Enjoy the views from the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa in Dubai stands a staggering 828 metres (2,716 feet) tall.
For decades, the title of the world’s tallest building was fiercely disputed. Was it the World Trade Center, the world’s highest architectural point, or was it Sears Tower, the world’s highest occupied floor? What even defines a building? Then in 2010, one building decided enough was enough and simply crushed all possible opposition in its wake by becoming the world’s tallest everything and grabbing all the records. Tallest building, highest occupied floor, most nervous window cleaners – the lot. That building was Burj Khalifa in Dubai, home to apartments, offices, a hotel, swimming pools, a restaurant and nine world records.
First of all, let’s get past the elephant in the room: the numbers. Actually, it’s more like 10,000 elephants in the room. That’s how much the concrete alone weighs. Burj Khalifa stands a staggering 828-metres (2,716-feet) tall – more than 60 per cent higher than the previous world’s tallest building, Taipei 101. For comparison, Taipei 101 is 61 per cent higher than the Chrysler Building – the tallest building in 1930. Burj Khalifa is so tall, its unique spiralling Y-shape was developed to help the tower reduce the impact of the wind raging nearly a kilometre into the sky.
The first eight floors belong to the Armani Hotel : the next eight to the Armani residences – luxury flats designed by Giorgio himself. Some 80 floors are given over to 900 further luxury apartments, while 37 floors are reserved for office space. But it’s not all business: tourists are catered for as well. The lift can take you from the ground floor to the observation deck on Floor 124 in just 60 seconds, where you can take an interactive tour around the construction of Dubai and Burj Khalifa itself. That costs around £30/$40, but if you want to visit Floor 148, the world’s highest observation deck that sits 555 metres (1,820 feet) above Dubai, you’ll need to fork out around £75/$98.
In a further example of Burj Khalifa’s incredible height, even though Floor 148 sits 273 metres (896 feet) below the top of the tower, it would still clock in as the world’s fifth tallest building by itself. For the traditionalists, laid horizontally Floor 148 would be the length of 66 London buses away from the base. Level 122 hosts At.Mosphere, the world’s highest restaurant. Afternoon tea with sparkling wine costs from £100/$130 if you want a window seat, but if you’ve gone all the way to the 122nd floor you’d be crazy not to drink in the view and cover your eyes when the bill arrives. For dinner, the taster menu will set you back £200/$260, while a three-course meal is around £140/$180. If this is stretching the budget too far, grab a sandwich from the mall at the base of the tower and take a dip in one of five swimming pools. And yes, one is the world’s highest.
Burj Khalifa is opulent, awe-insoiring, obscene, breathtaking and an absolute must-visit destination.
Burj Khalifa’s epic height forced designers to develop ways to disrupt the wine to avoid a catastrophic Wizard of Oz- style incident
Book an early evening slot to enjoy da sunset and night views of Dubai