Keeping up with the Khalifa: A guide to 5 tallest buildings in Asia

A general view which shows the Burj Khalifa (centre) in Dubai's skyline, which will lose its title as the world's tallest tower after a taller tower is expected to be completed in 2020.
A general view which shows the Burj Khalifa (centre) in Dubai's skyline, which will lose its title as the world's tallest tower after a taller tower is expected to be completed in 2020.PHOTO: AFP

This article was first published on Nov 3, 2014, and updated on April 11, 2016.

Dubai plans to build a tower that will stand higher than its Burj Khalifa, currently the world's tallest skyscraper, property developer Emaar said on Sunday (April 10).

The exact height has not been released, but it is expected to be completed before 2020, in time for the World Expo trade fair, expected to run from Oct 20, 2020, to April 10, 2021. Dubai will be the first city in the Middle East to host this event.

The tower will have observation decks, restaurants and a boutique hotel.

Here is a guide to five of the tallest buildings in Asia, for travellers to explore.

1. Burj Khalifa


The 200-storey Burj Khalifa building standing in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on January 4, 2010. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

Where: Dubai, United Arab Emirates

How high: 828m, 200 storeys

Completed: 2010

For visitors: Level 148 is home to the world's second highest outdoor observation deck (555m). Visitors can relax in the lounges and enjoy a bird's eye view of the city.

The Armani Hotel Dubai, developed by Italian designer Giorgio Armani, is located within the Burj Khalifa. The 160 rooms and suites come with bespoke furnishings and occupy the concourse level to level eight and level 38 and 39.

The skyscraper lies in the centre of Downtown Dubai, a lifestyle destination similar to Singapore's Resorts World Sentosa.

Downtown Dubai is also home to the Dubai Mall and Souk Al Bahar

The Dubai Mall, the world's largest shopping mall,boosts the world's tallest musical fountain (140m), a dinosaur skeleton exhibit and an indoor theme park.

The Emirates A380 experience,a flight simulator, gives visitors a taste of being a pilot. Time of day, weather and destination settings can be adjusted.

There is also an Olympic size skating rink.

2. Shanghai Tower


Workers clean the exterior of skyscraper Shanghai Tower at the financial district of Pudong in Shanghai, China, on February 23, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

Where: Shanghai, China

How high: 632m, 121 storeys

Completed: 2015, yet to open

The second tallest building in the world is also the tallest building in China. The building twists 120 degrees, with each storey inclined 1 degree away from the previous storey. This minimises the effect wind has on the building, at high altitudes.

Shanghai Tower features the world's highest observation deck, at 561m.

It is also home to the world's fastest lifts that travel 18m per second.

Shanghai Tower has a double-glass facade. In the space between the two facades, nine sky gardens are housed. There is one garden for each of the nine sections of the building.

3. Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel

 


The tower clock of the Mecca Royal Hotel can be seen from Sai, Safar and Marwah in the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia. PHOTO: BERITA HARIAN

Where: Mecca, Saudi Arabia

How high: 601m, 120 storeys

Completed: 2012

The hotel boasts 1,542 guest room suites and residences. It is located next to the Masjid al-Haram or the Holy Mosque. The mosque is the largest mosque in the world and the focal point for Muslims who come for the annual pilgrimage or haj.

Within the hotel, there is a shopping mall with 4,000 stores, featuring international brands.

The hotel also holds the record for the world's tallest clock tower in the world and largest clock face.

4. Taipei 101


A man looks at the city's skyline from the Taipei 101 building in Taipei, Taiwan, on Nov 26, 2009. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

Where: Taipei, Taiwan

How high: 508m, 101 storeys

Completed: 2004

It was the first building in the world to surpass the half-kilometre mark. Observation decks are located on the 88th and 89th floor.

Visitors can look out for the giant steel ball on the 88th floor. The ball, weighing 800,000kg, stabilises the building by reducing lateral movement in case of an earthquake.

The building also hosts a six-storey shopping mall and a gymnasium.

Visitors can dine at the TWG Tea and Din Tai Fung outlets.

5. Shanghai World Financial Center


Host of Extreme Engineering, Danny Forster checking out the ongoing construction inside the Shanghai World Financial Centre, who also scaled the 101-storey building. PHOTO: DISCOVERY CHANNEL

Where: Shanghai, China

How high: 492m, 101 storeys

Completed: 2008

Its highest occupied floor exceeds the Burj Khalifa's at 474m. Visitors can enjoy a panoramic view of the city from the observatory deck on the 100th floor. The deck is 55m long and features transparent glass floors.

The Financial Center also houses the Park Hyatt Shanghai Hotel, located on levels 79 to 93. It features 174 luxury rooms and suites, a tai chi courtyard and an infinity pool.

Foodies can dine at Godiva, Brotzeit and Din Tai Fung.

Sources: Burj Khalifa, Gensler, Fairmont Hotel and Resorts, Taipei 101, Shanghai World Financial Center, China Daily