The island will be home to 150 shops and restaurants, two hotels, a beach club and a Madame Tussauds…

With new projects announced almost every month in Dubai, you’d be forgiven for forgetting back in 2013 when Meraas, the creators of destinations including La Mer and Al Seef, announced Bluewaters. Located 300 metres off the JBR coastline, the island promised family living, huge new attractions, hotels and a host of restaurants and shops.

Fast forward to 2018, and the island is just about ready to start welcoming guests.

So, what will you find at the Dhs8 billion destination?

The island is split into three key areas: residential, retail and entertainment, and hotels and a beach club. It can be accessed from Sheikh Zayed road by car, or a 265-metre-long pedestrian bridge, which links directly to The Beach opposite JBR (another Meraas project). Visitors will eventually also be able to use the Group Rapid Transit (GRT) – a metro-like system – which will see driverless pods transport guests from Nakheel Habour Metro Station to Bluewaters.

Things to do

The world’s largest observation wheel, Ain Dubai, stands proudly at 210 metres tall, and is at the heart of the leisure and entertainment destination on the island. The wheel will be fitted with 48 spacious glass capsules, which will offer panoramic views across Dubai to some 1400 passengers at a time. A number of the capsules will also be private ‘fine dining’ rooms that seat up to 12 guests, while six of the capsules will have a licensed bar so that you can have a tipple with your 360 degree views.

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Although an exact time frame for opening has not been given, it’s expected to open to the public sometime in 2019.

But that’s not the only big leisure pull on the island. First announced in 2008, Madame Tussauds was revealed to be making its way to Bluewaters in 2016. And while they’ve been very quiet about it so far, it’s also expected the iconic waxwork museum will open early next year.

Restaurants & bars

Some 150 restaurants, bars, shops and cafes will make up the rest of the leisure area, and although a full list of all the venues has not been revealed, a number of restaurants and bars are now advertising that they’re set to make their Bluewaters debut soon. Among those is The London Project. Despite its namesake, the split-level restaurant and bar does isn’t actually from the British capital – it’s a home-grown concept, inspired by London – and features a downstairs restaurant serving sharing Mediterranean dishes and upstairs gin garden, modelled on a wild, overgrown English country garden.

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Mumbai favourite Basanti & Co is set to make its Dubai debut on the island, too. The Indian restaurant will occupy a split-level space and boasts a menu of modern Indian dishes served up in an interior space modelled on summer colours, as well as a covered al fresco terrace.

Affordable burger bar Ketch-Up will bring an all-American menu to the island later this month. The unlicensed concept, hailing from Moscow, features an industrial, ergonomic design dotted with plants and foliage. While the big focus is burgers, the restaurant will also have a dedicated healthy section for those looking for something a little lighter.

Trendy café L’ETO, which currently has branches in City Walk and The Dubai Mall Fashion Avenue, has also announced its plans to open on Bluewaters.

Hotels & beach club

Arguably, the big pull for many residents and tourists will be the huge hotel and beach club complex, operated by Las Vegas heavyweights Caesar’s Entertainment. The first of the two hotels, Caesars Palace Bluewaters Dubai, will open its doors first in mid-November. Only the second Caesars Palace in the world, it will be home to 194 guest rooms, an indoor and two outdoor swimming pools, a huge spa and health centre, as well as six restaurants – including a Dubai outpost of Hell’s Kitchen by celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay.

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The second resort, Caesars Resort Bluewaters Dubai, is the larger property, with an opening planned for early December. Aimed at a more family-orientated market, there’ll be 301 rooms, a dedicated kids club, two outdoor pools, three restaurants and three bars, three meeting rooms and an 850-square-metre ballroom. Both hotels will share a 450-metre stretch of private beach, joined in the middle by Cove Beach Club.

Previously calling Jumeirah Beach Hotel home, the new, elevated Cove Beach experience will have three swimming pools, two restaurants and an expansive shisha terrace. The beach club promises a mix of chilled beachside lounging and lively day to night parties. We’re happy to report their famed Wednesday ladies’ day will also be returning.

ALSO READ: Cove Beach club is relocating to Caesars Palace hotel


If you like the sound of all this, and fancy calling Bluewaters home, then would-be residents can choose from ten residential buildings set on the waterfront, with 698 apartments, and 17 townhouses. For those with a few more dirhams tucked away, there are four ultra-luxury penthouses available, with private swimming pools and, of course, incredible views from every room.

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