Abu Dhabi’s iconic Qasr al Hosn Fort will reopen to the public on December 7, it has been announced.
The historical landmark, formerly home to the ruling Al Nahyan family, has been undergoing extensive renovation in recent years.
It was the first permanent structure in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, parts of which date back to around 1795.
Tourism bosses have now released details of its grand reopening as it prepares to form a key part of a new cultural destination in the capital, which will be known as Al Hosn.
HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman, DCT Abu Dhabi hailed the site as a “constant in our evolving city”.
He said: “Qasr Al Hosn retraces the history of the city of Abu Dhabi, our very first building.
“It is a testament to the heart and spirit of our people and the repository of our collective memories, and its reopening is a key moment for both the citizens of Abu Dhabi and the wider UAE.
“In addition, we are thrilled to reopen the Cultural Foundation, which has always played an integral role in the cultural scene of Abu Dhabi, the UAE and the region.
“It is a place to both reflect on our past and embrace the present, as we look to shape Abu Dhabi’s future.”
The Al Hosn hub will comprise of four elements – the historic Qasr Al Hosn Fort, the Cultural Foundation, the National Consultative Council building and the House of Artisans.
The official reopening will see days of special events held to celebrate Abu Dhabi’s rich history and culture.
Cultural Foundation will re-open in phases with 7 December allowing access to the Visual Arts Centre, which will feature exhibition halls and art studios.
The newly renovated premises of the Cultural Foundation will host a range of visual and performing arts events, alongside the opening of a stunning new children’s library.
The two remaining components of the site, a new theatre and the children’s library, will open next year.
HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary, DCT Abu Dhabi, said: “With the historic Qasr Al Hosn Fort and the Modern Heritage Building of the Cultural Foundation sitting side by side, Al Hosn will be a year-round destination open to the wider community including nationals wishing to know more about their heritage, to art-lovers and intellectuals exchanging ideas and engaging in the active cultural scene.
“We wish to create once again a true home for creativity and learning, dialogue and debate, a space which celebrates not just our past but our contemporary Emirati culture as well.
“Al Hosn will stand as a proud representation of the identity of Abu Dhabi with an innovative offering of cultural and inspirational experiences.”