The Burj Khalifa is a skyscraper in the centre of downtown Dubai in the United Arab Emirates and is the highest building in the world.
Until its inauguration in January 2010, the building was called Burj Dubai, which translated means “Dubai Tower”. It was then christened Burj Khalifa after the President of neighbouring Abu Dhabi.
In addition to numerous offices, the building houses various companies, hotels and a mall, as well as leisure and entertainment facilities in which an additional 20 million US dollars have been invested in recent years.
The Burj Khalifa was developed and built by an Arab project company according to the plans of the American architect Adrian Smith, supported by an international team of experts.
At a height of 828 metres, the skyscraper has around 190 floors, 163 of which are used for commercial purposes.
Burj Khalifa – Insights, views and world records
Due to its size, the Burj Khalifa forms the centre of a new urban development area that has been newly created around the skyscraper. To this day, no other building in the world can match its exclusivity and the variety of possibilities inside the building with its high-quality fittings. Floors 9 to 16 are home to the Armani Hotel, which in 2011 opened a restaurant on the 123rd floor, making it the highest restaurant in the world.
From the highest viewing platform on the planet, located at 555 metres above sea level, you can look out over the whole of Dubai and far beyond. A 360-degree panorama reveals insights into the artistically designed luxury city with its colourful hustle and bustle as well as views of the imposing desert landscape at the gates of the city in all its beauty.
Visitors are first taken by lift to the 124th floor, where the first terrace is located. However, if you want to go to the very top, you have to go in another lift, which transports people to the highest viewing platform on the 148th floor.
From both viewpoints you can admire the sunset in the evening and from 6 p.m. onwards also the “Dubai Fountain”, the largest water feature in the world. Over a length of 250 metres, it creates fountains with up to 1,000 different expressions at heights of up to 150 metres.
Facts, figures and curiosities to the Burj Khalifa
The costs for the construction of the Burj Khalifa amounted to about 1.5 billion US dollars, which the Royal Family of Dubai originally intended to bear alone as one of their projects. However, when the investor was no longer able to secure the financing, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayid Al Nahyan from the neighbouring city of Abu Dhabi stepped in with a cash injection worth billions. For this reason, the tower was eventually named after him.
The skyscraper was built in a total of 22,000,000 hours. At peak times, 12,000 people worked on and in the tower.
During the construction of the Burj Khalifa, about 200 large and 650 small concrete piles were driven into the ground, which reach down to a depth of about 70 metres above sea level.
A total of about 330,000 cubic metres of steel, concrete and other materials were used. Several thousand tonnes of material in the upper floors are recycled steel from the Palast der Republik in Berlin, which was demolished between 2006 and the end of 2008.
The floors in the Burj Khalifa have a surface area of 526,760 square metres. A total of 2,909 steps lead from the ground to the 160th floor. The multi-storey car park on the two floors below the building has 3,000 parking spaces.
Of the 163 usable ones, 49 floors contain offices and four fitness and wellness facilities. There are also 1,044 apartments in the tower, 144 of which are in the Armani Hotel. Floors 158 to 162 are at the disposal of the Group’s CEO Mohammed Ali Alabbar as personal work rooms and mosque.
The average water consumption of the Burj Khalifa is estimated at 946 cubic metres per day, while the daily peak electrical load is 36 to 50 megawatts.
The building is accessed by a total of 57 lifts and eight escalators. The lifts are among the fastest in the world at 10 metres per second, a transport time of 55 seconds to the highest stop and a speed of 36 km/h.
Another world record, however, is the travel height of the main lifts: It is 504 metres, and thus the means of transport cover a greater distance than in any other skyscraper on the globe.
An overnight stay at the Armani Hotel costs between 265 and 850 Euros.
The top of the Burj Khalifa building can be seen on a clear day from a distance of about 100 kilometres.
Numerous scenes from the film “Mission: Impossible – Phantom Protocol” starring Tom Cruise were shot in the imposing building and part of its surroundings.
The architect of the tower was inspired by the desert flower “Spider Lily” when designing it, which is why the structure of the building resembles the structure of this plant.
In the lobby of the Burj Khalifa, drops of water falling from above onto numerous singing bowls represent the voices of all peoples from around the world.
Holiday in Dubai – more luxury is not possible
The city surrounded by sand is called the futuristic jewel of the Middle East and the Arab Emirates. Originally a small fishing village, it is now a cosmopolitan metropolis where eastern tradition meets western open-mindedness.
Enjoy an exciting time while on holiday in Dubai, immerse yourself in Arab history and at the same time enjoy the lifestyle and the modern service in the finest hotels, restaurants and boutiques. See the architectural masterpieces of the city, stroll through the colourful souks, enjoy a coffee at the harbour with the fancy yachts or visit the biggest shopping centre in the world. Relax on the beach, enjoy a slower pace of life in the endless expanse of the desert and take interesting trips in the surrounding area. Explore the dune landscape in a hot-air balloon, on the back of a camel or in an off-road vehicle. Be sure to sample the local cuisine and visit the fragrant spice market, world famous for its 1001 spices. Stay in a luxury hotel, a cosy resort or a romantic suite by the sea.
Of course, a visit to the Burj Khalifa is also one of the highlights of a stay in Dubai. All the necessary information and the tickets for a visit to the highest skyscraper in the world will be available at your hotel. The most expensive ticket, which includes a ride in the lift up to the 148th floor and an evening view of the water features, costs around 100 euros.
Further sights in the metropolis are the Madinat Theatre with concerts as well as opera and ballet performances, and the Dubai Museum, the “Heritage Village” with reconstructed historical villages and the “Diving Village” with exhibitions on pearl fishing.
Booked tours and day trips
During a holiday in Dubai you can also book one or the other tour within the city as well as day trips to the area.
Modern Dubai (about 5 hours): Marvel at impressive skyscrapers, luxury buildings and the artificial islands of Dubai. Drive along Sheikh Zayed Road, shop in modern shopping malls and stop at the posh marina. Enjoy the cosmopolitan flair of the Arab metropolis.
Magical Dubai (day tour): Visit the city’s museums and learn more about the history, culture and traditions of Dubai. Take an abra (water taxi) through the Khor Dubai, explore the souks with sparkling gold goods and fragrant spices and finally let yourself be enchanted by the water shows of the Burj Khalifa in the evening hours.
Old and New Dubai (approx. 4 ¼ hours): Experience the charming beauty of both old and modern Dubai on an exciting sightseeing tour. Explore the fascinating sights of the city like the Palm, the Atlantis Hotel or the Blue Mosque.
Adventurous Dubai (3 ½ hours): Enjoy the view of the vast landscapes during a helicopter flight. Experience pure thrill on a quad bike ride through the desert, a sandboarding adventure or a camel ride. Explore the impressive dunes on a desert safari and enjoy the morning charm of the region after spending the night in a Bedouin tent.