Dubai’s mini-Europe - where it rains and streets are snowy

Dubai, the desert state where luxury comes as standard and temperatures can easily soar over 40 degrees centigrade, will soon have its first snow-lined streets, in an impressive project called The Heart of Europe.

The ambitious - if somewhat zany - Heart of Europe will offer visitors a number of five start luxury hotels, restaurants and all manner of other facilities across six islands: Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Netherlands, Sweden and St. Petersburg.

These, along with six additional destinations - Sochi, Belgium, Luxembourg, Geneva, Monte Carlo and Poland - will all lie under the "only outdoor climate controlled areas in the world".

Buildings on each island will reflect the architecture of its eponymous country.

In a bid to get things as life-like as possible, the $850m development on The World islands will use state-of-the-art German technology to create the world’s first rain and snow-lined streets.

The project, which is owned by developer Kleindienst Group, is one of Dubai’s biggest and most prolific land reclamations. The 6m square foot plot is nine kilometres wide and seven long and will offer 67km of beach front.

It follows Dubai's reclaimed island The Palm, upon which sits the opulent Atlantis hotel (pictured).

Building work's only just started on The Heart of Europe, but should be finished by the end of 2016.