Aldar Properties challenged us to be different, so we delivered an oasis of calm contemplation... that revolved! “We’d done quite a few stands for developers before, and we entered the meeting expecting the usual brief: make the models look good,” says Hedley Grist, Action Impact’s Account Director. But Abu Dhabi based Aldar Properties had a surprise for Hedley and Executive Creative Director, Simon Tapping: they wanted something ‘different, really different.’

“Their explanation of different was that we would be featuring a single project, code-named North Yas, and that there would be no models on the stand, and otherwise we had a blank sheet of paper,” says Simon. “Refreshingly, they were only wanting to see sketches of our initial ideas, rather than fully rendered visuals, which meant we could easily show them some different possible directions”.

“A couple of brainstorm sessions with the team resulted in three very different ideas. The first idea we called ‘The Oasis,’ and it was definitely our favourite. We produced a simple deck with brief explanations and simple sketches to get all three ideas across, and sent these to the clients.

Fortunately, they all liked our favourite idea too, at which point it was full steam ahead to create The Oasis for Cityscape Abu Dhabi, for the launch of Yas Acres.”

“We would achieve this with clusters of comfortable seating grouped around digital touch-tables, with the whole space defined by a series of suspended panels. From the outside, these panels would be clad with materials representing the architecture of Yas Acres, like a life-sized sample board, whilst inside there would be projection surfaces onto which we would project imagery to evoke the lifestyle of the development. Oh yes, and just to make it a bit more interesting, the panels would be constantly moving on tracks, whilst the entire seating area would be on a huge slow-moving revolve!”

“Throughout the process, we did our best to appear to our client like a serene swan drifting across a lake,” says Hedley, “but the reality of the effort involved in overcoming the challenges that we set ourselves was probably noticeable once or twice.”

“Our clients at Aldar were as protective of the concept as we were, to the point that when the decision was made to showcase some models of Yas Acres on the stand, they took additional floor space, so that we could place these extra elements adjacent to The Oasis rather than dilute its effect by cluttering up the main space.”

The on-site build benefited from all of the pre-planning, meaning that the stand was finished in plenty of time, and drawing interested and admiring looks from other exhibitors even before the show opened.

Paul Middleton, Executive Director, Commercial, Aldar Properties, was determined that the stand succeeded; “We wanted to use the platform Cityscape gave us to launch our most significant residential development ever, and we knew that the only way to do it was to achieve something unique,” he says. “Action Impact delivered just that. All visitors were able to experience what we were creating.”


Adrian Bell

Co-founder and Executive Director