Dubai is “the city of superlatives.” Just take note of these:
Dubai’s Mall of the World is yet another record-breaking structure once it’s completely constructed. It is dubbed as a “city within a city” having an impressive area of about 48 million sq. ft. It is designed to have 7km of temperature-controlled boulevards modeled on Oxford Street and Broadway, which will be roofed during summer and covered during the cold months.
The mall will house no less than 100 hotels and adequate amenities – restaurants and food courts, every imaginable shop, medical facilities, an underwater zoo, an Aquarium said to have the biggest viewing panels in the world, an Olympic-sized ice skating rink, etc. – to make a self-contained structure without the visitors having to go out for something else.
Burj Khalifa is Dubai’s most recent and exclusive offering to those who seek opulence and great experiences – view, music, complimentary drinks, and posh lounge area. It has a platform that offers the visitors a sweeping view of the city from the coastal Palm Jumeirah hotel to the vast flat desert extending beyond the metropolis.
To get here, however, you have to brave the ear-popping 555m or 148 floors ascent to the top of the world’s highest man-made structure, but that is all worth with the experience that waits.
The Pearl of Dubai is another world’s best when it comes to underwater theme park. It was designed and is being developed by no less than the Reef Worlds, an underwater design company from Los Angeles. This 5-acre water park is staged in the coastal waters of The World Islands, was modeled after the proverbial lost city of Atlantis and inspired by the top grosser Hollywood movies Avatar and Pirates of the Caribbean.
There are more to see in this “city of superlatives” that continue to lure travelers with a penchant for one-of-a-kind experiences. There’s the Indoor Ski Park and the nearby Snow Park sitting on a 22,500 square-meter ground with five slopes of varying levels of difficulties. The construction of the Dubai Eye will surpass the current biggest Ferris wheel, the 165-meter Singapore Flyer. Dubai is also home to the world’s tallest hotel, the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai and Cayan Tower, the 75-storey twisted tower, as well as Dubai Miracle Garden, the underwater Dubai’s Water Discus Hotel and artificial islands -The Palm Jumeirah, Palm Deira and Palm Jebel Ali.
The Rise and Domination of World’s Air Traffic
With all these fabulous attractions (with some even bordering to being extreme and outrageous), it is not surprising that Dubai also has the world’s busiest airport. In fact, Dubai’s Mall of the World had more visitors than New York in 2014. You can glean how Dubai surpassed the world’s topnotch air hubs from this article by Jolyon Attwooll entitled “The Incredible Rise of Dubai as the World’s Air Travel Hub” posted in Telegraph Travel – Destinations Section.
“… Data released by the Airports Council International showed that almost 69 million (68.9m) international passengers had passed through the airport in the 12 months to the end of September, compared to 67.8m in Heathrow.
Dubai is also leading 2014 (January-September) in terms of international passengers, with a shade more than 52 million until the end of the same month, compared to 51.7m for Heathrow.
Paul Griffiths, the chief executive of Dubai Airports, said he was confident statistics would show the airport had ended 2014 with more than 70 million passengers, confirming its place as the world’s busiest international hub.”
Dubai Airport was not even among the top 30 busiest airports in the world in 2007 despite having an average of 34.3M passengers passing through it. It started showing up the following year. Around 2008 and upon the inauguration of the Emirates terminal 3, Willie Walsh, then chief executive of British Airways has already predicted that the rise will be astonishing. Despite the inevitability and prediction, the phenomenal growth is still impressive. Since then, the number of passengers passing or visiting Dubai has steadily increased.
According to DCTM or Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, there was an 11.1 percent increase in the number of visitors that arrived in the city in the first 6 months of the 2014; more are expected this year and in the coming years. In fact, Dubai is anticipating it will dominate the world’s air traffic by 2020 with a projected 98.5M passengers landing in its airport.
The staggering figure will make up 22 percent of the Emirate’s employment and the current airport will not suffice for the overwhelming demand. Expansions are underway to accommodate five runways and over 160 million passengers. Indeed, the number of passengers arriving in the city since 2008 has not abated. It continues to increase; twofold in 2008 and counting. With the rapid growth, all statistics and evidences show that Dubai has little sign of slowing down.
Dubai has overtaken top airports such as Heathrow, but the combination of the different airports in London – Heathrow, London City, Stansted, Gatwick, Luton, and Southend – remains to be a tough one to beat at a combined total 140 million passengers in 2013. At the rate Dubai is fast becoming a unique and lavish destination for many, it is soaring high and it will just be a matter of time before it completely dominates the air space.
Do you often go on international travel? If you do, chances are you’ve landed in Dubai and you were sure glad to stay for a few hours or days in such an entertaining and posh destination. You would be one of those who would understand why this city of superlatives is becoming a top hub for air travel.