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Abu Dhabi Corniche to get 'Destination Village' for Volvo Ocean Race hosting

posted on 14/06/2011: 1727 views



A specially-designed 55,000 m2 ‘Destination Village' is being built on the Abu Dhabi Corniche breakwater to host the Volvo Ocean Race yachting fleet and its many thousands of fans expected to descend on the UAE capital when the city welcomes the flotilla this New Year. Plans for the Destination Village, which will be adjacent to the Heritage Village and overlooking Abu Dhabi's impressive city skyline, have been unveiled by Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA), which is behind the two-week fleet stop-over and the huge visitor activation programme planned around it.

ADTA has appointed Tourism Development '&' Investment Company (TDIC) to manage development of the site, which is being designed to serve as a sailing centre once the Volvo Ocean Race fleet sails out of the UAE capital.

TDIC will dredge this section of the Corniche lagoon to allow entry of the 4.5 metre keeled state-of-the-art race yachts and build permanent yacht pontoons. Infrastructure work is due for completion this September. Temporary structure build will run until December when the final phase of installing more than 130 Volvo Ocean Race team gear, hospitality and equipment containers will take place. "This will ensure that our hosting leaves a lasting legacy for the emirate and will also boost our long-term ambitions to be recognised as a compelling winter sailing and watersports destination," said Mubarak Al Muhairi, Director General, ADTA and Managing Director, TDIC.

The ‘Destination Village' - which will be around the size of eight football pitches - will open free-of-charge to the public daily from December 30 this year to January 14, next year. ADTA anticipates welcoming more than 100,000 visitors through its gates. "It will be the place to be at the beginning of 2012 and will be marked by a sensational New Year's Eve celebration," said Al Muhairi. "It will also allow visitors to connect with our rich maritime heritage as well as the history of the Volvo Ocean Race and to discover more about sailing as a healthy pastime and sport."

The Volvo Ocean Race 2011/12 begins in Alicante, Spain, in October 2011 and ends in Galway, Ireland in summer next year. It is a race in which professional athletes, on-board the Volvo Open 70 racing yacht, sail around the world with the prevailing winds. - Emirates News Agency, WAM

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