- The Architecture
- Exhibitions, Acquisitions and Galleries
- Louvre Abu Dhabi Online
- Activities and Events
- Dining at Louvre
Calling all culture and art enthusiasts! Since its opening in 2017, the Louvre Abu Dhabi has become a shining light of cultural progression and openness. Located in Abu Dhabi’s Saadiyat Island Cultural District, the Abu Dhabi Louvre museum stands as a proud testament to connected humanity throughout the world.
The mastermind behind the Louvre Abu Dhabi is the 2008 Pritzker Prize winner Jan Nouvel. Among the many notable projects from the French architect are the Copenhagen Concert Hall, Philharmonie De Paris and the Doha Tower skyscraper.
Planning a visit to Louvre Abu Dhabi? From entry fees to exhibits, we’ve compiled everything you need to know about this coveted art museum in the country’s capital.
Located in Saadiyat Island, The Louvre Abu Dhabi is the first museum to bear the Louvre name outside France. It houses around 600 pieces in a modern light-filled structure designed to perfectly harmonise with its desert-island surroundings. The inspiration for Louvre Abu Dhabi is a traditional Arabic architectural culture.
The Louvre Abu Dhabi has been designed as a ‘museum city’ in the sea, with a contrasting series of white buildings inspired by the medina and low-lying Arab settlements. But here, it is a modern interpretation made of ultra-high performance concrete, otherwise known as UHPC. More than 55 buildings make up this museum city. The 180 metre-wide dome covers a large part of it and is also visible from surrounding areas.
EXHIBITIONS, ACQUISITION AND GALLERIES
The Louvre in Abu Dhabi features a total of four major exhibitions each year. The exhibitions are organised in collaboration with its counterpart Louvre in France, with feature works loaned from the former’s collection. Curated in season, these temporary exhibits are planned according to specific themes common to global cultures and civilisations.
ART HERE 2022
Art Here at Louvre Museum in Abu Dhabi is an opportunity for regional artists to showcase their work. This platform is created by the museum in collaboration with Swiss watchmaker, Richard Mille. So if you’re an artist living in the GCC, you can submit your artwork at Art Here 2022.
The international jury of art experts will select a number of artworks to be exhibited at the museum from mid-November 2022 until February 2023. One of the selected artist will also win the prize worth USD 60,000.
CURATES AND COLLECTS
Louvre Abu Dhabi acquired 167 artworks in 2020 for permanently collection and secured landmark loans of masterpieces by artists such as Claude Monet, Vassily Kandinsky, Edouard Vuillard, Jackson Pollock and Johannes Vermeer. Let’s take a look at some of the permanent collections at the museum.
- A Girl Blowing on a Brazier
- The Bolt (Le Verrou)
- The Call to Arms
The Louvre Abu Dhabi museum galleries are designed in chronological order. Each exhibit tells a story of human creativity. It highlights different issues that have left a deep impact on cultures, society and humanity from pre-historic events to the present. The galleries at Louvre Abu Dhabi are home to over 600 masterpieces in four wings.
Wing 1 features three galleries with artefacts and art pieces dating back to the early human civilisations. It also hosts masterpieces and items dating back to ancient empires in China, Arabia and Africa. The three galleries in Wing 1 include:
- The First Villages
- The First Great Powers
- Civilisations and Empires
The museum’s Wing 2 represents three galleries as well. This is where visitors can witness artworks and artefacts from universal religions around the globe. It also has several masterpieces that focus on Asian trade routes. The three galleries at Wing 2 are:
- Universal Religions
- Asian Trade Routes
- From the Mediterranean to the Atlantic
Wing 3 has four galleries with great pieces from the ancient Chinese to the Napolean and Columbus era. It has artworks and items from popular trade routes around the globe. The galleries here include:
- Thinking the State
- First Globalisation
- A New Art of Living
Wing 4 has three galleries with art modern art pieces on display. This is where you experience the fusion of modern world with art. The galleries here include:
- A Modern World
- Challenging Modernity
- For the Air
There’s a dedicated space for kids at the museum where they get to learn and interact. From creating their own avatars to interactive journeys exploring costumes seen in artwork —it’s no wonder why kids make a beeline for the Children’s Museum at the Louvre Abu Dhabi.
