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December / January / February 2017

Table Talk

Winter Wonderland

Awesome Arrives

Tuck into Dubai Food Festival’s eclectic menu of exciting events for all the family

From desert safaris to al fresco shopping, how best to enjoy the city’s coolest season

Strap yourself in for full-on fun as Dubai Parks and Resorts debuts its thrilling attractions


THIS IS WHERE AMAZING MEETS AMAZING 3 THEME PARKS, 1 WATER PARK, STAY AND DINING EXPERIENCES ALL IN ONE LOCATION

LEGOLAND® Water Park Splash your way through 20 water slides and attractions in the region’s only water park designed for families with kids aged 2-12.

- 2016 - Lic. Lafig Belgium – www.smurf.com

LEGOLAND® Dubai The ultimate theme park for families with kids aged 2-12. With over 40 LEGO® themed rides, shows, attractions and building experiences.

Lapita™ Hotel Check in to this Polynesian themed hotel, dedicated to families and friends who want to stay close to all the fun.

Kung Fu Panda © 2016 DreamWorks Animation LLC LEGO, the LEGO logo, the Brick and Knob configurations, DUPLO and LEGOLAND are trademarks of the LEGO Group. ©2016 The LEGO Group. LEGOLAND is a Merlin Entertainments brand.


MOTIONGATE™ Dubai Play the hero with your favourite Hollywood characters across 27 action-packed movie rides and attractions.

Bollywood Parks™ Dubai The world’s first Bollywood theme park with rides and attractions based on some of Bollywood’s biggest blockbusters.

Riverland™ Dubai Enjoy a uniquely themed dining, retail and entertainment destination with four vibrant districts, located at the heart of Dubai Parks and Resorts.

UAE: 800-Amazing (2629464) International: +971 4 820 0000

DubaiParksandResorts

@dubaiparksresorts

DubaiParksandResorts

@dxbparksresorts


DUBAI Contents

Contents

Dec / Jan / Feb 2017

T. +971 4 364 2876 W. hotmediapublishing.com MANAGING DIRECTOR Victoria Thatcher EDITORIAL DIRECTOR John Thatcher GROUP COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR David Wade COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR Rawan Chehab ART DIRECTOR Andy Knappett SUB-EDITOR Emma Laurence BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER Rabih El Turk SALES MANAGER Lisa Price DESIGNER Emi Dixon PRODUCTION MANAGER Muthu Kumar Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from HOT Media Publishing is strictly prohibited. HOT Media Publishing does not accept liability for omissions or errors in DUBAI

Surf’s Up (page 42)

Features P34-71

34 Park Life

Fun, adventure and foodie feasts are just a taste of the action at Dubai Parks and Resorts – we’ve got the lowdown on the emirate’s newest must-visit family attraction

42 Surf’s Up

Get airborne over glittering Arabian waters (and feel the wind beneath your sails) with a burst of unforgettable kitesurfing. Our experts show you how

48 Eat, Play, Shop

Peruse our pick of the city’s ample al fresco shopping and leisure hot spots

54 Dive Into The Desert

Bash through the dunes, camp under starlight or take to the skies? The best ways to get the most from the desert are here

58 The Hills Are Alive

Take a break from gleaming skyscrapers to admire the

cultural gem of Hatta – welcome to the rugged side of Dubai

64 Eating’s Not Cheating We round up Dubai’s finest healthy dining spots, to kickstart your New Year eating habits the right way

70 Freshly Picked

Succumb to the allure of the great outdoors with an organic exploration of Ripe Market – a true community favourite visitdubai.com 3


D UBAI Contents

Produced for DTCM by HOT Media Publishing DIRECTOR OF CONTENT Carmen Michael carmen.michael@dubaitourism.ae BRAND & EVENT MARKETING OPERATIONS VP Moza Al Youha myouha@dubaitourism.ae CHIEF EDITOR Kerry Baggott kbaggott@dubaitourism.ae OVERSEAS OFFICES African Continent dtcm_africa@dubaitourism.ae Australia and New Zealand dtcm_aus@dubaitourism.ae China (Beijing) dtcm_beijing@dubaitourism.ae China (Chengdu) dtcm_chengdu@dubaitourism.ae China (Guangzhou) dtcm_guangzhou@dubaitourism.ae China (Shanghai) dtcm_shanghai@dubaitourism.ae France dtcm_ france@dubai.fr Germany, Switzerland and Austria dtcm_ge@dubaitourism.ae

Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa (page 22)

Hong Kong dtcm_hk@dubaitourism.ae India dtcm_in@dubaitourism.ae Japan dtcm_ ja@dubaitourism.ae

