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ILLUSTRADO : Most Influential Filipinos in the Gulf : Architect Medardo Cadiz - Architect Par Excellence


A lover of architecture since childhood, Medardo Cadiz is the founder and CEO of Cadiz International Architects – an award-winning design firm with over 100 employees stationed in headquarters in Dubai, Seattle, and Manila, and a running portfolio of projects and master community developments spread across 16 countries including the Bur Juman Centre, award winning Al Hamra Mall, Manar Mall and Old Town District in Ras Al Khaimah, Lakeside Residence in Jumeirah Lakes, among others.

Of the firm’s success, Medardo exclaims, “With imagination, purpose and courage, we connect well with people we serve and work with, especially the clients and the end-users of the places we create. It brings us great pride and joy to see our creations well-used, visited and successful. To that end, the best rewards come from the community acknowledging our work. But best of all, we most feel fulfilled and rewarded when we are able to establish a long-term relationship with our clients, enabling us to create many more projects with them as business partners rather than just a one-time vendor architect.”

Through competing with other international design firms, Medardo has learned that that clients appreciate and respect good work based on one’s ability, and not nationality. He takes great pride in Cadiz International’s pool of talents, who continue to impress and nurture the loyalty of clients with their outstanding design and service. Medardo adds, “By virtue of representing the creative nature of Filipinos through our company, we feel proud that in our own small way, we help uplift the reputation of the Filipino professionals in the UAE.”

BLUPRINT : Two Cadiz Projects featured in the Special Issue on 35 Unbuilt Designs


BluPrint Magazine's "35 Unbuilt Designs" issue featured two projects from Cadiz International. These include "Jebel Jais Mountain Hotel" on the Jebel Jais Resort (The Sanctuary) at Ras Al Khaimah, and "The Silhouette" on a proposed corporate office tower at Dubai, UAE. Originally published in BluPrint Magazine: Special Issue Vol.3, 2015.

ZAWYA NEWS : Manar Mall expansion to energise RAK retail sector


• Property developer reveals that interest now exceeds new leasable area
• Work on the 30,000 square metre expansion project already under way
• Leading retail operator Alshaya affirms commitment to mall and region

Ras Al-Khaimah - Senior business leaders representing some of the world's biggest global retailers have expressed excitement at the business opportunities that will be created through the redevelopment of Manar Mall, after construction work began earlier this year on the AED230 million expansion project.

The new development includes a spectacular waterfront retail promenade overlooking local mangroves and a brand new entertainment centre.

Work on the 30,000 square metre expansion project commenced on 16 April 2015, and Barry Ebrahimy, Head of Commercial at Al Hamra Real Estate Development , said the expansion of Manar Mall continued to generate huge interest from tenants looking to take advantage of new space. Demand for existing retail space was also high, he said.

"Despite the fact that we had already received expressions of interest for the majority of the new leasable when the project was announced, we have continued to receive large volumes of enquiries. Some of those enquiries include major global fashion brands and discussions are ongoing. We are also pleased with how are plans are coming together in terms of ensuring space left by tenants moving to the promenade is filled," he said.

Leading international retail franchise operator M.H. Alshaya Co., which currently operates 8 brands in Manar Mall - H&M, Next, Milano, Dorothy Perkins, Mothercare, Claire's, MAC and Pinkberry - has underlined its ongoing commitment to the Mall.

"Alshaya will be opening its pharmacy brand Boots in the Mall later this year, and is looking at further food brands in the future," said a company spokesperson.

Alshaya operates over 2,800 stores across diverse customer sectors, including fashion and footwear, health and beauty, food, optics, pharmacy, home furnishings, and leisure and entertainment. Alshaya's portfolio includes some of the world's most recognised retail brands, including Starbucks, H&M, Debenhams, American Eagle Outfitters, and Victoria's Secret.

Debbie Stanford-Kristiansen, CEO of Novo Cinemas also said about the expansion:

"Our aim at Novo Cinemas is to provide the ultimate cinema experience and part of that means securing prominent locations for our entertainment centres. As the most popular shopping and leisure destination in the northern emirates Manar Mall fits the bill, and as populations continue to grow, its expansion has the potential to create opportunities and increase footfall, creating synergies between the retail and entertainment industries."

