The late designer's brother Santo, who is taking charge of the venture, stands beneath a portrait of Gianni Versace
Photo: © AFP
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The new resort, which is scheduled to open in 2008, follows on from the success of the Palazzo Versace on Australia's Gold Coast (above)

VERSACE PLANS A STYLISH UTOPIA FOR DUBAI

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Those who like to holiday in style will soon be able to take the ultimate high-fashion break as Italian label Versace is planning to open a new beach resort in Dubai. The destination promises to give well-to-do consumers the chance to get away from it all in an oasis of "Renaissance splendour and breath-taking beauty".

Developers have revealed the Palazzo Dubai will offer 215 suites and 204 villas all decked out with a specially designed range of Versace homewear. Perhaps the most impressive feature of the man-made Shangri-la, however, will be a temperature-controlled beach where sun-worshippers can keep their cool while also getting a tan.

"It's a palace," affirmed a spokesman for the venture. "We'll have our own beach where the temperature the whole year will be 22 degrees." The company has not revealed how it intends to achieve this climatic wonder, particularly in a country where the temperature often exceeds 50 degrees, but some form of technological wizardry will no doubt be involved.

The Italian fashion house's decision to build a new luxury hotel follows on the success of the Palazzo Versace which opened on Australia's Gold Coast in 2000. And the formula certainly seems to be working. Jeweller Bulgari has followed suit by setting up an exclusive venue in central Milan, with another set to start taking bookings in Bali early next year. Silver-haired style guru Giorgio Armani is likewise getting in on the act, with lavish venues in the pipeline for both Milan and Dubai.

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