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A room with a Burj eye view

Sunday, February 4, 2007
By: Joey Yap

How does the internal layout of the Burj Al Arab measure up on the feng shui scale?

Last week, I talked about the external feng shui of the Burj Al Arab (incidentally, the Burj Al Arab (incidentally, the Burj is not the tallest building in Dubai, but it is the tallest hotel there). Today, I'm going to take you inside the hotel and show you how its internal layout measures on the feng shui scale.


In feng shui, "inside" refers to the area immediately outside the main Door and inside the Main Door. So, in the context of a hotel, it would be the area where the guests enter the hotel, and the reception area where the guest are greeted and checked in.

It is important to understand that we only look at the inside after we've checked the outside. The external macro feng shui situation always ranks ahead of the internal or micro feng shui. You cannot make up for a poor external feng shui set-up, no matter how good and internal feng shui and how much it complies with the principles of feng shui.

Having a great Flying Star combination at the Main Door is nothing to be excited about if the Main Door itself is not receiving beneficial Qi because the area does not generate positive Qi, or Qi is obstructed from entry by negative forms or if the property is simply in a direction that doesn't make Qi attraction and collection conducive, such as a Death and Emptiness line.

The face that the hotel has the largest square footage of gold leaf, and items within it made of gold, does not affect the feng shui. It only adds to the opulence.

From last week's article, it's clear that the exterior macro feng shui of the Burj is pretty good. We now turn our attention to the Main Door, which is how the Qi enters the building.

The main door: A Qi mouth

Is there anything blocking the Qi from getting to the hotel via the Main Door? Or is there any negative formation affecting the quality of the Qi entering the property? There are no negative forms affecting the Main Door - the road that brings guests to the hotel is a curved bridge, not a straight T-junction or straight road that will bring gushing, aggressive Qi.

There is a small fountain in front of the Main Door that acts as a mini-table mountain. It is shaped like a Huge Door Mountain (ju men). There are actually 81 types if Huge Door Mountain and this one, which resembles a volcano, is known as a Jade Pillow Huge Door Mountain or yu zhen ju men.


At first sight, it would appear as though the fountain is obstructing the Main Door. However, there is a spacious distance between the Main Door and the fountain (a necessity given that the guests are all being ferried to the hotel in stretch limos or Rolls Royces). And the little round about it creates actually helps Qi to collect and circulate.

The fountain is also an interesting feature because its position, by necessity, means the Qi is forced to enter the building through the Southeast and Southwest sectors, thereby conforming to the Indirect Spirit principle of San Yuan feng shui. This is also mimicked at the macro level, as there is a large intersection in the Southwest direction of the hotel. In feng shui, this is called the internal conforming to the external and is ideally what we would like to see in a large structure.


Bright halls aplenty

As you enter the hotel, it is clear that its layout conforms to the three internal Bright Halls requirement - according to the feng shui classic Ru Di Yan (Entering Earth Eye Classic), this is a Goldfish Ming Tang Formation or "Goldfish" Bright Hall Formation. This is simply poetic language and is meant to allude to the Qi flow being like the shape of a goldfish and to indicate it slows in a meandering and sentimental way. It has nothing to do with the real fish itself.

The immediate reception area is Bright Hall number one. There are two large aquariums located at the Southeast and Southwest sections. Again, the Indirect Spirit formula is present, on a micro scale.


Generally, a feng shui practitioner will not use Flying Stars feng shui for such a large structure. Flying Stars is actually inadequate as a system to handle such a large building. But, coincidentally, the positions of the two large aquariums are in the Facing Star #1 and Facing Star #8, so it is not too shabby.

If you saw images of the Burj on TV, you will probably have seen the atrium located above the lobby. This atrium is the tallest hotel atrium lobby in the world and is large enough to accommodate the 38-storey Dubai World Trade Centre building! So that's a pretty big Bright Hall, which is the second bright hall.


Style and feng shui subtlety

So where's the third Bright Hall? It's on each of the individual floors. Each floor has several suites on it and each of these floors has several suites on it and each of these floors features an individual check-in reception area. This is Bright Hall number three and it serves to collect the Qi on each floor. From the hospitality and feng shui aspects, this is a great set-up as it ensures that the guests feel relaxed.

What about the rooms? Aside from the fact that they all boast of a fabulous view of Dubai, each spacious duplex-style suite opens to a small foyer (mini Bright Hall) and then to a very large, high ceilinged living room. So the Qi flow from the check-in reception on each floor flows to the rooms unobstructed and then into the individual room's living room. Guests feel comfortable because the Qi is flowing freely from the entrance all the way into the rooms.

Of course, for a hotel the rooms are important but the administrative offices are the key to its ability to have and retain good and regular business. As a guest, that was not part of the hotel that I was shown, so I cannot speak for its business feng shui. I would say that a minus point that is evident is the main entrance of the hotel's spa on the 18th floor, which has less than ideal forms and is also located on a floor that doesn't quite correspond with Xuan Kong He Tu calculations.

I hope my two articles on the Burj Al Arab have in some ways helped to improve your understanding of Classical feng shui. So, if by any chance you are going to visit Dubai, keep a lookout for the subtle feng shui features that I've mentioned.

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