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Fri 11 Oct 2013 10:29 AM

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Dubai's Taj Arabia opening delayed until early 2016

Developer behind an enormous replica of Taj Mahal says it has taken time to get permission for project

Dubai's Taj Arabia opening delayed until early 2016
Land of India and the Taj Arabia, in Falcon City of Wonders

The developer behind an enormous replica of the Taj Mahal in Dubai has said that the property will not launch until 2016, up to two years behind the original schedule.

Designs have now been finalised for the Taj Arabia, a 350-room hotel and serviced apartments that will be a replica of one of the original seven Wonders of the World, India's Taj Mahal, Emirates 24|7 reported.

“Our design has been finalised and we have got all the permissions from the authorities. We will soon issue tenders for earth and enabling works,” Link Global Group Company director Arun Mehra was quoted as saying by the paper.

“It took us some time to get the permission from Dubai Municipality as they wanted to know more about our structure," he added.

Taj Arabia, said to be four times the size of the Agra mausoleum, will form part of the long-delayed Falconcity of Wonders, a huge mixed use site that will feature copies of other global monuments including the Eiffel Tower, Great Pyramids and Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

Taj Arabia, whose five-star hotel will contain more than 400 rooms, will be managed by India-based Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts.

The project itself is being built by Link Global, a sub-developer working under master developer Falconcity.

The developer said it will not use marble to build Taj Arabia and instead it will be an all-glass structure, the report said.

The delay is not the only setback Taj Arabia has faced. The project was last year slammed by cultural officials in India, who claimed the plans to copy the UNESCO world heritage site will detract from the original building.

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