It’s called the ‘Arabian Riviera’, where the streets are immaculate and luxury hotels are interspersed with vibrant views across the sea. Welcome to ‘Margarita.’
Work on this artificial island – now one of Doha’s most exclusive areas – began in 2004, and was named after the traditional practice of pearl diving, which was the dominant industry in the area before oil was discovered.
People dressed in designer clothes walk their chi-chi dogs along the promenade, while others relax on the man-made beaches that sit on the glistening beaches near the harbor.
Many boats have a permanent area but some have arrived as luxury accommodation for soccer fans looking for the ultimate World Cup experience.
The Saluzi, notable for its graffiti-style engraving adorning its side, is one such superyacht.
He arrived in Doha on November 24 and his army of 35 staff was busy preparing for his first, secret, free tournament that CNN had invited on the way to the ship.
Saluzi’s station costs about $500,000 a week and when you first step on board, you’re enveloped in luxury.
Guests are invited to change into their white slippers and be greeted by immaculately dressed staff who are on hand to tend to customers and ensure they are happy.
From jacuzzis to auto-play pianos, this is a floating space with three floors to sleep, play and work.
Many of the outdoor areas have a warm sunbed and guests can even play golf on the back of the boat – the golfers tend to have a green that is full of rotten hair that turns into fish food when they hit the water.
There are also diving instructors, swimming pools and diving tables – you will never get bored of Saluzi.
“We can accommodate 32 guests, but we are rarely full,” Saluzi manager Asparuh Chorbadzhiev told CNN.
“When people have privacy, they can only use one or two cabins, but they can bring a lot of support staff with them.”
Chorbadzhiev, who has worked and lived at sea for almost 40 years, will not reveal who will be staying on board the Qatar 2022 ship, but said his guests are often famous or wealthy business people.
The captain was quite proud of Saluzi, and was eager to display his many hidden secrets; from the novelty of the lamps, which the guests are drawn into the distance, by the remote artifice, which is shaped like a gun, adorning the walls of the entrances of the natives.
The distinctive pictures inside the shield match the pictures on the outside. All designs are inspired by the name celox, which is derived from the legendary Chinese war horse.
A fully equipped gym sits opposite a luxury spa, complete with a massage bed that has the ability to release wine into your body. This yacht also has a hair salon.
A total of 16 cabins are available in the Saluzi, equipped with VIP rooms with a balcony. There is also a study, a cinema room and a gastronomic dining area. The boat has also been known to host karaoke parties, according to Chorbadzhiev.
All meals are prepared by the sailors. The boat is also spotlessly clean. You leave one room and a group of people suddenly seem to return to their original state.
“It’s a global yacht. It’s usually in the Mediterranean every summer,” Chorbadzhiev said.
“Then, in the winter we can go to the further East or places like the Seychelles, the Maldives, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong or the Gulf region like here.”
CELOX had been in Abu Dhabi recently because of the Teacher Training Program, but was delayed in getting to Qatar because of the row of documents needed to enter the country with a visa, according to Chorbadzhiev.
While standing in Abu Dhabi for the grand prix, people watching the race raced from the decks that were part of the track.
Now in Doha, guests can arrange limousines to take them to the World Cup stadiums for tournament games. Guests are also asked to take a boat from the marina to see the city in the distance.
According to yacht Pro Global Class Tracker, more than 20 superyachts have entered Qatari waters since the start of the tournament, including vessels such as Al Lusail and Alaiya, which were stationed around Doha.
The Mansura Superyacht World Cup is very different from any other accommodation available to guests in the city during the tournament.
From tents in the desert to portacabins on the outskirts of Doha, World Cup organizers had to be innovative in finding accommodation options to accommodate the influx of an estimated 1.5 million people living in a nation smaller than Connecticut.
Roncus is one of the fan towns as fans started to come before the tournament.