The Troubled Story of the Burj Khalifa

Everyone is still talking about the financial crisis, especially about how Dubai defaulted on something like $80 billion in debt in November 2009 and my current oil-rich home bailed them out…again, probably because they have already committed so much funding to Dubai. In December 2009 Dubai received an additional $10 billion loan from the emirate of Abu Dhabi. (  This all came as an embarrassment to Dubai, which is already struggling with their countless idle cranes and skyscrapers.  They had a brief reprieve last month with the extravagant, albeit 4 month late, grand opening ( of the now largest building in the world, formerly the Burj Dubai and now called the Burj Khalifa, after Abu Dhabi’s ruler who bailed them out (

Well, we went up to Dubai for a nice weekend away from AD and purchased tickets ahead of time to visit the newly opened skyscraper for 100 dhs ($27).  It was fortunate we bought them ahead of time because they were sold out for about a week when we got there, though you could buy a ticket to go up that day for 400 dhs.  Once you enter, you get whisked to the 124th floor in under a minute with awesome elevator music (unfortunately, though it’s called, “At the Top,” it’s only about 2/3 of the way up the tower) to the observation deck.  Once you equalize the pressure in your head and clear out your ears, it’s a helluva view from there, kind of like looking out the window of an airplane, but not moving anywhere.

As a comparison, the building behind my right shoulder is something like 65 stories. Last summer in one of our first visits to Dubai we had gone to a bar there on the 63rd floor….and we thought that was really high.  Now, we’re twice as high and it looks relatively minuscule.

We had a good time enjoying the view. Worth the money, perhaps, definitely a tourist trap though.

It is definitely a good thing we went up when we did, because about a week later, the elevator got stuck on the 120-something floor, trapping 15 people inside for nearly an hour, shutting the tower down indefinitely until they fix it! ( Glad we went when we did! Just add it as another embarrassment to Dubai. Insult to Injury.

Another thing I thought might interest some of the folks from home, a brochure illustrating the Dubai Mall’s courtesy policies (the Dubai Mall is connected underground to the Burj Khalifa).

Self explanatory.


7 responses to this post.

  1. Great insight into a travesty of issues with such a rich country; I’m sure they could have invested
    more wisely – well written, well researched, you’re starting to perform, look & act like a scientist – you may have found your passion in life – research!!!

    love you


  2. Posted by Linda Trummer on February 16, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    Hi Brian
    Very interesting… A business colleague of mine just returned from business in Dubai, he spent one week there. He said that the population is about 80% non emirati and that there is an undercurrent of racism against non emirati-he said even 2d generation immigrants can not become citizens-this creates divisions among the populace
    thought I would pass this on
    Be well, Linda


  3. Posted by Nute on March 8, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    Yo man,

    Loving the pictures. Keep up the strong work out there.



  4. I’m gone to inform my little brother, that he should also visit this web site on regular basis to get updated from most up-to-date information.


  5. Exceptional post but I was wondering if you could
    write a litte more on this topic? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Cheers!


  6. First of all I would like to say wonderful
    blog! I had a quick question that I’d like to ask if you don’t mind.
    I was interested to know how you center yourself and clear your head before
    writing. I’ve had a hard time clearing my mind in getting my ideas out. I truly do take pleasure in writing however it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are usually lost simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any suggestions or hints? Thank you!


    • Posted by bashay48 on July 22, 2013 at 2:49 pm

      Well for this type of writing I usually am thinking of the approach while actually visiting the location and taking pictures, etc., so it’s always on my mind. And sometimes I start in the middle of the story/post and then circle back to make a better intro and title. Other times the story is pretty clear and logical from the start. But there’s always time when I’m staring at a blank screen no knowing where to begin. Looking through pictures or having a beer sometimes can spur inspiration. Once I get going the problem becomes cutting down content to a reasonable size. But I just wrote this blog for fun, it’s not a job so I wouldn’t pretend to be a professional. My day to day writing is more technical in the form of research reports, not nearly as entertaining. Feel free to email me if I can help out at all ( Thanks for the comment and views,

      – Brian


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: