Lumina Tower Martinique: Big, Bold, and Beautiful (to some)
When most people think of West Indian architecture they likely envision stately old plantation great houses. Charming chattel cottages and Creole bungalows come to mind as well. Or what about the region’s various forts, churches, and government buildings? All of them carry echoes of Europe and the Caribbean’s colonial past. Many daring new construction projects in more recent years, though, are different. Very different. Lumina Tower Martinique is one of them.
Set along the waterfront in Martinique’s capital city of Fort-de-France, the Lumina Tower (Tour Lumina) truly stands out. The same type of pastel-colored private homes and apartments prevalent in most West Indian cities trail up into the hills behind the downtown area. Further back, the Pitons du Carbet amplify the exotic nature of the tropical urban setting.
Then there’s Lumina, jutting up into the sky in all its unapologetically ultra-modern audacity.
What is the Lumina Tower Martinique?
Lumina Tower Martinique is part of the larger Pointe Simon development project. Total estimated cost: just under US$100 million. Designed and constructed by Briere Architects of France, Pointe Simon includes residential, hotel, and parking structures in addition to Tour Lumina. The tower itself rises 20 floors to a height of 346 feet (105.5 meters). That makes it the tallest building in Fort-de-France and all of Martinique. Its tenants comprise a who’s who of Martinican/French Caribbean business entities, including the Martinique Tourism Authority.
It’s clear, though, that Lumina Tower Martinique is more than just your typical tall office building. In its striking style and distinctive shape, Lumina stands as a symbol of a progressive 21st century city squarely focused on a bright future.
Not For Everyone
Bold and hopeful undertones aside, though, Lumina is not beloved by all.
Some have likened it to a tube of lipstick. Indeed, the most common nickname I’ve heard for it is the “Lipstick Tower.”
Others feel it’s more reminiscent of a certain appendage… Of the hand… Like, the middle one, you know?
Love it or hate it, Lumina Tower Martinique is here to stay and impossible to miss when visiting downtown Fort-de-France.