View of the Colonella landscape, location of the Bella Oceana real estate development master planned and designed by RTAE, Dubai.



Colonnella, Italy

Colonnella map

Colonnella, Italy

Project Facts

Project Bella Oceana Phase 2: Casa Verde
Client OPM
Built-Up-Area N/a
Services Master Planning, Architectural Concept, Preliminary Design, Design and Project Management Pre and Post Contract
Status Under Construction
Budget N/a

Project Features

Buildings 35 2-Storey Residential Buildings with 6 apartments on each floor, the ground floor apartments will have private pools. Each building is serviced by staircases only.
Apartments 420 (12/ Building) 1-Bedroom Apartments
Swimming Pools 210 (6/ Building)
Parking 420 Resident’s Parking (12/ Building), 70 Visitor Parking (2/ Building)
Services Central MEP Services, Central Garbage Services

Situated in the quaint historical commune named Colonella on the north east coast of Italy, Bella Oceana, the multi-phased master-planned residential community will be located within walking distance of the endless beaches and clear waters of the Mediterranean. Covering a staggering 200,000-sq. metres the master plan by Rashid Taqui Architects and Engineers harnesses the natural beauty of the site characterised by rolling hills dotted with greenery. A river flows through the site that widens at the centre of the plot, forming a lake surrounded by lush dense vegetation, home to an amazing array of wildlife.

The master plan divides the site into hierarchical community to cater for a varied range of potential residents in affordability and background and reflected in the different building types offered in the three planned phases:

1. Phase 1: Lago Vista
2. Phase 2: Casa Verde
3. Phase 3: Belvedere

Continuing in the look and feel of the Phase 1 building-type: Lago Vista and intended for short term holiday-lets, the buildings are broken down into smaller blocks comprising size (6) apartments/ floor, totalling 12 apartments over 2 floors. Each block is serviced by a dedicated lift and external staircase. Each apartment measures 40 sq. metres; each ground floor apartment extends further by a 20-sq. metre terrace with has an infinity-edge pool and shaded sundeck, while the upper-floor apartments (identical in design to the ground floor) have a 20-sq. metre balcony. The corner apartments enjoy a larger 30-sq. meter terrace/balcony.

Positioned lower on the hillside, these buildings designed to take advantage the natural beauty of the site and dense vegetation are clean and contemporary in style. Local materials, textures, colours and details including the extended overhangs and red-clay-tiled roof characteristic of the Commune de Colonella ensure the buildings will blend harmoniously into the local context.

Master planned in a terraced manner on the sloping land, car parking and vehicular access is limited to the rear of the buildings only, thereby preserving the natural landscape as much as possible. One car parking space per apartment (total of 12/building) is provided. Garbage collection points are provided as part of the lift and services structures at the rear of each building.

The buildings are separated by 10 metres of greenery and pedestrian walkways leading to meandering paths that take the holiday makers to the nearby beaches.

Each building is designed to be access from the carpark side access from cantilevered walkways services by stairs and lifts at the rear of each unit. A private entrance opens to a long hall-way with a ocean-view that leads to an open plan kitchen, living and dining area also with a ocean-view. Complete floor-to-ceiling invisible-framed glazing blur the boundary between the

inside and out. The hall-way also leads to double bedroom with a walk-in wardrobe and a high-level mountain-view and a bathroom with a rain-shower.

Sustainability is key component of the design. While extended roof overhangs provide shading to the glazed facades, all external windows are fitted with sliding wooden louvers to protect from direct sunlight and reduce heat gain. And, as all apartments are planned as ‘through’ units, owners can enjoy the cool Mediterranean breeze by opening the doors/ windows on both sides for natural cross ventilation and thereby reducing the demand for mechanical cooling and/or air-conditioning.

With 6 units on each floor, offering a total of 12 units per building the result is a highly efficient and sustainable design. This combined with the modularity in design and construction, Casa Verde will result in a high ROI yield.

Casa Verde Building Typology

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With over 40 years of experience in project and construction management across the region, Al-Kayyalli has worked in senior-management level roles with some of the biggest real-estate development companies across the Gulf region.

Specialised in working on complete project lifecycle, Al-Kayyalli’s has wide-reaching experience in all stages of project development and delivery ranging from initial preliminary and feasibility studies, financial and time planning, costing and procurement, value engineering, construction supervision and management to commissioning and testing before final handover.

