Hello and welcome to my travel blog,

Oman ~ the Conference Centre

Oman ~ the Conference Centre


Exquisite and elegant Omani architecture

OCEC foyer

Oman Conference & Exhibition Centre

Muscat, Oman

The Oman Conference and Exhibition Centre was not yet completed when I first visited it in November 2017, but the scale and beauty of the project was clear to see and very impressive. I was here for work - a Higher Education exhibition - so I’ll let the images do the talking for this post. As always, you can click on the photos to enlarge them.

A work in progress, in November 2017

Clean lines in the buildings and hedging

This gives an idea of the scale - the doors are about 9’ high.

Bright, airy and full of arabesque imagery, the concourse is beautiful. Details evident in the sunlight screens and the etched glass of the balconies are shown in close up below.

Marble for days…

Ladies’ prayer room this way

Glorious planting in raised beds enclose seating nooks

Informal and formal: generous planting round the seating nooks reflects in polished marble

One of the entrances to the conference and exhibition halls at OCEC

The roof of the exhibition centre is going up.

The shape of the OCEC logo echoes the turtle-influenced design of the main theatre’s roof

Oman’s Vision - government policy driving investment - has seen a strong focus on creating so-called ‘destination architecture’. Two of Oman’s neighbours, the UAE states of Abu Dhabi and Dubai, have done similar but I much prefer Oman’s vernacular. It manages to capture the light, warmth and elegance of the people here and it’s superb quality but never overpowering. Other gorgeous arabesque developments in Oman include the Opera House and the Al Mouj (The Wave) complex by the marina, places that are not just tourism draws but that Omanis frequent are justifiably proud of. Where else is doing this well? Using architecture to redefine or regenerate a city? Dundee, of course! The V&A! Anywhere else? Do leave a comment below.


The Tripographer’s notes

  1. Unslumping level? 7/10

  2. Would I go again? Probably - for work!

  3. Best time to go? November-March, when the winter weather is perfect

  4. Best for? Events and exhibitions

  5. Top tip? Get to know venue staff for access to areas that are usually restricted. The A/C is effective so dress for a cooler temperature!

More info about this place

Other posts about this place

And if you liked this, look at

  • the Beach Rotana in Abu Dhabi coming soon


Beirut ~ Smallville

Beirut ~ Smallville

Palma ~ Christmas

Palma ~ Christmas