The Board of Directors of APL decided to install its offices and formal meeting rooms in the West Wing of Gare Marítima de Alcântara (Alcântara Cruise Terminal). This decision was both a symbolic and functional. Symbolically speaking, the fact the choice fell upon of a building with unequivocal heritage value and one of the first truly modernist buildings in Portugal, is of particular relevance. This choice is appropriately compatible with the solemnity of the new program. Within the city’s context, due to the close relation with the river and proximity to the harbour’s activities, this is a building which is clearly adequate for its new prestigious institutional representativeness, as well it serves the purpose of approximating the harbour’s decision making to its core business.
With its monumental scale, marked by the rhythm of the structure that supports it, the vaulted ceiling of the 1st level is now the setting of a new scenography and formal representation. Here will be taken some of the most important decisions about the future of the Lisbon Harbor, and ultimately a significant part of the City of Lisbon. The space was stripped of any built noise. Being physically impossible to leave the requested program out of this void, the necessary "invasion" of this space was "hidden" behind a mirrored surface positioned along its longitudinal axis. Through the reflexes, this mirrored surface virtually "completes" the vaulted ceiling, creating the illusion of an empty space, restoring its character. “Hiding” beyond this wall, accessed through a generous corridor, one can find the Administrators offices, the President’s office and the Secretariat as well as the sanitary facilities.