Discover the luxury Anantara hotels in Asia and the Middle East in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

This hyper-modern metropolis has grown on fast-forward for the past 10 years. Once a sleepy fishing village, Abu Dhabi’s black-gold billions have been poured into mammoth development projects both decadent and divine: the Aladdin-esque Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Yas Island’s full-throttle theme parks, and Saadiyat Island’s forthcoming Louvre and Guggenheim incarnations (slated for 2015 and 2017, respectively). Distractions here are diverse to a surreal degree, you can shop in a megamall, hop on a yacht, sunbathe, ice-skate, see the leaning tower of Abu Dhabi (aka the Hyatt Capital Gate) and have a flutter on a camel race in one day. It’s not all full-speed fun; abaya- and dishdash-sporting millionaires spend languid afternoons in the grassy Corniche and the oases at Al Ain and Liwa offer a laid-back glimpse into the Arabia of myth and legend.

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