Talal Omar is the regional representative of the Guinness Book Of World Records. Image Credit: Supplied photo

DUBAI Over the years Dubai has built a reputation as a city of records and it is no big surprise then to know that the Guinness World Records (GWR) is opening an office here.

“GWR’s plans to establish an office in the Middle East will be confirmed by the end of this month,” Talal Omar, head of Guinness World Records for the Dubai-based Middle East and North Africa (Mena) office, told XPRESS.

The office is set to be officially unveiled after the finishing touches are done, he said.

GWR’s presence in Dubai Media City was in response to the “huge demand” in the region, said Omar.

“To be honest, establishing an office in Dubai was in response to a huge demand and interest in the region for the past few years when it comes to new records.”

Until his Dubai posting, Omar worked in GWR’s Hanover Square, London head office for four years.

Besides being home to the 828-metre Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, Dubai also recently entered the Guinness Book of Records for having the tallest hotel after GWR officials conferred that title on the JW Marriott Marquis.

At 355 metres (1,165 feet) the twin towers are just 26 metres shorter than New York’s Empire State Building.

global competition

“Guinness World Records is a global competition,” said Omar. “There are times when someone in Dubai beats a record set earlier in Brazil or China. It’s good to see people in the Middle East put their names or their country’s names on the world map.”

In 2008, the UAE saw the sale of the world’s most expensive car plate — plate No. 1 — bought at an auction for Dh52.2 million ($14.1 million) by Abu Dhabi-based businessman Saeed Al Khouri, breaking the previous record of plate No 5, which was sold to his cousin for Dh25.2 million.

On Friday, Dubai will attempt to set a new record in the category of “largest convoy of off-road vehicles”, with over 1,000 4x4 cars participating in the annual Gulf News Fun Drive.

Omar has confirmed their representatives will be there to verify and certify the event.