Dubai

Located on the southeast coast of the Persian Gulf, Dubai has the largest population in the UAE. The earliest recorded settlement in the region only dates from 1799 when 800 members of the Bani Yas tribe settled on Dubai Creek. Dubai grew into an important regional port.

Historically Dubai’s economy was built on the oil industry. That is no longer the case today since its main revenues now come from tourism, aviation, real estate, and financial services. This cosmopolitan metropolis has grown steadily to become a global city and a business and cultural hub of the Middle East. The city has become symbolic for its unique architecture, skyscrapers and huge buildings such as the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building.

The Burj Al Arab is the fourth tallest hotel in the world and said by many to be the only “7 star” hotel in the world. Completed in 1999 with a design to mimic the sail of a ship it has only 28 double-story floors which accommodate 202 bedroom suites. The smallest suite is about 1820 sq. ft. and costs about $1300 US dollars per night. The largest suite covers 8400 sq. ft. The hotel stands on an artificial island connected to the mainland by a private bridge. Only people who have reservations for the restaurant, afternoon tea, or a room are allowed to cross the bridge and enter the building.