Plaza Las Americas

Merit Award

Located in the Hato Rey district of San Juan, Plaza Las Americas shopping center has recently undergone a $210 million renovation and expansion. The design blends the climate, culture, heritage, and plants and flowers of the region into an array of tropical sights, sounds, and experiences in the form of several themed courts. These unique themed environments include a tropical rainforest, flora, fauna, stars, rain, and the arrival of Christopher Columbus. The look and feel of the environmental graphics at Plaza Las Americas incorporate indigenous materials and fabrication methods. The interior and exterior signage utilize wrought iron and the hand-drawn qualities and vibrant color of icons created from native Indian stone-carved petroglyphs. Key to each themed area is a dramatic three-dimensional glass and metal sculpture, many parts of which leap into two and three story volumes.

Jury Comments: 

"The look and feel of these environmental graphics jump out as a winner. A very delicate use of wrought iron combined with incredible metal sculptures make this project a success. But the incorporation of glass sculpture and decorative paving medallions illustrated by local artisans make it outstanding."

"A thoroughly artistic approach to a massive retail space that comes off wonderfully!"

Design Firm: 

RTKL Associates


Empresas Fonalledas

Location City: 

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Project Area: 


Open Date: 


Project Budget: 


Photo Credits: 

David Whitcomb/RTKL Associates, Inc.

Design Team: 

Phil Engelke (Principal in Charge), Jamie Pett, AIA, John Scheffel, Jennifer McKinney Cardinal


Jo Schneider LLC (sculptor/architect)


Cornelius Architectural Products

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