The Silicon Review
“Paseo in Spanish means promenade; we believe that every project is a unique opportunity for creating a self-telling architectural space.”
Architecture is a social art that reaches all human beings at all levels of their existence everywhere and every day. The impact of architecture is much beyond the horizon of your imagination. Architecture indeed is poetry that defines how a culture sees itself and the world around it. Architecture doesn't just create a pretty shelter. It ends up setting the context for lives. Nowhere is the impact of an architect more clearly felt than in the quality of life aspect of a building. A builder will only provide you the space to live in. An architect will make it a space worth living in.
Tarek Wassim Ibrahim is one such Architect who is creating aesthetic buildings that talk to you and tells a story through Paseo Architecture. Located in the heart of Lebanon, the company is always pumping with new designs and experiences. Architecture for Tarek Ibrahim is a Promenade, and he believes that there is architecture when there is a poetic story to tell. According to him, architecture should share experiences, stories and reflect social behaviors.
To highlight and further understand what Paseo Architecture stands for and seeks to explore in this segment, I sat down with Tarek Wassim Ibrahim, who is the company's Founder.
Q. Why and how did you found Paseo Architecture?
Paseo Architecture was founded in El-Chouf Lebanon, a place with historical background and was home to many major leaders. As I mentioned El-Chouf is rich in history and have been a major importer for the Italian style to Lebanon and a mix with the ottoman style was found after that the French colonized the area and there was an insertion of the French products and style.
Since I was young, architects referred to history in a way that made me feel curious to look up to its identity, and thereby, I decided to become an architect. With the education that I got in the Lebanese American University, architecture knowledge I gained from the books, and all the traveling around the world while studying different cultures and architecture, I came forth with a theory that led me to the foundation of Paseo architecture is not just an architectural or a design office but also a unique experience for architects and engineers working in it. It will end up being part of its united, strong, caring, and lovely family for the customers.
Q. What are your focus areas?
Paseo Architecture focuses mainly on providing provocative architecture in any architectural field that we are hired to do. We have planned industrial buildings, public parks, hospitals and commercial centers, residential and private villas. Our projects held humanity's efficiency and experience in their spaces as a priority to serve human, social, and economic development.
Q. 'We create quality space to give you a new experience.' Splendid. Would you like to elaborate on this a bit more?
Paseo in Spanish means promenade; we believe that every project is a unique opportunity for creating a self-telling architectural space. Architecture that Paseo designs has a rooted identity to the culture where the project will take place. It has a classical volumetric that will never be outdated and has a strong concept, and holds the story in every single line and wall in it. Paseo architecture was founded due to my suffering of design since I was a kid, and I asked myself why buildings in our village are a copy-paste or even faking a beautiful old building. While faking and copying these buildings, the identity is changed dramatically. Paseo architecture holds a message for the young generations. It is a new example that wherever you are if you work with passion, love, and use the right methods that globalization offers, you can reach every heart beating on this planet. Paseo is located in Mount Lebanon village. It recruits young architects who are bold enough and strong enough to think differently, capable of finding simple solutions for unseen problems that will make living way better.
Q. How dynamic is your portfolio? And what can you tell us about it?
Our portfolio is extremely dynamic as it talks about cultures and architecture. One can see, feel, and experience the originality of the culture in the projects that we undertake. Our theory is applied in the identity of the space, the approach of design, and the story of the space. They all have the quality of a better place, more efficient, more functional, and the most important is how to have its unique story that communicates with the users and connects to the users (family, company, industry) mission and vision. In our portfolio, you can sense the multi-disciplinary and rounded team we have.
Q. Let's talk about your team of experts and their role at Paseo Architecture. How did you form your dream squad, and how unique is it?
The most important thing that makes you successful and enables you to reach international standards is a strong, thoughtful, and understanding team that can communicate with the same language of thoughts and be rounded architects capable of analyzing and reading spaces. A team that believes that architecture is not about looks and not about fashion and trend, architecture is about spaces and humanity; it is the language of humanity and culture. As an architect, I believe in opportunities and that I should be capable enough to inspire and give opportunities for young architects who are living in villages and motivate them to change their circumstances. That is why Paseo Architecture is not found in the capital or the main city; it is found in villages to provide an opportunity for young architects to reach international standards and become rounded architects.
Q. From your perspective, how is the industry you serve currently evolving? And what are the trends in the different categories?
Architecture is like a language; it is a place where humans will experience every single emotion. If architecture is about looks and shapes, as time passes, it will become a sculpture without life, just the spirit. If you build the most beautiful skin of architecture according to the current trend, it will be outdated, and people will not see the beauty within, and it won't be mesmerizing anymore. But if the spaces in it were coherent with humanity and identity, people will always make it trendy by visiting it and keeping it always visited by all ages.
Q. Where do you stand as a company in the current market landscape? And what are you doing to stay ahead of the curve?
Of course, we stand up high in the market, and many Silicon Valley-based companies are writing about our firm based in Lebanon. Competition is the best booster for work; it obliges you to push your limits and enable yourself to stay ahead of the curve. You should always be intellectual, happy to be creative, knowledgeable with high manners as a firm. Being descent with spaces, forests, nature, and clients is one of our priorities. Being capable of combining manners with creativity with eco-friendly and economic projects is what is making us stay ahead and be a leader in this sector.
Q. What plans for transformation are you pursuing to remain relevant now and in the future?
We pursue our own line, our mission, and vision and try always to push our limits and learn from others and our mistakes; focusing on our dream is what has made us an international company, and we will continue to do the same—focus on our dreams and make the spaces we create a better place for living and better place for humanity.
The Visionary Leader Upfront
Arch. Tarek Wassim Ibrahim is the Founder of Paseo Architecture. He is a contributor to the cultural ambition and the welfare of the community. Mr. Ibrahim is recognized as the fastest growing and one of the highest achieving architects. He is named the 'Vogue Architect' by Adobe 2. He is the winner of 'Excellence in Architecture For 2018' by Kotinos International Award. He is a member of the United Nations. He won Bronze A' Design Award in Architecture 2018-2019 for Building and Structure Design Category.
Tarek Wassim Ibrahim won Gold in the 'Muse Design Award 2019', IAA, for Excellence in Architecture. He also won the n 'German Design Award 2020' for Excellent Architecture. He is listed among pioneers from Lebanon 2021. Mr. Ibrahim was chosen to be the youngest Architect to deliver a lecture in The Arabian week for Architecture organized by Archinet. He delivered several lectures about concepts and applying the concept in architecture at the Lebanese University.
Tarek Ibrahim graduated from the Lebanese American University (L.A.U.) with a Bachelor's degree in Architecture (B.Arch.). Now, he is a graduate student in Masters of Islamic Art & Architecture after he finished his project and construction management degree.