There are some places around the world that are truly iconic, evoking and inspiring emotions like few others.
Think of New Zealand: ‘Middle Earth’ and its iconic blend of majestic mountains and lush flora.
Think of Iceland: the ‘young earth’ with its otherworldly landscape and coastlines.
Think of Giants’ Causeway…
The Grand Canyon…
The Atacama salt flats…
And add Qatar to that list.
After 15 years in this wonderful country, we’ve come to recognise Qatar as on par with those above. It’s home to some of the most iconic locations on the planet, and we feel incredibly fortunate to have been able to film across so many of them.
WHERE PAST MEETS PRESENT
One of the most beautiful aspects of Qatar’s character and identity is the way in which the past and present meet across all walks of life.
Take Doha as a prime example: a key hub to the world, and both a modern metropolis and a hotbed of tradition and heritage. From the modernity of the skyscrapers throughout West Bay and the Corniche to the bustling hubbub of the Souq Waqif, it’s an inspiring blend of history and the here-and-now.
In every wall and at every street corner, you are immersed in a wonderful blend of historic Islamic architectural design and geometry brought together with modern-day aesthetic and building techniques from around the world. It’s a beautiful, distinctive mix, and it’s one of the many elements that make Qatar so special – but there’s so much more to tell!
Over the years, we’ve arranged all kinds of shoots and productions across this incredible country, making use of our extensive expertise and vast network of connections to gain entry to these iconic locations, some of which many others are unable to access.
With that in mind, we wanted to take the opportunity to share some of our favourites with you – and serve as potential inspiration for your own projects…
THE DOHA SKYLINE
There’s something about a city skyline that just feels right – and Doha has one of the most memorable in the world. The city has been central to Qatar’s success, and its cityscape is truly iconic, as befits a capital city! Whether it’s sunrise or sunset, the peaks and arches of the city’s skyline are truly something to behold.
No matter where you are in the city, you can’t fail to be captivated by the likes of the Doha Tower, a resplendent tribute to Mashrabiya design; the Tornado Tower, a giant hourglass set against the Doha sky, or the Torch Doha – the city’s tallest building, and a truly stunning sight by night as it radiates a symphony of blue and orange lights.
We would happily keep going – but this is one of those occasions where a picture says more than a thousand words ever could…
THE HISTORIC FORTS
Qatar is a proud nation with a rich history and a distinct sense of heritage. The land is full of landmarks that reflect this, and few are more significant that the various forts that dot the landscape.
Many of the forts feature in the story of Qatar’s long road to independence from the various empires that controlled it in past centuries, and they also each have their own fascinating stories to tell.
Arguably one of the most famous is Al Zubarah Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a great example of Arabic military architecture. We were able to film at Al Zubarah as part of our award-winning series of films for the National Tourism Council, Essence of Qatar, and we found it to be truly breath-taking! Now a museum, Al Zubarah provides impressive exhibits of Qatar’s journey over hundreds of years, showcasing art and archaeology spanning the nation’s history.
Of course, when we’re discussing the forts of Qatar, one can’t ignore Al Wajbah Fort, one of the oldest in the country, and a major part of the historic battle between the forces of Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani and the Ottoman Empire in 1893 that helped pave the way to future independence for Qatar. We filmed at the fort itself when we recreated the battle for a suite of films produced for ExxonMobil – and it was a truly amazing experience!
If ever there was a perfect example of past and present meeting together in Qatar’s every-day life, it’s the Souq Waqif. A bustling marketplace with goods and shops, it’s an iconic destination within Doha that tells a tale of the city’s growth that reflects that of the country itself.
It’s always a thrill to wander through the Souq, full of sights, scents, and sounds – and we love every opportunity we get to film in this cultural hotspot.
Last, but not least, a modern classic: a series of four sculptures designed by world-renowned American artist, Richard Serra, and located in the Brouq nature reserve.
It’s a stunning landmark with an otherworldly feel that evokes thoughts of 2001: A Space Odyssey and similar landscapes from the world of science-fiction.
As a visual experience, it’s a stunning sight, but when you dig into the details of how the sculpture was achieved, it brings a new level of awe: 4 enormous, 14-metre-high steel plates placed across over a kilometre of desert, perfectly aligned with the encompassing topography and enhance the eerie, vast expanse of the surrounding wilderness. The thought and detail that goes into a piece of this kind is astonishing!
We were honoured to be able to film here as part of our award-winning films for Qatar Tourism, Essence of Qatar – and we can’t wait to go back. There are many more locations around Qatar that could have made this list, but these are our favourites – for the moment!
We love having the opportunity to film throughout this amazing country every day, and we fall more and more in love with the place each time.
We hope this has given you a sense of our passion for filming in Qatar, and we’d love to use our expertise in film production and film-fixing to help you bring your own film dreams to life – so get in touch today to see how we can work together email@example.com