Photo: Kirk Fisher/Shutterstock

Everything You Should Know About the World’s Tallest Building (Yes, You Can Stay the Night There)

Dubai Insider Guides Art + Architecture
by Morgane Croissant Apr 19, 2023

Dubai is a place of excess. It is home to the world’s tallest observation wheel, the deepest pool, the most extravagant seaside resort on the planet, and, of course, the tallest building in the world: Burj Khalifa. But this vertiginous tower is much more than just a very tall needle pointing at the sky.

What is Burj Khalifa?

Burj Khalifa viewed from the ground

Photo: Tomasz Czajkowski/Shutterstock

Burj Khalifa is a skyscraper in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It is the tallest building in the world.

Where is Burj Khalifa?

It is located in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). More precisely, it is in Downtown Dubai, along Sheikh Zayed Road, which is one of the city’s main thoroughfares. It is next door to the famous Dubai Mall, the second-largest mall in the world.

Is Burj Khalifa the tallest building in the world?

Burj Khalifa holds the Guinness World record for the tallest building in the world since 2010. China’s Shanghai Tower is the second-tallest building in the world.

How tall is Burj Khalifa?

Burj Khalifa viewed from the observation deck

Photo: Kirk Fisher/Shutterstock

Burj Khalifa is 2716 feet tall or 828 meters tall. In comparison, China’s Shanghai Tower, the second-tallest building in the world, is 2073 feet tall or 632 meters tall.

How many floors are there in Burj Khalifa?

Burj Khalifa has 163 floors/storeys. The tower holds the world record for having the highest number of floors and the highest elevators.

Who designed Burj Khalifa?

The tower was designed by Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill (SOM), a collective of architects, designers, engineers, and planners with studios throughout the world, including in the US, Australia, China, and more.

When was Burj Khalifa built? How long did it take?

The construction of the tower took five years — it started in 2004 and finished in 2009. Burj Khalifa opened in 2010.

How much did it cost to build Burj Khalifa?

It cost $1.5 billion to build the tower.

Who owns Burj Khalifa?

Emaar Properties, a real estate development company based in Dubai, owns the tower.

Can you go to the top of Burj Khalifa?

The observation deck at Burj Khalifa

Photo: RAW-films/Shutterstock

Burj Khalifa has 163 floors, but the highest visitors can go is the lounge on floor 154, i.e. 1919 feet or 585 meters above the ground.

The higher visitors want to go up the tower, the more expensive it is. You can reach levels 124 and 125 for the experience “At the Top, Burj Khalifa” for $46 (169 AED); you can go all the way to level 148 for the experience “At the Top, Burj Khalifa SKY” for $109 (399 AED); or you can go to level 154 for the experience “World’s highest lounge” for $210 (769 AED). You can purchase your ticket online in advance.

Is Burj Khalifa a hotel? How much does it cost to spend the night in Burj Khalifa?

Just so you know, Matador may collect a small commission from the links on this page if you decide to book a stay. Listed prices are accurate as of the time of publication.

Photo: Expedia
Photo: Expedia
Photo: Expedia

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Burj Khalifa is not a hotel, but it houses the Armani Hotel Dubai that consists of 160 rooms. As its name indicates, this exceptional luxury hotel was created by Italian fashion designer Georgio Armani. The highest floor you can sleep at is floor 39, in one of the Armani Signature Suites.

The cost of spending the night at the five-star Armani Hotel Dubai in Burj Khalifa starts between $680 and $1145 (from 2.500 AED to 4.200 AED) per night, depending on the date you wish to stay at the property.

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If you’d rather stay somewhere different while in Dubai, check out Matador‘s selection of opulent hotels in Dubai.

What’s inside Burj Khalifa?

The tower is a multipurpose building inside which you can find, among other amenities:

  • Residential apartments
  • The Armani Hotel Dubai
  • Several observation decks and lounges
  • Offices
  • At.Mosphere, a fine dining restaurant
  • A health and wellness center
  • Several swimming pools

What does “Burj Khalifa” mean?

In Arabic, “Burj” means tower, and “Khalifa” refers to the term caliph, i.e. the ruler of a Muslim government. It could be translated as “The Dominant Tower”.

Did Tom Cruise really climb Burj Khalifa?

In one of his more impressive stunts, Tom Cruise climbed on the exterior of Burj Khalifa for the movie “Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol” (2011). He has also been pictured sitting at the very top of the tower. Only a few people have ever stood at the summit of the tower, including the Crown Prince of Dubai and a stuntwoman promoting the airline Emirates.

What’s on floor 163 of Burj Khalifa?

Floor 163 is not accessible to the public and is said to be used for mechanical operations.

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