This impressive structure is the realization of one man's vision and dedication to preserve Kuwait's maritime heritagefor the future generations. Apart from bringing back memories of those graceful bygone days of sail, it has been recognized by Guiness World Records as the largest wooden dhow in the world.
It is use as a restaurant and will never be put to sea. While maintaining all the qualities of an ocean-going dhow of the past century, Al Hashemi 2, is fitted out an exquisite banqueting hall. A replica of a pre-oil era Kuwaiti village fabricated using contemporary materilas and a marine museum to house about 30 scale models of various historical and exciting dhows dedicated to traditional art of shiping has been built beside Al Hashemi 2. A variety of marine articles, pictures of traditional significance and photographs depicting various stages of construction of Al Hashemi 2, form part of the marine museum. This time when we took my brother, we couldnot visit the museum as it closes at 5pm. We were little late. So we wandered over the dhow and took photographs. There is a large parking area under the concrete slab on which the Al-Hashemi-II sits.On the wall of the museum is a certificate, dated 2002, from the Guinness World Records announcing that Al-Hashemi II, the huge and unmissable wooden dhow adjacent to the museum, is the largest wooden boat on earth, measuring a world record-breaking 80.4m long, 18.7m wide and weighing an estimated 2500 tonnes.
The centre piece of the lobby at Radisson SAS Hotel is an amazing 4772 kilogram granite ball floating on a bed of water. So perfectly balanced that it can be rotated with gentlest of pressure, the "KUGEL" is indeed unique. It was first seen by Husain Marafie, in 1975 in the USA and during the renovation of the hotel, he decided that the Kugel would be ideal for the renovated hotel. Already assembled before shipment from Germany and weighing a total of 8000 kilograms( or 8 tons) it took 9men over 10hours to transport the ball outside the hotel to its present position, two forklifts moving in tandem assisted the operation.
So when you visit the hotel next time, check out the lobby and take a break to marvel at this ingenuity of modern physics.
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