NCO Club Kadena Air Base

Kadena Air Base, Japan

The Non-Commissioned Officers Club creates a new entertainment experience inspired by Japanese culture. The new 58,000-SF facility contains a ballroom for over 800, meeting rooms, a casual dining restaurant, a sports bar, NCO lounge, a gaming area, a coffee shop, and administrative support. The new facility includes multiple spaces, each with their own unique identity and design. 

Contrary to spaces commonly found in this typology, the incorporation of natural light is an integral part of shaping the atmosphere of each space. The common Japanese pattern “Asa No Ha” is deployed in varying scales and rendered in a variety of materials, stitching the many varied experiences via recognized iconic symbology. The project also includes a complex furniture and kitchen equipment procurement package that includes re-use of certain existing pieces of furniture from the old facility.

Space planning considerations included securing the casino cash out area from unsecured areas, the circulation of 150 guests within the restaurant area, and the addition of outdoor seating adjacent to the ballroom, sports bar, and NCO club. The design incorporates Base standards by using a concrete exterior wall and frame system with concrete roof surfaces. The typical roof height is at 15 feet but raised roof planes occur at the Ballroom, the Sports Bar and the Enlisted Night Lounge. These raised areas have broad overhangs to provide shade for clerestory windows and to help establish a hierarchy to the spaces within the building while providing a lantern effect from the outside in the evening. The Contract Documents incorporate earthquake and typhoon requirements.

The large ballroom is centrally located along this corridor. It can be divided into three smaller areas and can also expand by folding partitions to the flanking meeting rooms. A large open courtyard has been placed at the entry to allow controlled natural light into the ballroom and to allow activities to spill out to an outdoor patio.


US Department of the Air Force

At a glance

58,000 SF

Design charrette

AT/FP criteria

Cost estimating

Food service design


Inspired by Japanese pattern “Asa No Ha”

Complex equipment procurement package

Raised roof planes have broad overhangs to provide shade for clerestory windows




Interior design


Landscape architecture

Sustainable design