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434005 Views 850 Replies 165 Participants Last post by  isicman
Abu Dhabi says 'Yas' to the world

Leading property developer ALDAR Properties PJSC today announced plans for Yas Island, one of the largest natural islands in Abu Dhabi.

Marina at night.

Yas Island will be a prestigious world-class leisure destination, with mixed-use tourist attractions including beaches, entertainment, shopping, hotels, residences, golfing, equestrian facilities and motor racing. Yas Island will host the world's first 'Ferrari World'.

Outlining the scale of the project, ALDAR's Chairman Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh commented on its size and ambitions: 'Yas Island will combine the many natural attractions of an island with the world's most popular leisure activities. We have taken mankind's passion for the sea, for racing cars, shopping, golfing, and luxurious living, and designed them all into a single unique setting. Yas Island will be the only destination in the world that combines our desert and maritime traditions with the fascinations of Florida and the elegance of Monte Carlo. It will be the world's most complete leisure destination. "

"At ALDAR Properties, our business model is based on strategically integrated residential and leisure developments, with particular emphasis on infrastructure, planning, and environmental protection. With the launch of Yas Island we are inviting the whole world to our land. We are inviting the world to say 'Yas'," he said.

CEO Ronald Barrott elaborated on Yas Island, and its many attractions: "We have been working to create a unique destination that will present Abu Dhabi to the global tourist market. Our intention is to bring together families, friends and individuals seeking options of entertainment, excitement, nature and peace in one location," he said.

Shopping will be one of the key attractions, with retail areas occupying a staggering 300,000 square metres. Ferrari World will be a major highlight, through ALDAR's rights to a Ferrari-themed park, museum and theatre. These attractions are linked to a top quality motor race track on which visitors can experience the thrill of the exclusive Ferrari Driving School (Pilota Ferrari), kart track and dune buggies. They can also test the limits of their own cars under professional instruction.

More peacefully, located on the island will be two major marinas and yachting facilities; resort hotels, lagoon hotels and hotel apartments; a water park, three golf courses, a polo field and equestrian centre, restaurants and cafes, and mixed type residences. Plans are underway to adapt sensitive and beautiful parts of the island into conservation areas. A number of very select individual homes will be made available on the island, at a later stage.

ALDAR said that more details would be announced in due course, but that Yas Island would feature a range of attractions and activities that will appeal to people of all age groups, and retain the interest of every member of a visiting family. The company also expects most people to stay on Yas Island for a minimum of seven days, and all activities - shopping, sports, leisure, recreation and others - are designed around long-stay visitors.

Yas Island, spread over an impressive area of 2,500 hectares, is roughly one third the size of the island of Abu Dhabi, and features a beach front shoreline of approximately 32 kms. Infrastructure will be developed around the Yas Island project in advance and to the operational benefit of the capital city. A new ten-lane highway will connect Yas Island to the new Abu Dhabi International Airport, the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway, and the city of Abu Dhabi at Mina Port. Yas Island will also connect to ALDAR's signature Al Raha Beach development.

Yas Island is easily accessible by road, air and water. International visitors flying into Abu Dhabi will be able to see the bright glow of the red Ferrari World roof from the air, and can reach Yas Island within minutes of disembarking. Just ten minutes from Abu Dhabi International Airport and a similar distance from ALDAR's Al Raha Beach, Yas Island is located at the gateway to Abu Dhabi, and will target the 1.6 billion catchment area located within six hours flying time to the UAE.
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Actually, it has! :)

I think Abu Dhabi will suit Brawn, their set-up, etc, so I'll go with Button or Barrichello to win the race, or at least make it on to the podium. But more importantly though I think, Button will win the drivers title, NOT because he has a healthy 15 point lead, but because he has had the edge over everyone this year. His second place at Monza (absolutely crucial IMO) and finishing ahead of Barrichello at Singapore have put him in a fantastic position in the points. Anything can happen in F1, of course, we've seen championships lost from the front (Raikkonen came from behind and won by one point in Brazil in 2007) but my gut says Button will step up now and do just enough to secure the title. :2cents:

Bottom line, head-to-head, Button will beat Barrichello (avoiding crash, engine failure, etc) for the drivers championship in 2009! :cheers:

