Ferrari World, the vast 40-acre theme park on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, was due to open on Thursday, but the death of Sheikh Saqr Al Qasimi, the ruler of the Ras al Khaimah, one of the smaller states in the UAE, has caused this to be delayed because of a period of official mourning. The 92-year-old was one of the world’s longest-serving monarchs, having ruled the emirate since 1948.
The new theme park is hoping to attract 10,000 a day when it is fully operational. It is seen as an important element in the tourist development of Yas Island.
The planned F1X theme park in Dubai remains on hold. Work on the park stopped after the economic crash of 2009 and although the company behind it – Union Properties – has claimed that it was still trying to find $460 million in funding needed to complete construction, there is little hope of that at the moment. Union Properties is busy disposing of assets to raise money to finish building projects which are hoped will be successful, but F1X is not one of them. The company is renegotiating its debt repayments and has scrapped plans to expand in Asia and Europe. The share value of UP has fallen dramatically this year.