Last edited 30 Dec 2020

The Sax, Rotterdam


In July 2017, Dutch architectural practice MVRDV won the competition for The Sax.

The 51-storey mixed-use tower will be the latest addition to the development of Rotterdam’s renowned Wilhelminapier port, of which the harbour basins and quays form an important historical reference for the city’s heritage. It will also be the newest contribution the city’s now recognisable 'Manhattan On the Maas.’

The building’s distinctive shape consists of two interconnected towers (Philadelphia and Havana) with a total floor area of 82,000 sq. m, and will include 450 apartments, a hotel, wellness centre, parking and commercial facilities.


It is conceived as an ‘iconic’ silhouette, with its main towers of 70 - 150 m in hieght connected by an air bridge accommodating the 150-room hotel.

Inside the building, the main rooms are situated behind a bay-windowed façade, allowing all them to benefit from maximum daylight and 270-degree panoramic views of the Nieuwe Maas and the city. On top of the hotel at 80 m, there is a public terrace.


Jacob van Rijs, co-founder of MVRDV, said:

“Rotterdam is more and more a city of towers and The Sax will add a new element to this collection. The façade features a contemporary reinterpretation of the bay window, providing views for each unit with the advantage of allowing individual and unique apartments in this large collective complex. This windowed effect adds an extra dimension in experiencing the view onto Rotterdam. The plinth and the bridge which contains a hotel will be open to the public making Wilheminapier even more lively.”

MVRDV worked together with ARUP on the structure, façade design and sustainability. Construction is set to begin in 2018 and be completed by the end of 2022.

Content and images courtesy of MVRDV.

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