Colorful backlighting is not only for Christmas and New Year
Night lighting transforms everything – strange makes amazing, nondescript cute, beautiful grandiose and the whole city festive. “Around the World” shows 12 examples of beautiful illumination of bridges, skyscrapers and other structures.
Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
The world's tallest (452 m) twin towers turn into pillars of bright light every night. Thanks to heavy-duty anti-aircraft searchlights located between the towers, as well as the internal lighting system of the spiers, a special effect is created – the light visually lengthens the buildings. This makes the towers not only look sleeker, but also become more visible to aircraft flying nearby.
70,000 LED panels with a total area of 32,467 square meters are fixed on the facade of the world's tallest skyscraper. This is the largest LED facade in the world, listed in the Guinness Book of Records. In addition, powerful spotlights are installed at different levels of the building. And on New Year's Eve, the skyscraper literally “explodes” with illumination and fireworks, becoming the tallest “Christmas tree” in the world.
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One of the most beautiful bridges in the world was not built only in feng shui, but also “in science”. Its design depicts a DNA double helix (helix – eng. “spiral”). At night, pairs of red and green letters glow among the neon lights: C and G, A and T, – meaning the nitrogenous bases cytosine, guanine, adenine and thymine, which make up the genetic code.
The Maritime Center building from afar looks like the crest of a giant wave rising over the port. The facade is made of multi-colored metal cassettes and glass plates. Among the colors, shades of sea water prevail – turquoise, green, blue, white. At night, the glasses glow brightly from the inside.
The official coat of arms of Baku depicts three flames. The city of lights became even more true to its poetic name, when in 2013 three futuristic skyscrapers rose over the Baku Bay. Fully covered LED-screens, at night the towers become like a burning torch.
Mohammed VI Bridge
The bridge over the river Bou-Regreg, connecting Rabat and Sale, is named after the King of Morocco. The longest cable-stayed bridge in Africa (950 m) is equipped with an innovative lighting system: at night, 200-meter arched towers and 160 steel cables play with 16 million colors.
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In the evening panorama of Barcelona, this building overshadows the Sagrada Familia. The 144-meter bullet-shaped tower is sheathed in almost 60,000 multi-colored glass and aluminum panels and shimmers with a moire sheen. 4500 LED devices create a “pixelated” effect. Three days a week, a light show is played on the facade.
Moscow International Business Center has long become one of the most beautiful places in Moscow at night. The towers, which competed with European skyscrapers for the title of the tallest and most aesthetic, now demonstrate a discreet superiority of forms in illumination. They look especially impressive from the Taras Shevchenko Embankment and the Bagration Bridge.
The London Eye
The huge Ferris wheel is equipped with 640 LED modules , each of which is individually programmable, allowing you to create millions of color combinations.
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USA, New York
Far from being the tallest skyscraper in Manhattan (320 m), it is considered the most originally illuminated. Two sets of equipment are used to illuminate its “crown”: V-shaped light panels in the body of the building itself and spotlights on masts that direct light into the interior. The tower is especially beautiful at sunset, when the sun is still playing on the steel roof and the illumination is already on.
Sheraton Huzhou Hotel
The horseshoe-shaped structure of the 27-story hotel with panoramic windows makes efficient use of sunlight during the day. In the evening, the building itself exudes radiance. Reflected in the water of Taihu Lake, the light forms a figure eight – a symbol of unity, prosperity and infinity.
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“Shell”, connected by bridges with the banks of the Old City, appeared on the Mur River in 2003, when Graz received the title of European Capital of Culture. The floating platform is anchored. Inside there is a cafe, an amphitheater and a children's labyrinth. Murinsel is especially beautiful in the blue rays of night illumination.
Photo: Legion-media (x8), Getty Images, Istock, AP/East News, Zoonar/Legion Media, Panther Media GmbH/Alamy/Legion Media
Material published in Vokrug Sveta magazine No. 1, January 2017, partially updated in December 2022