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McMurtry College ranks amongst world's most beautiful dorms

By Andrew Ta     9/19/12 7:00pm


McMurtry College was included on FlavorWire's list of "The Most Beautiful College Dorms in the World," published on Sept. 14. McMurtry stands among 10 dormitories from locations around the world, including France, the Netherlands, Denmark and Slovenia. 

According to the FlavorWire website, Flavorpill Productions, LLC, covers international events, art, books, music, and pop culture. 

In the article, McMurtry is described with a single phrase. 

"If only our college dining hall was that awesome," the website states. 

According to the article, McMurtry College, which opened in 2009, was designed by Hopkins Architects of London working in conjunction with Hanbury Evans Wright Vlattas and Company. 

McMurtry College president Peter Abraham said that finding out he lives in what others consider one of the most beautiful dorms in the world made him prouder to be not only a resident, but also a Rice student. 

"Seeing the ranking made me appreciate the building and facilities that we have here - not just at McMurtry but at Rice as a whole," Abraham, a junior, said. "It's really easy to take for granted that we live on one of the most beautiful college campuses in the world. Articles like the recent one are great for all Rice students because it reminds us how privileged we are to be living on such a beautiful campus."

Sid Richardson College sophomore Kara van Schilfgaarde echoed Abraham's opinion. 

"It's really exciting that Rice made that list," Schilfgaarde said. "We know we have a beautiful school, but it's nice to show the world that Lovett Hall isn't our only architectural masterpiece."

McMurtry freshman Kate Nicholson said she specifically loves the sundeck and the McMurtry Commons. 

"With beautiful wood, bright lights and wrap-around windows, [the ranking] is no surprise," Nicholson said. "The underrated sundeck gives us a fantastic place to have fun, study and relax outside."

McMurtry Master Karim Al-Zand said the commons was his favorite location. 

"The McMurtry commons, which the list singles out in particular, is bright and colorful," Al-Zand, an associate professor of music composition and theory, said. "Its design is also spacious and flexible enough to accommodate the considerable variety of events we hold there."

Al-Zand said he appreciated McMurtry and Duncan College's unique aesthetics. 

"All of the buildings at Rice have a unique appearance, which I think is part of the charm of the campus," Al-Zand said. "McMurtry and Duncan's aesthetic well-complements the modern look of other buildings like the Brochstein Pavilion and Brockman Hall."

Jones College freshman Mario Aragon said he didn't particularly find the college deserving of its placement on the list. 

"You know the world has issues when McMurtry is picked as one of the most beautiful college dormitories in the [world], but [it's] what can be expected when things as simple as dots on a wall are considered modern art," Aragon said. 

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