Author: Peter Matthews
Right at the top of the pile however, comes the Burj Al Arab – a glittering jewel in Dubai’s thriving hotel economy.
Built on its very own artificial island, the luxury hotel opened its doors in 1999 after five solid years of construction work.
An impressive 70,000 cubic metres of concrete and more than 9,000 tons of steel were used in its construction, with the final product designed to resemble an Arabian dhow sail in ‘tribute’ to Dubai’s nautical traditions. At 321 m (1,053 ft), it’s currently the fourth tallest hotel in the world.
A one- bedroom suite at the hotel – one of the city’s most recognisable landmarks – starts off at a fairly ‘modest’ thousand pound, while a stay in a Royal Suite will comfortably set you back over £12,000 per night. This gives ‘the Burj’, as it’s fondly known, the honour of the title of Dubai’s most expensive hotel – in addition to its predestined status as one of its most luxurious.
But in a city that is a byword for ostentation and excessive spending, what singles out the self-proclaimed ‘only seven-star hotel in the world’ from other competitors? And why exactly is ‘The Burj’ the ultimate in over-the-top opulence? Spear’s took a little time to find out…