ABU DHABI // Residents enjoying a day at Saadiyat Island beach found themselves in the presence of one of the most famous TV lifeguards of all time on Wednesday.
Yes, The Hoff was in town, courtesy of the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority.
Baywatch star David Hasselhoff, in Abu Dhabi for the Formula One Grand Prix, was posing for a photo shoot in his famous red trunks.
“It was all really to bring a bit of fun to the beachgoers,” Hasselhoff said. “The beach is fantastic though, it’s so wide and clean.
“You certainly get a feeling of being at one with nature and free, and it was also a great excuse to top up my ever-present tan.”
Hasselhoff has a faithful fan base in Germany, where in 1989 he had a major hit with the song Looking for Freedom.
And among the autograph hunters on the St Regis Abu Dhabi Saadiyat Island Resort beach was Ronja Hannsen, 21, a hotelier from Dusseldorf.
“This made my day,” Ms Hannsen said. “When I first saw David in the lifeguard’s chair I thought I’d had too much sun, but he turned out to be the real thing.
“I got my photo taken with him and it’s already on its way back to Dusseldorf. Baywatch may have been a long time ago but it was an iconic series and David’s still looking good.
“This is really something to talk about when I’m back home.
“There are lots of Germans here on holiday and it’s been great to meet up with so many other young Germans.
“We’re all friends now and I think will remain so when we’re back home. It’s added another dimension to the vacation for us.”
Other fans expressed their excitement on Twitter.
“I JUST MET DAVID HASSELHOFF IN OUR HOTEL!!! :D he was having a photoshoot at the beach,” said one user.
“Just saw David Hasselhoff in Abu Dhabi Mall, #boom, who’s jealous ;),” tweeted another.