These two buildings, in the heart of the Old Manama Suq, couldn’t be more apart in terms of looks. One, a modern structure with many apartments and the other a dilapidated, crumbling structure which had clearly seen better days.
However, the older building stands out in terms of its sheer architectural brilliance, with large windows, a ‘air curtain’, massive rooms and high roofs. Clearly, it was built with the rather severe elements of the harsh Middle East climate in mind.
In the days gone by, when there was no air-conditioning, these structures were known for their natural cooling with the available sea breeze while buildings these days are chock-a-block with energy-guzzling machines.
The reality also is that life in those olden days was rather comfortable, content and full of “life” as opposed to now when everyone seems to be in a rush, and on a short fuse, among other things.
Perhaps we should each take a trip down memory lane once in a while to look at what we were. And what better place to do that then go to the older part of town!