Office News

Perkins+Will positions itself for growth in the Middle East, naming new Managing Director for Dubai studio

Poised for growth in the Middle East, global architecture and design firm Perkins+Will announces new leadership for its Dubai office. Roger Wilson takes over today as Managing Director of the 100-plus-person practice, working closely with the studio’s Design Directors, Diane Thorsen and Firas Hnoosh, on client engagement and design strategy.

“I’m thrilled to establish my base in Dubai and put my knowledge of the UAE marketplace and wider Gulf region, to work for both Perkins+Will and the clients we serve,” Wilson says. “There is so much opportunity in this part of the world, and I look forward to collaborating with Diane, Firas, and colleagues around the firm to build on what they have created.”

The Dubai studio of Perkins+Will has long been known for its award-winning corporate interior designs, but in recent years, it has also earned a reputation in the EMEA for excellence across multiple disciplines and practice areas, including architecture, landscape, urban planning, transportation, hospitality and healthcare. Recent and ongoing projects include Kings College Hospital in Dubai, multiple residential and hospitality projects for Emaar, Aldar and Eagle Hills in the GCC, and a Marriott Hotel in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Under Wilson’s leadership, the office anticipates continued growth across all sectors.

“It is with great enthusiasm that I ‘pass the torch’ to Roger to lead this dynamic practice and take it to the next level,” says former Managing Director Steven Charlton, who is now assuming the role of Managing Director for Perkins+Will’s London studio. “The Dubai market is known for rapid change and dynamism, necessitating agility both from a business and a design perspective. Roger brings all of that to our office, as well as great energy and expertise. The team - and most important, our clients - are in safe hands.”

Wilson joins Perkins+Will from another international architecture and design firm, where he built up extensive experience working on large-scale retail, aviation and mixed-use commercial projects within the EMEA region. He also has experience launching successful architectural enterprises in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai. Some of his most notable projects over the years have included city center regeneration masterplans for Lancaster, Bath, and Portsmouth in the U.K.; retail master planning and interior design for Critic Square in Shanghai and Landmark Prince’s in Hong Kong; and retail design and master planning for the likes of Al Maktoum International Airport in Dubai; Heathrow Airport T5; and Gatwick North Terminal. Wilson’s clients have included Hammerson, British Land, and Multi Development.

Meanwhile, in London, Charlton succeeds Jack Pringle, PPRIBA, Hon. AIA, who served as the Managing Director of Perkins+Will’s London office for the last five years. Pringle is now focused on strategic growth and the development of new regional client relationships as Perkins+Will’s Regional Director for the EMEA.

Pringle says the leadership transition will result in stronger architecture and urban design practices in both the London and Dubai studios, while ensuring a high quality, personalised service for clients locally, regionally and internationally.

“The greatest thing I’ve learned about Perkins+Will is: not only are we a large, extremely capable firm full of world-class design expertise, but we also deliver a personal service with a thorough understanding of each office’s local market. While our reach is great and our numbers vast, we are nimble, adaptable and absolutely committed to serving the local communities in which we work,” Pringle says. “With the fresh, dynamic energy that Steven and Roger bring to their respective offices, there’s a lot for us to look forward to.”