The Swiss Pavilion is home to a dramatic journey of three acts ending in a garden with seats made of recycled concrete. Image Credit: Twitter/@Swiss_Pavilion

Dubai: When the curtains go up on the Swiss Pavilion at Dubai’s Expo 2020, it’s sure to bring drama. The building itself, inspired by Bedouin tents, has a mirrored facade that will reflect the dynamism of the red carpet in its entryway. As visitors line-up and move, so will the reflection – creating new images on the cubic structure.

The pavilion, located in the Opportunity District, will be open to visitors when Expo 2020 kicks off, in October.

The experience promises to be one of immersion in Swiss culture and sights and innovation through a three-stage walkabout.

Based on the theme of ‘Reflections’, the pavilion interprets the concept with a reflective surface designed by Zurich-based architecture studio OOS AG. Image Credit: Twitter/@Swiss_Pavilion

A mirrored facade

Running with the theme of ‘Reflections’, the pavilion facade takes on the theme literally with a reflective surface designed by Zurich-based architecture studio OOS AG.

The building material consists of sustainably produced scaffolding elements and textiles, which make installation and deconstruction easy.

A three-act journey

The visitor experience begins outside the pavilion, where, while in queue on a red carpet, the audience is given sun umbrellas for shade as well as to paint facets of Switzerland on the reflective surface.

Upon entering the pavilion, visitors will embark on the second act, walking uphill through a natural soundscape and a sea of real fog – a scenography created by design studio Bellprat Partner AG. At the end of their trek, visitors will be rewarded with a panoramic view of the Swiss mountains; snow-capped 48 Alpine peaks and 65,500km of watercourses will lie before them.

Check out the sea of real fog at the Swiss Pavilion. Image Credit: Twitter/@Swiss_Pavilion

The third act showcases Switzerland’s sustainable creativity. The area on the ground floor will exhibit innovations by Swiss firms. This spot will double up as the stage for a Daily Swiss Digital Show, where works by start-ups and advances in digital technology will make an appearance.

The third act showcases Switzerland’s sustainable creativity through the fountains of innovation, a final sensory experience. Image Credit: Twitter/@Swiss_Pavilion

The journey concludes in an outdoor garden created by Lorenz Eugster Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning, based on the Arab wadi – a dry river bed – featuring seats made of recycled concrete in an arrangement inspired by the Majlis seating culture.

Swissnex Mobile Expo 2020
Besides immersing in Swiss culture and sights, visitors will get to explore the strides the nation has made in the fields of education, research and innovation through swissnex Mobile, an event part of the swissnex Network that aims at connecting Switzerland with global minds.

At the Switzerland pavilion, the mobile event will provide Swiss universities, start-ups and innovative companies with a platform to showcase their research through workshops, presentations, exhibitions and much more.

What can you do here?

  • Try the chocolate. Did you know? In Switzerland, about 10.3kg of chocolate is eaten per person, per year. Find out why by taking a little nibble of the treat at the pavilion cafe.
  • Get a photo as you relax with a cool drink on the rooftop terrace of the Swiss Pavilion, home to a great view of the Expo 2020 site.

‘Sea of fog’ turns heads

From March 29 to April 3, 2021, an abstract of Bellprat Partner AG’s fog scenography, ‘Swiss Fog Magnified’, was received at the 14th edition of Art Dubai, a global art fair in the region that features international artists.

The fog installation, recreated using tiny water droplets, served as a teaser for the visitor journey at the Switzerland Pavilion in Expo 2020 Dubai.

- The writer is an intern with Gulf News.