Details of the Legoland Dubai theme park have been revealed, with the attraction expected to "add a whole new dimension" to the emirate's leisure scene.
Merlin Entertainments is Europe's number one visitor attractions operator and is developing the park in conjunction with Dubai Parks & Resorts Limited. It is set to open in 2016.
The attraction will be the first Legoland park in the Middle East and will comprise a three million square foot location in Jebel Ali. In addition to more than 40 interactive rides, shows and attractions, there will be over 15,000 model structures made from more than 60 million Lego bricks.
Aimed at children aged between two and 12, this will be the seventh Legoland theme park worldwide. It is set to contain six distinct themed areas, including Lego City, Adventure, Lego Kingdom, Create, Lego Factory and Miniland.
Nick Varney, chief executive of Merlin Entertainments, said: "Dubai is the most important tourist centre in the Middle East and we believe that it is the ideal place for Legoland.
"Legoland’s unique appeal for families with younger children is universal, making it a must do visit not just for ‘local’ visitors from Dubai and neighbouring Middle Eastern states, but also tourists visiting the region from all over the world.”
Dubai Parks & Resorts is also working on the Motiongate Dubai and Bollywood Parks Dubai destinations, both of which are also set to open in 2016. The first phase of the organisation's construction plans also includes the Riverpark grand entrance plaza and the family-themed Lapita hotel.
These attractions are examples of how companies are following the Tourism Vision 2020 directive set out by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. This consists of a series of guidelines designed to help Dubai boost its annual number of visitors from ten million in 2012 to 20 million by 2020, significantly increasing the economic contribution made by the tourism sector.