The Burj Khalifa is a skyscraper in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Not only is it the world’s tallest building, but it’s also a true marvel of architectural genius!
Its cloud-piercing height is certainly one of the most impressive facts about the Burj Khalifa, but this mesmerizing structure has lots of other interesting aspects you might not have known about! We’ve put together a list of the coolest and most interesting Burj Khalifa facts that are sure to amaze you!
Whether you’re looking for new trivia questions, planning a trip to the tower, or are just interested in the world’s tallest building, you’ll definitely learn something new!
Let’s get into some of the most fascinating Burj Khalifa facts!
Facts About Burj Khalifa’s Design and Construction
Burj Khalifa (Photo credit – csengineermag.com)
It took 6-years to build the Burj Khalifa. Excavation work for the building began in January of 2004 and construction on the building’s exterior was completed in October of 2009! The Burj Khalifa officially opened to the public on January 4, 2010!
Let’s get into some interesting and downright impressive facts about the world’s tallest building!
The Burj Khalifa was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merill, (SOM) an American architectural, urban planning, and engineering firm.
The Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world with an architectural height of 2716.5-feet (828.0-meters)!
Its occupied height (height of the floors occupied by people) is 1918-feet (584.5-meters)!
The Burj Khalifa is 3 times as tall as the Eiffel Tower and twice as tall as the Empire State Building!
During construction, as many as 12,000 workers worked on the tower per day and clocked roughly 22 million hours of work in total!
The design of the tower was inspired by the shape of a Hymenocallis Flower or a Spider Lilly. This is a regional desert flower known for its long petals extending from its center. If you look at the skyscraper from above, you’ll see the similarity!
The exterior of the Burj Khalifa is covered by 26,000 glass panels, all cut individually by hand and designed to withstand the high heat of Dubai!
The total amount of aluminum used in the tower weighs as much as 5 A380 aircraft!
The total amount of concrete used in the tower weighs as much as 100,000 elephants!
The Burj Khalifa building is 160-stories high!
The building has a specially designed elevator system for controlled evacuation during emergency situations.
163 floors of the Burj Khalifa are located above the ground, and only one floor is located below the ground.
The whole project cost of building the Burj Khalifa was 1.5 billion dollars, with the tower itself costing 1 billion dollars!
Short on time? One of these tours in Dubai is the best way to see the most!
Facts About The Burj Khalifa’s World Records
Photo credit – emaar.com
The Burj Khalifa has been the tallest structure and building in the world since 2009! The day it premiered it not only broken several records, but it also set new world records at the same time!
Let’s get into some interesting facts about Burj Khalifa’s impressive list of world records!
The Burj Khalifa holds world records for: ‘tallest free-standing building’, ‘highest occupied floor’, ‘highest number of stories’, ‘elevator with the longest travel distance’, and ‘tallest service elevator!’
The Burj Khalifa also houses the world’s highest restaurant – At.mosphere on level 122 of the building. Guests can enjoy a menu full of luxury items like oysters and caviar as they stair out the city skyline from a height of 441-meters!
The rooms on the 160th-story of the building are the highest habitable floors in the world!
The Burj Khalifa houses the world’s second-highest swimming pool, located on the 76th floor. (The world’s highest swimming pool is located on 118th floor of Ritz-Carlton Hotel at International Commerce Centre, Hong Kong).
The Burj Khalifa elevator is the longest single running elevator, it runs 140-floors!
The Burj Khalifa may not be the world’s tallest building for much longer! While the Burj Khalifa has enjoyed being the world’s tallest building since it premiered in 2009, it’s about to get some competition from another Dubai construction project, named the Jeddah Tower.
Originally, the Jeddah Tower was set to be completed by 2020, but construction setbacks and other issues have slowed the development of the tower. At the moment, it’s expected to be completed in 2023!
The Dubai Fountain dances in front of the Burj Khalifa every 30-minutes starting at 6:00 pm from Wednesday through Sunday. It holds the record for the world’s largest dancing fountain system!
