With the year coming to a close, UAE residents can look forward to 2021 in truly dazzling style.
The UAE is already known for its extravagant and record-breaking New Year's Eve firework displays as last year Ras Al Khaimah broke two Guinness World records for the "Most Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for launching Fireworks Simultaneously" and "The Longest Firework Waterfall". Back in 2014, Dubai ushered in the New Year by breaking the Guinness record at the time for "Largest Firework Display", with a pyrotechnics extravaganza of almost 500,000 fireworks, mostly along the Palm Jumeirah and The World Islands.
This year, a number of prime attractions in the country are gearing up to send off the year in spectacular fashion. The Burj Khalifa has announced there will be fireworks on the world's tallest building, while Atlantis, The Palm is promising the "largest-ever pyro display".
Nakheel has confirmed there will not be fireworks this year at any of its mall destinations, which includes Club Vista Mare and The Pointe on Palm Jumeirah.
Here’s a look at some of the firework displays that have officially been confirmed.
Fireworks in Dubai
The world’s tallest building will be celebrating New Year’s Eve with a “grand masterpiece of fireworks and lights and laser show”. While not too many details have been disclosed about the theme of the display, Mohamed Alabbar, founder of Emaar, the developer of the Burj Khalifa, has said the attraction will be delivering “an even bigger gala event” this year.
Downtown Dubai will be adorned with decorations, and the fireworks and laser and light show will be synchronised to The Dubai Fountain show for an impressive display.
To ensure public health and safety for all visitors, Emaar will be implementing several preventive measures, including thermal cameras, social distancing, contactless payments and frequent deep cleaning and disinfection, in line with Dubai Government guidelines and directives.
Burj Al Arab
Jumeirah Group has confirmed the luxury hotel will be having a fireworks display this year. Whether you choose to take in the pyrotechnics from any of the restaurants at Souk Madinat Jumeirah or Kite Beach, it's bound to be a fantastic way to see in the New Year.
Families looking for a space to watch the skies light up can always head to Global Village which will be bringing back its "around the world" New Year's Eve fireworks. That means that guests at the multicultural venue will be treated to hourly fireworks, starting at 8pm, that coincide with the clock striking midnight in different countries around the world.
According to the organisers of Dubai Shopping Festival, the World’s Largest Frame will be having fireworks again this year for New Year's Eve.
Town Square Dubai by Nshama
The area will have a six-minute-long firework display to ring in the New Year. Celebrations at the area will start at 6pm, with entry complimentary for residents and members of the public alike. There will be entertainment, food stalls, an inflatable play area, children’s train and Splash Pad waterpark to keep the little ones entertained.
Town Square Dubai by Nshama will be implementing social distancing and sanitisation procedures in line with government guidelines.
Atlantis, The Palm
The resort on The Palm Jumeirah is going all out for New Year's Eve with a concert by Kiss, which the US rock band has dubbed their "biggest concert ever". Guests staying in the resort can watch the show via a vertical concert format while those in a Palm View Hotel Room will be able to see the main stage. The event promises to be coupled with "the world's largest pyrotechnic fireworks".
Guests wanting to spend New Year's Eve at Atlantis, The Palm, must book a stay at the hotel. A three-night room package starts at Dh19,630 per room, excluding taxes – based on a minimum of two people sharing, staying a minimum of three nights. Packages include a New Year's Eve dinner according to tier type, with food and beverages from 6pm to 9pm, followed by front-row balcony seats to the Kiss 2020 Goodbye concert inclusive of in-room beverage and snack packages.
The popular waterfront promenade will be hosting a three-minute fireworks display. Visitors can head there to take in panoramic views of old Dubai and watch the skies light up at midnight. The destination also promises a range of entertainment and dining options.
The island destination, which is home to Ain Dubai, has confirmed that it will be having fireworks when the clock strikes midnight. There are numerous dining venues – from The London Project to Brass Money – for front-row seats to the show. Guests can also head there on Friday, January 1 as there will be fireworks again at 8pm.
The Beach, JBR
The dining, shopping and entertainment destination has promised dazzling fireworks that light up the sky at midnight. In addition, UAE residents heading to the destination a little earlier on New Year's Eve can catch 300 drones launching into the night sky to create 3D shapes choreographed to popular tunes at 8pm and 10pm. Visitors can view the celebrations from the al fresco setting or reserve a table at any of the restaurants including Eat Greek Kouzina, Aprons & Hammers, Catch22, The Cheesecake Factory, PF Chang’s and more.
