28 Apr THE CAPITALS OF LUXURY: DUBAI
Dubai is a kind of place that you need to see with your own eyes to say it’s reality. And event then, you still have a voice inside your head telling that the masterpiece around you must be a dream. Architectural works that are challenging the laws of physics. Artificial islands overlooking the bay. Nor sky, nor sea is the limit. Because Dubai has no limits. Is the city of the future, a perfect mix of science-fiction literature and a comic of Walt Disney.
From the first oil-well, to the highest building on earth
Dubai is the most populous city in the United Arab Emirates and is capital of one of the seven emirates that make up the country. It is located on the southeast coast of the Persian Gulf, inside the Arabian desert. This site is a crucial spot for international trade and this is what made the fortune of the city in the XX century. The access to the sea became a huge opportunity for foreign investments. No doubt that the area around the port became the banking and financial centre of the city.
The trade of pearls put Dubai on the map during the 30’s, but it was only in 1966 that the rising started. In that year was found the presence of a massive oil field in the nearby area. That place was later called “Fateh”, literally “good fortune”. The massive changes of the landscape began in the following years, culminating with the new millennium transformation into the capital of luxury.
The grand open of Burj Al-Arab, the first 7 stars rated hotel of the world, marks the start of a new era for Dubai: the era of luxury. In 2003 where placed the first stones of many ambitious project like the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower with its 163 floors and 829,8 meters (completed in 2010 and still Guinness World Record).
One of the main beauty in Dubai is the close-proximity of futuristic skyscrapers to historical buildings like the Al Fahidi Fort, built in 1787 and the oldest building in the city. Since the 1971 is the location of Dubai Museum. The exhibitions includes local antiquities as well as artifacts from African and Asian countries that traded with Dubai. It also includes several dioramas showing life in the emirate before the advent of oil, in addition to artifacts from recent discoveries as old as 3000 BC.
The artificial islands of Dubai
Men have always felt the need to conquer the seas. The city of Dubai has taken that need to the next level with the Palms Islands, the triumph of human genius. Three artificial islands with the shape of a palm tree, constructed from sand dredged from the bottom of the Persian Gulf.
In Palm Jumeirah, the first island completed, there are residential areas and luxury hotels like the Atlantis, with over 2.000 rooms, one of the biggest Water Park in the Middle-East and an aquarium with many connections to the myth of Atlantis. The island is connected via monorail that goes along the “trunk” of the palm.
The other two islands, Palm Jebel Ali and Palm Deira are still under construction. At the end of the entire project, the complex is going to host over 100 luxury hotel, exclusive residential sites, ports, parks, restaurants, malls and hot springs.