x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Dh121,000 prayer clock 'combines art and faith'

An Islamic timepiece created by Britain's foremost clock company, Smith of Derby, is to go on display in Abu Dhabi. It is priced at £20,000.

an artists impression of the Islamic Prayer Clock.  Courtesy of Smith of Derby
an artists impression of the Islamic Prayer Clock. Courtesy of Smith of Derby

To the untrained eye, the UAE may already seem awash with opulent goods, but a British firm thinks it has found a gap in the market - for luxury prayer clocks.

Featuring a gold leaf finish and a price tag of £20,000 (Dh121,000), Smith of Derby's "Islamic clock" is to be unveiled at the Interiors Show in Abu Dhabi next week.

Described as "a combination of art and a celebration of faith", the timepiece is being marketed as the most luxurious of its type in the world.

Its creator is a specialist in high-end clocks - the same firm produced a timepiece costing £10,000 to commemorate last week's British royal wedding - thought to be the most expensive piece of memorabilia produced for the occasion.

Bob Betts, the managing director of the company, said the clock integrated city- and day-specific prayer times with a classic design, and was envisioned as a focal point for the interiors of mosques and other prestigious buildings, as well as "homes of distinction".

"Prayer clocks are vital in every Muslim's life, yet the design and quality available is poor and cheap," Mr Betts asserted.

"Luxury developments and prestigious, existing sites have no opportunity to celebrate their faith through exploring prayer time in a luxury manner. This clock inspires and touches your senses and says: 'Do you dare to be different?'"

The company's previous projects in the region have included the supply of 16 gold-plated clocks for Mecca's holy Harram area, the DNA Clock at the University of Dammam and the Four-Sided Tower Clock for the Dammam community. The company is also responsible for the tower clock of the Asma Mosque in Muscat, and the clock in Time Square, a busy junction in Al Ain.

dsapsted@thenational.ae