Oqyana launches “The World’s” first snorkelling lagoon

Oqyana World First, the first fully master-planned elite island community of Dubai’s “The World” development has announced the launch of the first snorkelling lagoon, which will provide an interactive opportunity to swim and snorkel among coral reefs and underwater sea life in a safe environment.
The Reef Lagoon will be located on the Great Barrier Island, one of the 22 islands comprising the Australian continent. The first phase of construction will commence in summer 2008, with the completion date slated for 2012.

Serviced by the adjacent International Diving Centre, the Reef Lagoon will also offer diving, snorkeling and boat-related activities and facilities.

Dr. Wadad AlSuwayeh, CEO of Oqyana World First said: “Around 60 per cent of the development area is freed from any construction to avail open spaces for lagoons, parks, promenades, playgrounds, beaches and extensive landscaping - to offer residents and guests the most comfortable surroundings possible.”

“We have reshaped our islands to ensure that water is continually circulated for purity and can sustain marine life, which makes the quality of seawater surrounding our islands superior to that tested along the shoreline of Dubai.”

“It is our goal to maintain and protect a stable and healthy environment, within and around OQYANA islands; and ensure that a luxurious lifestyle is not achieved at the expense of nature.  As such, we are considering a full range of alternative green solutions, such as solar-powered ferries among others,” he added.


Derived from the Arabic word for ‘oceanic’, the entire Oqyana development incorporates a number of environmentally friendly features, such as the use of natural cooling, saline-friendly landscaping, and the re-use of grey-water and storm water for irrigation. In addition, the innovative shape and orientation of the islands’ waterways ensure that, in the event of pollution within the waterways, 50 per cent of full water cleanliness will be achieved naturally in 24 hours and 100 per cent in 72 hours.

The launch of the Reef Lagoon comes shortly after Oqyana announced The World’s first and only exclusive utility hub next to the breakwater, during its participation at the Arabian Travel Market 2008. 

Oqyana is the first and largest of all developers on The World with 22 islands and water villas that form the shape of the Australian and New Zealand islands. In addition to a retail hub, luxury hotel, spa resort, restaurants and cafes, stylish apartments, water homes, and villas, Oqyana will also feature a waterfront promenade with boutiques, world-class restaurants, cultural and entertainment facilities. 

Construction of OQYANA, The World’s first luxury island community, will start in summer 2008, while the completion date is slated for 2012.