Category Archives: Abu Dhabi

World’s largest statistical map in the UAE


The Statistics Centre Abu Dhabi unveils 170m-long statistical map for National Day

ABU DHABI // The Statistics Centre Abu Dhabi has documented the astounding growth of the city over the decades with what it says is the world’s largest statistical map.

Called Abu Dhabi Over Half a Century, the 170m-long display, located close to Marina Mall, details the significant developments in the capital’s history.

Statisticians spent two years collecting data documenting the socioeconomic rise of Abu Dhabi between the 1960s and 2012 for the project, which is open to the public until December 7, with free admission.

“It captures all the major turning points from all the decades,” said Sameth Raafat, a statistician with the centre. “It highlights how we’ve grown in the last 50 years.”

Visitors to the outdoor exhibit were presented with a beautifully packaged collection of books – one for each decade – chronicling the city’s rise to power.

The first book opens with a quote from Sheikh Zayed: “History is a continuum of events, the present only an extension of the past. So he who does not know his past cannot make the best of his present or future, for it is from the past that we learn.”

Kashif Hussain, a 27-year-old Pakistani who has lived in Abu Dhabi for nearly two years, said the exhibit was a good addition to the National Day celebrations.

“It’s important so we know the history of UAE,” Kashif said.

Vasu Deevi, a 30-year-old Indian who was strolling along the timeline map with his wife, Sireesha, also praised the project.

“This is fantastic, you can see how they grew,” Vasu said. “Even the design, it’s very nice.”

The Abu Dhabi Over Half a Century books are also available online at

Most expensive Car Plate in the world!


Another record breaking feat for the capital came in February 2008, with the sale of the most expensive car plate in the world. License plate No. 1 was bought at auction for a staggering Dh52.2 million by Abu Dhabi businessman Saeed Al Khouri, breaking the previous record of plate No. 5, which was sold to his cousin for Dh25.2 million.

Many world firsts at mega waterpark

Many world firsts at mega waterpark

Get set to start your new year with a splash, as the UAE’s first mega waterpark will finally open on January 24, giving water enthusiasts the ride of their lives.

Published: 19 Jan 2012  at 7:01 AM

This article was sent from the Khaleej Times app.

Get set to start your new year with a splash, as the UAE’s first mega waterpark will finally open on January 24, giving water enthusiasts the ride of their lives.
Spread over 15 hectares, the waterpark on Yas Island features 43 exciting rides, slides, attractions, themed restaurants, shops and activities. It showcases a mountain topped by a huge glittering pearl, bandit towers, an authentic wood-raftered souq and a giant falcon’s nest spilling over with slides.

“We are just a few weeks away from the grand opening of Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi. All the rides, slides and attractions are installed and the pre-opening testing stage has commenced to ensure that everything is in place in terms of safe and successful park operations. A few members of the public will be given access to the park in the coming days as part of Challenge Accepted Competition, then it will be all aboard for the public opening,” said Mike Oswald, park general manager.

He said: “The countdown’s begun and we are sure visitors will be wowed by what’s in store. The January opening will kick-start what we expect to be an extremely successful year for this all-year-round entertainment attraction.”

“Visitors to the park will be in for a fantastic experience that brings together high-thrill rides, interactive attractions and a number of world-firsts in terms of waterpark entertainment – it will take even the most enthusiastic water park fan by surprise,” he added.

Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi pays tribute to the UAE’s pearl-diving heritage, and is themed around “The Lost Pearl”, an original story about Dana, a young Emirati girl on a quest for the legendary pearl that had once brought prosperity to her village.

Visitors can join the adventure on rides never before seen in water parks, including the first hydromagnetic six—person water-slide in the world and the largest sheet wave surf ride ever.

UAE cities top in Arab world for quality of life

UAE cities top in Arab world for quality of life

Abu Dhabi and Dubai rank highest in the Arab world for quality of life and infrastructure, according to a survey by the HR consultancy Mercer.

For overall quality of life, Abu Dhabi ranks 78th globally – level with last year – while Dubai edged up one place to 73rd, according to Mercer’s rankings.

That puts the two UAE cities ahead of others in the Middle East and North Africa, with the next highest in Mercer’s ranking being Oman, which was placed 103rd.

