The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is an intergovernmental political and economic union that brings together Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Together, these nations were able to take the world by storm.

In a matter of years, they showed unprecedented progress in terms of their economy, tourism, business, and real estate sectors.

GCC countries were also able to transform their mostly desert and barren lands into visual testaments of the outcome of hard work, determination, and perseverance.

Today, we will showcase the most impressive structures that stand tall on the banks of the Persian Gulf across the GCC.

World Trade Center, Manama, Bahrain

World Trade Center

The World Trade Center is the first skyscraper in the world to incorporate wind turbines into the design.

The structure, which is shaped like a sail, generates electricity using wind.

It is composed of two towers connected by three sky bridges. It is made up of 50 stories and is 240 meters high.

The World Trade Center was constructed in four years at a cost of US$150 million.

Al Hamra Tower, Kuwait City, Kuwait

Al Hamra Tower

Al Hamra Tower is the tallest structure in Kuwait and the 23rd tallest in the world.

The tower design is instantly captivating, as it appears to be made up of an outer layer that is being unwrapped to reveal the tall, sturdy tower within.

It received the Chicago Athenaeum – International Architecture Award for best new global design in 2008.

This US$500 million concrete tower stands at 413 meters high with 80 floors. It is home to many offices and retail shops

Museum of Islamic Art, Doha, Qatar

Museum of Islamic Art

The Museum of Islamic Art is a geometric wonder that stretches on 46,450 square meters and cost US$47.7 million.

It is a futuristic piece that is made up of cubes irregularly placed on top of each other resting on an island in Doha.

Inspiration behind the design came when I.M. Pei traveled across the Middle East for six months in order to draw the perfect home for one of the largest Islamic Art collections in the world.

The Chedi Muscat, Muscat, Oman

The Chedi Muscat

In northwest Muscat, on a calm private beach, sits the 5-star luxury hotel, The Chedi Muscat.

The hotel lobby is a 12-meter-high tented structure that resembles an authentic Bedouin tent.

Around it is the hotel’s several buildings intertwined with beautiful landscape.

The Chedi’s reception area is designed to resemble an Omani fort, allowing the hotel to fuse local culture with Arabic, Japanese, European, and Zen inspirations.

The hotel sprawls across 8,360 square meters and cost US$25 million. It has 160 guest rooms.

Abraj Al Bait Towers, Mecca, Saudi Arabia

Abraj Al Bait Towers

Abraj Al Bait Towers, also known as Mecca Royal Hotel Clock Tower, stands at 600 meters high in front of the Holy Kaaba.

The structure’s main tower is larger than Elizabeth Tower in London.

The entire project cost US$15 billion and extended from 2004 to 2012.

It holds 120 floors, a prayer room that can welcome up to 10,000 people, and an observation deck under the clock.

Capital Gate, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Capital Gate

Capital Gate skyscraper is more commonly known as the Leaning Tower of Abu Dhabi due to its striking architecture.

The 160-meter-tall, 35 story tower is inclined 18 degrees to the west.

The tower holds within it a hotel and commercial offices.

The Capital Gate tower appears to defy the rules of physics with its gentle inclination that results in a masterpiece of architecture.

It covers an area of over 53,000 square meters and is the center of the Capital Center/Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre master development.