(hope I don't end up eating my words :lol: I'm sure there are some here who will remind me too :D)

has the mist cleared away yet ???
noir-dresses said:
watching qualifying at the singapore circut was really impressive, its going to be a real hard act to follow, going to take Abu Dhabi a while to get there aswell
Totally agree, I think Abu Dhabi will be better next year - and better again in the following few years once all the dust has settled. I think once they get a few races under their belts and the fans get used to it...basically bond with this circuit then it will be pretty awesome! Really looking forward to this race! :)
Stunning indeed. Incredible what they've done here. My respect to all involved with this amazing project. :cheers:

simply stunning. looking better everyday, I hope landscaping will be completed by then.
oops, Je suis desole :)
Pas de problème :)
Fast start to Grand Prix volunteer search

Coloured lights illuminate the Yas Hotel on the Formula One racetrack. Rich-Joseph Facun / The National

Hassan Hassan
* Last Updated: September 28. 2009 5:10PM UAE / September 28. 2009 1:10PM GMT

ABU DHABI // A scheme to recruit up to 900 Emirati volunteers to help out during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix has had a strong reponse, organisers said yesterday.

Even before the publicity campaign started, said Takatof, the volunteer organisation of the Emirates Foundation, it had had many calls from people offering to participate in the Formula One event, scheduled for October 30 to November 1 on Yas Island. The volunteers will work in airports and hotels to welcome visitors and provide information, and inside the Yas Marina Circuit during the event.

Takatof officially launched its campaign yesterday to recruit volunteers. At least 600 are needed, but the organisation set a target of 900. Takatof said earlier this month that more than 300 people had already volunteered.

Volunteers must be UAE nationals, more than 18 years old and should have a strong command of Arabic and English. Applicants will be interviewed by Takatof officials.

Recruitment is expected to finish by the end of this month, with October reserved for training.

The volunteers will be trained in customer service, ceremony and hospitality, as well as health safety, security, traffic control and firefighting. The goal, in addition to making the event run smoothly, is to present visitors with a positive image of the country, Takatof officials said.

“Our role is to make sure everyone is comfortable,” said Mohammed al Mansouri, a Takatof supervisor. “Every volunteer, male and female, will be required to wear national dress and will be tasked to give a positive image of the country.

“A lot of visitors will come from outside the country and for a short period of time, so it is important they do not get the wrong image.”

Maytha al Habsi, the head of Takatof, said volunteers would benefit from the experience.

“Participating in this event has several advantages for young Emiratis, such as improving their skills and self-confidence,” she said. “This is a chance for them to get in contact with people from a variety of cultures, which would improve their ability to better represent their country in international forums in the future.”

Mr al Mansouri said Takatof had finished recruiting and assigning leaders and captains, and was now seeking volunteers and setting up training. Volunteer groups will consist of a leader, four captains and 20 volunteers.

“No one would work in airports Dubai and Abu Dhabi airports hotels and the circuit unless they are fully trained,” he said. “In addition to being a national duty, participation will provide us with a very good experience.”

Humaid al Hamadi, another Takatof supervisor, said volunteers would be positioned at 15 hotels, two airports and six stands inside the racing circuit.

He said 100 volunteers would work in two or three shifts at Abu Dhabi International Airport, and an unspecified number will be at Dubai International Airport. Volunteers would be responsible for welcoming guests, providing first aid and information, and even organising traffic, he said.

Last April, the organisers of the Grand Prix said a plan was in place to have Emiratis trained to fill most of the marshalling positions at the circuit in the next five years.

Among the most demanding jobs will be working alongside F1 officials as scrutineers, assessing the cars after the race to ensure they meet international regulations.

Most of the marshalling volunteer positions this year are being filled by experienced staff from the UK, as well as from the circuits in Bahrain and Doha. Some marshals will also be recruited from the Dubai Autodrome.

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Remember last years final race, I actually thought Hamilton never won the title, didn't notice one of the cars infront of him blew a tire on the final lap, and Hamilton ended up passing him for that extra point. It actually happened on the final corner before the finish line.

Honestly, Button has the title secured, well 99 %, so I dont expect any real suspence at Abu Dhabi.

