Shurooq

Increasing footfall, naturally

Elevating the ecotourism offerings of Kalba

Challenge

The Sharjah Investment and Development Authority, Shurooq, planned on expanding Sharjah’s tourist destinations, developments, and offerings to increase the scope of tourism in the emirate. The Kalba Eco-Tourism Project, a nature reserve on the east coast of Sharjah boasting untouched landscapes and rich ecologies unique to the GCC region, was in Shurooq’s plan to undergo a dramatic expansion and public unveiling.

MBLM conducted a branding program to capture and distill the essence of Kalba, giving the brand clear definition and a platform for future growth. We crafted a brand strategy and subsequent identity that encapsulated the diverse ecosystems and landscapes of Kalba’s mangroves, wetlands, deserts and mountains into a comprehensive and recognisable identifier. A brand architecture was constructed to help differentiate between Kalba’s offerings, which included the visual mapping of how various guest experiences would be branded and defining how business partner relationships should be defined.

In order to express the unique vision for Kalba and aesthetically differentiate from Shurooq’s various destination developments, a new design system and visual guidelines were crafted, with a distinctive illustration style inspired by Kalba’s diverse landscape. This was accompanied by a visual language that used location based imagery highlighting the indigenous fauna and flora of the Kalba region. MBLM also designed artwork for advertising, merchandising, wayfinding and experience branding templates to support the brand launch and activation.



Results

The new brand program has helped elevate the Kalba brand, driving increased customer awareness and new business partnerships which have led to project developments in the region. There has been a surge in press around the Kalba Eco-Tourism Project and a rise in bookings for its outdoor experiences, fueled by the destination’s unique positioning in the tourism offering mix of the UAE, and supported by the emblematic visual language the brand now uses.

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