Shopping in Dubai? Visit the world’s tallest building too
By Amanda Grateley
DUBAI, February 14, 2010 – Shopping for jewellery in Dubai? Tourists might also want to go up the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, which towers over The Dubai Mall, the world’s largest shopping and entertainment centre.
The Burj Khalifa dominates the skyline as visitors approach The Dubai Mall, which houses many of the world’s leading jewellery brands.
Tourists can take a 55-second ride to the 124th floor observation deck of the Burj Khalifa, formerly Burj Dubai and renamed after the president of the United Arab Emirates when it opened in early January, after Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan guaranteed billions of dollars of Dubai’s debts.
The Burj Khalifa was closed for maintenance last week after unexpectedly high visitor traffic.
Tickets to the highest observation deck in the world, costing about 20 pounds each, are likely to be hot property when the skyscraper reopens.
Emaar Properties has spent $1.5 billion on the tower since construction started in 2004. Around 12,000 workers were involved at the peak of construction.
One of the best views of the Burj Khalifa can be found at the 5-star Address Downtown Dubai hotel, where diners look onto the raging fountains display in front of the Burj Khalifa.
A wall of white water bursts across the skyline at regular intervals from the stunning Dubai Fountain against the backdrop of the imposing Burj Khalifa as its lights come on at sunset.
TOP JEWELLERY BRANDS
The Address Downtown Dubai hotel is flanked by The Dubai Mall, which has a labyrinthine gold souk and showcases many of the world’s top jewellery brands, including Cartier, Graff, Bulgari and Van Cleef & Arpels, as well as watch brands, such as Carl F. Bucherer.
The gold souk of The Dubai Mall hosts a large number of gold jewellers, just a short distance from a variety of shops and department stores, including Bloomingdale’s and Galeries Lafayette, as well as an underwater zoo, cinema complex and Food Court.
On a recent visit to the gold souk, a collection of high quality, framed oil paintings of Emirati royals was on display.
A selection of super-cars, including bespoke Porsches, Mercedes and Lamborghinis, stood in a circle between Cartier and Graff.
Despite the opulence, a glance from The Dubai Mall across the city of gold reveals that the worries over Dubai’s debt crisis are far from over.
The skyline surrounding The Dubai Mall and the Burj Khalifa is dotted with becalmed tower cranes and dozens of half-finished buildings.