Just in time for the 2020 Expo, Dubai will have expanded itself into the sea in the form of two man-made islands. Marsa Al Arab, the pair of man-made islands, will be located on either side of the Dubai’s iconic sail-shaped hotel, the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah. The total space of these islands will be four million square feet. The project will add a further 1.4 miles of beach and is estimated to cost around $1.72 billion.
Family friendly and luxury offerings
One of the islands will feature a 2.5 million square-foot marine park amongst other attractions aimed to attract family tourism. This island will offer 300 seafront apartments. It will be the home of the first ever Cirque du Soleil show in the Middle East. To top off the family-friendly attractions there will also be a 1,700 seat theatre.
The other island will host a boutique hotel, as well as 14-luxury villas and a marina. The Marsa Al Arab island development will also add another 2,400 hotel rooms to the Jumeirah Group’s portfolio.
Artificial islands experts
The Jumeriah Group certainly don’t lack experience when it comes to making man-made islands. They group manages the Burj Al Arab, situated 280 metres off the shore of the Jumeirah Beach. This was constructed in 1994 on artificial land. After this the group built other artificial islands, both larger and more complex, some of which were more successful than others. Sea dredgers are used in order to create these artificial islands.
The Jumeriah Group is part of Dubai Holding, a company which is majority-owned by the Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Unique offerings and unprecedented achievements
His Excellency Abdulla Al Habbai said, “The launch of this new and ambitious project is in line with the directives of the visionary leadership to provide the finest and rewarding tourist experiences for visitors to Dubai, as well as enhance Dubai’s position as a global tourist destination.
“Dubai has achieved a global reputation for unique offerings and unprecedented achievements. This was feasible through proper planning and accurate execution of such projects, complemented by in-depth knowledge of the local market’s needs and capabilities. As part of strengthening local capabilities, Marsa Al Arab will support Emiratisation in the tourism sector by providing new job opportunities and encouraging UAE Nationals to commit their innovative and creative ideas to this vital sector,” he added.