The Jakarta Post
Changi Airport in Singapore is frequently voted as one of the best airports in the world. (Shutterstock/File)
An airport is more than just a transportation hub.
According to Citylab, airports play a crucial role in economic development as it moves people. The number of passengers and flights is said to be related to economic output, wages and income.
Fortunately, more and more airports are being upgraded and modernized, giving comfort to passengers and supporting a country's economy.
So where are the most beautiful airports in the world located? Below is a list of 13 of them, according to Curbed.
Heydar Aliyev International Airport
Designed by Turkish architecture studio Autoban, Heydar Aliyev International Airport in Baku, Azerbaijan, boasts concave external glass walls, cocoon houses, cafes, bars, stores and amenities.
The airport is said to be able to accommodate more than 5 million passengers each year.
Denver International Airport
Located in the heart of the United States' Mountain West, Denver International Airport in Denver, Colorado, is among the world’s most beautiful airports.
The fabric-covered tents, which were designed to mimic Colorado’s snow-capped Rocky Mountains, are a unique architectural feature of the airport.
Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport
Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport, popularly known as Madrid-Barajas Airport, is located 12 kilometers away from the city center of Madrid.
The airport was upgraded in 2006 by architect Richard Rogers. It features an unusual wave-shaped roof that is supported by central “trees," allowing natural light to enter the upper level of the terminal.
Kansai International Airport
Designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, Kansai International Airport in Osaka, Japan, first opened its doors in 1994.
The airport, built in Osaka Bay, was the first “ocean” airport that handled up to 100,000 passengers a day.
Read also: Six countries without airports to travel to
Beijing Capital International Airport
Opened right before the 2008 Olympics, the two-mile long Terminal 3 of the Beijing Capital International Airport is among the world’s largest buildings.
Designed by architecture firm Foster+Partners, the airport uses a traditional Chinese color scheme of red and yellow to celebrate Chinese history and culture.
Furthermore, the terminal building and transportation center were designed to handle up to 50 million passengers each year by 2020.
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport
Terminal 2 of Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, India, first welcomed passengers in 2014. Designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), the terminal was built to accommodate the city’s growing influx of visitors.
The design features a gigantic roof canopy, which was inspired by vernacular Indian pavilions. The airport is also equipped with curbside drop-off zones, which were designed to accommodate traditional Indian arrival and departure ceremonies.
Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang, Malaysia, is one of Asia’s largest airports.
Designed by Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa, the building features an Islamic-style shading roof anchored by massive columns made with sleek stainless steel.
Menara Airport in Marrakech, Morocco, was completed in 2008. Designed by Swiss Architects E2A Architecture, the building features stylized Islamic ornamental designs and a gorgeous façade. The design is said to be an example of how a contemporary building can use traditional patterns.
Kutaisi International Airport
Kutaisi International Airport, also known as David the Builder Kutaisi International Airport, is a small airport located in Kutaisi, Georgia.
Designed by Dutch architecture firm UNStudio, the building features bright red colors that help passengers to easily navigate the airport.
The building also features large windows, creating a light-filled interior with views of the Caucasus Mountains.
Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport
Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport is located in Bao’an district, Shenzhen, China.
Designed by Rome-based architects Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas, the airport’s Terminal 3 building is considerably unique as it looks like a manta ray from above.
Pulkovo International Airport
Designed by London-based architecture firm Grimshaw Architects, Pulkovo International Airport in St. Petersburg, Russia, was completed in 2014 and is expected to welcome around 12 million passengers each year.
The building features a large flat roof that can withstand heavy snowfall.
Queen Alia International Airport
Situated in Amman, Jordan, Queen Alia International Airport features concrete domes designed by Foster+Partners. The domes are said to be inspired by Bedoui tents and its underside is embossed like the surface of a leaf. Browns and cream colors match the surrounding desert.
Changi Airport in Singapore is frequently voted as one of the best airports in the world.
The airport’s Terminal 3 was opened in 2008, allowing it to welcome more passengers.
In addition to its swanky design, Terminal 3 also includes a “Green Wall” and a butterfly garden. (jes/kes)