Energy consumption in buildings due to heating, cooling and air conditioning (HVAC) systems has a steadily growing trend as a consequence of enhanced indoor thermal comfort conditions. The role of cooling in HVAC oriented energy consumption is remarkable especially in regions with extreme climatic conditions such as Africa and Middle East. In hot and arid climates, cooling demand is usually met by cost-effective evaporative cooling solutions. However, in hot and humid climates, evaporative cooling systems are not capable of providing cooling as the outdoor air is already almost saturated in most cases. Therefore in this research, a novel desiccant-based evaporative cooling system is presented. For different values of inlet supply air temperature and relative humidity provided by a standard environmental chamber, temperature and relative humidity values are measured experimentally at the inlet and outlet of dehumidification and humidification unit, respectively. Since the main purpose of the system developed is to provide cost-effective thermal comfort conditions especially in humid climates, dehumidification effectiveness is calculated for each case tested. The results indicate that the system provides attractive findings for temperate and humid climatic conditions, where stand-alone evaporative cooling systems are inconclusive. For a case of average inlet relative humidity of 94.7% and average inlet air temperature of 38.6 degrees C, the average outlet relative humidity and air temperature are determined to be 65.5% and 33.3 degrees C, respectively. An average of 5.3 degrees C reduction is achieved in supply air temperature as well as an average of 63.7% dehumidification effectiveness which is attractive and promising. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.