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How Abu Dhabi is aiming to be one of a world’s good artistic centres

January 22nd, 2016 by admin | Filed under Blog.

Abu Dhabi is operative tough to settle itself as a Middle East’s many critical informative end – an artistic valuables in a desert. 

At a heart of this informative series will be a opening of an £85million outpost of a Louvre gallery after this year – though a Louvre Abu Dhabi will be only one of several ‘starchitect’-designed mega-galleries opening between now and 2020. 

Along with a Frank Gehrydesigned bend of a Guggenheim (12 times bigger than New York’s original) and a Sheikh Zayed National Museum (a Foster + Partners-designed partnership with a British Museum), a devise is to emanate a marvellous humanities hub. 

Zayed National Museum is only one of a ‘starchitect’-designed mega-galleries opening between now and 2020

Zayed National Museum is only one of a ‘starchitect’-designed mega-galleries opening between now and 2020

But this blast of good ambience is only one of a emirate’s new developments creation Abu Dhabi a Middle East’s must-see end this year. 

Largest of a 7 Arab Emirates and collateral of UAE, Abu Dhabi already has a abounding informative tradition. 

My initial stop was a iconic Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque – an astonishingly outrageous structure of intense white marble, featuring 86 domes and 4 minarets, upheld by some-more than 1,000 columns. 

There’s room for 41,000 worshippers, and a walls and floors are inlaid with semi-precious stones, mother-of-pearl and gold. The building is lonesome by a world’s biggest hand-knotted carpet, and outrageous 24- carat gold-gilded clear chandeliers (also a world’s largest) hang from a roof – they are so large they have stairs inside for a cleaners. 

That afternoon, we done a approach to a Eastern Mangroves Hotel Spa by Anantara. Set on a waterway unaware a sprawling Eastern Mangrove National Park, we enjoyed a idle lunch gazing out on to a pleasing wetlands, plentiful with herons, warblers, kingfishers and flamingos. 

It’s an halcyon mark and we climbed aboard a dhow – a wooden vessel traditionally used by pearl divers – to journey along a lifelike canal. Falcons are a inhabitant birds of Abu Dhabi, and falconry is a inhabitant sport. 

Female birds (the fastest, drifting adult to an startling 220mph) can set we behind anything adult to £100,000. Abu Dhabi founded a world’s initial Falcon Hospital in 1999 where owners can move ill or harmed birds. 

Futuristic: The large waterslide during Waterworld located on Yas Island - that is famous as a party isle

Futuristic: The large waterslide during Waterworld located on Yas Island – that is famous as a party isle

The sanatorium also offers a falcon bathing service. It was a marvellously surreal sight, examination traditionally dressed Emiratis patiently queuing during reception, hooded falcons on their arms prepared to get their beaks embellished and small feet massaged. 

Abu Dhabi is indeed an archipelago of 200 islands set on a Arabian Gulf. Just 15 mins by speedboat from Saadiyat Island, Zaya Nurai is being grown as a five-star Maldives-style review island. 

A ideal honeymoon end with 32 elegant, butler-tended beachfront villas and a spa, it also creates a illusory day trip: paddleboarding and kayaking on a palm-fringed cerulean waters of a Arabian Gulf seemed a universe divided from Abu Dhabi’s ultra-modern, high-rise cityscape. 

Yas Island is famous as a party isle and facilities thesis parks such as Waterworld and Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, whose Formula Rossa rollercoaster is a fastest in a universe (after rocketing around a lane during 150mph, we had to check we was still wearing my bra!). 

Opening this spring, a park’s Flying Aces float is set to be a world’s steepest rollercoaster, featuring a world’s tallest loop – a stomachchurning 170ft. To find a bearings, we visited Tower 2 of Etihad Towers on Abu Dhabi’s categorical island. Zooming adult 74 floors in a lift, we were greeted with a mocktail as we stepped out on to a Observation Deck during ‘300’. 

This cafe-cum-lookout wraps around a building 300 metres – about 1,000ft – up: floor-to-ceiling monumental windows offer monumental views opposite a city and a Arabian Gulf. 

Abu Dhabi founded a world’s initial Falcon Hospital in 1999 where owners can move ill or harmed birds

Abu Dhabi founded a world’s initial Falcon Hospital in 1999 where owners can move ill or harmed birds

Etihad Towers is one of Abu Dhabi’s landmark structures: 5 mountainous towers designed in a figure of palm fronds, curving over a Corniche – a renouned five-mile brush of primitive beachfront. 

The 66-storey, five-star Jumeirah hotel is set in one of a towers, and from a room we marvelled during a oppulance cars cruising adult and down a Corniche below. Dubai might have a repute as a Middle East’s glitzy playground, though Abu Dhabi is no slump in a stylish stakes, with a Corniche a epicentre. 

The glinting Etihad Towers formidable – with a engineer shops, restaurants, Talise sauna and chi chi late-night Ray’s Bar – is a jetset magnet. (I desired eating during Pearls, Michelin-starred UK cook Michael Caines’ new restaurant, though wish I’d eaten there a week after when Brad Pitt was expected). 

Low-rise to Etihad Towers’ highrise, opposite a highway – set in 200 acres of sensuous landscaped gardens – is a Emirates Palace. Originally designed as a genuine palace, it is one of a many costly hotels ever built, stretching some-more than half a mile from wing to wing. 

It’s unfit not to be tender as we enter a lobby. Looking up, we marvelled during a mountainous golden dome: 240ft high, it’s only one of Emirate Palace’s 114 domes and only partial of a 22,000 sq ft of ceiling, hand-decorated with 22-carat bullion and china leaf. 

There’s so most bullion it has a group of 11 staff dedicated to cleaning it. And we had a double-take during a gold-dispensing appurtenance (index-linked to a batch market) we speckled on a approach to a room. 

If all this sounds like something out of a film, it is: Etihad Towers and Emirates Palace underline in Furious 7, a latest Fast And Furious film. 

We watched it on a moody home sitting during a aircraft’s bar. Whether art residence or multiplex, Abu Dhabi caters for everyone. 

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