Singapore was great, notice the skyline in the back ground, landscaping with lots of vegetation, high way going threw the circut, ocean, casino's. condo's on the island aswell ( The Sail ), Singapore Sling, etc. Going there is always fun.

One of my dreams is to do all the circut's one year, why not
Light effects

Some light effects on the Marina Hotel and on the Sun Tower (facing towards Start/Finishing line)

Yas Marina Hotel:

Sun Tower:
To my knowledge, Glock didn't blow a tire, he basically said that he had lost almost all grip on that final lap (probably because he hadn't changed to wet tires earlier on) and unfortunately (for Massa) went wide at the last corner allowing Hamilton to pass and take the title from under Massa's feet. Unbelievable! That must have hurt Massa more than we'll ever know... BUT, the incident in the pit lane (fuel rig) at last year's Singaporean Grand Prix ultimately cost Massa the title IMO.

Anyways, I think the Yas circuit has the longest straight in the world right ??

PS: Nice shots, Ro.Bi. The light effects are quite stunning! :cheers:

:D Suzuka Grand Prix this weekend! Always been one of my favourites! :banana:
Remember last years final race, I actually thought Hamilton never won the title, didn't notice one of the cars infront of him blew a tire on the final lap, and Hamilton ended up passing him for that extra point. It actually happened on the final corner before the finish line.
‘Keep trying’ if you want Yas tickets

Announcements on entertainment at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix has caused an increase in demand for tickets. Sammy Dallal / The National

Anealla Safdar
* Last Updated: September 30. 2009 12:08AM UAE / September 29. 2009 8:08PM GMT

ABU DHABI // The availability of tickets for the capital’s inaugural Formula One Grand Prix seems to be changing faster than tyres at a pit stop, with some seats that were previously unavailable coming up for sale again.

Confirmation that concerts featuring Beyoncé and Aerosmith on Yas Island will be open only to race ticket-holders has increased the demand, although would-be ticket buyers have encountered various difficulties.

Customers have reported conflicting information from salesmen at the official hotline and limited availability from Etihad Airways outlets. Problems booking via the Yas Marina Circuit website have also been reported.

When The National telephoned the official Yas Marina number on Monday and yesterday morning to inquire about tickets, the sales staff said they had sold out. By yesterday afternoon, however, they were saying several had become available.

“I am having the same kind of problems,” said Hasan Gulistan, a banker from Abu Dhabi. “I really wish I had not left it so late. I am booking now because I also really want to see Beyoncé perform at the concert.

“I have tried the website, which isn’t working, and also tried calling yesterday. I am now banking on the Etihad shops having some available so I can guarantee some good seats.”

Sales are picking up at the Etihad outlets across the capital, according to Abdullah, an assistant in the Al Wahda Mall branch. The majority of seats had been snapped up when the tickets first went on sale, after which they had slowed to about 50 a week. In recent days, however, there had been more customers and availability was falling fast.

Seats in the most expensive Main, North and South Grandstands had all been sold out at the Etihad outlet yesterday afternoon but some were for sale in the cheaper West Grandstand and Support Pit. The West Grandstand was previously said to have been sold out soon after booking opened in March.

A spokesman for Abu Dhabi Motorsport Management (ADMM), which manages the circuit, said the evidently contradictory advice on availability had arisen because some companies were returning tickets from their allocations.

“It is a day-to-day situation, so people shouldn’t assume that if they can’t get hold of tickets in the morning, that they can’t in the afternoon. Keep trying.”

It was possible that more tickets would become available from the middle of October, the deadline for returning tickets allocated to companies, tour operators or government bodies that were not sold on.

On Monday, Richard Cregan, the chief executive of ADMM, told the media that “a number” of seats were available and that the organisation was happy to investigate any reports of problems customers might have.

He added that people who had already bought tickets should start to receive them in the coming days.

“They are going out now. When everyone gets their ticket, I don’t think there is any event in the world that will give you as good value as that.”

A formal announcement would be made to the public once the race was sold out, the ADMM spokesman added.

After that, fans will have few options and the prices are likely to be higher than face value as third-party companies try to cash in.

