Dubai’s iconic sail-shaped Burj al-Arab hotel is to be extended with a 10,000 square metre deck, jutting out into the waters of the Arabian Gulf.
The deck, constructed by a Finnish marine building firm, is the biggest revamp to take place since the hotel’s completion in 1999. It will open to guests in the second quarter of 2016, according to Jumeirah Group, the hotel’s management chain. Accomodating not only 32 cabanas, the deck will also have 400 sun loungers, two water pools, a restaurant and a bar. On arrival at the hotel in mid-February, the six sections will be lifted by crane and lowered onto a grid of 90 steel piles.
“This is the first time a structure of this nature and size has been built in one country and then transported to another country to be assembled and operated,” Jumeirah Group’s chief operating officer Robert Swade said. The hotel, where rooms start at around $1,800 per night, is undergoing a number of upgrades, including a bar on the 27th floor.
Over the past one-and-a-half decades, the Burj al-Arab has seen a flood of rivals vying for position as the city’s most well-known structure.