A section of the Orchard and some of the airport's new retail shops
The Orchard, Hamad International Airport | © Getty Images

Hamad International Airport, located in Qatar’s capital city, has just completed the initial stage of its grand expansion in time for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Fans travelling to the host country from all over the world will get the chance to marvel at the airport’s newest attraction.

Inside the Orchard

The striking spectacle, christened ‘The Orchard’, is situated in the centre of its central concourse terminal, where it boasts more than 300 trees and over 25,000 plants, all obtained through various sustainable forests worldwide. This includes forests from countries such as Singapore and Thailand. Creating 10,000 square metres of tropical ambience within the large atrium, the renovation’s unique design will be one of the airport’s main focal points as passengers make their way through the airport. As well as stunning footpaths and mezzanines, The Orchard is also home to a great 268-metre waterfall feature, illuminated by the atrium’s high levels of natural lighting. Due to the garden’s design’s intricacy, the flora can survive and thrive within the internal conditions of the atrium, meaning that they will continue to grow during the course of the airport.

All of these elements successfully enhance Hamad International’s additional aim of generating a sense of calm and well-being during what can be a stressful section of travellers’ journeys.

Retail exclusives

Alongside the Orchard, the space also hosts a vast selection of retail options with 65 retail shops, including high-end luxury fashion brands such as Burberry and Tiffany. Fendi Boutique and the world’s first and only FIFA shop also accompany the list of big names at the airport. As well as these exclusives, Hamad International has added over 30 spots to try out food and drink, including the very first Ralph’s Coffee Shop and Fendi Café seen in an airport. The airport’s interior has also been decorated with 100 works of world-class art in a bid to amaze World Cup fans.

On top of the exciting new commercial aspects, the completion of the first stage of the airport’s development also comes with practical benefits. Despite going from an initial maximum capacity of 29 million to 58 million passengers per year, the latest transfer on Concourse C is set to lower the general waiting time.

Akbar Al Baker, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar, said, “This expansion marks a significant step in the advancement of tourism in Qatar and global activity and connectivity through this fine airport…the expansion further strengthens our ambition as we look towards maintaining our status as the best airport in the world.”

What do you think of the new expansion? Let us know in the comments!


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