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The big deal about UAE’s sparkles in the skies

XPRESS looks at why dazzling displays were the most appealing part of the New Year revelry across the emirates. Plus wish lists by viewers

  • Light Up 2018, DubaiImage Credit: Atiq ur Rehman/XPRESS
  • Atlantis fireworksImage Credit: Pankaj Sharma/XPRESS
  • Al Qasba, Sharjah’s premier leisure, tourist and family destinationImage Credit: Supplied
  • Fireworks on Yas Island, Abu DhabiImage Credit: Abdul Rahman/XPRESS
  • NYE Guinness World Record attempt at Al Marjan Island in Ras al KhaimahImage Credit: Virendra Saklani/XPRESS
  • Global VillageImage Credit: Supplied
  • Fireworks at the Jumeriah Public Beach near the Burj Al ArabImage Credit: Clint Egbert/XPRESS
  • Sharjah’s Al Majaz WaterfrontImage Credit: Supplied
XPRESS

Dubai: With the Light Up 2018 spectacle at the Burj Khalifa creating a Guinness World Record, it is no surprise that the UAE’s dazzling celebrations that ushered in the New Year continue to be the talk of the town. As thousands took to the streets to watch the innovative light show in Downtown Dubai or the fireworks at other locations across the emirates, one thing was clear: sparkles in the sky – LED illuminations, fireworks or otherwise - remained the most appealing part of the nightlong revelry. The canopies of colour inspired awe and created magical moments for viewers everywhere, making for a perfect start to 2018.

Light Up 2018, Dubai

The ‘Light Up 2018’ show at Burj Khalifa set a Guinness World Record as the largest light and sound show on a single building. Covering 32,467 square metres, the LED display had an impressive 70,000 LED bulbs and used over 100,000 brackets linked seamlessly with 55,000 metres of cabling.

The 10-minute show began with a Year of Zayed display, following which symbols of the nation like the UAE flag, falcon and the Arabic language were projected to some riveting music.

What people loved about it: The innovative factor and elimination of risks involved with general fireworks.

Wish list: Projector screens all around the Burj Khalifa so that people can see the magnificence of the laser show from any direction; easier access to the Centre of Now; extended Metro timings; and faster exit post celebrations.

Al Marjan Island, Ras Al Khaimah

1,.090 tonnes of fireworks created a colourful canopy spanning one kilometre on this island in Ras Al Khaimah, which has emerged as a top tourist destination.

The 10-minute display set a Guinness World Record for having the largest aerial firework shell. The shell packed 390 comet stars of 100mm each flowering into white, red and green, to recreate the colours of the national flag.

What people loved about it: Relative privacy the island offered and none of the usual traffic woes.

Wish list: Greater awareness across the UAE as many outside the northern emirates missed out on the spectacle.

Countdown Village and other locations in Abu Dhabi

Accompanied by incredible pyrotechnic effects, the 15-minute fireworks display at the New Year’s Eve Countdown Village left the thousands who had gathered spellbound. The capital welcomed the New Year with spectacular firework shows in other locations too, including the Abu Dhabi Corniche, Yas island and Al Maryah Island.

What people loved about it: The fact that they had so many options within the emirate

Wish list: More parking spaces, easier access

Al Qasba, Sharjah

As Sharjah’s prime tourist, leisure and family destination, Al Qasba was one of the most happening party hubs on December 31. Viewers were mesmerised when the midnight fireworks were reflected in the water canal and other features of the picturesque place,

What people love about it: Sharjah residents consider it the perfect New Year treat as it comes with many other attractions at the Masrah Al Qasba Theatre, Kids Fun House, Maraya Art Centre, Al Qasba Musical Fountain and the Eye of the Emirates. There are any number of good restaurants too in the vicinity.

Wish list: More parking spaces, easier access

Al Majaz Waterfront, Sharjah

Sharjah’s Al Majaz Waterfront drew massive crowds with spectacular 10-minute fireworks being the highlight. The fireworks were rigged on 16 massive barges, all synchronised with the countdown to 2018. The display was visible to spectators across many parts of the city.

What people loved about it: A new concierge service for revellers. The service offered restaurant bookings and special requests for balcony views, as well as advanced parking spots.

Wish list: More parking, smoother exit

Dazzling favourites, Dubai
Dubai residents were spoilt for choice when it came to selecting a venue to watch a New Year firework display. From The Atlantis on the Palm and Jumeirah Beach Residence to Burj Al Arab, Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai Festival City and Global Village, the attractions were many.

What people loved about them: Tried and tested spectacles with viewing places offering an unmatched vibe

Wish list: Ease of parking, traffic and extended Metro timings

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