Culture Spotlight

How the world’s top architects shaped the best buildings in the world

These iconic buildings have not only become landmarks in their respective locales, they have become highlights in the careers of their respective architects. 
Partner Feature | Jul 22 2019

The iconic Empire State Building in New York, the towering Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and the famous Taj Mahal in India are just some of the world’s most beautiful structures. Behind these carefully crafted building designs are brilliant architects who have proven time again that one can marry form and function and come up with an aesthetically stunning result.

Here are some of the world’s renowned architects and how they have changed the way we think about buildings.


Frank Lloyd Wright

Photograph from the Official Website

Many consider Wright's works as some of the best representations of American architecture. He revolutionized 20th century design by creating the Prairie House style, which meant using clean geometric shapes and horizontal planes. One of his most popular projects was a residential house in Pennsylvania called Fallingwater which features stacked rectangular balconies over a waterfall, creating an impression that the structure is floating on rushing water.


Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe

Photograph from Joe Ravi on Wikimedia Commons

German architect Van der Rohe is popular for his proposition “less is more.” He showcased this through his use of minimalism by doing away with geometric figures. Steel and plate glass are the most evident materials in his buildings, some of which include The Barcelona Pavilion and the Seagram tower in New York which emphasized rationalism and efficiency as the route to beauty.


Adrian Smith

Photograph from the Official Website

Smith has designed notable buildings around the world such as the Burj Khalifa in Dubai and the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago. He has won numerous awards in architecture around the world and has been working with the firm Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill. Smith’s design of the world’s tallest structure was inspired by Lake Point Tower's curved three wing layout.


Renzo Piano

Photograph from the Official Website

The Italian-born award-winning architect is a remarkable name in architecture. His most recognized work was his design of The Shard in London, a 95-storey skyscraper made of glass and steel. He is also known for his range of eclectic styles seen in his Neo-Brutalism design for the Whitney Museum’s home and the Menil Collection in Texas. He also designed the main terminal of Kansai International Airport, taking note of the frequency of earthquakes in Japan.


Norman Foster

Considered one of the most prolific architects of his generation, Foster’s experience as an associate of Buckminster Fuller, the visionary of the geodesic dome, has made an impression on his later designs, with similar treatments for their facades. London’s most recognizable tower, The Gherkin, has become one of his notable works with the commercial skyscraper designed as a pickle-like form tapering to a point.

Foster owns the renowned British architectural firm Foster + Partners, known for their innovative, modern, and sustainable designs in the international landscape. Marking a first in the Philippine real estate industry, Foster + Partners was tapped by SMDC and Federal Land to design The Estate Makati, a high-rise residential condominium located along Ayala Avenue in Makati. Each unit features huge picture windows angled for privacy and double slab technology which allows the homeowners to redo their unit any way they please without disturbing those above or under them. The Estate Makati will feature 763 sqm. multi-level super penthouse suites, aside from its equally expansive two-bedroom and three-bedroom flats.


For more information on The Estate Makati, visit, or email