Before joining Rashid Taqui Architects and Engineers, Al Kayyalli was the CEO of the Saudi Qitaf al Ardah Development Real Estate Co. (Al Nahda & Al Omar Group) where he re-structured the company to fully develop in-house turnkey developments through the establishment of an in-house project management and procurement office.

Prior to which, he was the Vice President Project Management and Engineering of Al-Oula International-Amar International Real Estate where Al Kayyalli successfully implemented major investment programs for the firm’s operations in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, as turnkey solutions tailored to the findings of market analysis studies.

Earlier, Al-Kayyali was the Director of Development & Project Management for Al-Nahdi Group (KSA) and KCMCC(Kuwait Commercial Market Company), and Director/ Construction Manager for a number of key contracting firms including Al-Jafr Trading and Contracting Co. (KSA), Ali & Fouad Al-Ghanim Co. (Kuwait), Al-Habtoor Engineering (UAE), Al-Muhairy Contracting Co. (UAE) and Al-Hani Construction & Trading Bureau (Kuwait).


Born and educated in the United Kingdom, Rula Hannoun completed her undergraduate in anthropology at the University of Manchester in 1979 prior to completing her postgraduate MBA (Finance) at the Manchester School of Business in 1981.

Hannoun’s professional career began at the First National Bank of Chicago, Corporate Finance division before moving to Project Finance, Oil and Gas. As the Deputy Head of the Oil and Gas division for EMEA at 26, Hannoun became the youngest Vice President in the history of the bank.

After marrying and relocating to Dubai, Hannoun left the banking sector in 1985 to raise her family. She resumed her professional career in the mid-90s as Advisor to the Economic Department of Dubai, spearheading the establishment of Dubai Internet City – the second and one of the most successful free zones in Dubai.

With an inherent passion of architecture and design and a key eye for business, in 1999 Hannoun established the firm Tala Furniture, dedicated to providing quality furniture to the booming hospitality sector across the Gulf and North Africa. Nearly two decades later the company is recognised as one of the leading suppliers of complete hotel interior products, operates 3 factories in CEBU, China and Indonesia and boasts over 120 professional staff focused on project management, technical services, manufacturing, sourcing and quality control.

A member of the Young President’s Organisation (YPO) and an active fundraiser, Hannoun has dedicated much of her personal life to raising awareness for children with special needs. She was instrumental in the establishment of Asseef School (Dubai Centre for Special Needs) in the late 80s, the first special needs school in Dubai to receive funding from the late HH Sheikh Maktoum Bin Rashid Al Maktoum and remains equally diligent in her quest today, to protect the rights of the children without a voice.


With near 30 years of experience in the design, management and delivery of complex architectural projects, Rashid Taqui’s portfolio spans multiple sectors in Australia, Greece, Kenya, Mauritania, Morocco, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, UK, and the UAE.

Taqui has a Master’s in International Architecture Studies from the University of Huddersfield (UK), and two theses to his credit: The UAE – Searching for a Lost Identity, and The National Museum in Al Ain, UAE.

Starting his career in 1996 as a fresh graduate at German firm Schuster Pechtold’s Dubai office, he won instant appreciation and international applause for conceptualising and designing the multi-award-winning Al Maha Desert Resort and Spa – the first eco-resort in the Middle East attributed to having changed the discourse of architecture in the UAE. His involvement in other ‘firsts’ for the region include the establishing a voice for the architects and designers by the launching Dubai’s premier and the regions’ leading architectural journal, Architecture Plus, shaping the annual architectural networking event, Cityscape and founding the international awards for architecture and design in the UAE.

Taqui’s broad-ranging experience covers urban planning projects, resorts and hotels, palatial residences, shopping malls, airports, schools, banks, offices and varied public and cultural facilities, and undertaken while holding senior positions in the UAE offices of German multi-disciplinary firm Kling Consult, civil engineering firm Italconsult SPA, and architectural firm Incorporated Consultants (Conin).

Rashid Taqui Architects and Engineers, established in 2008, is his personal brand that specialises in contextually authentic, eco-aware architecture. He ardently advocates integrity and sustainability while targeting high yields for stakeholders through innovative design, investment opportunities, and value engineering.

Taqui often speaks at public events and writes regularly for local publications. His interests include fitness, films, food, and travel.

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