Interview with Craft of Architecture (COA) about their work on the landmark later-living development, Rimaal Village in Dubai.

Retirement communities

Interview with Craft of Architecture (COA) about their work on the landmark later-living development, Rimaal Village in Dubai.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Client: Avida
Project: Rimaal Village
Location: Dubai

Rimaal Village by Avida, recently launched at Bvlgari Yacht Club in Dubai, is a landmark later-living project in partnership with renowned architects, Craft of Architecture (COA).

We asked the founding partners to talk us through some of the concepts and design choices working on such a ground-breaking project.

Rimaal Village, designed around the lifestyle pillars of Avida: Community, Living, Wellness & Wealth

Q: Why did Avida decide to partner with COA on this project?

A: “We offered Avida a strong background in prestigious later-living projects. It was important to them that we understood the challenges and could bring our creativity, innovation, and know-how to such a unique project, and the first in the UAE.”

Q: What was the client’s vision for this project?

A: “Avida wanted this project to focus on lifestyle, rather than real estate. They wanted something unique that had not been done before, whilst challenging the perception of ageing and redefining how we approach life in our later years. The project had to revolve around the four defining lifestyle pillars of Avida: Community, Living, Wellness & Wealth.”

Q: With such a unique vision and request from the client, how did you integrate this into the design?

A: “Developing a one-of-a-kind narrative for the Avida brand was a challenge worth taking, given that there is no other brand quite like it out there. To construct a compelling narrative, we meticulously developed the storyline starting with the foundational building blocks such as the location, local history, and culture. We then proceeded to examine these elements from a broader global perspective, allowing us to craft a more comprehensive and captivating narrative.”

The foundational building blocks such as the location, local history, and culture

Q: Could you tell us a little more about the Key Features of the development?

A: “Rimaal Village has a distinctive approach to urban planning, which revolves around the creation of 150 apartments and 50 villas, beautiful gardens, sport facilities, and a large Village Centre. This design fosters a peaceful and pedestrian-friendly atmosphere, where residents can enjoy shopping, leisure, health, dining, business, well-being, and sport facilities in a luxury setting, all easily accessible by foot.”

Q: With the Village Centre being a key part of the lifestyle and design, what amenities are included?

A: “The 8000 sq. metre Village Centre offers a luxurious experience with an array of outstanding facilities such as a boutique shopping centre, state-of-the-art offices and boardrooms for business meetings, a well-stocked library, and a multi-function room for hosting events. The centre also includes a lounge bar and an upscale restaurant for dining, a cinema for movies, and a games room for snooker. For relaxation and wellness, there is a luxurious spa and wellness centre and a modern gym. Visitors can also enjoy bowling at the bowling alley or shop for essentials at the premium supermarket. The Village Centre offers a variety of activities and amenities for everyone to enjoy. The project includes a resort-style swimming pool, surrounded by lush tropical landscaping, making it the perfect place to unwind and relax. In addition to bowling, padel, and tennis, residents can also enjoy a rest pavilion that provides a space for refreshments and relaxation.”

Village Centre – wellness spa

Q: What are the design elements that set this project apart?

A: “Many, from the master planning principles to the handrail details of the stairs. The master plan has been designed to create a sense of community through the creation of various neighbourhoods and clusters that facilitate interaction and socialisation among the residents. With the Village Center in the middle and an extensive system of both open and covered pathways interconnects every aspect of the area, providing easy and convenient access to all its parts.”


“The villas have been carefully designed to provide an easy and seamless flow, along with enhanced visibility and absolute convenience. The facades are a testament to the inner workings of the home, with the ground floor being open for living activities and the upper floor being dedicated to bedrooms, with a more sculptural facade that frames stunning views and offers privacy where needed.”

Villa with entertainment and garden space

Q: Could tell us a little more about the sustainability, materials, and passive design features for this project?