“That the two UAE cities maintained and exceeded their high ranking shows that development is up to par with major cities around the world,” Mercer said.

Dubai – which opened its Metro system in 2009 – ranked 34th globally in terms of its infrastructure, ahead of cities including Geneva, Miami and San Francisco.

Quality of life in Cairo and Damascus fell sharply in Mercer’s rankings due to the impact of social unrest, the survey found.

Mercer’s study measures elements including social and economic conditions, plus the availability of medical, education, transportation and recreational facilities.

Vienna retained the top spot in Mercer’s ranking, followed by Zurich at second and Auckland third. Baghdad ranked lowest among the global rankings for quality of life.

Biggest National ID card makes it into world record book

Biggest National ID card makes it into world record book

By Nada AlTaher Staff Reporter
Published: Dec 4, 2012 7:19 PM

Photo 1 of 1
Abu Dhabi: The biggest Identification Card was revealed on Tuesday by the Sultan Bin Zayed Culture and Media Centre holding President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s name and picture.

This initiative came under a National Day Project for the Culture and Media Centre called Khalifa in the World’s Languages.

Abdullah Fadel Al Muhairbi from the the Diwan said: “On this day which extends our celebration of the 41st National Day, we are honoured to reveal this National ID card which has now entered the Guinness Book of World Records as it is also considered the first idea of its kind in the book.”

Regional director of Guinness World Records, Talal Omar, said that the idea came form the Sultan Bin Zayed Culture and Media Centre and is an identical copy of the original National ID card which meets all the standards required to break the world record.

The card is 1.4 metres long and 0.86 metres wide making it almost 20 times the size of the original National ID card. According to the Guinness representative, the UAE is in the lead among its Middle Eastern counterparts as it currently holds 110 world records.

Abu Dhabi: The best liveable city

Abu Dhabi: The best liveable city


Abu Dhabi has been named the best liveable large city in the world, fending off a field of tough international competition.
The country’s capital city took gold in the International Awards for Liveable Communities, in the cities with populations over 400,000 category — beating out 11 other finalists, including Ankara and New Taipei.

The LivCom awards, hosted in Al Ain from November 22 to 26, included finalists from 32 countries and 60 cities, with Abu Dhabi emerging as the winner in the largest city category, after a grueling one hour submission on six main criteria, including natural and built environment; environmental best practices; healthy lifestyle; community participation; arts, culture and heritage; and city planning.

The finalists were filtered out after a preliminary round in July.

An Abu Dhabi Municipality spokeswoman said many people were surprised with just how accomplished the UAE capital was, as it did not have the same profile as many big cities, or even sister city Dubai.

“People were very, very impressed…I don’t think people realise how much is going on in Abu Dhabi, it’s a very low profile city.”

Even many of the city’s residents would be unaware of the great availability of health and community services, or environmental initiatives happening.

“I don’t think people recognise what’s going on…there’s a lot of awareness to be had. In the next couple of years a lot’s going to happen…and already there’s a lot going on. There’s wonderful things on the ground.”

While Ankara was a well-established city, the toughest competition came from some of the up-and-coming Chinese cities, the spokeswoman said.

But it was Abu Dhabi’s ability to show the city’s good habits were long-standing, and it was not just “hopping on the bandwagon” of in-vogue ideas.

“This leader (President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan), even before people were talking about environmental best practices he planted nine million trees…people are shocked with what he did for sustainabilty (and) what he did for engagement.”

The spokeswoman said that once the basics had been established, the discerning judging panel wanted specific details about quality of life.

“We didn’t fudge anything, they asked tough questions…we said the way it is, ‘We’re not perfect on air quality but we’re generally good, here’s some issues we’re dealing with’.”

And the best was yet to come, she said, as Abu Dhabi became an iconic city in its own right.

“Yes there are many things we have to learn about the world, but we’re coming into our own (and now) there’s many cities that are coming to us to see how we’re doing it.”

Launched in 1997, the awards have been endorsed by the United Nations, and were considered “the sole international competition focusing on the best global practices related to the management of the local environment”, Abu Dhabi Municipality said.