DUBAI: It took Mughal emperor Shah Jahan 22 years to build the Taj Mahal. But Dubai developers are planning to construct a bigger version of it in just two years.
Taj Arabia, a replica of the 360-year-old marble mausoleum, will be about four times the size of the original, developers said at the Cityscape Global event in Dubai.
The billion dollar project will be set in the heart of the 41 million square foot Falcon City of Wonders on Emirates Road. Taj Mahal is an epitome of love and romance and Taj Arabia, which is expected to be ready by late 2014, will be no different. It will celebrate the union of couples by serving as the world’s grandest wedding destination.
“Marriage is a celebration. It needs to be announced and glorified. Currently Dubai is not regarded as a wedding destination. People go to Bali and other exotic places to marry. Now they will come to Taj Arabia,” said Arun Mehra, Chairman of the Link Global Group, sub-developers of the mega project, on Wednesday.
Surrounded by lush green landscaping including the famous Mughal Gardens, the “New City of Love” will have several architecturally themed residential and commercial buildings.
Taj Arabia will be a five-star hotel property with 300 rooms. It will be flanked by seven mixed use buildings, two of which will have 200 serviced apartments.
Mehra told XPRESS: “Taj Arabia will not be a 100 per cent replica as it has a different purpose. That said, we definitely want to create the same spirit of love and passion in today’s modern times when divorce rates are fast picking up.”
He added: “Traditionally in the UAE and the sub-continent, marriage is not just a union of two people but also their families. The serviced apartments beside Taj Arabia will be ideal for wedding guests as they will have 10 large bedrooms and a hall. We want to create an atmosphere which bonds family members.”
The developers added that some Bollywood producers have shown interest in using Taj Arabia as a backdrop for movies in future.
Falconcity of Wonders is an integrated mega city shaped to represent the falcon, emblem of the UAE’s heritage. It’ll include several historical and modern icons of architecture from around the world such as the Pyramids, Hanging Gardens, Eiffel Tower, Taj Mahal, Great Wall of China, and Leaning Tower of Pisa.