The biggest and the brightest

If it’s impressive, imaginative and quite simply audacious, it’s got to be in Dubai. TTN rounds up what’s on offer in the shiniest emirate of all:
The new Dubai sky line

Dubailand, said to occupy more area than the present Dubai city, is witnessing a major real estate development with construction having begun on the key 20-million-sqft City of Arabia component.

With six themed areas, the $5bn Dubailand will host 45 mega projects and over 200 tourism, leisure and entertainment sub projects, making it the most ambitious tourist destination ever created.
Set to be completed some time this year is the Dubai Sunny Mountain Skidome, complete with huge revolving ski slope going through and around an artificial mountain range, all in a bid to recreate the Arctic experience – with real snow! Expect a deluxe hotel built to resemble an iceberg, a shopping mall, restaurants, coffee shops and other retail outlets.
Also at Dubailand is ETA Star Projects’s Dubai Lifestyle City (DLC), a Dh1 billion ($272 million) project spread over an area of four million sqft. It will house the world-class IMG Sports Academy, which will help the city attract top sporting professionals and train new ones. IMG’s two exclusive academies, the Nick Bolleterri Tennis Academy and the David Leidbetter Golf academy will be part of the DLC. A 9-hole executive golf course and driving rink will enable golf lovers unwind and relax within a tranquil atmosphere. The project will also have a seven star hotel with a destination spa and a rejuvenation centre.
The two-billion-sqft Dubailand will be completed between 2015 and 2018.

Burj Dubai
Set to be the world’s tallest building, the Burj Dubai is believed to be at least 705 metres tall – its exact height is unknown to even the developers, who claim they will decide how tall it is to be when the building is near completion in 2008, depending on what the tallest structure in the world is at that time. The tower is set to be the centrepiece of a $8bn mixed-use development that will include commercial, residential, shopping, entertainment, and leisure outlets. Part of this development will be the first Armani Hotel, which will occupy the lower 37 floors and whose interior will be decorated by designer Giorgio Armani.

Raffles Hotel
The region’s first Raffles Hotel comes to Dubai’s Wafi City complex, already home to a fine Egyptian-themed shopping mall. Small by Dubai standards at 19 floors and 101 metres in height, construction is scheduled to end 2007.

Dubai Healthcare City
A luxury five-star hotel is to be built in the heart of the city of Dubai by the region’s leading healthcare, wellness, medical education and research facility, the Dubai Healthcare City. The hotel will be built at an estimated cost of Dh860 million and will be a twin-tower project with one of the towers being a five-star hotel and the other an apartment tower. The development is to be finished by September 2007 and will be connected to the 425-bed teaching hospital and on-campus Harvard Medical School Dubai Center.

Dubai Business Bay
The Business Bay is to be a new city within the city of Dubai and will be created as a commercial and business cluster along a new extension of the famed Dubai Creek. Covering an area of 64 million square feet, it will feature office and residential towers set in landscaped gardens interspersed with a network of roads, pathways and fascinating canals.

The Palm and the World
Three palm-shaped islands make up the Palm project in Dubai. The first, the Palm Jumeirah is in its final stages, having cost Dh22.04 billion ($6bn). It is set to host 30 hotels, approximately 7,000 apartments and 1,800 villas and townhouses and on its trunk, a ‘Golden Mile’ of 220 outlets carrying the world’s most exclusive brands. It will also feature a number of Trump properties, including The Palm Trump International Hotel and Tower, the island’s centrepiece hotel, that will pioneer the condo-hotel concept in the region.
The biggest of the three palms, the Palm Deira, will take another 10 years to complete, being 10 times bigger than the Palm Jumeirah. The third island, the Palm Jebel Ali, will be delivered before then. Finally, the 330 islands that make up The World, a collection of islands being built in the shape of the world’s countries, each being sold at no less than $6 million, is to be ready in early 2007.

Dubai Waterfront
Nakheel’s 81-million sqm beachfront mixed use destination is the world’s largest waterfront offering and is the first phase of the larger 75km Arabian Canal development. The first phase of Dubai Waterfront will focus on Madinat Al Arab, a thriving urban downtown metropolis, including Al Burj, one of the world’s tallest buildings. The project is a collection of canals and islands complete with luxury hotels and homes.