Dubai’s man-made islands are a feat of engineering, created through land reclamation, using sand from the Persian and Arabian Gulf’s floors and millions of tons of rock. United Arab Emirates developer Meraas has opened its man-made island Bluewaters, now home to a different but equally impressive engineering project – Ain Dubai, the world’s largest observation wheel.

Bluewaters is a luxury tourist destination with hospitality, leisure and entertainment venues. The island is divided into precincts with a residential zone comprising 10 mid-rise residential towers featuring 698 apartments, four penthouses and 17 townhouses set over a podium. Inhabit were engaged for the Bluewaters’ lifestyle retail area, The Wharf, which features 132 retail and dining outlets in low-rise structures which have an urban island feel. The food and beverage offerings include licenced fine-dining concepts at the waterfront, eateries, cafés, restaurants and bistros, with internal and external terraces.

The retail area sits adjacent to the new Ain Dubai ferris wheel which at 250 metres, sits at the centre of the project and is currently under construction. When opened it will carry up to 1,400 passengers at a time in its 48 double-glazed capsules, and will be the largest ferris wheel in the world

Inhabit was engaged to provide façade consultancy for design and construction support for 29 retail and food and beverage buildings on the island. The façade types used include:

. kinetic façade
. mirror stainless steel
. perforated core ten and core ten rainscreen
. dichromatic glass
. cast U channel glass
. ceramic rainscreen
. coloured interlayer glazed systems
. patterned precast cladding
. expanded mesh
. GRC rainscreen
. core ten rainscreen
. stone rainscreen
. glazed shopfronts and operable walls
. titanium cladding
. polycarbonate cladding


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