Designed for kids aged four to 10, the museum is ideal for family visits and school groups. Young visitors even get to try on beautiful replica costumes handmade from Paris. Kids under three can have fun with their costumes through games in the museum’s new toddler space.
The ongoing exhibit – Emotions is The New Art Adventure where your little ones can go around exploring art. The entry to the exhibition is free for kids aged between 4 to 10 years.
- Exhibition Date: 18 June 2021 – May 2023
- Exhibition Tickets: AED 63 for adults
LOUVRE ABU DHABI ONLINE
If you want to enjoy the best of art from the comfort of your home, there are plenty of activities for you to explore. Let’s take a look!
ON SHOW PODCAST
The On Show Podcast series is a chance for you to go on a virtual tour of the museum. The passionate experts will guide you through the museum galleries and exhibitions right from the comfort of your couch. Every episode will take you on a different journey exploring the fascinating stories behind each exhibit. The podcasts are available in Arabic, English and French.
MINDFUL ART MOMENTS
Mindful Art Moments is a selection of short videos using grounding exercises to allow you to relax, observe and reflect on an artwork from the museum’s collection. This particular platform by Louvre Abu Dhabi is a way to promote well-being and mental health through art.
Looking for timeless inspiration? Then you’d love the Online Masterclasses with Emirati artists. It is a series of three virtual courses released during the last week of every month.
Here’s a look at all the other online activities you can be a part of.
- The Pulse of Time
- We Are Not Alone
- Art From Home
- Make and Play
ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS
Apart from artists and enthusiasts, a visit to the Louvre Abu Dhabi can be enjoyable for the whole family too. In fact, it’s one of our top picks for family attractions in Abu Dhabi. Here’s a peak into all the activities and events you can enjoy.
KAYAKING AROUND THE MUSEUM
You wouldn’t think that a museum is one of the best places to go kayaking in Abu Dhabi — but it’s apparently possible for you to do so at the Louvre museum.
A guided kayaking tour of the Louvre Abu Dhabi is a spectacular experience. Lasting 60 minutes, the tour gives visitors a unique perspective of the museum’s architecture. Accompanied by professional instructors, guests are briefed on safety first. Sessions may be cancelled or postponed due to weather conditions in which case you will be notified.
Apart from this, another notable activity at the museum is the upcoming Full Moon Kayaking tour where guests can enjoy paddling on the waters surrounding the museum. The tours are offered by Sea Hawk. A list of dates is available on the Louvre Abu Dhabi official website.
- Price: Starting from AED 126 per person
- Timings: Tuesday to Sunday 06:00 am – 08:00 am (Morning) | 03:00 pm – 05:00 pm and 07:00 pm (Afternoon)
IMMERSIVE FLOW SESSIONS AT LOUVRE ABU DHABI
The yoga sessions at Louvre invites you to discover the restorative power of ancient yogi practices. The Flow Sessions started from 1st October and are held by the experienced practitioners (Meena Karani and Chaithra Jain). Join them as they guide you through a self-transformative journey which will do wonders to your body, mind and soul.
- Price: Starting from AED 105
- Timings: Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday 11:00 am – 12:00 pm | 05:00 pm – 06:00 pm
THE ELECTRIC CATARMAN
Sail through the museum’s waters on an electric catarman. This one-of-a-kind experience offers spectacular views of the iconic Louvre Abu Dhabi. All you have to do is sit back and take in your opulent surroundings!
- Price: Starting from AED 350
- Timings: Monday to Sunday 09:00 am – 10:30 pm
NATIONAL DAY CELEBRATION AT LOUVRE ABU DHABI
Louvre Abu Dhabi is all set to celebrate the UAE’s 51st National Day. There will be Emirati artists performing under the magnetic lights and an immersive talk led by seniors who accompanied the Late Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan during his lifetime.
