Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: How to Blow your Entire Annual Salary in One Weekend

Abu Dhabi, home to the most extravagant mosque in the world, 420,000 of the world’s richest citizens worth about £12.7 million each and the Grand Prix, set to take place 24th-26th November 2017.

In a city where luxury cars are the norm and money is no object, let’s take a look at how much this weekend could set you back.

Firstly, hotels. Let’s not bother looking at the cheap stuff here, if there is such a thing in this city. You can stay in Yas Viceroy’s Presidential Suite which is literally on top of the race track and see the cars speed by without even leaving your bed.

At 19,000 AED a night which equals roughly £3852.44, this is the ultimate in unnecessary expenditure. Sure, you might have to walk past some of the peasants staying and using the hotel’s bed and breakfast option but you could probably pay someone to make sure that you don’t even have to do that.

If the Yas Viceroy’s price makes you shudder at the thought of this perhaps becoming a budget weekend, try the Emirates Palace. Over the Grand Prix weekend you can book the 3 Bedroom Palace Suite for a measly 43,500 AED which is about £8840.75 a night.

Coming with its own 24 hour butler (in case you’ve forgotten to bring your own), a dining room, living room and multiple marble bathrooms with in-house iPads within arm’s reach of every seat this is more like it.

With accommodation sorted, which tickets should you buy for the event? There’s only one option here, the Red Bull Racing Paddock Club Hospitality Suite. At only 27,703 AED a ticket which equates to around £5211.54, this is pocket change – obviously not going to make a dent in your thick wad of hard-earned (probably inherited) cash.

Sip your vintage Dom Pérignon and at least pretend to know what’s going on as you’re likely to meet both teams and drivers as well as more celebrities than you could shake a gold-plated stick at.

2016 saw the likes of Lewis Hamilton, Drake and Rihanna performing and watching the races. This year we have Calvin Harris, P!nk and Mumford & Sons set to play. Obviously they’ll be hanging around after and the hospitality suite is probably the best place to catch them, of course they’ll be really interested in meeting you as long as you’re surrounded by the best food, drinks and staff.

The trackside restaurant, Origins is offering a food and beverage package at 3300 AED per person on Sunday’s race day. Roughly equalling £669.11 you will be treated to an interesting selection of local cuisines including carrot shavings, hot dogs and a choice of whole or cut fruit (who in their right mind would want to cut their own fruit?).

If you had something more exotic in mind, simply get your 24-hour in-house butler to give Bloomsbury’s a call. About an hour away in Dubai, you can order the Gold Phoenix cupcake, absolutely smothered in edible gold. At 3,876 AED which is roughly £747.09 this is an absolute bargain. After all, are you even rich if you can’t eat your gold? Clients are sure to be putty in your hands at the awe of such a lavish, over the top expense.

The playground of the rich and famous, you simply cannot turn up in your VW Golf. Body kits don’t cut it here, nobody cares how much it cost for you to have those LED lights stuck to the door tread, the drivers in Abu Dhabi are on a whole other level. The police even own possibly the fastest police car in the world, the Abu Dhabi Police F999, which was made to both celebrate Formula One and promote safe driving because obviously, a simple sign wouldn’t have cut it.

With Lamborghini rental and Ferrari rental the norm, make sure you fit in by hiring a car at a fraction of the cost of buying one. Nobody will know it’s not actually yours, worth around £117,000 new a Ferrari can start at just £445 a day. This is a city that even has its own theme park based on the supercar. If your budget’s on the heftier side, hire a Bugatti Grand Sport Vitesse to blow all those everyday Lambos out of the water, which can be bought for a cool £1.4 million or rented for £40k across the weekend.

So for 3 nights of the best accommodation, food and racing we’re looking at close to £36k, nearly £9k above the average UK salary, and this doesn’t include the 10% service charges, 6% tourism fee and 4% municipality fee. And with the crazy all-night parties, Monte Carlo Beach Club, yachts, shopping, diamonds and pearls we’ve barely scratched the surface.

This is set to be one hell of a weekend.