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Notes on the Geography of The U.A.E. (Dubai): Dubai: Photo 11

world pictures The U.A.E. (Dubai): Dubai

Commissioned by the ruler of Dubai and designed by Tom Wright of W.S. Atkins, the Burj Al Arab is a commanding structure, even if you deplore the hype.  The floor plan is a V, with rooms along the arms and a concrete spine at the base, facing the water.  On the land side, a teflon and fiberglass sail closes the gap of the V and creates a 600-foot-high atrium.  The upper-level circular platforms are a restaurant on the water side and a helipad on the land; one critic has compared them to votive offerings, presumably to Mammon.

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