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Home » Top Holiday Destinations » Dubai Travel Blog » Etihad Museum: A deep dive into its History and Architecture

Etihad Museum: A deep dive into its History and Architecture

By Vengatesh - June 4, 2020
Abu Dhabi

Etihad Museum is located next to the historic Union House on the Dubai waterfront, the museum was built to honour the foremost pivotal moment in UAE’s history – the birth of the country at the Union House. Since then, the oval-shaped Union House has undergone restoration and refurbishment, however, the building’s exterior including the windows and railings, are all original. Once the thought to create the Etihad Museum originated, in only 17 months, the 25,000 square meter museum was built. Even the brand of the Etihad Museum is inspired by the form of Union House.

Also Read: History of Dubai

Apart from the Union House, the Etihad Museum comprises 2 other important halves – the Guest Palace and therefore the Visitors Pavilion. The Etihad Museum is situated underground and directly connected to the Guest House through a set located above ground outside of the museum building.

Etihad Museum
Courtesy: Google Images

It was designed a by Canadian architects Moriyama & Teshima Architects the museum is made within the shape of a manuscript, with seven leaning columns representing the pens that signed the declaration of the Constitution in 1971. Although all the furniture restoration was administered within the UAE, the interiors, including the carpets, curtains, and chandeliers were imported from India, Turkey, and Germany. Near the flagpole may be a body of water designed to match the form of the first shoreline at the time the union of UAE was conceived. Don’t overlook this beautiful creation to witness how the UAE looked within the past.

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Etihad Museum Timings

The Etihad Museum is open from Monday to Sunday from 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Etihad Museum Location

The museum is found on Jumeirah Road along Route D94. If you are going during a taxi, ask them to drop you at the Union House. Since this is often a reasonably new museum, not too many of us are conscious of it.

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Inside the museum

Inside view of Etihad museum
Credits: Google Images

As you enter the compound, you shall walk through the reception to reach the main building, its curved architecture creating an embracing circular structure, assured to leave you gaping at it for a few minutes. There are 3 highlights to the Etihad Museum – The Union House, the Guest House and the Visitor’s Pavilion.

All of these bring together permanent and temporary exhibitions, a theatre, library, an interactive timeline with maps and videos, an educational area and a casual recreational space.

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The interactive programmes are particularly interesting as it educates the visitors on rights, privileges and responsibilities the constitution bestows upon the people of the UAE.

On whole there are 10 halls, each one are designed in a different theme – the Founding Fathers, the UAE Interactive Map, the Interactive Timeline Hall, the Showcase, the Canals, the Seeds of Unity, the Change of Union, the Unity of the UAE, the Constitution and the Union Accomplishment.

You will be amazed by Founding Father’s hall, because you get a chance to know in-depth about each founding father, witness their belonging; all supplemented by interactive screens providing information about their biographies and family trees.

Another interesting part of the Etihad Museum is the Guest House, a building of historic importance where the founders met before signing the union. This building is said to hold the Late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum Majlis’s private office and dining room with seating for 300 people. From old passports to personal artefacts such as letters, rings, eyeglasses and pocket watches, stamps and other rare items are on display for the public to add dimensions to the story of UAE.’

Also Read: All You Need to Know About Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum

Tips for visiting the Etihad Museum

  • Students aged 5-24 years can pay a reduced amount of 10AED. The museum is free for children under 5 and disabled individuals.
  • Don’t forget to drop by the Seven Sands Cafe on the 3rd floor and eat their delicious sweets.
  • There are 2  tours organised daily, one at 11:00 AM and the second at 5:00 PM
  • Plan to spend at least 3 hours at the Etihad Museum.
  • The Etihad Museum is open on Friday too (one of the few places in Dubai that is open on Friday).

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