Dubai: Why the Museum of the Future’s exterior lights have been off at night

The seven-storey pillarless landmark on the emirate's Sheikh Zayed Road, which opened in 2022, has been dubbed ‘the most beautiful building in the world’


Angel Tesorero

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Photos by Shihab
Photos by Shihab

Published: Wed 19 Apr 2023, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Wed 19 Apr 2023, 2:10 PM

The external façade lights of the Museum of the Future have been turned off at night for some time now following renovation, but the museum itself is open as usual during the day for visitors.

“Currently we are working on enhancing the external façade lights,” said a statement from Museum of the Future shared with Khaleej Times, adding: “Rest assured that the museum is operating as usual with unique and immersive experiences that await you!”

The seven-storey pillarless landmark on Dubai’s Sheikh Zayed Road which opened on February 22, 2022 is dubbed ‘the most beautiful building in the world’. It is open daily from 10am to 9.30pm (but tickets are available only until 7.30pm)

The torus-shaped (vanishing curvature) building “speaks Arabic”. Its façade is covered in quotes by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, rendered in calligraphy by renowned Emirati artist and sculptor Mattar bin Lahej.

Quotes about the future

The Arabic calligraphy, which is about 14 kilometres long when stretched from end to end, comes to a dramatic effect at night when illuminated by special LED lighting. It beams some of Sheikh Mohammed’s most iconic quotes, including: (first) “We may not live for hundreds of years, but the products of our creativity can leave a legacy long after we are gone; (second) “The future belongs to those who can imagine it, design it and execute it. The future does not wait. The future can be designed and built today.”

And the third quote is: “The secret of the renewal of life, the development of civilisation and the progress of mankind is in one word: Innovation.”

The cursive Arabic scripts also serve as transparent windows that brighten up the interiors of the museum by day.

Symbolic form

The Museum of the Future is 77 metres tall and occupies an overall area capacity of 30,548 square metres. Its façade is made of stainless steel, consisting of 1,024 pieces manufactured using a specialised robot-assisted process and covering a total surface area of 17,600 square metres.

Its symbolic form represents humanity while the green mound the museum sits atop represents the Earth and the void represents the unknown future.

The museum has five main exhibition floors (from floors 1 to 5) and the seventh floor is dedicated event space. There is also an auditorium space on the third floor and a ground floor lobby area.

Over 1 million visitors from 136 countries

Over one million tourists and residents from 136 countries have visited the museum in the past year. It is a place to experience what the future could be.

Its website says: “Visitors are invited to explore immersive future environments designed to stimulate their senses and expand their minds. We aim to inspire every person who walks through our doors to become engaged and active participants in creating a better future."


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