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Dubai’s ‘floating Venice’ resort will feature underwater cabins and a coral garden

September 14, 2017

An artist's impression of the floating Venice resort in Dubai. Image: Kleindienst Group

Venice may or may not be sinking – but Dubai is coming to the rescue anyway, with an enormous off-shore replica of the city planned, in resort form.

Originally hailing from Europe, real estate developers Kleindienst Group along with developer Cityscape Global, have announced the project. It is estimated to cost about $852 million, and construction should be complete by the end of 2020.

Dubbed “The Floating Venice”, it’s to be located around 4 kilometres off the coast and will actually, officially be considered a boat – a really big boat – with 24 swimming pools and 12 restaurants, floating beaches, 414 cabins with 180 of them submerged, three decks above water and one underneath.

The resort will have gondolas imported from the real Venice. The resort will have gondolas imported from the real Venice. Image: Kleindienst Group

According to the project website, the structure is expected to last for 100 years, and it will be the “first luxury underwater vessel resort”.

The complex will be set on concrete foundations and beneath, an extensive 37,000-square-metre coral garden bed will beplanted with the corals raised in an on-site coral nursery and maintained by “a dedicated team of seascapers“.

Naturally there will be gondolas – imported from Venice, no less – to transport the lucky guests around, while there are Venetian-themed events, such as street operas, in the works as well.

Guests will be able to reach the location by seaplane, boat or helicopter.

The whole resort will be considered a boat, and will have coral gardens for guests to view. The whole resort will be considered a boat, and will have underwater cabins. Image: Kleindienst Group

It’s not the only Venice replica built to attract the canal-obsessed tourist. The Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas has the Grand Canal Shoppes, a Venice-themed mall where shoppers can be punted about on motorised gondolas. There’s a similar edifice installed at the The Venetian Macao.

​Meanwhile Dalian, in northeast China, has a 4-kilometre-long Grand Canal replica dotted with tradition, non-motorised gondolas and lined with European-styled buildings. And Taguig City, part of Manila in the Philippines, also has its own Venice Grand Canal Mall, ideal, apparently, for shopping and selfies.

Dubai itself has a plethora of replica projects, including a Louvre, and a Taj Mahal, and pyramids slated for the Falconcity of Wonders. A recent Bloomberg report suggests that Dubai’s residential real estate sector is still struggling, with villa rents and sale prices down across the city.

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