Postcards from Dubai
Postcards and a short diary from a fleeting but fun visit to Dubai earlier this month…
The weather was absolute perfection and we spent most of our time lounging by an infinity pool of Burj Al Arab during the day, and admiring the dazzling night city lights as soon as darkness fell – Dubai is one of those cities that is certain to captivate you in the latter hours of the day!
Dubai is a truly enthralling place: a city in the desert embodying futuristic vision, a glamorous oasis amongst the sandy dunes. Most of the city that you see today has been built in just four decades. It is one of the fastest growing cities in the world, a multinational society with less than 20% of emiratis. It is home to the worlds’ tallest manmade structure, the world’s fastest rollercoaster, as well as the world’s only 7-star hotel, Burj Al Arab.
We stayed in Dubai’s landmark hotel, Burj Al Arab, easily recognisable by its elegant sail-shaped silhouette, sitting on an artificial island just of Jumeirah road. Its gorgeous exterior is starkly juxtaposed by the gaudy interior, with a garish colour scheme of blue, green and red and pillars covered in gold-leaf . The imposing lobby is 180-metres high and is apparently tall enough to fit in a Statue of Liberty. The two-storey suites are spacious and incredibly opulent – queue in gold-plated taps – with the same colour scheme as the lobby. Not everyone’s cup of tea (and not mine either), but certainly interesting enough for a one-off experience!
Within Burj Al Arab, you will find one of Dubai’s most extravagant and surreal restaurants, Al Mahara, whose name translates as oyster shell. To enter the restaurant, you need to take a simulated short submarine voyage!Tables are placed around a circular floor-t0-ceiling aquarium teeming with fish, and guests are served two-michelin starred seafood-centric meals.Burj Khalifa: the world’s tallest building!
Burj Khalifa is truly overwhelming: it is the world tallest building piercing the sky at 828 metres! It is a glittering backdrop to the city. It opened back in 2010, merely 6 years after excavation for the foundation began. The Burj Khalifa is a stunning feat of architecture and engineering, and a testament to human progress! Within the building, you will find the highest observation platform on the 144th floor.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
On our last day, we decided to embark a half-day trip to one of the world’s most beautiful and largest mosques, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, in the heart of the new Abu Dabhi.
Named after the founder and first President of the UAE, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the construction of the mosque began less than two decades ago, and it hosted its first prayer a mere 9 years later! Grand is somewhat of an understatement for this edifice built in order to consolidate Islamic culture.
The dazzling white exterior is made from some of the purest white marble in the world. The mosque is also home to the largest carpet in the world with a total area of 5,625 m2! This astonishing piece has been hand-knotted by about 1,300 Iranian craftsmen out of 35 tons of wool and 12 tons of cotton.
A few favourite places to eat and drink…
La Petite Maison – for mouth-watering Southern French cuisine and wonderfully convivial atmosphere, head to La Petite Maison. Generous portions are made for sharing.
Abd El Wahab – A great restaurant serving delicious Lebanese fare as well as incredibly fresh seafood. Its terrace by the water facing Burj Khalifa is perfect for watching Dubai’s famous dancing fountains at night.
Relaxed, chic ambience and stunning views of Burj Khalifa and DIFC.
Dubai’s most idyllic and glamorous rooftop overlooking the Dubai skyline and the Burj Khalifa on one side, and the Arabian Gulf on the other.
At.Mosphere Burj Khalifa – Upscale bar (and fine dining restaurant) on floor 122 of the iconic Burj Khalifa skyscraper.
A photo diary from to finish off this post…