Etihad Museum Dubai

Union House, also known as Dar Al Etihad, reopened to the public as the Etihad Museum on January 7th.

“The Etihad Museum tells the story of our Founding Fathers and our journey in the UAE,” said Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai.

The museum was opened on December 2nd in celebration of the 45th National Day, by Sheikh Mohammed in the presence of Rulers from other emirates.  The museum is run by Dubai Culture & Arts Authority and focuses on the political history and personal stories that led to the unification of the seven emirates.

“Our shared duty towards our country is to contribute to the documentation of this historical milestone, which marks the very beginning of the UAE’s glorious march towards progress. In addition, we should collectively support the effort to showcase historical objects related to the establishment of the Union of the United Arab Emirates,” added Sheikh Mohammed.

Many rare items such as old passports, personal artefacts, pocket watches, stamps and letters are on display for the public to add even more details to the story of the UAE.

Designed by Canadian firm Moriyama and Teshima Architects, and inspired by the Unification Agreement, the Etihad Museum building is shaped like a manuscript.  It features seven leaning columns to represent the pens that signed the declaration of the constitution in 1971.

The location is marked by a UAE flag atop a 123-metre golden pole on Jumeirah Beach Road.  The restored oval-shaped Union House – where in 1971 the emirates’ Rulers signed a declaration that marked the formation of the UAE – is now part of the museum complex.

The museum includes interactive programmes to educate visitors on the nation’s constitution, in particular the rights, privileges and responsibilities that the Unification Agreement gives to the people of the UAE.

The halls have different themes – some permanent and some temporary. One of them is dedicated to the Founding Fathers, where through photos, belongings and interactive screens providing historical information and family trees, visitors will get a chance to understand in depth their individual stories.

“The new Etihad Museum team has a responsibility to help inspire citizens and visitors from around the world,” said Saeed Al Nabouda, acting director general of Dubai Culture & Arts Authority. “The museum will be an essential destination for researchers and historians, and will provide future generations in the UAE with valuable knowledge to support their academic and social life, as well as boosting their national identity.”

Photo Credits: Etihad Museum

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