For the love of architecture. The Best!

Opulent 7*

  • Dec 12, 2010
While it is true that some of the best things in life are free, often we have to pay a great deal to enjoy other things. It is then prudent to ask what we are actually paying for. In the past, we pay for quality, authenticity, uniqueness and beautiful stuff. In recent years, the trend is to not only pay for all of the above but also something else. Not only do we need these factors to be present we also need it to be a special experience. Yes, we are most likely be willing to pay a lot more for the experience of it all.

Since this is a review about a *dream* hotel, let's look at it from this perspective. So, other than it being a hotel with good design, architecture, hardware and service, what makes a hotel an experience of a lifetime? Why are we so much more willing to pay for this home away from home? Simply, why do we have a tendency to pay for extra for a hotel room?

I've stayed in thousands of hotels so I guess to answer this question, I'm more than qualified. I also did a course in Hotels & Tourism Management recently so I ought to know about this answer more than majority of the people. Yes, when we are away from home we need a room to stay. It is not just a simple room, we need one that gives us something more than what our homes have not offered us (be it for the average or the rich). We (at least majority of us) will choose a specific hotel and many hotels compete to not only give their customers the best, they also compete for the best customers. Hence, to see who did well or best in the industry would be most revealing.

To build a world class hotel, it is not as simple as just building the best infrastructure and architecture. A hotel is not like an office, it is not just a mere building. It comes alive and has its own magnetic field. A hotel is only as good as the people living in it. If one takes a quick look at the best hotels in the world, most often cited are those with the best services. If you take an even closer look, many of them are those in developing countries. For example, the most famous of them all is the Oriental Hotel in Bangkok. So, what is it about these employees and what is it in their training and attitude that puts them above the others? Yes, it is fascinating when you think about it, isn't it?

In recent years, the Americans have contributed in some way to the rise of spectacular hotels in the world; either through the many business trips that executives took or due to the high prices of oil we all paid which had flushed the Arabs with plenty of cash to spend (and spent they indeed on many of the hotels in Dubai as well as the best sports cars in the world)! Yes indeed, if there is anything that remains out of our spend spend spend generation, it is these spectacular skyscrapers we see around the world. The most famous and awesome of which ought to be the Burj Al Arab.

I recall seeing the Burj Al Arab on a documentary in Discovery some years ago. It was a fantastic sight! Back then it was the only 7* hotel in the world (now, there is at least another one in China)! So, one wonders what 7* entails. Don't you?

Well, for one, you need to pay just to enter it. As for the others, let's take a visual tour of it so you may decide for yourself :-) 

I know a friend who had entered it for the experience. He didn't stay there for the night but he did experience it like no other. How? Well, he went there for golf. And here is what is distinctive about it, he played golf on its roof top!!! Is that awesome or what?!!!


So, other than golf, what is in store for you, you may ask. How about some of these:
  • Never been on a Rolls-Royce? No problem! A Rolls-Royce fleet will pick you up from the airport to begin with.
  • If you are fed up with traffic jams, how about a helicopter for transfers instead?
  • Reception desks on every floor. Private butler service around the clock.
  • In-suite check-in & check-out.
  • Rain showers & Jacuzzis in every suite (yes, suites, not rooms).
  • Dining under the seas and stars.
  • Your very own private beach. 
  • Presidential suite featuring 7200 sq feet of living space which overlooks the Arabian Gulf!

No, I have yet been there (since the last time I was in Dubai, nothing as great as this was in sight yet!) but it is an experience that I'll have to make sure I do experience one fine day, hopefully in near future! As for the rest of you, I leave it up to you to decide for yourself if you're willing to pay for a few thousand bucks a night just for an experience ;-) For those of us who are passionate about hotels, we'll find a way :-)

If you're in any way tempted and the high expense is no consideration, do make your way to the Burj Al Arab (aka Tower of the Arabs) when in Dubai. This is the link for reservation to the official site. Do let us know when you returned how the experience go; we'd all be most jealous!!! :-P

For now, this is the best I can offer, two excellent documentaries on the building of the Burj Al Arab & Burj Dubai (the tallest building in the world unless it's been overtaken by another building in Dubai recently). Dream on it! :--)

Opulent 7* Opulent 7* Opulent 7*

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December 12, 2010
The architecture and design of this hotel is amazing! Really cool!:)
March 03, 2011
It is a dream of mine to stay here at least one night in my lifetime! I knew some of the details but not all, so thanks for this :)
More Burj Al Arab reviews
Quick Tip by . March 06, 2010
A 7* hotel in Dubai; an architecture masterpiece & a designer dream comes true! Spectacular! You need to pay a fee to see the hotel though!
About the reviewer
Sharrie ()
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I'm a traveler at heart & have been nicknamed Travel Queen by friends & colleagues alike. Traveling has been my life passion for the last decade or so. As we enter a new decade, I'm excited … more
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About this hotel


The Burj Al Arab (Arabicبرج العرب‎,"Tower of the Arabs", also known as "Arab Sail") is a luxury hotel located in DubaiUnited Arab Emirates. At 321 m (1,050 ft), it is the third tallest building in the world used exclusively as a hotel.[2] The Burj Al Arab stands on an artificial island 280 m (920 ft) out from Jumeirah beach, and is connected to the mainland by a private curving bridge. It is an iconic structure, designed to symbolize Dubai's urban transformation and to mimic the sail of a boat. 

Several features of the hotel required complex engineering feats to achieve. The hotel rests on an artificial island constructed 280 m (920 ft) offshore. To secure a foundation, the builders drove 230 forty-metre (130 ft) long concrete piles into the sand.[11]

Engineers created a surface layer of large rocks, which is circled with a concrete honeycombpattern, which serves to protect the foundation from erosion. It took three years to reclaim the land from the sea, but less than three years to construct the building itself. The building contains over 70,000 m3 (92,000 cu yd) of concrete and 9,000 tonnes of steel.[11]

Inside the building, the atrium is 180 m (590 ft) tall.

Burj Al Arab is the world's second tallest hotel (not including buildings with mixed use). The structure of ...

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