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The person giving the service stands in that gold-filled alcove which helps amplify his voice. On the wall in Arabic are the 99 names of Allah. This is the wall that is prayed towards as it faces Mecca. We learned a grip of interesting stuff about the Muslim faith. Impressive for sure.

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Did I mention how tight our tourguide was?

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FYI, this is the world’s biggest Persian rug. It was made in Iran, then had to be cut into sections to transport to this mosque. It has raised lines in it so at prayer time, people can line up properly.

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Jetlagged and sweating on the first day, but here’s our crew: Drew York, Blair Alley, Darryl Tocco, Sam Beckett, Jussi Korhonen, Andrew Critchlow, and Alex Mizurov. Flossin’ marbs.

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Oh, just tryin’ to get artsy.

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The marble out here was especially chosen since it doesn’t retain heat. It was 100 degrees this day and you could stand on the white marble barefoot, but if you touched the colored parts, it was super hot. This mosque can hold up to 50,000 worshippers at once, has 70 domes all topped with 24 karat gold, and 1,000 marble columns.

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Another one of the Grand Mosque’s grand skatespots.

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More touristing! Next stop was the Abu Dhabi Heritage Village, an authentic replica of a Bedouin encampment before oil wealth struck the area. Stuff in here dates back 4,000 years.

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Across the water, construction was booming. Yes, there are a ton of brand new all-marble spots in Abu Dhabi.

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A traditional souq, or marketplace. We loaded up on the souvenirs and keffiyehs.