By Staff writer
Crowd of thousands sees in 2012 amid glittering fireworks show at Dubai’s Burj Khalifa
Thousands of revellers swarmed the Burj Khalifa and Downtown Dubai for a second year running to see in the new year with the tower’s multimillion-dollar firework display.
The world’s tallest building marked the start of 2012 with a spectacular 10-minute show that saw fireworks shoot from the 828m tower in a blaze of colour, illuminating the city. Sparkling comets in colours including green, purple and red spiralled down the Burj, as the tower was flanked by glittering firework displays across Downtown Dubai.
The crowds erupted as the pyrotechnics began just seconds ahead of midnight, with cheers and blaring horns marking the end of 2011. Out on Sheikh Zayed Road, traffic ground to a halt as motorists pulled over to enjoy the show as Dubai's flag-shaped Burj al-Arab joined celebrations with its own fireworks.
The Burj Khalifa display was streamed live to more than two billion homes worldwide, according to a statement from Emaar Properties, the developer behind the superscraper.
Similar celebrations have been taking place across the world as revellers welcomed in the New Year. Sydney kicked off proceedings with a huge firework and music display, attracting an estimated million-strong crowd. In London, more than 250,000 people gathered to chime in the New Year with pyrotechnics over the River Thames.
The first places to celebrate were Samoa and Tokelau after they jumped across the international dateline, to catch up with Asia, New Zealand and Australia.
As the clock struck midnight at the end of 29 December, the two South Pacific island nations shifted to the left of the dateline to begin 31 December, missing out on 30 December entirely.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi said the move would make it easier for Samoa’s tourism trade.
“It will remove the enormous amount of confusion in our travel times for the Samoans and especially for the tourists who come to Samoa, who keep thinking of the New Zealand and Australian time zones,” he told Radio New Zealand.
Japan, which was devastated by an earthquake and tsunami in 2011, saw celebrants gather in Tokyo to release helium balloons carrying notes outlining their hopes for 2012.
Recession ! What recession ?
"Out on Sheikh Zayed Road, traffic ground to a halt as motorists pulled over to enjoy the show as Dubai's flag-shaped Burj al-Arab joined celebrations with its own fireworks."
Says it all about driving standards really!!