Architecture is a subject that fascinates and captures the attention of a certain breed of people. Appreciating the design of a building is one thing, but understanding its construction, the different elements that make it so spectacular and feeling that desire to create something for yourself appeals to a fair few select people.
Read about some of the top architectural cities in the world, different design trends and how they have been evolving in the past hundred years.
Perhaps the most impressive of modern construction sites is Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. With oil no longer the main focus in the Emirate, attention is turning to tourism and hospitality in the region with some of the most grandiose skyscrapers and construction endeavours ever seen taking place within the city. Modern spins on traditional Islamic architecture can be found as well as the most innovative modern designs in the world. Man-made islands shaped to look like palm trees and skyscrapers that resemble the sails of yachts are just the beginning as developments continue.
China's capital has been the centre of culture and politics in the country since the Ming Dynasty in the 14th century. When the last of the dynasties fell in 1911, Beijing was a place of extreme unrest with warlords fighting for control of the city. Relics of the dynasties architectural styles remain - buildings like the Temple of Heaven and the Forbidden City are characteristic of this with multi-eaved roofs and intricate brickwork. Today this old architecture clashes with modern skyscrapers and boxy buildings that exist for function rather than form, providing for the corporate centre that the capital has become. Innovative marvels like the Watercube National Swimming Centre's blue walls and the dome-like National Grand Theatre of China do break up the monotony of grey skyscrapers that are found in central business districts.
Ancient Roman architecture plants an image in the mind of almost anybody who hears the words. Stone colosseums and the intricate Aquduct of Segovia in Spain still stand today as proud monuments of the empire's past. Government and banking buildings all over the Western world took inspiration from these early designs and today the arch is a staple of Roman architecture that can be seen almost anywhere and everywhere.
When you're planning a new home for yourself or planning the construction of a new office or