I have been to Dubai twice now (for the marathon both times) and the one thing you really take away from the city is that they really, really want to have the biggest/tallest/longest of everything.
Now, they are looking to do it again. They are launching out to build the new Dubai Mall of the World that will dwarf their existing malls. The amazing part is that their current malls – the Dubai Mall and the Mall of the Emirates – are already the largest malls in the world. This new mall arena will be almost four times the area of the Dubai Mall!
Dubai’s Mall of the World – the $7 Billion Mini-City
What is going to be in this behemoth? Well,supposedly one of the big parts is that the entire complex is going to be air-conditioned. If you have ever been to Dubai, you know that it can get hot there (I was there in January and it was hot). In the summer, the temps can really just bake you. Dubai is wanting to change some of that by offering visitors and residents alike a place that they never need to go out from – their whole life can take place in this air-conditioned mall, or actually more of a mini-city.
Dubai is putting forth the plan to have the air-conditioned, covered retail street network. The total distance of these streets will be about 4.5 miles within the shopping complex! In addition the shopping area itself will take up 8 million sq. ft. of area.
This new complex is estimated to have a total of 20,000 hotel rooms spread out amongst 100 hotels and serviced apartments. That amounts to about 20% of all the hotel rooms in New York City! These hotels will all be networked to the other areas of the complex allowing guests and residents to stay in the cool arena.
They will also be installing a 3 million sq ft wellness complex for medical tourists. Not sure what all they will be putting in this area, but whatever ends up here (including options for surgery), you can bet it will be at the very high-end of medical treatment facilities.
Part of the complex will be reserved for a cultural area that is being modeled after New York’s Broadway. In addition, this will also house the largest indoor family theme park in the world (again, why not?:) )
The cost for all if this is slated at 2.5 billion AED per year, or 25 billion over the 10 year life of the project. That works out to being just under $7 billion! This is a massive undertaking and something that Dubai is putting a lot of hope into.
The one thing that was not listed that I would really like – for the Dubai Marathon to take place on the streets within this new mini-city. That would be an incredible experience!