Visitors can expect a celebratory firework display at the beachfront destination at midnight. There will be another one taking place on Friday, January 1, at 9.30pm.
Dubai Festival City Mall
The mall will hold two firework displays – one at 9pm and another at midnight – accompanied by the venue's Imagine musical fountain and laser shows. To enjoy the displays, visitors are required to pre-book a meal at selected restaurants at the waterfront destination. There are plenty of options to choose from, including Joe’s Crab Shack, Chili's, Texas Roadhouse, Famous Dave’s, Nandos, Five Guys, Semsom and Turkish Village. There will be two seating options available: a family-friendly slot from 7pm to 9.30pm and another one between 10pm and 12.30am.
Customers can pre-book via dubaifestivalcitymall.com and only those with email confirmation will be allowed to access Festival Bay.
Fireworks in Abu Dhabi
As with previous years, residents in the capital can expect the skies above the Corniche to light up on New Year's Eve. The Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi has announced there will be a five-minute show at midnight that extends a distance of 1.2km. Residents and visitors can also watch the fireworks on Abu Dhabi TV, Emarat TV and UAE_BARQ’s official Instagram page.
Organisers behind Sheikh Zayed Festival have announced the event will host a fireworks show that spans more than 35 minutes in an attempt to break two Guinness World Records on Thursday, December 31.
The display will include the “world’s first-ever Girandola fireworks show”, according to a tweet shared by the festival. Girandola is the Italian word for pinwheel, so spectators can expect a spinning, sparkling display.
The second Guinness World Record organisers are looking to set is for the largest straight-line fireworks display. Besides the fireworks, there will be special fountain and laser shows, performances by local and international bands, and children's activities taking at the Sheikh Zayed Festival to mark the end of 2020.
Al Maryah Island
Guests can head to Al Maryah Island promenade for a dazzling firework display organised by Mubadala Investment Company. There are a number of dining options, from Coya to Loca, offering views of the fireworks. Meanwhile Rosewood Abu Dhabi has also unveiled packages for the occasion, from a cosy feast at Wood & Fire restaurant for Dh655 per person, to tables and cabanas at rooftop lounge Glo, starting from Dh900.
Anantara Eastern Mangroves
The five-star hotel has announced that it will be having a sparkling NYE bash, with fireworks displayed over the mangroves and Abu Dhabi skyline when the clock strikes midnight. Guests at the hotel can get up close to the pyrotechnics with any of the hotel's four celebratory NYE events. There will be a countdown by the pool, a party at the rooftop venue Up-Hi, and gala dinners taking place at Pachaylen and Ingredients restaurants.
Shangri-La Hotel and Traders Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri
Shangri-La Hotel and Traders Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, will be having its annual fireworks over the Grand Canal. Residents of the capital will be guaranteed a front-row seat to the sparkling show by booking any of the packages offered within the hotel's restaurants.
As with previous years, the skies over Yas Island are set to burst into colour to see in the New Year. However, this year, those keen to watch the New Year's Eve fireworks will either have to view them via a livestream event, or will have to book dining options at one of Yas Marina's restaurants. Several venues - including Aquarium, Mr. Miyagi's, Casa de Cuba and Cipriani - have launched New Year's Eve packages for diners looking for front-row seats to the sparkling show.
Fireworks in Ajman
Ajman Tourism Development Department has announced there will be two firework displays taking place at midnight in the emirate. In the first, spectators can look forward to a spectacular five-minute display at Ajman Corniche, opposite Ajman Saray, when the clock strikes 12.
Oberoi Beach Resort at Al Zorah
There will also be another five-minute display taking place next to the resort managed by Al Zorah Development Company. The general public can view the Al Zorah fireworks at Marina 1, which will also make an ideal spot to take pictures.
Fireworks in Ras Al Khaimah
The emirate that broke two world records last year is set to light up the skies once more. This year, it will have fireworks in various shapes and themes rising above the sea near Al Marjan Island. Exploding over a 4km stretch, the display will be in tune with special musical arrangements for a total of 10 minutes to welcome the New Year.
There will be no public activities or viewing areas to ensure the safety of the public. Only hotel guests, residents, ticket holders of special events, and diners of surrounding restaurants – such as those in the hotels in Al Hamra Village and Al Marjan – will have access to these areas. Those wanting to catch the celebrations from the safety of their homes can also watch it live on television networks, social media channels and at rasalkhaimahnye.com.
Fireworks in Sharjah
Al Majaz Waterfront will be welcoming 2021 with a 10-minute display. Restaurant bookings are required to access the area.