A: “To effectively convey the concept of layered narrative and differentiate between planes and surfaces, we carefully selected a diverse range of marbles and stones, each with their unique tones and textures. Through deliberate contrast and careful arrangement, we were able to create a visual representation of the passage of time and the interplay between different elements. The designs maximise the use of natural lighting to create a bright and welcoming environment. Large windows and skylights can bring in ample daylight, reducing the need for artificial lighting during the day. We have focused on good indoor air quality by using materials that are low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs), ensuring proper ventilation, and incorporating air purification systems if needed. This contributes to a healthier and more comfortable living environment. For the outdoor spaces and gardens, we incorporated patios, decks, or gardens where residents can relax and enjoy nature.”

The designs maximise the use of natural light

Q: How do you create that sense of community through design?

A: “The master plan centrescenters around a sense of community through the creation of various neighbourhoods and clusters that facilitate interaction and socialisation among the residents. A system of conveniently connected walkways provides easy access to all parts of the project, including the vibrant village centre. The walkways are seamlessly integrated into the verdant landscaping, where one can meander past refreshing water features, immersing oneself in nature’s beauty.”

Village Centre lounge and bar area

Q: How does this community-led design impact the quality of lifestyle for the residents?

A: “The utmost care has been taken to design a serene and tranquil environment, offering the residents a peaceful retreat. At the same time, the community offers a myriad of opportunities for the residents to engage and connect with their fellow community members. As we age, it becomes increasingly important to maintain a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle. Staying active and mentally stimulated is crucial to achieving this. To help seniors achieve this goal, we have taken great care to design environments that promote and facilitate such a lifestyle. These spaces are thoughtfully crafted with features that encourage physical activity, social interaction, and mental engagement. The result is an environment that supports a healthy and happy life for seniors.”

Integrated socialising and living spaces

Q: When was the project launched?
A: “Rimaal Village was officially launched on the 16th of November at Bvlgari Yacht Club in Dubai. The successful launch by Avida was an elegant event, which was wonderful for us to attend with all the other collaborators on the project.”
To read more about the launch, click here

Avida’s pioneering Rimaal Village, designed by Craft of Architecture (COA), launched at Bvlgari Yacht Club, in Dubai.

Retirement communities

Avida’s pioneering Rimaal Village, designed by Craft of Architecture (COA), launched at Bvlgari Yacht Club, in Dubai.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

November saw the launch of a landmark later-living project, Rimaal Village by Avida, at Bvlgari Yacht Club in Dubai. The elegant evening was a true celebration of creativity, architecture, sustainability, lifestyle, and heritage, bolstered by fabulous food, fine art, live music, and presentations of ground-breaking ideas coming to life in this project.

The launch showcased a new philosophy in lifestyle design in a first-of-its-kind development consisting of 150 apartments and 50 villas, designed around a spectacular village centre and complete with boutique shopping, concierge, offices and boardrooms, library, multi-function room, lounge bar, restaurant, cinema, games room, spa and wellness centre, gym, bowling, pools, sports courts, and a supermarket.   Avida partnered with multi-award-winning architectural designers Craft of Architecture (COA) to create a ground-breaking, luxury-living retirement estate, centred around Community, Living, Wellness & Wealth in the UAE.

“The launch has been fantastic, with so many like-minded people here, bringing excellence and innovation together in a single project. It has been a pleasure to work closely with Avida. Shifting the narrative away from real estate and focusing on a lifestyle project will bring incredible value to residents,”

John van Wyk, founding partner and director at Craft of Architecture.

Avida’s instruction to COA was clear: shift the perception of ageing and redefine how we approach life in our later years. COA’s strong portfolio and their involvement in some of the most prestigious later-year living projects made them perfectly placed to partner with Avida on this project.

Dubai is Avida’s chosen location for their first Later Living Community. Aimed at both international and local high net worth retirees, the project’s core focus remains on the community, health, and wellness its residents will enjoy in this luxury, leisure-style residence.


To read more about the project, including COA’s design philosophy and sustainability on the project, click here.

Tokai Estate architects cape town south africa

Best Luxury Retirement Development in South Africa: Tokai Estate


Best Luxury Retirement Development: Tokai

Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

Faircape Group

Best Luxury Retirement Development in South Africa: Tokai Estate

The luxury Lifestyle Awards for 2021 have been finalised, and we’re very proud to announce that Tokai Estate has been awarded top laurels once again. This is the second year running that Tokai Estate has been recognized for this prestigious honour.

