Hilton Capital Grand

Abu Dhabi

Integrated LED façade lighting designed to withstand operating temperatures of 75 degrees Celsius!


Amongst the many luxury hotels that appear along the Abu Dhabi skyline, none other is as striking as the Hilton Capital Grand. Built from curved gleaming blue and green glass panels, its wavy mosaic structure is an architectural triumph. 
The use of LED dots helps to accentuate the architectural form of the curtain wall. This lighting technique has been pioneered and refined by Illumination Physics and is now quite commonly used. In moderate climates, using LED dots is not overly problematic, provided that the light fixture designer has the ability and agility to customise the fixture to suit the façade system design.

In the Gulf however, the extreme temperatures require a unique engineering approach such as that used for the Hilton Capital Grand Abu Dhabi.

Hong Kong/Europe and the Gulf of Arabia are both strong markets for Illumination Physics. However, they require a markedly different design approach because of the ambient temperature and the extreme temperatures attained by the surface of modern buildings.

A search of most manufacturers’ websites will typically reveal temperature limitations for LED products, ranging from minus 20 degrees Celsius to plus 45 or 50 degrees ambient operating temperatures. Illumination Physics also manufactures similar LED products, but we do not market them in the gulf for façade applications as the heat resistance is far too low for more than half the season.


The Hilton Speck has special qualities to cope with the harsh Middle East Climate. Designed to withstand non-operating temperatures of 90 degrees Celsius and operating temperatures of 75 degrees Celsius, the IP SPECK is extremely robust. Six Rebel LEDs were used (RGB), driven at 350 milliamps.


The lighting design called for a matrix of ultra-bright LED pixels which were to be mounted in the curved façade of the hotel as a ‘crown effect’.  Illumination Physics created a custom version of the popular ‘SPECK’, a compact high powered LED fixture designed for insertion into curtain wall panels.  Every curtain wall system is different and the mounting methods for this project were custom designed around the needs of the curtain wall. The LED fixture needed to be mounted on a number of different curtain wall finishes, including mounting on a glass spider wall system, mullion curtain wall system and to a concrete façade.
The SPECK series of products have domed lenses that provide high visibility, even from shallow viewing angles. This is of particular benefit as the hotel has an undulating wave form and the domed lens ensures that the apparent brightness appears the same regardless of the curvature of the façade.


The light fixtures, special cables, drivers and control equipment were provided as a total solution.


This project has been operating faultlessly for more than 8 years which is a true testimonial to Illumination Physics gulf spec.




  • 320 x Illumination Physics custom specks
  • 55 x Illumination Physics HP led drivers
  • 3 x DD4 dmx splitters
  • 1 x Xnet8 ethernet/DMX converter
  • 1 x PC with Illumination Physics X-soft software