Meanwhile, mother of two, Patricia McInnes shared her thoughts on the expansion project, which she said made perfect sense given the current retail landscape in RAK:

"In Ras Al Khaimah there are a lot of smaller malls right next to each other. Even though some are half empty, more malls keep springing up. I can't see the logic. Expanding Manar Mall and having everything in one place makes much more sense and the new stores are very exciting. I'm sure my kids will enjoy the waterfront area too," she said.

The expansion and refurbishment of Manar Mall was designed by Cadiz International, one of the world's foremost shopping mall architects, with Shankland Cox Ltd appointed as lead consultants. Following completion of the project, scheduled for the third quarter of 2016, net leasable area at the mall will rise from 30,000 to 60,000 square metres.


About Al Hamra Real Estate Development
Al Hamra Village is the flagship master planned development of Al Hamra Real Estate Development , which is fast becoming one of the UAEs most significant real estate developers. Al Hamra Village is a luxurious integrated community, located in Ras Al Khaimah on the shores of the Arabian Gulf, offering laidback oceanfront living approximately 45 minutes from Dubai the world's busiest airport. The development covers an area of 77 million square feet and includes 1.5 kilometres of pristine beach, over 1,000 villas and town homes, nearly 2,500 residential apartments, 5 hotels including the legendary Waldorf Astoria, an 18-hole golf course, a marina, and a shopping mall. Al Hamra Village offers investors a unique opportunity to purchase freehold property in the emirate.

About Manar Mall
Manar Mall is the first and largest shopping mall in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. Situated in the heart of Ras Al Khaimah, Manar Mall has a current built-up area of 30,000 square feet and a gross leasable area of 30,000 square feet. The mall has a capacity of over 100 retail outlets, featuring a comprehensive array of entertainment and dining facilities, along with an extensive parking facility with over 2,200 car parking spaces. Manar Mall is developed and owned by Al Hamra Real Estate Development , a leading real estate developer and master planner in the Middle East.

ILLUSTRADO : Medardo Cadiz - Architect


"Medardo T. Cadiz - Architect"

Feature profile article on Medardo Cadiz, CEO of Cadiz International. Originally published in Illustrado Magazine: Oct-Nov 2013 issue. Click on the title to view the article.

Samasta Village Beach Hotel Groundbreaking - Bali, Indonesia

Samasta - An Integrated Lifestyle Village Beach Hotel

“For it’s outstanding natural backdrop and strategic location, Jimbaran Compels to be a prominent hideaway in the Island of the Gods. The environment Allows one to unwind and to unfold the true wonders of mother Earth. We welcome you to experience life and embrace the universe …Welcome to Samasta.”

The ground breaking ceremony was held on the site in Jimbaran, Bali On May 2013. The event was attended by the developer, Summarecon Bali, as well as the resort hotel operator, Movenpick, of Switzerland, and the architects, Medardo Cadiz of Cadiz International.

The project is an integrated resort hotel cum lifestyle village, tropical lagoon pool and gardens, complimented by lifestyle shops, cafes and F&B’s in the village. The project is located in the hills of Jimbaran on a 3.5 ha land. Project is scheduled to open the end of 2014.

Al Hamra Mall ICSC-MENA Awards

The Al Hamra Mall - Finalist in the 2011 ICSC Middle East & North Africa (MENA) Design Merit Awards International Council of Shopping Centers

Development Profile

For many years the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) has honored the shopping center industry’s most cutting-edge properties, innovative solutions and creative responses to market trends. In 2011, ICSC has focused that same competitive template on the Middle East and North Africa, the sites of many of the 21st century’s most dynamic retail trends,

The Al Hamra Mall received a special Merit Award in the Category for Design and Development of a New Shopping Centre in the MENA Region. Opened in April 2012, the Al Hamra Mall is a 37,000 sq.m shopping center set amidst the residential development of Al Hamra Village in Ras Al Kaimah, offering a blend of shopping, entertainment, dining and recreational options.

Cadiz has created a gem of a destination for visitors, inspired by the traditional Lantern that is an intrinsic icon of the region. The contemporary Architecture echoes the forms and colors of the Lantern, with the Main Atrium a celebration of a kaleidoscope of rich, deep colors. A space of dancing lights and water, the Al Hamra Mall invites visitors to partake and experience in the rich and colorful culture of the region.