Best Luxury Retirement Award Criteria

The Luxury Lifestyle Awards (LLA) Committee has strict selection criteria. For best luxury retirement development, the criteria are varied and account for factors in 10 different categories. Tokai Estate was found to be outstanding in all of the following categories:


The LLA Committee assesses for a history of satisfied residents and families.

Tokai Estate has achieved a reputation as the most luxurious and rewarding of all retirement villages in the Western Cape, and with good reason. The village provides a wide array of top-class amenities, services, and quality in all aspects. This proven history has led to the name ‘Tokai Estate’ becoming synonymous with excellence in every regard.


Candidates are reviewed for their track record of quality service provision and the trustworthiness of the organization as represented in licensing, accreditation, and awards.

Tokai Estate is proudly offered in partnership with Old Mutual, a licensed financial services provider. This partnership brings together the expertise from a diverse group of professionals and helps to ensure that service excellence is consistently achieved.


The ability of the retirement development to adapt the specific needs of the resident are considered.

Faircape Life is considerate of the changing demands of retirees and especially the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on residents. Tokai Estate adapted to the needs of their residents during this time in many ways including offering restaurant quality home catering for private functions. In addition the Healthcare Centre multidisciplinary team has been expanded with additional doctors, social workers, physiotherapists and occupational therapists to ensure residents have the care they need on their doorstep.


The situation of the development is assessed for its proximity to services such as hospitals, and amenities like shopping centres, as well as beautiful scenery.

The village achieves top honours in this category. With breathtaking views of the Constaniaberg Mountains Silvermine Nature Reserve and Table Mountain – Tokai Estate is perfectly positioned for a rewarding lifestyle. Wine estates, golf course, shopping malls, and more are all within easy reach.


Nominees are appraised for their commitment to sustainability and minimising any negative impacts on the environment.

In addition to the solar power panels installed at the estate, the landscaped gardens are maintained by a staff horticulturalist to ensure that the plants are predominantly indigenous and can support local bird and bee populations.

Safety & Security

The Committee looks at the strength of security measures, and the proactive use of new technologies to ensure safety. They also assess healthcare facilities within this sub-category.

The Faircape Health Tokai Estate facility, with its multidisciplinary team of health professionals, has achieved a 95% 5- Star review rating. The security features of the village are extensive, and designed for convenience. Access control at the boomed entrance includes a 24/7 manned control room, surveillance cameras, and biometric scanners. The entirety of the perimeter wall is also replete with surveillance cameras, electric fences monitored at all times by trained off-site surveillance professionals.

Facilities & Amenities

The quality and ease of access to additional leisure facilities is evaluated in this category.

Tokai Estate features a gymnasium, scenic pathways, heated swimming pool, club house and more. One of the most standout features of the village in this category is the exceptional calibre of the meals and event services.

Property Management

The expertise of the staff are accounted for in this category.

Tokai Estate was found truly exemplary in this field: housekeeping staff, village manager, catering staff as well as the horticulturalist are noteworthy. Our village staff are always ready with a smile to lend a helping hand in whatever way they can.


Nominees are assessed for how well the latest innovations are integrated into the village.

Tokai Estate features fibre internet infrastructure installed and maintained by Faircom. This infrastructure delivers extremely reliable, high speed internet connectivity for uninterrupted streaming and staying in touch with family and friends.

Recommendations & Reviews

The Committee looks for a long history of positive reviews and recommendations from associated industry professionals and residents.

The village has garnered positive feedback and 5-Star reviews from residents, family, and guests. What makes these reviews and recommendations truly special is the fact that they’re consistently high across an extended period of time. Achieving excellence over years shows true commitment to providing the best luxury retirement. Our Google Reviews alone speak volumes!

Our Commitment to Excellence

At Faircape Life, we’re committed to delivering excellence in all aspects and this award serves to strengthen our resolve. We’re proud to be recognised for our standards of excellence and we will continue to provide residents with only the best in every aspect of living. We can’t wait to see what the future holds.

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