The first real edifice dedicated to hard core commerce and what stood as a symbol of Dubaiís priorities was without doubt the World Trade Centre.
Elegant and faintly reminiscent of an egg crate rising into the sky, it was distinctive and won a very special place in the hearts of those who lived here in the late seventies and eighties. The World Trade Centre (WTC) was opened for business in 1979 after being five years in the building and stands a proud 39-storeys high.
Even though it has now been beaten by taller younger brothers, the building has a reputation and the complex is still a thriving hub for conventions, conferences and exhibitions of a global standard. So grand is its stature in the architectural history of Dubai that the building is featured on the Dh 100 note even today.
The WTC markets itself so well that it has become synonymous with quality. It is quoted as “being renowned as an international business centre offering new opportunities for multinational corporations to network, trade and grow”.
For those who have seen the dynamic changes on the skyline, and the rate at which Dubai has progressed, the one constant that stands out is the WTC and no one can deny it.
The WTC is also undergoing a facelift and expanding both its resources and its services at what is reckoned to be a $16 million makeover. There is little doubt that it is a great address even today and whether people live there in the exclusive apartments, or work there, the trademark of excellence is stamped with certainty.
The ethos of the WTC is best summed up by its own slogan: changing the way the world trades.
The future looks bright for the complex and it continues to serve as the primary venue for anything big that is happening in Dubai.