Dubai is famous for its modernity, but the biggest and best part is unquestionably the Burj Khalifa. While travel might be off the table for now, but you can still get a little inspiration for the future.
These 7 facts about the world’s tallest tower will give the local tour guides a run for their money.
1. It took an army
Inspired by the spider lily flower, the elaborately designed tower was always going to be a huge undertaking. Even for a city that features the Dubai Fountain and a slew of other skyscrapers, this was the city’s biggest (and tallest) project. The building of the Burj Khalifa required a workforce that was larger than any the city had ever needed before. By the peak of construction, 12,000(!) workers were needed on-site every day. That’s a lot of hard hats!
2. Heavy metal(s)
When it comes to putting together one of the world’s tallest yet safest buildings, premium quality materials are more than a must. As a first precaution, the tower was built in a Y-shape to make it more stable. But how do you make sure the 830 meter (2,720 ft) Burj Khalifa stays where you want it? Tons and tons of concrete… literally! How many tons exactly? To give you an idea — about 100,000 elephants’ worth. Talk about heavy metal.
3. Lofty goals
Breaking the world record for the tallest building wasn’t enough for the Burj Khalifa. The enormous tower also cemented its place in the Guinness World Records for a couple of other reasons. As the record holder for the world’s highest inhabitable floor, the Burj Khalifa has the (sky-)highest views from any home. There’s good news for lucky residents looking to reach their oh-so-lofty estates. No need to lug groceries up countless stairs when there’s (what else) but the second record-breaker: the world’s tallest elevator!
4. Going the distance
It might be debatable whether you can see the Great Wall from space. But there’s no doubt that from land, the Burj Khalifa can be seen from up to 95 km (60 miles) away. Whether exploring the desert dunes on safari or drifting along the cool waters of the nearby bay, the skyscraper seems to follow. Dubai will be ready and waiting for you.
5. Dinner and a view
Feeling peckish? The Burj Khalifa really has it all, including a little At.mosphere… the restaurant! You can find the world’s highest restaurant up 441 meters (1,447 ft) — just hit the button for floor 122. No matter where you find yourself seated, the views are unbeatable, thanks to the segmented floor plan making every angle the best vantage point. Panoramic views of Dubai and the surrounding landscape are our preferred digestive. It doesn’t get much higher on the bucket list than the Burj Khalifa.
6. A little spring cleaning
With over 26,000 glass panels covering the exterior of the tower, it’s no surprise that cleaning can be… a bit high-maintenance. Did you know? It can take a team of cleaners up to 3 months to clean every single window. The best part? Once they’re done, they have to start all over again.
This might not be the job for someone afraid of heights, but you can (securely) enjoy the sights from the observation deck with 360-degree views.
7. Sky-high sculptures
The Burj Khalifa isn’t just about views and food. The skyscraper is also filled to the brim with art, culture, and the world’s first Armani hotel. First stop on the art-lover’s tour should be the corporate entrance’s oval sculpture made by Egyptian artist, Karim Rashid. Afterward, head to the incredible “World Voices” installation from Catalan artist, Jaume Plensa.
On your next trip, be sure and immerse yourself in the local culture of Dubai at its shimmering, towering epicenter – by day or by night.