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It’s just one year away. Sunday marked the year-to-go countdown for the 2020 Expo in Dubai, a long-awaited event in the Middle East’s capital of conspicuous consumption.

“The next 12 months will see us put the finishing touches to ensure an exceptional World Expo,” said Reem Al Hashimy, director general, Expo 2020 Dubai.

Millions of people will turn Dubai into one big party in October 2020, with six months of celebrations and promotional activities ahead of the event. For the extremely discerning traveler, Remote Lands has a few suggestions for where to stay during the Expo 2020.

BURJ AL ARAB

Where else? The Burj al Arab – apart from being an iconic Dubai landmark – is the world’s first “six star” hotel and is the ultimate Dubai status symbol. There is no shortage of luxury hotels in the capital of commerce, but the Burj Al Arab is undoubtedly at the top of every luxury lover’s list.

Featuring 202 duplex suites that have at least 170 square meters of space and all come with their own private butler, Jacuzzi, and spectacular views, it should come as no surprise that the Burj al Arab will be the center of the party during the 2020 Expo. For some very unique dining, have dinner underwater – yes, underwater – at the Al Mahara’s floor-to-ceiling aquarium. Or, perhaps, the sky is more your thing; if that’s the case, pop off your private helicopter transfer and go straight to the Skyview Bar for some drinks and the best view in the city.

ARMANI HOTEL DUBAI

ABOVE: Inside the Armani Hotel Dubai.

For the best hotel view in the United Arab Emirates (perhaps the world) Armani Hotel in the world famous Burj Khalifa will not disappoint. That’s right: stay in the tallest building in the world during the biggest party in Dubai’s recent history. With more than seven dining options from Armani on the premises – and much more besides – travelers won’t want to leave their perch.

The hotel has 160 rooms and suites, some designed by Giorgio Armani himself and many offering incredible views of the city; travelers can even avail themselves of personal Lifestyle Managers to make sure the stay goes smoothly. The most spectacular room in the hotel might be the Armani Premier Suite. At 1022-square feet, these suites include an entrance hall, living room, storage closet, and bedroom.

ONE & ONLY THE PALM

The Palm is one of the first things people think about when they think of Dubai these days. The second thing you think about should be the One & Only The Palm, a staple of luxury travel on this strange, man-made island.

Compared to skyscrapers and architectural marvels that dot downtown Dubai, this hotel is a little different, trading shining glass for Moorish and Andalusian architecture. This is the proper beach hotel for the Expo and beach lover who wants to be close to the action.

For the ultra-luxe traveler, there’s the Manor Grand Palm Suite: The penthouse of the main Manor House. Here, you’ll get the best views of the resort itself in a 820-square-feet of room. Food lovers will find this area more pleasantly peaceful than the swirl on the mainland, and the best place to eat is the Mediterranean at the overwater restaurant of 101.

The Address Downtown

ABOVE: The Address Downtown exterior.

The Address is well and truly back. After a fire that garnered headlines in 2015, the hotel opened afresh in 2018 and is back to providing a luxury respite for busy (and shopping-happy) travelers. The Address Downtown is a Remote Lands favorite.

The jealousy-inducing master suite at this hotel is the 343 square meter 4-bedroom suite. Boasting views of both the Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Fountain this suite can hold a party of eight for those wanting to bring the extended family along to the Dubai Expo. To dine there are many choices, but Remote Lands recommends the view at Zeta: perched on the very edge of the terrace on level 5, providing an up-close fountain show and the Burj Khalifa.

ONE & ONLY ROYAL MIRAGE

A little smaller in stature than the likes of Burj Khalifa and the Burj Al Arab, The One and Only Royal Mirage is no less in terms of luxury. The mainland partner of the One & Only found on the Palm, this hotel features many of the facets found on its twin on the island, but the feel of this hotel is more urban while maintaining that unique Bedouin-style charm.

The room you’ll want is likely the Palace Superior Deluxe Suite for its Gulf views. Guests may choose from 13 different restaurants and bars, featuring European, Moroccan, and, of course, Arabian.

Now is the time to start thinking of where you want to experience the Expo 2020; all the tickets to the one-year-to-go-event in Burj Park, Downtown Dubai sold out in two hours. In short, travelers need to book this one early if they want the best.

“As we mark one-year-to-go until the UAE welcomes the world to Expo 2020, these spectacular nationwide celebrations will usher in the final leg of a historic journey and a major achievement not only for Dubai, but for the entire UAE,” said Reem Al Hashimy.