2017 proved to be a fantastic year across the UAE, with initiatives launched, projects completed, events celebrated a world records broken. Here’s a look back at 17 of our favourite things to happen over the past year.
1. 2017 was the UAE’s The Year of Giving
The year kicked off to a great start as UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan declaired 2017 the “Year of Giving”, encouraging people to volunteer and show loyalty to their country.
2. Louvre Abu Dhabi opened
The much anticipated Louvre Abu Dhabi on Saadiyat Island opened on 11 November. The museum contains internationally acclaimed art, as well as a stunning collection of Arab and Islamic pieces.
3. A Zipline launched in Dubai Marina
X Dubai are at it again, this time bringing XLine to Dubai Marina. It’s twice the length of the XLine at Dubai Fountains – and with two lines side-by-side, you can have twice the fun by trying it with a friend.
4. Dubai Fitness Challenge got people moving
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council, challenged Dubai residents to do 30 minutes of exercise every day for 30 days. The response was huge, with people all over the city finding fun ways of keeping fit.
5. The Dubai Frame was completed
The Dh260 million project, which frames old and new Dubai, was completed in late 2017. The new landmark was lit-up throughout December, building excitement for the first visitors on 1, January 2018.
6. Fashion Forward celebrated its 10th anniversary
Fashion Forward Season 10 showcased much-loved designers like Amato, Arwa Al Banawi and Hussein Bazaza. British fashion designer Mary Katrantzou was the headline speaker and the street style was on point.
7. Logan Paul greeted screaming fans in Dubai Mall
Over 11 thousands screaming fans showed up to Dubai Mall on November 11 to catch a glimpse of YouTube star Logan Paul. The 22-year-old American was in the city to headline the ITP Live Influencer Marketing Conference.
8. La Mer opened to the public
The new beachfront destination in Jumeirah 1 opened to the public in October, with shops, restaurants and ice cream parlours to enjoy.
9. Formula One Abu Dhabi
The annual racing event included after-race concerts from the likes of Calvin Harris, J. Cole, Mumford & Sons, and Pink.
10. E! aired a new reality show about Arab influencers
E! Entertainment launched a new reality TV show called My Fabulous M.E. that follows the lives of six Middle Eastern influencers, documenting their stylish lives across the Gulf. Kuwaiti Dana Al Tuwarish and Fatima Almomen, Lebanese Nour Arida and Lana El Sahely and Dubai-based Maya Ahmad and Hadia Ghaleb are the stars.
11. Downtown Design was bigger and better than ever before
Held under the patronage of the Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice Chairman of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, Downtown Design celebrated its fifth edition in 2017. Over 150 local and international brands were showcased.
12. UAE revealed plans to build a city on Mars by 2117
His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced the UAE’s plans to build the first city on Mars by 2117. The 100-year plan will the country increase space exploration efforts and inspire younger generations.
13. Floating houses arrived on the Dubai Canal
In September the first “floating homes” appeared on the Dubai Canal, berthing at Marasi Business Bay.
14. Bulgari Hotel opened in Dubai
Bulgari hotel opened on Jumeira Bay Island including hotel rooms, luxury suites and villas, as well as residences.
15. Katy Perry played Abu Dhabi into the New Year
Katy Perry put on an incredible show at the du Arena on Yas Island to play the UAE’s capital into 2018. She performed Firework as the clock struck 12 and an explosion of colours filled the sky.
16. New world record for largest aerial firework shell
Al Marjan Island in Ras Al Khaimah now holds the world record for the largest aerial firework shell following a hugh New Year’s firework display.
17. Burj Khalifa light show set a new world record
And finally… the Burj Khalifa played host to a spectacular light show that bagged a Guinness World Record for the largest laser light and sound show on one single structure.
What a year! 2018 has a lot to live up to.