Facts About the Burj Khalifa Skyscraper’s Many Attractions
Burj Khalifa (Photo credit – CNN)
The Burj Khalifa isn’t just a tower, it’s actually a multi-use building that has restaurants, a hotel, residential apartments, office space, and is a tourist attraction with its observation decks! There are also health and wellness facilities, lounges, and four pools! The Burj Khalifa Building provides many different uses, and contains many interesting structures you might not have known about!
Let’s cover some facts relating to the different aspects of the building!
One of the most recognizable architectural features of the Burj Khalifa is the “telescopic” spire on the top of it. It’s made from more than 4000-tons of steel and on a clear day the spire can be seen from up to 60-miles away!
The spire is a bit controversial, and people claim that this uninhabited space was simply used to make the building stand that much taller. Without the spire, The Burj Khalifa would lose 700-feet of its height.
The Burj Khalifa is surrounded by the huge Dubai Fountain, which is approximately as big as two football fields!
This popular sound and light show was designed by the same company who created the fountains at the Bellagio Hotel Lake in Las Vegas!
The Burj Khalifa houses a large art collection.There are more than 1000-pieces of art from some of the world’s best-known artists hanging within the property. Many of them were commissioned specifically for the building.
The Burj Khalifa contains 57 elevators and 8 escalators.
The Burj Khalifa is home to one of the fastest moving elevators in the world! While it doesn’t hold the record for the fastest elevator in the world, at the moment it ranks third. The elevator speed is 10-meters per second and it takes just one minute to get from the ground floor to the observation deck on the 124th floor!
Now that we’ve covered facts about the building construction, design, and attractions inside the Burj Khalifa, let’s get into some lesser-known but still very interesting Burj Khalifa facts you might not have known!
The Burj Khalifa was featured in the film Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol, where Tom Cruises’ character had to climb the structure!
Laid end to end, the pieces of the Burj Khalifa would stretch over a quarter of the way around the world!
The site where the Burj Khalifa tower is built was previously used as a Military compound called “Central Military Command”.
Over 10,000 fireworks were shot from the Burj Khalifa to celebrate its opening in 2010!
The same design team that designed the Burj Khalifa (SOM) also designed the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) in Chicago and the One World Trade Center in New York City
On March 28, 2011, Alain Robert, a French rock climber known as “Spiderman” scaled the outside of the Burj Khalifa. The climb to the top of the spire took him six hours! To comply with UAE safety laws, Robert, who usually climbs in free solo style, used a rope and harness.
The Burj Khalifa, along with several other popular Dubai landmarks, was featured in the music video of Thunder by American pop rock band Imagine Dragons.
The skyscraper was initially named Burj Dubai. However, it was renamed Burj Khalifa to honor the Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the president of the United Arab Emirates.
Prior to 2010, the Burj Khalifa height had been kept a secret in order to prevent it from being surpassed by potential competitors!
Every New Year, a fireworks show or laser show takes place on the Burj Khalifa! The last firework show occurred on January 1, 2017. On New Year’s Eve of 2018, a laser show was put on instead.
You can watch the sunset twice from the Burj Khalifa, once from a lower floor and then again from the observation deck!
We hope you enjoyed our list of the most interesting Burj Khalifa facts and learned lots of new information! As you can tell, everything from this skyscraper’s construction to its role in the modern world is impressive, lavish, and over the top!
The Burj Khalifa tower was built to impress, and in the ten years it has proudly stood as the world’s tallest building, it continues to dazzle and amaze! You don’t have to visit the skyscraper to appreciate it’s grandiose and powerful stature, we’ve sure that just reading this article has done the trick!
If you’re planning a trip to Dubai, this is one attraction you don’t want to miss!
Gin lover. Coffee addict. Nicola has traveled the world for 7 years and is a staff writer for Hotel Jules. Born in London, Nicola first got the taste of travel studying abroad in Barcelona. Since then she's been hooked - traveling the world non-stop. Passionate about green travel and vegan lifestyle, Nicola spends more of her free time staring at maps wondering where she will head to next!