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6 Cultural Mega Projects Coming to Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi is curating a network of museums, galleries, and heritage sites under the Saadiyat Cultural District project. The district will be one of the most culturally dense and globally relevant centers in the world when finished. The Abrahamic Family House, which features places of worship for the three Abrahamic religions, represents a beacon of love, tolerance, and peace. Here are some of the confirmed constructions currently underway:
teamLab Phenomena: A 17,000 sqm gallery area that will become the “home of infinite curiosity,” curated around a theme of ‘environmental phenomena.’ The exhibits will be designed to respond to their specific local environment and change, creating a different experience for every guest with each visit.
The project is a collaborative effort between DCT Abu Dhabi, Miral, and teamLab, set for completion in 2024.
Guggenheim Abu Dhabi: The Frank Gehry designed museum is set for completion in 2025. It will house 28 galleries across an 11,600 sqm area, with an additional 23,000 sqm of exhibition space contained within the distinctive cones and terraces attached to the building. The museum will exhibit modern and contemporary art with a special focus on pieces from the West Asia, North Africa, and South Asia (WANASA) region.
It aims to provide a platform for artists from the WANASA area and illuminate how “the interconnected histories and cultures” have shaped the world.
Louvre Abu Dhabi Residences: A residential complex of 400 apartments, including Le Salon Détente, a lounge for residents that features art curated in consultation with the experts at Louvre Abu Dhabi. The development will also feature a 12-seater Cinema Privé, a wellness center – Spa Bien-être, and an indoor kids’ playroom.
The complex is part of Saadiyat Grove, a 242,000 square meter, Dhs10 billion development that will also include retail and entertainment attractions, other residential properties, two news hotels, and co-working spaces.
Zayed National Museum: The museum, located on Saadiyat Island, is an architectural marvel designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Lord Norman Foster, of Foster + Partners. The museum will tell the story of the UAE’s journey to becoming a nation of influence and its connection to the wider world.
The exhibits will trace the UAE’s journey from the region’s first human settlers to the modern era.
Other projects include a maritime museum, a performing arts center, and a Sheikh Zayed memorial.
The Performing Arts Centre: The Performing Arts Centre is a multi-disciplinary centre designed to be a hub for the arts in the Middle East. The centre will be located on Saadiyat Island, and is being designed by the renowned architect, Zaha Hadid. The building will feature five theatres, including a music hall, a drama theatre, a concert hall, and an opera house.
The Performing Arts Centre will have a seating capacity of up to 6,300 people, and will offer a wide range of performances from local and international artists.
The Maritime Museum: The Maritime Museum is another cultural mega-project that is currently underway in Abu Dhabi. Located on Saadiyat Island, the museum will showcase the rich maritime history of the region. The museum will feature interactive exhibits, multimedia displays, and artefacts that will take visitors on a journey through the history of maritime trade and exploration in the Arabian Gulf.
The museum will also feature an auditorium, a research centre, and a café, and will be surrounded by a landscaped park. The Maritime Museum is expected to open in the coming years, and will be a must-visit destination for anyone interested in the history of seafaring in the Middle East.