Saadiyat Island is a natural island and a tourism-cultural project for nature and Emirati heritage and culture that is located in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
The project is located in a large, low-lying island, 500 metres (1,600 ft) off the coast of Abu Dhabi island. A mixed commercial, residential, and leisure project is currently under construction on the island. When completed, Saadiyat Island is expected to become Abu Dhabi’s cultural centre, mostly for the Island’s Cultural District that is expected to include eight museums.
The island is five-minute drive away from downtown Abu Dhabi, 20 minutes from Abu Dhabi International Airport, and one hour from Dubai.
The government of the Abu Dhabi emirate conceived of the idea to develop Saadiyat Island in 2004 as part of a larger plan to diversify the emirate’s oil-dependent economy. The project was carried out through the Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC), which was founded in 2006 by Abu Dhabi’s Department of Culture and Tourism to develop and promote tourism-related projects in the emirate.
The island has since become home to world-class cultural centres. The Louvre Abu Dhabi, designed by French architect Jean Nouvel, includes ancient and modern works from a variety of countries, including Egypt, Greece, Rome, China, and the Middle East. It also serves as a platform for educational programs, temporary exhibitions, and cultural events that promote cross-cultural understanding and an appreciation for art.