Armani Hotel opens in $1.5 billion Burj Khalifa
Property moves Dubai's luxury sector up 'a few notches' says Alabbar
The opening of the world’s first Armani Hotel at the Burj Khalifa in Dubai has set a new benchmark for luxury hotels in Dubai, Emaar Properties chairman Mohamed Alabbar said at the hotel’s grand opening on April 27.
“Dubai today is really celebrating this great achievement as Mr. Armani really moves the standards of luxury hotels a few notches up,” said Alabbar.
He was joined at a press conference by fashion designer turned hotelier Giorgio Armani, who began designing the hotel nearly five years ago after signing a joint venture for Armani Hotels & Resorts with Emaar Properties PJSC.
Commenting on his reaction when first approached by Alabbar to design a hotel with Emaar, Armani said: “Are you sure you want me? I believe in minimalism, less is more. And when you looked at what was happening here [in Dubai five years ago] you would have thought exactly the opposite, it was a very different style”.
His intention with the design, therefore, was to create “something to be remembered, something not just for the present but for beyond the present”.
“There are so many elements when you are designing a hotel which makes it a very, very exciting project, so many spaces, so many areas, restaurants, lounges, rooms,” said Armani.
“The real difference is that when you design some clothing, journalists say after six months ‘it’s off’. Wirth Hotel Armani it cannot be really the same. So it’s a much bigger commitment and a much bigger risk, which is why I love it,” added Armani.
“Yesterday I arrived and saw this in life, I felt really emotional. I had not been involved with construction itself but I followed every single step in design and style. After five years of working on this project on paper I saw it for real. It was marvellous to see how it came to life.”
Alabbar commented: “It’s very easy to build, but it’s very difficult to cerate space with spirit and lifestyle.
“The hotel has “space, life and elegance” that will stay with you as long as you live.”
He added: “Mr Armani has an incredible common sense that makes him a designer, a hotelier, that makes him a person that understands what works, what doesn’t work”.
The second Armani Hotel is currently under development in Milan, Italy, with the first Armani Resort also planned for Marrakech. The aim is for 10 hotels within 10 years.
Alabbar said: “There is a lot on the drawing board. There is a lot of interest from fabulous cities around the world. You will have noticed that Mr Armani is a careful designer and operator and driven by quality, so we are meticulously choosing the city and type of development, so we will select them carefully as we go forth”.
“This is the beginning of the story with Armani and hospitality”, added Alabbar.
Hotel occupies floors concourse to eight, and levels 38 and 39 of Burj Khalifa
160 rooms and suites
144 private residences on floors nine to 16
Exclusive Armani Club – annual membership AED 45,000
Armani/Prive VIP lounge
World’s first in-hotel Armani/Spa
Lifestyle managers assigned to each guest
1 Armani Dubai suite, 340m² in size and priced at AED 40,000 plus-plus.
Smallest room 45m², priced at AED 4000