Dubai: Planning a visit to the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) anytime soon?
Don’t be surprised if you find yourself in a sprawling 25,000 square metre indoor sports facility and not the exhibition hall you otherwise get to see through the year.
That’s right. Dubai Sports World – said to be the region’s largest indoor summer sports venue – sits inside DWTC across the Shaikh Saeed Halls and Trade Centre arena until September 2.
The multi-sport facility has been put together by more than 200 people, mostly contractors and their crew, who worked round the clock for days.
“DWTC has essentially been built to host exhibitions and conferences. Turning it into a sports field was a daunting task, but one that was achievable, thanks to our in-house expertise and help from our international suppliers,” said Jad Bechara, Director – Media and Sponsorships, Dubai World Trade Centre.
“One of the main challenges during construction was taking care of the flooring. Every sport has a different requirement. For example, basketball courts come fitted with rubber mats on the floor and plywood underneath. The football court is made of artificial grass and the running track of a special rubber. Our contractors worked their fingers to the bone to ensure this was all done right. Once the flooring was taken care of, our team looked at the rest of the infrastructure. The day before we opened to the public, we did a dry run to ensure everything was built according to safety standards,” said Bechara.
What’s new this year
A sports camp, Ninja Warrior course, trampoline park and a game of padel are new additions at DSW this year. The camp, organised by Just Play Sports, has a range of activities for children like trampolining, football, gymnastics, volleyball, table tennis, dodgeball, yoga, tag rugby, dance and more. The Ninja Warrior course is a 14-element obstacle and the 5,400 square foot trampoline park has been custom-built in the Netherlands for DSW. Padel is a new sport that combines tennis and squash and is played inside a glass court with racquets and balls as a doubles game.
“This year, we have a line-up of 17 different activities and 10 professional academies including the Kanoute football academy, IFA football academy, Dubai Pro Wrestling academy among others. There are four pro-standard pitches for five-a-side football and rugby tournaments, six football courts, three tennis courts, a skate park, a running track and more for sports enthusiasts,” said Bechara.