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WTM

BY Gary Noakes

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WTM 2017: Abu Dhabi opens door to The Louvre

Abu Dhabi’s week at WTM London will be capped by Saturday’s long-awaited opening of The Louvre Abu Dhabi, the first outpost of the renowned Parisian museum outside of France.

Louvre Abu Dhabi. Photo Credit: Mohamed Somji
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The Jean Nouvel-designed building, inspired by ancient Arab architecture, will feature more than 620 pieces of art

The November 11 opening is the culmination of 10 years of collaboration between Abu Dhabi and The Louvre. The Jean Nouvel-designed building, inspired by ancient Arab architectural styles, will feature more than 620 pieces of art, with around half of these on loan from key French institutions. They will include works by da Vinci, Monet, Van Gogh and Matisse.


The museum will tell the story of humanity via 12 chronologically themed galleries, with exhibits ranging from prehistoric artefacts to modern art. Themes include The First Villages, The First Great Powers, Universal Religions, Challenging Modernity and A Global Stage. In addition, French museums will provide four exhibitions a year at The Louvre Abu Dhabi for the next 15 years.


The adult entry fee is AED60 (£12), with children under 13 allowed in for free.


By contrast, next year will also see the opening of the $1 billion Warner Bros World Abu Dhabi theme park on Yas Island. The park will comprise six concepts based on famous Warner Bros creations. Superman’s home city of Metropolis will feature, as will Gotham City, Batman’s residence.


Two other parts of the park, Cartoon Junction and Dynamite Gulch, will bring together Bugs Bunny, Scooby-Doo and other famous characters from Looney Tunes and Hanna-Barbera. The Flintstones’ prehistoric world of Bedrock is another attraction and the final part will be Warner Bros. Plaza, a re-creation of Hollywood in its golden age.


Abu Dhabi will also unveil two significant beach developments in 2018. The five-star Saadiyat Rotana Resort is poised to open on Saadiyat Island, 20 minutes’ drive from Abu Dhabi International airport. It will feature 327 upscale rooms and suites, 13 beach villas, a private stretch of beach and large conference facilities.


In autumn next year, the Jumeirah Saadiyat Island will open with 294 rooms including eight villas. Here, six panoramic suites will feature floor-to-ceiling glass walls that open to the sea.

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