June in the UAE is probably the last place and time you’d look for snow, but improbably, that’s when we might be taking our first steps into Abu Dhabi’s own winter wonderland. That’s because Mohammad El Etri confirmed in a recent interview with Forbes magazine that Snow Abu Dhabi is expected to open at Reem Mall “in the next four months”. And he’d know, since he holds the enviable job title of ‘vice president of Global Snow’ at retail operator Majid Al Futtaim, who are running the whole project – so I reckon it’s time to start marking our calendars!
Snow Abu Dhabi is billion US-dollar plus project that aims to bring the joy of winter sports (and snowball fights, we presume) to Abu Dhabi. It won’t be the first snow park in the UAE – Ski Dubai at Dubai’s Mall of the Emirates has already beaten it to opening – but it’s the first one in the capital, and will offer a world of winter entertainment in the heart of the city.
Said entertainment includes twelve rides, seventeen attractions, and a whopping 10,000 square feet of snow-covered space to explore on a visit here. You’ll find us on the giant toboggan race as soon as the park is open, but younger visitors might be drawn to family-friendly sights such as the Crystal Carousel or Snow Hares Bunny Hill, where little ones can get comfortable in the snow. Snow Abu Dhabi will be chilled to a cooling 2ºC, and the snow will be as deep as 50cm in places.
Oh, and whilst there won’t be any black diamond ski runs in the park, you’ll be able to indulge in my favourite part of skiing: après-skiing. Dining options at Snow Abu Dhabi come in the form of The Ice Café, Grotto Amphitheatre, and The Lodge Restaurant, and a pot of piping hot fondue could be the perfect cure to any chilly fingers at the end of your visit.
Snow Abu Dhabi’s exact opening date is yet to be confirmed, but we’ll keep you updated when there’s a definitive date for us to play in the snow. You can find out extra details from their website, but it’s guaranteed that Abu Dhabi has snow on the weather forecast!