Exhibition’s nine zones narrate the history and development of Abu Dhabi

Revamped exhibition a showcase of the Qasr Al Hosn 2018 Master Plan

Abu Dhabi, UAE – March 8, 2017: Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi) announced the opening of the Qasr Al Hosn Exhibition to the public today, 8th March. The exhibition offers visitors a journey through the story behind Abu Dhabi, as well as the history of the region surrounding Qasr Al Hosn, and highlights the restoration and conservation development project that includes Qasr Al Hosn and its surrounding area. The Qasr Al Hosn master plan was launched on Monday by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and it is expected to be completed by 2018.

Moving through the various zones of this lasting cultural icon, Qasr Al Hosn Exhibition presents a rich collection of oral testimonies, historical photographs, and other materials that highlight the history of the region, and the vital role of Qasr Al Hosn within Abu Dhabi as a beacon of heritage, culture, and Emirati tradition. The exhibition also relates the extensive history of Abu Dhabi and the story of its development through to the modern era.

The newly renovated cultural destination underpins the everlasting vision of late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the UAE, and his invaluable initiatives to integrate culture into the identity of the emirate of Abu Dhabi. His vision inspired the concept behind the new design of the exhibition as an active hub for education, culture, and entertainment, as well as a window through time that presents both a rich history and a bright future.

The exhibition includes nine exhibition zones that collectively narrate the 450-year old story of Abu Dhabi from its establishment to the present.

Culture and Knowledge Hub
Qasr Al Hosn exhibition provides a hub of culture and knowledge that represents a platform of engagement with visitors, as it introduces visitors to the restoration and conservation development project implemented at Qasr Al Hosn, in addition to presenting an innovative technique for sharing the rich history of Abu Dhabi. As part of the master plan, the exhibition provides a platform for public engagement and is among the top priorities of TCA Abu Dhabi, which seeks to preserve the cultural heritage of Abu Dhabi in accordance with the Abu Dhabi Plan.

National Heritage
The exhibition also reflects the vision and aspirations of the Culture Section at TCA Abu Dhabi, seeking to lead efforts in transforming Abu Dhabi into an active cultural destination by raising awareness for the rich national heritage of the UAE among residents and visitors, as well as attracting prestigious galleries, museums, and other artistic activations to the region. Qasr Al Hosn Exhibition is unique for its comprehensive approach, as it presents a detailed review of the history of Abu Dhabi as well as its rulers, who offered valuable contributions to the modern image of the emirate. Qasr Al Hosn exhibition also displays the methods and tools that our ancestors used in their everyday life. These items are documented with visual and audio materials that are offered to visitors via 3D projections in order to enrich their experience.

A Global City
The first zone in the exhibition is the “A Global City”, which relates the history of Abu Dhabi beginning from the 17th century when Bani Yas ruled the region from Liwa Oasis to the shores of the Arabian Gulf. The second zone exhibits details of Bani Yas life, such as the tools they used for cultivation and other professions, as well as their weapons and clothing.

The third zone “The Move” focuses on the period of Bani Yas migration to Abu Dhabi island and the factors that helped this population settle there, a development that began to transform Abu Dhabi into a strategic location on the Arabian Gulf. This zone also highlights the new professions that developed on the island such as diving, pearl hunting and fishing.

New Era
The fourth zone presents a detailed review of the “The Early Settlement”, while exhibits in the fifth zone chart the period in which Sheikh Zayed the First led development in the region. The “New Chapter” is the sixth zone, concentrating on the economic and political shifts following the discovery of oil. The seventh zone relates the story of progression that defines modern Abu Dhabi under the rule of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan. Visitors are then guided through the transformation period in the eighth zone, where the exhibit relates the establishment of the UAE. Finally the ninth zone, “The Future”, presents visitors with a detailed overview on the developmental and expansion projects of the master plan that will continue to pass the torch of progression down through future generations.

Public Programme
The public opening of Qasr Al Hosn exhibition will be celebrated with an array of public engagement and family activities. Running each evening until March 10, the area surrounding Qasr Al Hosn site will be activated with an interactive art installation, art workshops, and many performances.

Different areas around the site will see artisan weavers create Sadu masterpieces in a contemporary way, using metallic strings. Children and their families can enjoy dot colouring activities, and a hands-on weaving mapping installation, where the public will connect dots with strings to create intricate shapes all around the hoarding surrounding Qasr Al Hosn area. Around the site, visitors are also invited to take a look through openings to see back-lit images of the old and future site, and in some areas, visitors can preview the future of the site with real 3D renders, like peaking through a window of time.

Qasr Al Hosn Exhibition is free to enter and open daily from 9am to 8pm. Further information and full details of the opening weekend’s activities can be found at

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