Dubai Architecture Guide: Iconic Structures That Rise From The Desert

Dubai, one of the most recent metropolises in the world, is the result of hard work, vision and ambition. It was once just a barren desert but the discovery of oil propelled it into development. Even after the depletion of oil this city continued to thrive – especially thanks to tourism and all the things to do in Dubai! It is proof that the prosperity of this land and its people is not just pure luck. Due to limitations of oil reserves, the city turned to tourism for its income. Thus, creating some of the most iconic skyscrapers and the need for my Dubai Architecture Guide! Based on western business principles, the city thrived through tourism, real estate, hosting sport events and financial services giving rise to some of the most iconic structures seen in the world as a testament of their success.

 Dubai Architecture Guide For Travellers!

Burj Al Arab Dubai Architecture Guide

Dubai Architecture Guide:  Burj Al Arab

The Burj al-Arab (Tower of the Arabs) is a luxury hotel located in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is the fourth tallest hotel in the world, standing 321m. Burj Al Arab stands on an artificial island near Jumeirah beach and is connected to the mainland by a bridge. The structure is inspired by a ship’s sail what stand out across the Dubai skyline! The Burj Al Arab is a five-star hotel. Sometimes it is mistakenly addressed as the only seven start hotels in existence.

Burj Khalifa Dubai Architecture Guide United Arab Emirates

Dubai Architecture Guide: Burj Khalifa

The Burj Khalifa (“Khalifa Tower”), the tallest tower known to mankind. It is a rare architectural feat. It was designed by Adrian Smith. The design is derived from the Islamic architecture of the region. It is the tallest structure in the world, standing at 829.8 m (2,722 ft.). The building was named in honor of the ruler of Abu Dhabi and president of the United Arab Emirates, Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The decision to build Burj Khalifa is reportedly based on the government’s decision to diversify from an oil-based economy to one that is service and tourism based. Burj Khalifa was built to bring more international recognition to UAE.

Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel Dubai Architecture Guide United Arab Emirates

Dubai Architecture Guide: Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel

Jumeirah Emirates Hotel Tower, also known as Emirates Tower Two, is a 56-storey hotel in the financial district of Dubai. The hotel includes 40 luxury suites and is operated by the Jumeirah International Group. The structure is 309 m (1,014 ft.) tall, Emirates Towers Hotel is the smaller of the two sister towers. It ranks as the 48th-tallest building in the world. It is the world’s third-tallest all-hotel building.

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Sheikh Rashid Tower Dubai Architecture Guide United Arab Emirates

Dubai Architecture Guide: Sheikh Rashid Tower

Sheikh Rashid Tower built in 1979 is part of the Dubai World Trade Center Complex. Renamed after the late Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Madtom, it is 39 stogeys tall. Today the tower does not stand alone, it is surrounded by exhibition halls and ballrooms, it is now part of a complex.

Etisalat Tower 2 Dubai Architecture Guide United Arab Emirates

Dubai Architecture Guide: Etisalat Tower 2

The Etisalat Tower 2 is a 33-floor tower in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The tower has a total structural height of 185 m (607 ft.). This structure was completed in 2007, the unique spherical ball on top of the structure makes it stand out.

Dubai Water Canal Dubai Architecture Guide United Arab Emirates

Dubai Architecture Guide: Dubai Water Canal

The recently inaugurated artificial water canal is an attempt by the Dubai government to further its economy, by creating more tourism and financial hotspots. The canal is 3km long all the way from business bay to the Persian Gulf. Currently the canal has been opened but the development along its banks is yet to begin. The canal is known for the iconic bridge above it offers a great view of the Dubai skyline – but of course don’t forget to check out some of these less popular Dubai attractions! 

Dubai Marina Dubai Architecture Guide United Arab Emirates

Dubai Architecture Guide: Dubai Marina

One of my favorite places in Dubai, the Dubai Marina is an artificially created canal city, with residential complexes along a 3 km long artificial canal. It is very beautiful and very well landscaped. A perfect end to this Dubai Architecture Guide, and a perfect end to any day in Dubai!

Guest Post by Febin Thomas. Febin is an architecture student from India. Born and raised in Dubai. He hopes to travel around the globe one day. Fascinated by the cultures and ways of life of the people around the world. For more of his photography you can contact him via Facebook.


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