Qatar’s first cultural centre to be housed in Washington, DC
Financing a major segment of CityCenterDC in Washington, DC, Qatar is now set to launch an Arab cultural centre in the downtown development. Tentatively named Al Bayt, the cultural centre is a project of Qatar Foundation International (QFI) and is aimed at providing information and resources on Arab culture for United States (US)students, educators, and the general community.
Covering a space of 1400 square metres, the centre is expected to open in the beginning of next year. Sharing more details with The Edge, Maggie Mitchell Salem, executive director of QFI said, “When students and teachers enter Al Bayt, they will be invited to unleash their curiosity about Arab culture. Multisensory stimuli in light and sound will engage their interest and imagination.”
The space will be modelled on a traditional Qatari home with “hands-on activities that allow them to learn, at their own pace, about the language and culture of the Arab region, with a special focus on Qatar.”
As organiser of cultural programmes, Al Bayt will work as an awareness outlet of Arab culture for the West. Salem revealed, “These [programmes] will include musical, literary, and artistic gatherings and, eventually, culinary demonstrations and lectures about food in the Arab world.”
While the foundation has an official presence in countries such as Brazil, US and Canada, the planned cultural centre is the first of its kind by QFI.