- Dates: 1st December to 4th December 2022
- Timings: 06:00 pm 07:00 pm (Senior Emirati Talk) | 03:00 pm – 05:00 pm (Performance)
Louvre Abu Dhabi is celebrating its fifth anniversary for a whole month! The museum has organised concerts by local and international artists. Louvre ABu Dhabi Grand Festival will also showcase new acquisitions and installations.
- Dates: 4th November to 4th December 2022
Looking for more options? Let’s see what else is happening at this architectural wonder.
- University take over the Museum
- Drawing at the Museum
- Art History Walks
CAFES BAR AND RESTAURANT AT LOUVRE ABU DHABI
You can’t appreciate art on an empty stomach. And thankfully you won’t have to, owing to the museum’s cafes.
This restaurant at Louvre Abu Dhabi offers Grab & Go service and a special menu for children. The Jean Nouvel designed cafe offers the views of ocean and skyline as you enjoy the blend of European and Emirati flavours.
- Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 12:00 pm – 06:00 pm
You can head to the Aptitude Café for a perfect cup of coffee, sandwiches, wraps and other eats on the terrace. The newly renovated cafe has plenty to offer and a brand new menu worth a try! Aptitude hosts exciting new activities including workshops, dinner events, themed nights and more. The Oud Night is another event to look out for!
- Opening hours: Monday to Sunday 09:00 am – 10:00 pm
FOUQUET’S ABU DHABI
Enjoy fine dining at the renowned Fouquet’s Restaurant located at the Louvre Abu Dhabi. The menu is curated by the French Michelin star-winning chef, Pierre Gagnaire. Taste the signature dishes with intricate flavours for a hearty meal at one of the best restaurants at Saadiyat Island.
- Opening hours: Tuesday to Thursday and Sunday 12:00 pm – 12:00 am | Friday and Saturday 12:00 pm – 01:00 am
The Marta Bar is located above the Fourquet’s restaurant and is one of the most popular attractions at the Louvre Abu Dhabi.
Marta is a speakeasy-style bar with an intimate ambience. The laid-back luxe atmosphere is perfect for delicious light bites and drinks. The bar is open after museum hours so you have plenty of time to discuss art. Bookings are recommended and the dress code is casual chic.
- Opening hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday 12:00 pm – 12:00 am | Thursday and Friday 12:00 pm – 01:00 am
Art Lounge offers an array of small bites, a chic elongated bar and an outdoor seating area. This is where you get to unwind while sipping on refreshing beverages and snacks. The stunning views of the Abu Dhabi skyline and the contemporary design concept make it one of the best sunset lounges in the capital city. The cafe is open to external guests and after museum hours as well.
- Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 03:00 pm – 12:00 am
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHAT IS THE LOUVRE ABU DHABI LOCATION?
The Louvre is located on Saadiyat Island. For more details about the galleries, art or exhibits, you can contact the museum at +971-60-056-5566
WHAT ARE THE LOUVRE ABU DHABI TIMINGS?
Louvre Abu Dhabi is open throughout Tuesday to Thursday from 10:00 am till 06:30 pm. The timings for Friday and Sunday are 10:00 am to 08:30 pm. The dome, cafes and restaurants are open till midnight.
WHAT’S THE PRICE OF LOUVRE ABU DHABI TICKETS?
Admission to the Louvre gives visitors access to the exhibitions, Children’s Museum, Museum Galleries, outdoor plazas under the dome and the museum café. You can buy Abu Dhabi Louvre tickets at the museum itself or online via the Louvre Abu Dhabi website. Here are details regarding the Louvre Abu Dhabi ticket prices:
- AED 63 for General Admission (Adults)
- AED 31.50 for teachers, faculty members and UAE military
That’s a wrap for our review of the Louvre Abu Dhabi. If you have never visited the museum before, we recommend checking out the best Instagrammable exhibits at the Louvre to understand what newer exhibits might be like.
The good news for art aficionados is that you can stay close to the museum by living at Louvre Abu Dhabi Residences – the art themed luxurious apartments!
Are you on a historical tour in the UAE? Don’t forget to visit the best museums in Abu Dhabi.