I was going to include this in a wrap up post of Dubai but Palm Jumeirah is so in-your-face that I decided it needed it’s own post. Plus, I took a gazillion photos.
My visit to The Palm was one of my first experiences of Dubai, and it had all the glitz I expected of this town. And that’s despite not actually being able to see very much of it.
Engineering-wise it is remarkable. It is the world’s largest man-made island, using millions of tonnes of sand to create more ocean frontage for wealthy Dubai residents. The trunk is 2km long and the crown comprises 17 “fronds” with a crescent surrounding it. Construction is still underway – more residences, presumably more hotels. A Trump tower was meant to be completed in 2009, but this project was shelved due to the GFC. Developers must still be optimistic, as a monorail station is still named Trump Tower.
At the top is Atlantis, The Palm, a luxury hotel resort I was unable to access, as I didn’t have a spare AED 4,000 to stay for a night. Or a spare AED 80,000 for the Royal Bridge Suite (currently AUD 1 = AED 2.7). Maybe next time.
I also couldn’t access the main part of the island as I don’t own property there, and I don’t know anyone who does. I’ll be working on that for my next visit!
To get there, I caught a monorail from the base of the trunk (15 AED one way, 25 AED return, you can’t keep the ticket as a souvenir, so don’t even try). There will be four monorail stops in use once the development is complete, but as you will see from a few pics, that seems some time away. Currently it’s only the Gateway stop and Atlantis.
Once you get off at Atlantis there really isn’t a whole lot to do if you don’t want to spend a whole lot of cash. The main attraction is the Aquaventure Waterpark, probably every kid’s idea of heaven. Prices start from AED 250 for the no-frills version. You can add in a dolphin encounter, a dolphin adventure, a Royal swim, a dolphin scuba dive, a dolphin photo, a sea lion photo, and so on and so on. Clearly it’s popular because my monorail was standing room only and there must have been 300 people lined up to pay when I arrived.
Instead I strolled around the shopping mall and had a quick browse in the Porsche shop (one of The Accountant’s and my favourite holiday memories is spending an hour in the Porsche shop on Rodeo Drive chatting to the sales assistant – he was awesome! He was from Chicago and we had a long chat about racism in the US). If you’re curious, the Porsche shop doesn’t sell cars, it sells really cool accessories. That you can use with your car. Including golf stuff. Hence the interest from The Accountant.
I wanted to buy a postcard, but at AED 10 I resisted.
Many years ago I learnt to look up in fancy buildings. You never know what you might see. The underwater mural in the shopping centre was spectacular.
The Gold-To-Go ATM gave me a good giggle.
Have you been to Dubai? Did you stay at Atlantis? What was it like???
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