If Heaven has a hotel then this is probably what the lobby looks like. As you walk into the sleek glass tower that climbs into the clear blue sky of Abu Dhabi your jaw drops.
‘Wow’ says it all, and yet seems far too small a word to pin on the visual overload.
As you pick your mouth up off the shining marble floors your eyes sweep up to take in the scene. Light floods the lobby of the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers, reflecting off the ornamental pool (or should that be lake?) that shimmers beside the minimal reception desk.
Then you look out of a huge window onto the world, straight to the private beach and the Arabian Gulf beyond. You strain your neck as you examine the giant crystal orbs which serve as chandeliers but in fact look like glowing planets orbiting above you.
One of the smiling hotel staff glides over to you, dressed in a lilac frock coat, like an air stewardess from a futuristic paradise. She has to gently coax you to check in as you continue to take in all the architectural wonders.
While the hotel reflects sunlight on a grand scale, it also reflects something deeper about Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates and its tourism ambitions.