DUBAI: Dubai is already known for its manmade islands, iconic sky scrapers, and the world’s first seven-star hotel – the Burj Al Arab, and now it’s getting its own version of the popular tourist attraction Madame Tussauds.
The world-famous waxwork museum is opening its first Middle East venue in Dubai’s Bluewaters Island later this year, Merlin Entertainments Ltd (Merlin), announced Tuesday.
Visitors will be able to take pictures with a selection of wax statues of 60 global stars, including 16 new wax figures from the Middle East region.
The attraction will feature seven themed rooms, including a Bollywood movie, featuring the Badshah of Bollywood, Shahrukh Khan.
Other figures will include Kylie Jenner, Cara Delevingne and footballing legend, Cristiano Ronaldo.
“In addition to well-known global figures, the new Madame Tussauds will also be home to figures celebrated in the Middle East including Nancy Ajram and Maya Diab, alongside other figures which we will announce very soon,” said Meike Lippert, Senior Divisional Director Midway Europe and Global New Openings, Merlin Entertainments.
It takes sculptors 12 weeks to create each wax statue, and during that time they document 500 precise body measurements, insert real hair strand by strand, apply countless layers of paints to build up the skin tones.
And it can cost up to $208,000 to create a wax figure, depending on the work involved.
The first Madame Tussauds was opened in 1835 in London, and has remained a popular destination with tourists in the British capital ever since.
There are also branches in Amsterdam, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Shanghai, Wuhan and New York.
“It is a thrilling experience to bring the iconic Madame Tussauds to the UAE,” said Sanaz Kollsrud, General Manager of Madame Tussauds Dubai.
“This will be the 25th edition of our wax attraction and will be a first in the GCC. We intend to bring a whole new entertainment experience to the exciting portfolio of attractions in Dubai and cement Bluewaters’ position as a global tourist destination.” Kollsrud added.