Contemporary super prime development, Gibraltar


A highly contentious site perched high in the conservation area on the Rock of Gibraltar. This was previously the site of a hotel until the 1970s from which time it has been disused and was subject to a number of attempts to gain planning for a commercially viable proposition.

The Brief

To architecturally design, spatially design and internally detail a number of residential units that would provide the most luxurious and most aspirational properties on Gibraltar whilst at the same time supporting the developer to gain planning permission for this new use.


Details & Specific Points of Interest

Firstly there was no planning for this particular principle and the developer relied on Design By Uber to design and present all aspects of the proposition to the Ministers of Gibraltar in order to secure the approval they needed to make this viable.
The site had many complexities. Sitting high up on a very steep section of the rock, the site was narrow, had huge access issues as well as being surrounded by potential for falling rock as well as being habitat for the indigenous and highly protected apes. This was not going to be an easy task.

In order to maximise the views and provide the scale that a luxury property deserved it was clear that the design would need to be quite vertical and therefore covering a number of levels. This gave us an opportunity to hide staff accommodation away at the lower level where only a lobby with electric sliding glass doors was part of the owners’ curtilage. A lift at this point encouraged access to all levels beyond and concluded in a magnificent roof garden with glass box and bar for cosy winter nights with astonishing views of the harbour and beyond.

UBER the Sanctuary Roof Gardens

The bedrooms were designed to make the most of the views with all bathrooms having glazed showers with electronic privacy glass and blinds. The master included a bath set into the glazing for wonderful candle lit moments of pure relaxation with arguably the best views on the peninsula. All bedrooms included bar facilities and of course a lounge area from which to enjoy this spectacular setting.

The day living floor with in/out kitchen and BBQ facilities as well as bar spilled out onto a magnificent terrace with wrap around infinity pool. We completed the space with a pagoda set on the edge of the pool with views out to sea and separated each plot with large planting beds for privacy.

Of course before all of this could begin the government of Gibraltar had to be convinced in us as designers as well as the developer and we were pleased to have gained the planning approval through a series of presentations as well as the quality of our designs and documentation.

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