Abraj Al Bait Towers in Mecca

Monday, 10 July 2017 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
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Abraj Al Bait Towers © King Eliot/cc-by-sa-3.0

Abraj Al Bait Towers © King Eliot/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Abraj Al-Bait is a government-owned megatall complex of seven skyscraper hotels in Mecca. These towers are a part of the King Abdulaziz Endowment Project that strives to modernize the city in catering to its pilgrims. The central hotel tower, the Makkah Royal Clock Tower, A Fairmont Hotel, has the world’s largest clock face and is the third tallest building and fourth tallest freestanding structure in the world. The building complex is metres away from the world’s largest mosque and Islam‘s most sacred site, the Masjid al-Haram.

The developer and contractor of the complex is the Saudi Binladin Group. The complex was built after the demolition of the Ajyad Fortress, the 18th-century Ottoman citadel which stood atop a hill overlooking the Grand Mosque. The destruction of the fort in 2002 by the Saudi government sparked Turkish and international outcry. It is also the most expensive building in the world. The tallest tower in the complex is the tallest building in Saudi Arabia, with a height of 581.1 metres (1,906 feet). Currently it is the fourth tallest freestanding structure in the world, surpassing Taipei 101 in Taiwan, but shorter than the Shanghai Tower, the Tokyo Sky Tree and the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.

The site of the complex is located across the street to the south from an entrance to the Masjid al Haram mosque, which houses the Kaaba. To accommodate worshippers visiting the Kaaba, the Abraj Al-Bait Towers has a large prayer room capable of holding more than 10,000 people. The tallest tower in the complex also contains a five-star hotel, operated by Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, to help provide lodging for the millions of pilgrims that travel to Mecca annually to participate in the Hajj. The complex can accommodate up to 30,000 people at the same time.

Abraj Al Bait Towers © King Eliot/cc-by-sa-3.0 The Holy Mosque with the Abraj al-Bait Towers in the background © Meshal Obeidallah © Basil D Soufi/cc-by-sa-3.0 Mecca - Kaaba © Zakaryaamr/cc-by-sa-3.0
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The Holy Mosque with the Abraj al-Bait Towers in the background © Meshal Obeidallah
In addition, the Abraj Al-Bait Towers has a five-story shopping mall (the Abraj Al Bait Mall) and a parking garage capable of holding over a thousand vehicles. The project uses clock faces for each side of the hotel tower. The highest residential floor stands at 450 m (1,480 ft), just below the spires. The clock faces are 43 m × 43 m (141 ft × 141 ft), the largest in the world. The roof of the clocks is 530 m (1,740 ft) above the ground, making them the world’s most elevated architectural clocks. A 71-metre-tall (233 ft) spire has been added on top of the clock giving it a total height of 601 m (1,972 ft). The tower also includes an Islamic Museum and a Lunar Observation Center which will also be used to sight the moon during the Holy Months.

The building was planned to be 734 m (2,408 ft) tall in 2006. In 2009, it was published that the final height would be 601 m (1,972 ft). The complex was built by the Saudi Binladin Group, Saudi Arabia’s largest construction company. The tallest building in the complex (from a height of 450 m (1,480 ft) up until the tip) was designed by the German architect Mahmoud Bodo Rasch and his firm SL Rasch GmbH. The facade was constructed by Premiere Composite Technologies, the clock by German tower clock manufacturer Perrot GmbH & Co. KG Turmuhren und Läuteanlagen. According to the Saudi Ministry of Religious Endowments, the project cost US$15 billion.

Read more on Makkah Clock Royal Tower, A Fairmont Hotel and Wikipedia Abraj Al Bait Towers (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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