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Where the 1% Stays
The Burj al Arab (Tower of the Arabs) is an introductory model with just nine pieces on one sheet of metal. A reduced picture of the instruction sheet is provided so you can see what you're getting into. The five-star luxury hotel is in Dubai, UAE.
Each Metal Earth model is laser etched in meticulous detail on one, two, or three 11 cm (4.33") metal sheets. Pop out the pieces by hand (or use wire cutters to get especially crisp lines), bend the tabs using needle-nose pliers, and fit them together as shown in the simple pictorial instructions. Metal Earth models are a little less challenging than our 3D wooden puzzles, but you do need some patience and dexterity because they're also much smaller. For maximum dramatic effect, display your model on the LED Display Base or the Solar Spinner (sold separately, see below).
Please note that Metal Earth models have sharp edges and are not suitable for small children. Metal Earth was originally called MetalWorks.
Are you curious...?
At 1,053 feet (321 m), the Burj al Arab is the fourth tallest hotel in the world, although more than a third of its height consists of non-occupiable space. Standing on an artificial island connected to the mainland by a private bridge, "the world's only 7-star hotel" was designed to resemble the sail of a ship. They started building the island in 1994 and finished the hotel in 1999; it took longer to reclaim the land from the sea than it did to complete the building.
The Burj has just 202 suites ranging in size from 1,820 sq ft. (169 sq m) up to 8,400 sq ft (780 sq m), or from the size of a comfortable house to the size of a small mansion. The Royal Suite rents for $18,716 per night. Doubt that you'll ever rent that? There's enough space to split it with 20 or 30 friends, although hotel management might frown on that. The building and all of its appointments are a monument to excessive wealth. So who stays there? In 2012, the Chinese made 25% of its bookings.