story: The Founder’s Office. The name comes from Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, known in the Emirates as the Founding Father and the driving force behind the creation of the UAE. Sheikh Zayed was president from its formation until 2004, when he passed away. This special office has been created to celebrate the 100th anniversary of his birth.

The Sheikh was known as the “illuminated president”, so when interior design specialists Bluehaus created the Founder Office, they wanted to reflect important values such as wisdom, respect, determination, loyalty, a sense of national belonging and capacity for sacrifice; all qualities Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan had shown during his presidential years.

The office is a large open space designed using sand shades reminiscent of the nearby desert. Along the corridor, a wall window containing sand recreates the charm of the dunes and guides the visitor into the main room. Here, warm colours and natural materials alternate with grey, minimalist pieces of furniture in a contemporary context.

The ceiling has been created through a type of handmade braiding called “Al Sedu”: an ancient Bedouin weaving technique named by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage. The highlight of this building, however, is the reception: behind the great counter, a giant stone hewn from the nearby Jabal Hafeet mountain, spotlights have been arranged to recreate the constellation present in the sky the night the Sheikh was born.

Microtopping® was chosen to unify the spaces and give them a velvet effect and timeless atmosphere; it is an Ideal Work solution able to create a contemporary, impactful environment in just 3 mm thickness. Suitable for both horizontal and vertical application, Microtopping® has been used to cover the corridor’s floor and walls, perfectly matching the warm colour of sand. Through its neutral shade, Microtopping® is a perfect partner for natural materials such as wood or rope, allowing each piece of furniture or decoration to stand out with great elegance.

Date: 2019

Place: Abu Dhabi (UAE)

Designer: Bluehaus Group

Building and interior contracting company: Al Tayer Stocks

ph: Chris Goldstraw


The Founder’s Office based in Abu Dhabi was initiated to oversee all activities taking place as part of the Year of Zayed, and is a focal point to show the significance of Sheikh Zayed  as both a ruler and also as prominent global leader.

The space was created as a work environment to continue the legacy of the founding father – HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Consisting of a library, sound studio and an arts exhibition.

Solutions chosen for Founder’s Office in Abu Dhabi