Burj Al Arab
What is common between the Tower Bridge of London and the Eiffel Tower of Paris? What can we see in the amphitheatre of Rome, the Piazza del Popolo or the Acropolis of Athens? It is quite easy to find out: they are all trademarks of a capital. Dubai has long viewed these trademarks not with envy but with admiration. Until it got to the level, where it had so much money, that it felt that it can do anything in the world, and create anything with the power of the money. Dubai has two trademarks. The first is the money itself; the other is the one it had to create for itself with the help of the architecture. This is the trademark that Burj Al Arab had become, for Dubai.
Burj Al Arab has the distinctive form enabling it to become iconic. The well-known architect Tom Wright had plans to make it a trademark. The basic idea was, to create something that was not only architecturally different but also something, which can for sure relate to Dubai. In addition, this is, the dhow, the vessel that has been long time used in Dubai for transportation of goods, of people and basically was the best used in the everyday life of the Dubai people.
The first name of the hotel had been Chicago Beach Hotel as the whole project, aiming to renew the whole Dubai Beach had been called Chicago Beach project. The project covered the area where now Burj Al Arab is. Wild Wadi Dubai and the other huge Jumeirah hotel, the Jumeirah Beach Hotel is located. However, later on, due to the Sheikh’s decision, the hotel got its new name Burj Al Arab. Burj means gate in Arabic. The constructions of the hotel have started in 1994 and the hotel opened its gates in 1997 for the public. It is interesting to note, that Burj al Arab is famous throughout the world as the one and only Seven-Star Hotel in the world, but it is not true, just promotional. In real, Burj Al Arab is a five Star hotel, which is still the highest category a hotel can own.
Burj Al Arab's height is 321 metres tall and its build on a manmade island gained from the sea being 280 metres far from the shore of the Jumeirah Beach. The hotel looks like a lonely dhow, the Arabic vessel standing vertically. Thanks to its unique shape, Burj Al Arab Hotel owns the largest and tallest atrium with its height of 180 metres. The Burj Al Arab is the second largest hotel in the world, by means of hotels that are exclusively used as such. The hotel has 28 floors with altogether 202 rooms. Of course, Burj Al Arab is the priciest hotel in Dubai, and it is the most popular one too.
The hotel houses several catering facilities, out of which the Al Muntaha and the Al Manara are the most famous. Al Muntaha, meaning the Highest in Arabic, is located on the top of the hotel, giving a fantastic view to the nearby Wild Wadi Dubai and the whole Jumeirah Beach, with New Dubai in the background, not to mention the beautiful water of Persian Gulf. Al Manara is world famous for being an underwater restaurant featuring an extra large circular shaped Aquqarium with hundreds of seafishes swimming inside. Al Manara is also very famous for its great quality seafood. Unfortunately, it is rather hard to get into one of these restaurants, as they are always fully booked.
Burj Al Arab is a hotel really worth seeing and that is for sure. As the Nr.1 gem of Dubai beach, the Burj Al Arab is indeed the trademark of Dubai. The rooms are highly expensive but could keep you from walking beside it day by day, on the Jumeirah Beach, while you are in Dubai.