Just seven minutes from downtown Abu Dhabi and 20 minutes from Abu Dhabi International Airport, the 27-square-kilometer Saadiyat Island is undergoing remarkable transformation into a world-class leisure, residential, business and cultural hub of global proportions, housing the world's largest single concentration of premier cultural assets. These will include the Zayed National Museum, Louvre Abu Dhabi and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi - all designed by Pritzker prize winners.
The island’s purpose-built visitor center - Manarat Al Saadiyat (which translates from Arabic as a place of enlightenment), brings the Saadiyat's vision to life. Two galleries are open to the public: The Saadiyat Story, on permanent display, gives visitors an interactive narrative on the history and cultural vision behind the island; and the Arts Abu Dhabi Gallery, hosts a series of exhibitions and educational programmes.
Moved piece by piece from Shanghai, where it welcomed almost two million visitors to the UAE’s national exhibition during the World Expo 2010, the UAE Pavilion is emerging as a new landmark exhibition and events venue. Hosting some of the country’s most important cultural functions, the striking dune-shaped structure was designed by London’s acclaimed Foster + Partners.
Saadiyat Beach Golf Club is the region’s first ocean course; the Gary Player-designed masterpiece respectfully harnesses the natural beauty of Saadiyat Island’s magnificent, white sand beaches for a truly unique playing experience. With two five-star properties already opened - and more in the pipeline, the island’s leisure and hospitality offering is rapidly increasing.