ILLUSTRADO : WOS 2012: Leadership – Nina Quintos, Architect of Her Dreams


You can say that Nina Quintos has built a career for herself as one of the top architects working in the Middle East and Southeast Asia brick by brick. With a career that spans more than two decades, Nina has carved out her own trail in a man’s world and has come out on top.

“This is what I’ve always wanted to be,” said Nina Quintos about her being an architect. As project manager for Cadiz International, Nina, 46, has managed several significant projects in the Middle East, such as the Al Hamra Mall in Ras al-Khaimah, which won the prestigious Design Merit Award from the ICSC MENA (International Council for Shopping Centers, Middle East and North Africa Region) in 2011, for the Design of a New Shopping Center.

A graduate of the University of Santo Tomas, Nina’s 22-year career in international concept architecture evolved as a result of her drive to become the best she can be.

Currently, Nina is the project manager for several Master Plan projects — which she emphasizes are team efforts — such as the Lausanne Golf Village, a 250-hectare integrated residential development in Kyrgyzstan with a championship golf course, a commercial area and a hotel; and the 20-hectare Uptown Tbilisi Mixed-Use Development in Tbilisi, Georgia, which will have a retail mall as well as office, hotel and residential tower developments.

Nina has built a career as impressive as the structures she plans. But being a woman professional in the Middle East and a Filipino also has its share of difficulties.

She credits her firm, which employs a number of women, for supporting her and her colleagues.  It also helps that she has made her mark as an expert in her field. Now, “it’s not highlighted that you’re a woman doing architecture, but that you’re [simply] an architect.”

As a solo mom, Nina feels the pressure of balancing her family with her career, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. Her daughter Crista is 12 and quite used to her mom traveling on a regular basis.  Though it’s hard when she has to leave her daughter for a business trip, she wants to serve as an example to her as well. “I don’t think that your passion for your work should change, and I want my daughter to see how much I love what I do. I show her the finished product of my work whenever possible. She’s totally supportive, and I want her to be true to herself too.”

Nina is extremely grateful for her support system — her family. “When I’m traveling, Crista is with my mom,” she said, adding that her sisters and their families are also there to help. “I wouldn’t be able to do this without them.”

When she’s not at work, Nina unwinds by taking aikido with Crista or rowing with the Manila Dragons Dragonboat Rowing Team. “I need to be active!” she declared. The team regularly rows in Manila Bay and takes part in international and local races and regattas.  “Our team is very diverse, with a very wide age range. We have professionals, we have students, and there are some breast cancer survivors. They’re all very dynamic, very strong women — and I’m not just talking about physical strength, but the strength of character of the people in the team.”

It’s not just for fun and exercise, either. The Manila Dragons are competitive, and in fact took the Diamond Cup at the Hong Kong “King of the World” International Dragonboat Race in October.

Nina not only feels a responsibility to be a good representative for women, but for Filipinos as well. “It’s something that’s been tugging at the back of my mind — how we as a people can be strong and make our real mark. I think my longing is to see an awareness and pride about who we are.”

To Nina, there is something missing in our collective perception of ourselves. “Sometimes it’s shaky; sometimes we give in to the thinking that they’re better than we are. I want us to see how far we’ve come. We have to find ourselves — and it has to come from us, from the inside, not from others — to become comfortable in who we are as Filipinos, so that we can move forward and be better.”

Outside the Philippines, said Nina, there is an extra responsibility for us to be our best and to show what we can do. “And we can—we’re well-trained, we have the experience, we have the skills.”

“Career should be beyond work — it should be something you enjoy and give you purpose, so that you want to do it well. And be true to yourself. Don’t let anyone set the limits for you. If you know what you want, go for it and enjoy where you are.”

Said like a true global creator and trailblazer.

ILLUSTRADO : Medardo Cadiz - Rising Above the Challenges


"Medardo Cadiz: Rising Above the Challenges"

A profile article on Medardo Cadiz, CEO of Cadiz International. Written by Sherry Tenorio. Originally published in Illustrado Magazine: 28 Nov 2010. Article excerpt below.


Armed with a strong global design perspective and commendable professionalism, Architect Medardo Cadiz led his firm to almost four decades of continued international success.  His perceptive strategies have been shaped by experiences gained in the 80s construction bubble in the United States (US), the late 90s Asian crisis and the recent global economic downturn. In an exclusive interview with Illustrado, he reveals deep-rooted discipline and practical philosophies that allowed him to break foreign ground.

