By Ayesha Daya

Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) — At.mosphere restaurant on the 122nd floor of Burj Khalifa, Dubai’s final extravagance before the financial crisis, offers a vista of the boom years.

At.mosphere. At.mosphere. Ayesha Daya/Bloomberg
At.mosphere. At.mosphere. Ayesha Daya/Bloomberg

Floor-to-ceiling windows look out over the sail-shaped Burj al-Arab hotel, Sol Kerzner’s $1.5 billion Atlantis resort jutting out from the tip of the manmade Palm Jumeirah island,
and beyond that, a huddle of towers near Dubai Marina.

“There are two kinds of people: One type gets a big thrill from being at the top of the world’s tallest tower, the other type is scared to go up there,” Adam Tihany, the restaurant’s New York-based designer, said in a telephone interview.

(Tihany’s designs include Daniel and Per Se in New York; and Bar Boulud and Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London.)

Emaar Properties PJSC halted its Dubai projects after the economic crisis, except for the 828-meter (2,717 foot) Burj Khalifa, which opened in January 2010. (The company restarted some projects last year.) Dubai received a $20 billion bailout from Abu Dhabi in 2009 and named the tower after that emirate’s ruler Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

At.mosphere is the world’s highest restaurant. Guests may choose between a formal grill for lunch or dinner and a casual lounge with purple and gray velvet sofas for tea and cocktails.

The 200 dirham ($54.50) minimum charge is half the price of a ticket for the outdoor observation area on the 124th floor, and it only applies to men. Women can spend what they like. More info

Ayesha Daya