Established on December 2nd, 1971, the United Arab Emirates is still considered a relatively young country. In just 45 years, the UAE, and the city of Dubai has become an international symbol for growth, prosperity and success in all sectors. We take a look back at some of the most important Dubai buildings, and iconic landmarks that have stood the test of time.
The First Monument – Deira Clock Tower
The Deira Clock Tower was constructed in the year 1963, before the UAE was even established. Initially called the Dubai Clock Tower, this structure was built to celebrate one of the nation’s first international oil exports, which occurred in 1962. This monument is located at the mid-point between Deira and BurDubai, which is an essential route in the Emirate. Today, The Telegraph listed the Deira Clock Tower as one of 17 most beautiful clock towers around the world, and it is considered as a major landmark of this thriving Emirate.
The First Residential Tower – The Toyota Building
Situated in one of the busiest interchanges of the city, the Toyota building on Sheikh Zayed road was one of the first residential Duabi buildings built in the year 1973. The actual name of the 15-storey development is Nasir Rashid Lootah Building. It gets its famous nickname from the large Toyota neon sign that is found on top of the tower. Currently, this Dubai building is 90% occupied because of its popularity with Dubai residents, and also being the most affordable Dubai real estate in the area.
The First Skyscraper – World Trade Centre
Established in 1979, the Dubai World Trade Centre was the city’s first skyscraper in the region and brought about the inception of Dubai property sector on the global stage. This 39-storey tower, which is also featured on the UAE currency, was first called the Sheikh Rashid Tower, and it was built to introduce trade and commerce in the country. Now, the Dubai World Trade Centre hosts all kinds of global exhibitions, seminars and events which attracts thousands of international businesses and visitors every year.
The First Shopping Mall – Al Ghurair Centre
Dubai is famous for its many large and grand shopping malls, but the first ever shopping complex was developed by the Al Ghurair Group in the year 1981. Al Ghurair centre was the first mall in the entire gulf region. Located in Al Rigga in Deira, Al Ghurair Centre was the one-stop shop for all international brands, the top restaurants, and different entertainment options for Dubai residents in the 80’s. Nowadays, even with a large variety of malls in the city, Al Ghurair Centre still remains as a fan-favorite Dubai building for residents in Deira and Old Dubai.