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Opening new doors

Keep your eyes peeled as these new attractions taking shape in the Middle East are gearing up to wow the world

The Middle East is home to some of the world's most ambitious developments. From state-of-the-art cultural hubs to record-breaking feats of engineering, these megaprojects are transforming the face of tourism. With the region never keen to rest on its laurels, new plans continue to take shape, with several attractions set to open soon.

Read on to discover our showcase of upcoming venues in the Middle East.

Zayed National Museum, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Rising from the heart of Saadiyat Cultural District are five steel structures that resemble the wing of a falcon, which make up the eye-catching façade of the Zayed National Museum. Set to open soon in Abu Dhabi, the museum pays homage to the life and legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the nation's founding father. Spread throughout the galleries are exhibits that celebrate the leader's extraordinary life, while also offering insight into the history of this land and its people.

Natural History Museum Abu Dhabi, UAE

Another addition to Saadiyat Cultural District's growing portfolio is the Natural History Museum, coming to the island in 2025. It is being designed as a journey through time and space, giving visitors the chance to discover some of the rarest natural history specimens ever found on planet Earth. A highlight of the museum’s collection is Stan, the famous Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton that was acquired for a record price of US$31.8 million during a 2020 Christie’s auction in New York City.

New Murabba, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

The land of gigaprojects, Saudi Arabia's latest addition to ever-growing portfolio is New Murabba. The US$800 billion project aims to transform downtown Riyadh and turn it into a cultural hotspot encompassing a museum, technology and design university, multipurpose immersive theatre and more than 80 cultural and entertainment venues. Set over 19 square kilometres, the cubic structure offers a modern take on Saudi's traditional Najdi architecture. Upon completion, it will be 400 metres high and wide – big enough to hold 20 Empire State buildings.

House of Hype, Dubai, UAE

Opening this summer, The Dubai Mall will soon be home to the experiential entertainment park, House of Hype. Spread across 100,000 square feet, it is designed to allow people to experience what stepping into the metaverse in real life will feel like. The attraction combines fashion, technology, gaming and digital art, giving visitors a chance to hop from one futuristic world to the next. Its sister attraction, Aya, is already open in Wafi City, where visitors can explore an ethereal universe full of stars and gardens of light.

Jeddah Historic Waterfront Development, Saudi Arabia

Part of the wider Jeddah Historical Rejuvenation Project, which encompasses a UNESCO Heritage Site, the waterfront development, which is currently in progress, aims to revitalise this Saudi neighbourhood. The project will connect the Red Sea and Al Balad over the course of two years and will move forward in three phases.

In the first phase, sections of the waterfront that were previously filled will be further carved out. Phase two will see the development of Lake Al Arbaeen, while the third phase will focus on the launch of a world-class marina for luxury yachts.

The Loop, Dubai, UAE

Currently in the research and development stage, The Loop could become an integral part of Dubai's sustainable vision. A smart city, it aims to reduce dependency on cars, by creating a 93-kilometre urban highway that only allows for pedestrian access and cycles. Housed in a curved glass structure, it will encompass all the amenities of a modern city within easy reach, along with plenty of green spaces, playgrounds and vertical farms allowing for more locally produced food.


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