A Norwegian online company named Euroteam, for example, has seats available in all areas, but at a much higher price. Those for the Main Grandstand, with a face value of Dh2,500, are on offer for as much as €1,000 (Dh5,350).

“We have not sold as many tickets as we wanted, fewer than 50 between fewer than 10 customers,” said the Euroteam chairman, Andreas Gyrre. “We are a third-party ticket supplier, and not an official distributor.”

Many tickets are for sale on auction websites such as eBay and, some at inflated prices. had seats in the South Grandstand at Dh3,500, an increase of Dh 1,500 on their face value. On eBay, some South Grandstand tickets were priced at $545 (Dh2,000), in line with their face value.

“I don’t know which option to take,” said Mohammed Ajaib, a 55-year-old engineer from Abu Dhabi, even though tickets are still officially on sale via official channels. “It seems odd that one day tickets are available and the next they are not.

“I just don’t want to pay a high price to find out more may become available at a later date. My worst nightmare is that people are buying them up in hope of selling them at a premium.”

Even at face value, the price of tickets coupled with booking difficulties has put some people off. Ayub Dosani, a 24-year-old F1 fan from London, said he was keen to visit the UAE but had problems with the official website. He said he would have made more of an effort had they been “more in line with international prices, like £120 (Dh700) for example.”

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1 month today till qualifying starts!! :banana:

Some aerial pictures 27th September.
Anyone spot the first yacht already in... :D

Stunning indeed. Incredible what they've done here. My respect to all involved with this amazing project. :cheers:
Yacht has gone again, one of the Sheiks kindly lent it to us for practice.

1 month today till qualifying starts!! :banana:

Some aerial pictures 27th September.
Anyone spot the first yacht already in... :D
very nice aerial shots, nice to see the track getting greener everyday, they planted alot of palm trees. I like the "ابوظبي" sign in the grass :)

by the way, ALL Etihad Airlines crafts fly above Yas island before landing now, as a promotion for the events :D
you know, now that I think about it, the race tickets is actually kinda cheap lol.

paying between $436 - $681 depending on which stand, and you get access to the:

F1 Grand Prix,

3 support races,

4 concerts and acts performed by known singers.

and not forget an awsome opening cermony/fireworks (we all know how awsome and well budgeted openings are in UAE, aka atlantis, bowling tournement, etc. we just love to over spend in that department :D). thats 3 days of so much entertainments. all for one low price. maybe they should print a Wall-Mart smiley face on the tickets hehehe
^^ Don't forget yer camera for when Beyonce takes to the stage shakin' her booty! :lol: :D

Adam2707 said:
1 month today till qualifying starts!! :banana:
I'm almost paralysed with enthusiasm already. :D

Awesome shots btw, Adam! Just imagine this same view in another 3-4 years..:)
Fleet of 300 buses to run F1 shuttles

New public buses will carry Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ticket holders to events free of charge. Ryan Carter / The National

Matthew Chung
* Last Updated: October 01. 2009 12:28AM UAE / September 30. 2009 8:28PM GMT

ABU DHABI // About 300 buses will carry Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ticket holders to events free of charge during the capital’s inaugural race weekend, a high-ranking transport official said yesterday.

The buses, some of which will be going into service for the first time, will help race-goers to get on and around Yas Island for both the race and its concurrent events. And when the Formula One cars and the crowds have gone, many of the buses will go into regular service on the capital’s streets, according to Saeed al Hameli, the general manager of the public bus office at the Department of Transport. Buses will be added to some existing routes, he said, and four new routes will be added.

The department is working closely with Abu Dhabi Motorsport Management (ADMM) and the police to run services from the car park on Yas Island to the event.

“We will also be running services from Abu Dhabi Island to Yas Island from various locations,” Mr al Hameli added.

The park-and-ride locations have not been finalised, but he said there would be various spots where Grand Prix attendees would be able to park their cars and ride buses to Yas Marina.

Richard Cregan, the chief executive of ADMM, said on Monday that locations for park-and-ride facilities were still being drawn up and that the full transport plan for the Grand Prix was likely to be announced next week.

The race preparation is a huge undertaking for transport planners as 60,000 people a day are expected to flock to the island from October 29 to November 1.

