Dubai is a city and emirate in the United Arab Emirates and was formally established in 1833 by Sheikh Maktoum bin Buti al Maktoum. It remained under clan control when Britain assumed the protection of Dubai in 1892. Dubai achieved independence 2 December, 1971. It remained historically an important trading hub and by the beginning of the 20th century was an important port. The discovery of oil in 1966 led to Dubai and Qatar setting up a new monetary unit. When the UK left the area in 1971 the emirate of Dubai together with Abu Dhabi and four other emirates formed the United Arab Emirates. Qatar and Bahrain chose to remain independent nations and the UAE dirham was established as the monetary currency for the UAE.
Today Dubai is a global financial player and important international business hub. The new found wealth of the late 20th century derived from its small but lucrative oil industry was invested wisely resulting in alternative sources of income upon the inevitable depletion of its oil reserves, namely, financial services, tourism and real estate.
The progress Dubai has made in the services sector is reflected in the astounding skyline. Sheikh Zayed Road has the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa 829.84 m. The building (Khalifa Tower) reflects the traditional pattern systems typical of Islamic architecture. Also the famous luxury beach hotel Burj al Arab 60 floors 320 m. high, was for a long time the highest building used exclusively as a hotel until it was overtaken by Rose Rayhaan also in Dubai. The Burj al Arab resembles the sail of a Dhow reflecting the pride in the region.