The Cadiz family moved to the US in the wake of Martial Law.  The shift, however, did not come difficult to Medardo, who lived in the US as an exchange student in 1969, two years before the family settled in Michigan. He recalls, “The move was a turning point that defined what I wanted to do in the future. In the Philippines, it was difficult to learn the art of being independent. In the US, I learned to do everything on my own.”

After securing an Architecture degree from the University of Michigan, Medardo worked in various firms across the US. His global exposure started when he joined the renowned Design International – where his first international assignment took him to Jakarta.  It was then that he realized the importance of having a global perspective.  He also saw the opportunity in retail planning and the growing niche in mixed-use developments, for which there was a lot of demand in Asia and the Middle East.

His subsequent decision to focus on Asia was a perceptive move since the states was already suffering from slowdown. So, using his more than ten years of global practice and his new found expertise, Medardo established Cadiz International in Singapore.

Cadiz describes his company as “a boutique design firm that only deals with concepts, which come at the forefront of every design.”  He explains, “In every project, we prepare and generate a lot of different designs that will be the basis for the local architects. We tell the story, we conceive the idea – how it will all look, how it will all work with the community – and for us to make a good job we have to make a lot of research. We visit the place learn the culture the people, its politics, and, most of all, the market fundamentals. We talk to real estate agents, researchers, and work with people to understand the demographics and how the market will evolve in the years to come.”

MEDIA : Cadiz featured on Jakarta TV Show "Metro City"


TV Interview in Jakarta with Summarecon Agung Group introducing the architect for their projects. Medardo Cadiz talking about their design projects globally and highlighted the special design features of the Serpong and Bekasi projects.

- From "Metro City" Jakarta, Indonesia

Gandaria City (Main Street) - Soft Opening Launch

Development Profile

The Gandaria Mainstreet Mixed-Use Development opened its doors for the soft opening launch in August 2010, with over 500,000 square meters of GFA in the upscale district of Jakarta Selatan, Jakarta. The development is an important hub for economic growth in Indonesia, and captures the spirit, the life, and the buzz not only of Jakarta, but of the Main Streets of the world. Premier residential condominiums, luxury hotels, offices and a vibrant shopping complex and F&B create a “Living Street” of urban lifestyle and entertainment.

CITYSCAPE : Cadiz International Designs New RAK Town Center


Article on the Manar Mall Expansion Project, the original mall and the expansion proposal both designed by Cadiz International. Originally published in Cityscape Dubai Magazine: Day 4, Oct 6-9, 2008. View the full article after the break.



DUBAI – Plans to expand the existing Manar Mall site in Ras Al Khaimah and double its size have been revealed. The new-look mall will incorporate a waterfront promenade with up to 20 concept restaurants and dining outlets overlooking the local mangroves. A four-star family hotel, serviced apartments and two condominium towers will create a mixed-use destination.

The plans also include a watersports venue and water taxi service. The island fronting the mall is also pegged for development, creating a new ‘Mangrove City’. Mohammed Sultan Al Qadi, managing director and chairman of Manar Mall, said: “It is high time to renovate, improve and expand the Manar Mall Development to align with the government’s policy of enhancing the lifestyle of Ras Al Khaimah by providing a place that is all things for all people.”

The design, created by Cadiz International is focused around the concept of a town square. According to Cadiz CEO Medardo Cadiz: “Lifestyle is more than shopping, it’s about enjoying yourself with your friends and families in a special place.

“With all the improvements specially the new public waterfront promenade, people will come not just to shop but to stay and enjoy the picturesque environment.This is like a big piazza, a town square for everybody.”

Once completed the new centre will be rnamed as Manar City – A City within a City. The 22-storey Manar Residence, which will cover an area of 55,000 square metres, will have a tropical-influenced design that will highlight the nearby mangrove plantations, while vertical landscaping will be used to complement the natural environment.

BLUPRINT : Hamilo Coast featured in Hamilo Haven


"Hamilo Haven"

Written and photographed by Arcadio Gonzales. Feature Issue on "Leisure by Design: At Home with Nature in Hamilo Coast." Originally published in BluPrint Magazine: Vol.2, 2008. Click on the title to view the article.