Vattanac Capital Tower, Phnom Penh (Cambodia)


Vattanac Capital Tower, Phnom Penh (Cambodia)

According to Chinese mythology, dragons hold audiences in large glass palaces on the bottom of the ocean. Although it is built on land, the Vattanac tower poses as a metaphorical incarnation of this legend, with its curved form evoking the mythical animal’s backbone, encased in a sheath of glass scales. 






Architect: TFP Farrells, Contractor: Jangho Curtain Wall Company
Technique: VMZINC® Standing seam, VMZINC Flatlock panel, Surface aspect: QUARTZ-ZINC®


A symbol of prosperity in Asia, the dragon – in this case called “Vattanac Capital” – cannot be missed in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh, which, despite its name meaning hill of the temple, is a low, horizontal city. This physiognomy is being gradually changed by the property boom, with constructions getting taller, although not to the extent of the solitary Vattanac Capital that dominates the urban skyline with its 188 metres and 29 floors.



The TFP Farrells architecture fi rm wanted to give this urban signal traditional features to connect it to the legend of the dragon, by printing traditional art patterns called “naga” on its windows.



Vattanac Capital is a mixed-use building. It combines offices, major brand shops and a luxury hotel. It is also a dual building, made up of a tower with a ninestorey building housing cinemas, a fi tness centre and a medical centre in its lower part. Together with an
esplanade, this layout makes it easier for the tower to connect with the city.



The building complies with LEED environmental standards. It was awarded the LEED “Silver” certifi cate and is aiming ultimately to obtain “Gold”. Together with glass, zinc is a key material in the construction. Its light grey QUARTZ-ZINC® cladding, featuring horizontal standing seam, covers the protrusion, making the tower look like a naja snake. This same zinc clads the rear facades of the lower building. Covering the lowslope roofs, slanted facade and underside in a single movement, the glossy metal forms a compact case for this singular building, marking the capital of Cambodia’s entrance into a new era.