Meet any person returning from Dubai and you will hear raving accounts of their wonderful and fascinating trip to this metropolis in the United Arab Emirates. So, what is it that makes Dubai a favorite of travelers? While it most certainly would not be one singular genre of attraction, Dubai particularly astounds every visitor and native with its architectural innovations. Albeit difficult to pick among the huge and impressive list of architectural wonders, ten stand out as absolute head turners.
1) Burj Khalifa Tower
Burj Khalifa: Inaugurated seven years back in 2010, the Burj Khalifa holds the distinction of being the tallest and most occupied building in the world. It stands at an impressive 829 meters and is in the heart of Dubai’s Downtown District. The architecture by Adrian Smith is designed to include a residential section. The building also hosts the Armani Hotel and several dining options. Burj Khalifa resembles a rocket ship standing erect leaving the onlooker with the feeling that it could take off any minute!
2) Burj al Arab Hotel
Burj al Arab: A one-of-a-kind hotel, Burj al Arab, is luxury personified. It stands at a height of 321 meters on its own man-made island! The hotel is designed to resemble a sail by the architect Tom Wright with its outstanding feature being the helipad on the rooftop. This helipad boasts of hosting several celebrity events with the most prominent one being the tennis game between Andre Agassi and Roger Federer.
3) Cayan Tower
Cayan Tower: Set on Dubai Marina, Cayan Tower stands out for its 90-degree twist. This unique architecture was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merill and has fast become every photographer’s delight. The tower houses 75 stories and stands 306 meters tall.
4) Atlantis The Palm Hotel
Atlantis The Palm: Atlantis The Palm Hotel is strategically situated on the head of the fascinating Palm Jumeirah of Dubai. The hotel is one among Dubai’s magnificent buildings. The architecture by Wimberly, Allison, Tong and Goo is planned around the theme of a fabled lost city with its Arabic arches visible from any corner of the Palm and the coastline.
5) Jumeirah Beach Hotel
Jumeirah Beach Hotel: Set close to the Burj al Arab, Jumeirah Beach Hotel was built two decades ago. The hotel stands out for its extraordinary wave-like design by WS Atkins. The building which is curved both on the level and elevation sections, results in creating a stunning breaking-wave effect which perfectly complements the sail-like design of Burj al Arab.
6) Emirates Tower
Emirates Tower: Designed by Hazel Wong, the Emirates Towers houses two buildings; the Emirates Office Towers and the Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel. The commercial part of the building overlooks the financial district of Dubai. The hotel tower has approximately 400 rooms and suites and access to Wild Wadi Waterpark.
7) Princess Tower
Princess Tower: Holding a name in the Guinness Book of World Records till 2012 as the world’s tallest residential building, Princess Tower stands 414 meters tall. Designed by Eng. Adnan Saffarini Office, it is one of the most expensive properties of this modern city and yet the most sought after. And why not? With 763 apartments that spill opulence and views of the Dubai Marina, every apartment in this 101-story skyscraper is a prized acquisition.
8) JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Hotel
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Hotel: Not just the tallest residential building but the distinction of having the tallest hotel in the world also goes to Dubai because of JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Hotel. This 72-story building designed by Arch Group Consultants is 355 meters tall and has two iconic towers.
9) Jumeirah Lakes Towers
Jumeirah Lakes Towers: Consisting of 87 towers, Jumeirah Lakes Towers is a property on Sheikh Zayed Road. The property has clusters of residential and commercial towers spread over 1.35 million square feet and grouped around four artificial lakes. The credit for this massive multiple use project goes to the architecture of Hazel W.S. Wong Norr.
10) Etisalat Tower
Etisalat Tower: The Etisalat Buildings in Dubai like Etisalat Tower 1, Etisalat Tower2, Sharjah Etisalat Tower, Al Ain Etisalat Tower and Ajman Etisalat Tower, are built with the same materials and bear the signature design of a spherical structure on the top of every tower akin to an oversized golf ball. The design is attributed to architect Arthur Erickson.
Every building in Dubai is captivating and each architectural plan a marvel. As for travelers to Dubai, it is nothing less than inspiring.