Atlantis: the Palm - Resort on the Palm Jumeirah Dubai
Atlantis, the Palm is a resort on the Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is a joint venture between Kerzner International Limited and Istithmar PSJC and was completed in Sept. 2008. The architectural design is based heavily on the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas.
The resort consists of two towers linked by a bridge, with a total of approximately two thousand rooms. There are two monorail stations connecting the resort to the main section of the Palm Jumeirah islands. The resort also includes a water theme park (160,000 square meters), a conference center, and 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2) of retail space.
In October 2007, the hotel received a shipment of 28 bottlenose dolphins from the Solomon Islands, to be used as part of their aquarium exhibit, called Dolphin Bay.
The move was decried by several environmental groups, particularly for the fact that the export of dolphins had earlier been banned by the Solomon Islands government (after a similar controversial shipment to Mexico).
Hotel managers have said that though the dolphins are being trained to interact with visitors, they will not appear in any sort of show or circus-like performance.
They have also stated that the health of the dolphins is paramount, and because the bottlenose is not an endangered species, their shipment did not pose a problem.
The deal was done with the approval of the United Arab Emirates and Solomon Island governments, through the company Solomon Islands Marine Mammal Education Centre and Exporters Limited (who had successfully overturned the earlier ban in court).
The amount of money paid for the dolphins has not been disclosed.
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