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Dubai Mall, located in the heart of the city’s downtown and adjacent to the Burj Khalifa, witnessed a record 105 million visitors in 2023. According to a statement by Dubai government’s media office on Tuesday, this makes it the “most visited place on earth”.

The figure for 2023 was up 19% from 2022, when the mall saw 88 million visitors. Meanwhile 2024 is “set to be another record year” the statement said, with 20 million people having visited already in January and February.

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“These numbers reflect Dubai Mall’s impressive status and mirrors the forward-thinking leadership and strong economy of Dubai,” Mohamed Alabbar, the founder of Emaar, which has developed the mall, was quoted as saying.

“Our mall embodies the city’s vibrant spirit and dedication to excellence, turning the leadership’s vision into a reality. Being an integral part of Dubai’s economic fabric, we play a crucial role in the city’s success and innovation,” he added.

Dubai Mall has more than 1,200 retail outlets, including two department stores, Galeries Lafayette and Bloomingdale’s, along with over 200 restaurants.

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That’s not all though. It also boasts the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, an open-air karting track, a virtual reality park, a cinema, a multi-sports complex, an ice rink, a haunted attraction experience and a trampoline park.

The new figures showed the mall attracted visitors from every corner of the world.

“This wide range of nationalities not only underscored the mall’s worldwide charm but also reflected the cosmopolitan culture of Dubai itself,” Alabbar added.

According to the media office’s statement, the mall’s events and promotions are a key driver of its foot traffic, along with festive occasions and international celebrations. Major events like the Dubai Shopping Festival, the Dubai Food Festival and the 3 Day Super Sale also drew in massive crowds.

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In 2023, the mall’s ‘Retail Relation’ programme partnered with top-tier brands to create immersive shopping experiences. Visitors marvelled at the magical festive displays by big designers like Cartier, Carolina Herrera, and Dior, while the Ramadan installation featured exclusive collections from brands like Fendi and Chloe.

Dubai continues to remain a major tourist attraction. Last month it was revealed that Dubai International Airport (DXB), the world’s busiest international hub, registered a 31.7% increase in passenger traffic last year to 86.9 million, surpassing pre-pandemic levels, operator Dubai Airports said on Monday. It also it received a record-breaking 17 million international tourists.

It is also one of several cities likely to join the ‘100 million passengers club’ in 2024.

Earlier, Mohammed Alnahari Alhashmi, the vice president of Pakistan for Emirates Airline, shared that the South Asian country was amongst the top 10 source markets contributing to the record number of overnight visitors to Dubai, with over 250,000 in the first nine months of 2023.

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