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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 June 2018

Avicii’s final hours: Fans recount meeting ‘full of life’ DJ in Oman hotel night before death

Hotel staff describe Sweden’s biggest DJ as a 'gentleman' who wanted to see more of the Arabian Peninsula

Swedish musician, DJ, remixer and record producer Avicii (Tim Bergling) performs at Pildammsparken in Malmo, southern Sweden. On 20 April, 2018, it was confirmed that Avicii died in Muscat, Oman. EPA / Bjoern Lindgren / 5 August, 2016
Swedish musician, DJ, remixer and record producer Avicii (Tim Bergling) performs at Pildammsparken in Malmo, southern Sweden. On 20 April, 2018, it was confirmed that Avicii died in Muscat, Oman. EPA / Bjoern Lindgren / 5 August, 2016

Swedish DJ superstar and dance music producer Avicii was cheerful and happy to greet fans at his three-star Muscat hotel on Thursday the night before he was found dead, according to those who met him in the Omani capital.

Samiha Al Aboodi, 24, was among the last people to talk to the 28-year-old DJ, whose real name was Tim Bergling, on Thursday at the Muscat Hills Resort hotel where he was staying in the popular holiday destination.

“He was in good spirits and very polite. He stood up from the reception area when I stopped to ask if it was really him,” Ms Aboodi told The National.

“My only regret is that I could not take a selfie with him because my mobile phone battery had just run out of charge. It must have been just hours before he died when we met”.

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Read more:

Swedish superstar DJ and producer Avicii dead in Oman at 28

Avicii dies in Oman at 28: Dance pioneer rejigged life after touring took its toll on his health

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Another fan who worked in the resort that sits on the bay of Al Jissah described the Swede as a “gentleman” and “full of life” when he met him just a day before his passing.

“First, I did not recognise him. He looked different until my colleague told me who he was. He was cool, a gentleman and full of life. I still don’t believe that he is gone,” says Preetam Ghoshi, a food and drink vendor at the hotel.

“He asked me which is the best place to visit in Oman outside Muscat and I gave him all the information he needed. It’s a pity he could not make it.”

A spokesperson confirmed Avicii’s death on Friday but not did reveal a cause. Omani police declined to provide further information, but a police source told Agence France-Presse that they had ruled out any suspicion of criminal activity related to the DJ's death.

"Two autopsies were carried out, one yesterday and one today, and we absolutely confirmed that there is no criminal suspicion in the death," the source said.

The source said the police would not be making a public statement on the death.

A police official told The National that “it was a request from his family not to give details”.

Muscat Hills Resort said it would not release details of his death, but said he was an “extremely kind” guest.

Avicii found fame with his 2011 hit Levels and regularly performed to mass audiences at a mixture of festival appearances, club shows and exclusive residencies. But he was burdened by ill-health from 2012 at the age of 22 when he was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis, a side-effect of heavy drinking.

He retired from touring in 2016 citing health issues, saying he had "too little left for the life of a real person behind the artist". The Grammy-nominated artist continued to record and release new music.

In 2016, Avicii's estimated fortune of $75 million (Dh275m) made him the third-richest DJ in the world at the time. He had amassed more than one billion streams on Spotify and became a DJ whose popularity was on par with that of a pop star.

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Read more: Dance pioneer rejigged life after touring took its toll on health

Swedish musician, DJ, remixer and record producer Avicii (Tim Bergling) takes a selfie on Table Mountain, South Africa in this picture obtained from social media January 11, 2018. Instagram / Avicii via Reuters
Swedish musician, DJ, remixer and record producer Avicii (Tim Bergling) takes a selfie on Table Mountain, South Africa in this picture obtained from social media January 11, 2018. Instagram / Avicii via Reuters

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His illness resurfaced in March 2014 when he was rushed to the emergency room in a Miami hospital where his gall bladder and appendix were removed.

His death has caused an outpouring of grief from the music community and his fans worldwide, from Stockholm where he was born, to Muscat where he would live his last days.

“His music will live on with us. He may be not with us but his legacy will continue to live in our hearts forever,” Felix Granada, a 26-year-old Spanish Muscat resident and music shop worker, told The National.

“He did not die in vain. He made a lot of people happy. We all thank you, Avicii, for entertaining all of us in a short life you had”.