ActivityUncover the story of Burj Al Arab

Dubai’s inimitable landmark and the world’s most luxurious all-suite hotel

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Translated into English, the Burj Al Arab literally means ‘the tower of Arabs’, adding a protective elegance to the building’s stance as it soars out of the turquoise shore, keeping a proud watch over Dubai’s dazzling cityscape. Any resident can wax lyrical about the inexplicably fond feelings the building’s sail-like silhouette invokes, illuminated at night-time by twinkling lights and projections. During its launch, one journalist was famously so overwhelmed by the hotel that they felt it must be rated seven stars out of the maximum five-star rating. Photos simply don’t do its ultramodern grandeur and intricacy justice, so we’ve curated countless stories for you to enjoy below to explain the painstaking work and dedication that have led the Burj Al Arab to become such an awe-inspiring experience.

Iconic design

Architecturally designed to resemble a billowing Arabian dhow sail, the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is the tallest all-suite hotel in the world. Standing at 321m tall, 12m taller than The Shard in London and 60m shorter than the Empire State Building in New York, the Burj Al Arab is built on a man-made island 280m off Dubai’s coastline and has the world’s tallest atrium, which ascends over 180m and is flanked by imposing golden columns. Architect Tom Wright of WS Atkins was the concept architect behind the Burj Al Arab, tasked with creating a ground-breaking superstructure that reflected the heritage and traditions of Dubai and Arabia. Renowned Chinese interior designer Khuan Chew, of KCA International, is the woman behind Burj Al Arab's distinctive interiors and has complemented the hotel’s impressive palatial proportions by blending a vibrant colour palette with exquisite materials. More than 30 different types of Statuario marble have been used in the walls and flooring throughout the hotel (covering nearly 24,000sqm) – the same marble that was used by Michelangelo when he created his masterpiece sculptures. Approximately 1,790sqm of 24carat gold leaf was used to embellish the interior and an estimated 86,500 individual hand-fixed pieces of Swarovski crystals have been etched into the frame of the mirror in the Junsui bar and the entrance.

Gold on 27 at Burj Al Arab

Service beyond expectations

The hotel’s dedicated teams go above and beyond guest expectations, no matter how small or big the request may be, including Michelin-starred chefs and mixologists to expert florists and private butlers. The butlers are responsible for offering the most memorable experiences for guests, whilst the Guest Relations team look after the finer day to day details.

Burj Al Arab’s ‘Marhaba Welcome’ is the epitome of Arabian hospitality. Upon arrival, guests are offered rose water, refreshing cold towels, dates and authentic Arabic coffee. The hotel has its own camel named Musafir, which means traveller in Arabic, who offers guests the chance to enjoy a symbolic walk around the grounds of the iconic building. To explore the city and its attractions, Burj Al Arab Jumeirah offers its own fleet of Rolls-Royces, available for guests’ transfers to and from Dubai International Airport or around the emirate, as well as a fleet of BMWs.

A haven of fine dining

Burj Al Arab has become a symbol of culinary excellence in Dubai. Choose from a wealth of restaurants, from leisurely lunch at The Terrace, a beachfront experience at Sal, stylish cocktails with staggering views at Gilt or ascend to 27th floor at six meters per second to enjoy a fusion of French and Italian fine dining at Al Muntaha overlooking the Arabian Gulf.

Sky View also offers spectacular views of the seascape, while Al Iwan’s regal dining hall on the first floor serves up traditional Arabian dishes. Bab Al Yam provides Mediterranean cuisines with Middle Eastern accents with floor-to-ceiling views of the Arabian Gulf, while Sahn Eddar offers a decadent afternoon tea experience as well as an expertly crafted international menu. For the ultimate luxury experience, guests can indulge in a Gold Cappuccino, a luscious coffee topped with 24-carat gold leaf.

Golden cappuccino at Burj Al Arab

Step inside the elegant Burj Al Arab on your next trip to Dubai. With a spectacular location, superb dining and seriously luxurious rooms, you might find it hard to leave. Please make sure you phone ahead of time to check whether opening times may have changed.

Thanks to our new Inside Burj Al Arab experience, you can discover the hidden world of Burj Al Arab and embark on a guided tour of one of the world's most renowned structures.