The world’s deepest swimming pool for underwater diving has opened in Dubai, where people can descend 60 metres (197 ft) to a sunken city-themed landscape and play arcade games.
Dubai, a tourism and business hub with desert terrain and months of scorching summer temperatures, has a reputation for flamboyant and record-breaking attractions such as its snow-filled indoor ski slope, large water parks and the world’s tallest building.
The pool, which holds the equivalent of six Olympic swimming pools, has been verified by Guinness World Records as the world’s deepest swimming pool for diving. Deep Dive Dubai says it is 15 metres deeper than any other.
The facility, shaped like an oyster in reference to the UAE’s pearl diving heritage, is also the region’s largest underwater film studio.
Divers go down through a landscape of a sunken city, with sound and lighting. There are two air-filled dry rooms on the way down.
With graffiti, crumbling facades and a large portrait of Marilyn Monroe hanging on the wall, Dubai’s new vertical diving pool contains the remnants of a lost submerged city. There’s an apartment building and library — even an arcade with a vintage Pac-Man machine, foosball and pool table.
Visitors can practice scuba diving – with a tank of air – and freediving – where divers simply hold their breath.
Non-divers can watch friends and loved ones’ dive from the facility’s built-in restaurant.
The pool is currently available by invitation only. It was visited first by the crown prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and celebrities including Will Smith who have documented their dive on social media. The facility is expected to open to the public in late July — and anyone of any experience level can dive, as long as they are 10 years or older.
It is also another record-breaking architectural feat for Dubai, which is home to the world’s:
- Tallest building — Burj Khalifa
- Tallest hotel — the 75-story Genova Hotel
- Highest outdoor infinity pool — Address Beach Resort
- First 3D-printed commercial building — Dubai Future Foundation
- Largest shopping center — The Dubai Mall