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Saadiyat Cultural District in Abu Dhabi set for completion in 2025

The Saadiyat Cultural District is on track for completion by the end of 2025, the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi has announced.

Saadiyat Cultural District is a global platform, emanating from a rich cultural heritage, celebrating traditions, and advancing equitable culture. It is an embodiment of empowerment, showcasing museums, collections, and narratives that celebrate the region’s heritage while promoting a diverse global cultural landscape.

Once completed, the diversity of Saadiyat Cultural District’s institutions will make the district one of the most unique cultural platforms. It is already the home of Louvre Abu Dhabi – the first universal museum in the Arab world – showcasing artworks from different cultures side by side and telling a story of human connections. Since opening in 2017, Louvre Abu Dhabi has welcomed 5 million visitors and is recognised for its breathtaking architecture and its innovative narrative. Nearby, Berklee Abu Dhabi offers music, performing arts and educational programmes throughout the year.

Additionally, Manarat Al Saadiyat serves as a centre for creative artistic expression and is home to two significant initiatives in Abu Dhabi’s cultural calendar: Abu Dhabi Art and Culture Summit Abu Dhabi.

The current construction progress of the soon-to-open institutions in Saadiyat Cultural District stands at 76 percent. Zayed National Museum, the national museum of the United Arab Emirates, will celebrate the nation’s rich history and culture, as well as honour the legacy of the country’s founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Additionally, teamLab Phenomena Abu Dhabi invites visitors to an ever-changing exploration that will transcend the limits of their imagination.

It will be joined by the Natural History Museum Abu Dhabi, which will include a research and teaching institution that will take visitors on a 13.8 billion-year journey through the story of our universe and our planet. Guggenheim Abu Dhabi will be a museum celebrating art from the 1960s to the present and the most important artistic achievements of our time.

Saadiyat Cultural District pays homage to the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed, who defined the cultural agenda and unveiled the history of the UAE to the world through archaeological excavations and findings. This legacy began with the establishment of Al Ain Museum, the first museum in the UAE, which opened in 1971. This was followed by the inauguration of the Cultural Foundation in 1981. Sheikh Zayed’s legacy continued to evolve under the guidance of the late Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Today, President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and H.H. Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council, continue to build on that legacy.

Mohamed Al Mubarak, Chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi, said, “Culture transcends mere connections; it shapes our very evolution and broadens our perspectives. Here in Abu Dhabi, we embrace this influence, fostering a deep appreciation that resonates throughout our community. Saadiyat Cultural District embodies ‘cultural hope’. The District will convey a message of cultural diversity that will become more powerful over time, creating global connections, inspiring cultural exchange, and fostering new ways of thinking to support the region, the global South and the world. Saadiyat Cultural District is somewhere people can come to learn from the past, understand our present and focus on our future.”

Saadiyat Cultural District is a testament to Abu Dhabi’s commitment to preserving heritage while embracing a forward-looking vision. The District invites the world to engage with diverse cultures, fostering dialogue and exchange, and offers a global cultural space that empowers the region and the global south.

DCT Abu Dhabi has also launched a compelling campaign titled ‘Be Moved in a Thousand Ways’, introduced by philanthropist, talk show host and author Oprah Winfrey and broadcaster Mona El Shazli. The campaign film delivers an inspirational message on the transformative power of culture to unite, inspire, and open minds. Contributors to the campaign include Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi; Zaki Nusseibeh, Cultural Adviser to the UAE President and Chancellor of the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU); Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of State; Norman Foster, Pritzker Architecture Prize-winner and architect of the Zayed National Museum; Mariët Westermann, Director and CEO of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, celebrated artists Mohammed Ibrahim, Najat Makki, Afra Al Dhaheri from the UAE; multi-award winning Actor, Musician and Entrepreneur Idris Elba OBE; legendary pianist Lang Lang and many more.

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