Powerlist Creative 30 2023: Pierre Martin DUFRESNE Design Principal, U+A
Martin graduated from the acclaimed Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism in Canada before relocating to South East Asia where his passion for design excellence flourished at HOK Asia Pacific in Hong Kong. He soon developed a keen interest for large scaled projects. Following his seven-year experience in Hong-Kong and Japan, Martin worked in Singapore for years as senior design architect with award-winning Kerry Hill Architects on a number of high-end resorts in South East Asia. Martin then moved to Dubai in 2005, where under RMJM he famously conceptualised one of Abu-Dhabi’s most striking icons, Capital Gate.
Martin co-founded the acclaimed firm U+A in 2007, and has been the driving force behind the company’s tailored design approach. Martin’s work, with over 25 years of global experience, consistently emphasises the relevance of context and cultural uniqueness for each project. His architectural passion emerges from his long-time fascination with “living structures” — creating buildings that improve the everyday lives of their inhabitants. He has always valued the architect’s position as a facilitator, understanding and creating a design that is adapted to the client’s individual needs, giving each space soul and purpose.
Martin has been instrumental in the conceptual stages of many high-profile hospitality projects in Saudi Arabia in recent years, including the recently opened Six Senses by Amaala on the Red Sea.
Martin has worked directly with notable clients such as Red Sea Global, Expo Dubai, Amaala, Emaar, Meraas, ADNEC, Hines US, IBM PRC, China Telecom PRC, Centrair Japan, Aman Resorts Singapore, GHM Hotels, and Beaufort Group HK.