Abu Dhabi’s presidential palace Qasr Al Watan announced on Monday its reopening for visitors with enhanced safety measures to combat the spread of coronavirus.
According to the site’s website, the reopening of the majestic palace comes hand in hand with a set of new precautionary health measure. First, the site will be subject to an increased frequency of sanitizing and disinfection. Second, the palace’s capacity has been reduced to avoid crowding and ensure social distancing is in place.
The website also indicated that all guests must undergo thermal screening prior to entering the site. Free-of-charge hand sanitizers have been placed across the palace for guests to use regularly. Guests will be required to wear face masks inside the palace. A two-meter social distancing policy has been introduced across the palace, except for families who live in the same household.
To avoid contact, guests will be advised to use contactless methods of payment and instead of using a printed map, guests will be able download a digital Palace map in order navigate their way through the different sections.
Qasr El Watan had been closed until further notice since March 26, 2020 when authorities cited their continued commitment to the health and well-being of their visitors and colleagues.
The presidential palace has often been used to host foreign leaders and lead political figures alongside hosting meetings of UAE’s supreme council and federal cabinet. In March 2019 the palace was opened for public visits to celebrate the historyand culture of the UAE.
The palace was designed by Bahraini Architect Ahmad Bucheery who according to Architectural Digest Middle East was inspired by Mughal-era design.
The palace’s architecture incorporates classical local motifs such as the arch, dome and ornate tile-work.
The design also attributes to the heritage and artistry of the Arabian Gulf, integrating 5,000 geometric, vegetal and floral patterns throughout the space.