Police plan to make travel announcements in the week leading up to the event, including road closures and detours. They are also setting up a website to provide travel updates and advice on routes.

About 70 per cent of the buses that will serve the Grand Prix will be new, German-manufactured vehicles, part of the 500 ordered from the firms MAN and Mercedes, Mr al Hameli said. Deals were struck last year for MAN to provide 250 city buses and 150 coaches, while Mercedes provided 100 city buses. The first 25 MAN city buses are running on routes Seven and Five in Abu Dhabi, while 50 Mercedes buses are plying four routes in Al Ain. About 70 buses are in use on the island’s streets at present.

More of those buses have arrived and will take to the streets for the race weekend, Mr al Hameli said, without specifying a number. They will then be integrated into the island’s bus network.

The 12-metre, air-conditioned buses can seat 34 passengers and carry about 65 altogether. Each bus has a wheelchair ramp and five closed-circuit television cameras.

By the end of the year four new routes would be added on Abu Dhabi Island, taking the total number to 13, Mr al Hameli said. The department is on track to have 21 routes serving Abu Dhabi by the end of next year, he said.

The routes have not been finalised but the Department is considering to have buses run to and from Khalidiya Mall, as well as creating new links from the al Bateen area. Mr al Hameli said the new routes would help provide better connectivity through the network.

“Now we need to enter within the blocks, within those existing routes to make it more accessible,” he said.

“We are planning on exchanging old buses with the new buses,” he said. “Then we need to make some express route links to shorten the journey and to distribute the crowds and to provide more comfort in the long journey. The buses carry about 88,000 passengers on the island daily, more than half the department’s goal of 150,000.

“New buses give people confidence,” Mr al Hameli said. “A lot of people have started using the bus now from the Tourist Club to Marina Mall. It has become reliable and better comfort than a car itself where you don’t find parking.”

The department has also launched new routes for the suburb of Shahama, linking it with Samha and Rahba.

New routes are also planned for Al Ain before the end of the year.

The Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, meanwhile, plans to open six visitor centres around the capital to offer information about the grand prix, the state news agency, WAM, reported.

One will open in the arrivals hall of Abu Dhabi International Airport on October 4, and one each at the Yas Marina Circuit, Marina Mall, Abu Dhabi Mall and Al Wahda Mall on October 24. The final centre will be part of an “arrivals experience” serving the cruise ships at Mina Zayed, with immigration services, duty-free shops included in an Arabian tent structure.

Also, touch-screen kiosks will be installed at Al Bawardi Mall in Al Ain and the Shangri-La hotel at Qary’at al Beri, bringing the number of kiosks in the emirate to 26. Two more are planned for Yas Island and the Qasr al Sarab retreat in the Liwa Desert early next year.

“Ease of access to destination information can lift the entire visitor experience, particularly in the lead-up to, during and the immediate post period of an important event,” Saeed al Dhaheri, the tourism authority’s visitor information manager, said in a statement.

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In the F1.....web page ....they say that the GP...its gonna be the last one!
Sorry all, moving away from the track and GP, any news on the proposed mall on the island is it still on or has it been delayed.
Picture update (2009-10-01)

For those interessted in new/actual pictures:

As somebody mentioned before it´s nice to see it become greener!

Another nice yacht arrived as shown in the pictures. Probably for testing if the access into the Marina is deep enough. Anyway, looks fantastic. Just imagine the whole Marina fully packed with luxury yachts!! :nuts:
What can I say, stunning...
I'm sure Yas Marina will be of the F1 calendar for a veryyy long time. And it will keep getting better. Imaging this track with the rest of Yas Island completed and with the back drop of Raha Beach, Masdar City, etc. And I'm still completly stunned on how fast this has come together, less than a month ago I was having serious doubts if everything would be ready in time. Now Im confident that this will be one of the most spectacular venues of the season!

One month today till race day!!! :banana:

I'm seriously thinking about putting some money aside to go next year..
It's looking really good, think the roller coaster will be finished, and running by the time of the race ? The landscaping is really making the track feel alive. Who thinks the Dubai yaucht will be there aswell ?
IS anyone going? I am seriously considering it....
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