17 July, 2006

Tripped out in the Burj

New York's Premier Alternative Newspaper:
This de facto United Nations crew was dizzying enough—not only for the stark contrast from India—but made perfect sense when considering the spectacle of the Burj Al Arab. It’s a tourist attraction as well as a place to sleep, drink, shop and look beautiful, and while I don’t think a return visit is in the offing, it’s a pretty cool one-shot if you want to experience an LSD adventure without the downside. The hotel, which opened in ’99, is smack in the middle of a man-made island, and is the tallest building in the world used for this purpose. It’s shaped like a sail, as preposterous as that sounds. When you walk in the lobby, besieged by a phalanx of employees, the first sight is a vertical display where water shoots at random, often changing colors.
. . .
I’m not sure, even if the capital was available, that I’d invest in the properties of Dubai. Yes, it’s currently an over-the-top Las Vegas, where libertines come to indulge, but one killer bomb in the airport, say, and the city’s economy will collapse. The Burj Al Arab is billed as one of the wonders of the 21st century, but how long it, and the dozens of hotels that surround it, lasts is a real question.


Woke said...

Funny how easily people can speculate on when the hotels in Dubai are going to be bombed as if it is some lego game.

It doesn't cross our minds, does it?

nzm said...

I've never heard a waiter in Dubai ever talk like the one in the article!

I think that Smith overstates when he writes, "..but one killer bomb in the airport, say, and the city’s economy will collapse."

As seen in other cities that have experienced bomb blasts - recently Madrid, London, Mumbai - after the shock and horror starts to dissipate, life goes on. It may not be quite the same as it was before, but people still have to go about their daily life.

London suffered a setback in tourism numbers, but that's over now.

What would really damage the UAE tourism economy would be a longterm war with Iran - just like the Iraq war affected tourism here for a while.

However, I'm sure that there would be other sectors in the UAE which would benefit from such a war.

BD said...

^^^I agreee. Well, said. But where is this whole Lebanon thing heading?

Mme Cyn said...

Yeah, nzm, but the Madrid, London, and Mumbai economies don't depend quite as much on tourism and business travel as Dubai's does, do they? If somebody bombed DXB, even the Gulf Arabs would stop coming -- a huge tourist population. Let alone the Europeans etc. And how many of the current expats would be over the border to Oman and out asap?

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