Dubai, the Middle-Eastern city is famous for its impressive feats of architecture, outrageously expensive hotels and stratospheric skyscrapers, but what’s more impressive than an owning an apartment/lair in a really, really tall building?
One that’s underwater, of course.
A futuristic village of underwater villas is currently being built in Dubai’s manmade World Islands, offering unparalleled views of the Persian Gulf and an opportunity to protect the city’s local marine life.
While plans for underwater mansions off the coast of Dubai are still underway the Heart of Europe, a cluster of man-made land masses making up the European section of the World Islands, already rolled out its first floating home in 2016; The Floating Seahorse.
The small but perfectly-formed luxury home is worth as much as £2.5 million, and is the result of nearly 20,000 hours of research, design and engineering, according to property firm and sub-aquatic home designer Kleindienst Group.
Of course, the whole property isn’t completely submerged. The master bedroom and bathroom make up the underwater portion of the floating home, complete with its own 500-foot coral garden.
That’s right; there’s an underwater coral garden. Minimal maintenance, maximum colour.
One thing’s for certain, they’ll be great for anyone with even the faintest passing interest in the local wildlife.
Seahorses, which thrive in warm, tropical marine climates and coral reefs, abound in the Arabian Gulf. Kleindienst wants its floating homes to become part of the ecosystem.
‘We will create an artificial coral reef beneath the luxury retreats’, said Kleindienst at an unveiling event in May 2015, ‘which will be a protected area in which seahorses can safely live and breed.’
So if you’re into naval-gazing (sorry), you can sit back and watch the seahorses from your very own Seahorse.
The villas will cost between £2.15 million and £2.5 million and are anchored at the heart-shaped St Petersburg Island.
St Petersburg Island is around two miles off the coast of Dubai, so the homes are only accessible by boat or jet ski, but if you’re the kind of high-flyer who thinks nothing of putting down £2.5 million on a house in the middle of the ocean, that can only add to the appeal.
The underwater pods are extremely popular. Kleindienst say they sold 60 Seahorses in 2015 before construction was even completed.
Meanwhile, Kliendienst is also marketing an even more ambitious development; a village of larger, 4,00sq ft Signature Edition villas that are worth big enough for the whole family.
The Signature Edition homes will have four designated bedrooms and several rooms that can transform into sleeping quarters, so they can sleep up to eight adults and eight children.
Kleindienst said there will be more than 125 floating villas when the whole project is completed next year.
There will be nearly 900 sq ft of living space, and 600 sq ft on the outside for the “garden”.
In true Bond villain style, the larger Signature Edition homes will have full smart home automation, including the blinds.
The incredible homes prove that you don’t need to live in a high-rise to get the best views.
Send your stories and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com