the Palm is a resort on the Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, United Arab
Emirates. It is a joint venture between Kerzner International Limited
and Istithmar PSJC and was completed in September 2008. The
architectural design is based heavily on the Atlantis Resort in the
The resort consists of two towers linked by a bridge, with a total of
approximately two thousand rooms. There are two monorail stations
connecting the resort to the main section of the Palm Jumeirah islands.
The resort also includes a water theme park (160,000 square meters), a
conference center, and 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2) of retail space.
In October 2007, the hotel received a shipment of 28 bottlenose
dolphins from the Solomon Islands, to be used as part of their aquarium
exhibit, called Dolphin Bay.
The move was decried by several environmental groups, particularly for
the fact that the export of dolphins had earlier been banned by the
Solomon Islands government (after a similar controversial shipment to
Mexico). Hotel managers have said that though the dolphins are being
trained to interact with visitors, they will not appear in any sort of
show or circus-like performance. They have also stated that the health
of the dolphins is paramount, and because the bottlenose is not an
endangered species, their shipment did not pose a problem. The deal was
done with the approval of the United Arab Emirates and Solomon Island
governments, through the company Solomon Islands Marine Mammal
Education Centre and Exporters Limited (who had successfully overturned
the earlier ban in court). The amount of money paid for the dolphins
has not been disclosed.