Regulars P6-33

11 The Edit

All you need to know to ensure a memorable visit from the moment you touch down

20 Dubai Stories

How the appeal of the Arabian Horse has gone the distance

6 #MyDubai

Become part of the story by sharing your holiday memories with #MyDubai 4 visitdubai.com

22 6 Of The Best

Hotel rooms with to-die-for views – perfect for sparking romance this Valentine’s Day

25 The Insider

Local style guru Kelly Lundberg shares her tips for shopping up a storm in Dubai

Nordic Countries dtcm_sca@dubaitourism.ae Russia, CIS and Baltic States dtcm_cis@dubaitourism.ae UK and Ireland dtcm_uk@dubaitourism.ae

28 Perspectives

Come on a visual tour of the historic Dubai Creek, the city’s very heartbeat

Plus, on 72… A Look Ahead

What’s in store at the newly opened Dubai Water Canal?

Cover image: Courtesy of Platinum Heritage


DUBAI #MyDubai My Dubai

#MyDubai PICTURE THIS

Spellbinding experiences, shared stories and hidden destination gems all come together to make this city a place like no other… Want to contribute to the narrative? Add #MyDubai to your next Instagram snap of this spectacular emirate, and your artistic effort might just make it onto these pages

Ride a ‘ship of the desert’ Falcons aside, no animal better symbolises the emirate than the camel. They adorn many a souvenir, are the centrepiece of an avid racing community, and you’re sure to spot caravans of them on any proper UAE road trip. But don’t just admire from afar – enjoy a lolloping ride, precariously perched atop your own long-legged creature. You’ll feel as high up as a Dubai skyscraper, so careful with the dismount. Be it an impromptu encounter on JBR beachfront or a desert safari into the depths of the Big Red, there are plenty of ways to secure that most essential of Dubai moments. 6 -visitdubai.com visitdubai.com


DUBAI #MyDubai My Dubai

visitdubai.com visitdubai.com- 7


DUBAI #MyDubai My Dubai

Stroll around the Marina In the upscale Dubai Marina district, 7km of palm-lined walkway awaits... but good luck if you’re intending on making it all the way round, as there’s copious temptation en route to lead you astray. Quaint cafés and myriad restaurants will waft delicious hints of international fare your way, attempting to entice you in for a romantic waterside meal. Of course, you could always whizz by them on two wheels – convenient Byky stations are on hand to easily obtain your own piece of pedal power. The largest man-made marina in the world is a dramatic sight worthy of a moonlight stroll – or a gentle yacht cruise, if you’re so inclined. Picture by @shugaphotography 8 visitdubai.com


DUBAI #MyDubai My Dubai

visitdubai.com visitdubai.com- 9


A PLACE TO EMBRACE LIFE.

Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai, a lifestyle destination for those who set the trend. Located on Pearl Jumeira, the resort introduces 132 keys comprising 117 rooms and suites, 15 villas with private pools as well as 63 private residences boasting top-line facilities. Host of unique food and beverage offerings including the world-famed Nikki Beach Restaurant & Beach Club. Relaxation and wellness are key elements of the resort where you can enjoy the choice of pools, sundecks or a more relaxed environment at Nikki Spa.

For reservations or more information please contact reservations.dubai@nikkibeachhotels.com Pearl Jumeira, PO Box 8286, Dubai, United Arab Emirates T: +971 4 376 6000 F: +971 4 376 6333 NIKKIBEACHHOTELDUBAI

NBRSDUBAI | NIKKIBEACHHOTELS.COM


DUBAI The Edit

The

EDIT What’s new, what’s hot, what’s not to be missed - your definitive guide to Dubai’s wonderful winter season

Here and now

Dining at Dubai Parks and Resorts There’s all kinds of action on the menu at brand-new theme-park hub Dubai Parks and Resorts – from adrenalinepumping roller coasters to dazzling live performances. But it’s also Dubai’s most exciting new foodie destination, with more than 50 themed eateries to explore in-between all that entertainment.

We love the fabulously kitsch Baby Brent’s Luncheonette, just opened at MOTIONGATE™ Dubai, while Riverland™ Dubai boasts over 20 dedicated dining options – from Tom’s Kitchen Deli, devised by Tom Aikens, the UK’s youngest chef to hold two Michelin stars (don’t miss the cod dog), to Katsuya by Starck, a gastronomic liaison between master sushi chef Katsuya Uechi and design guru Philippe Starck. Our favourite

thing about Riverland? At the very heart of Dubai Parks and Resorts, it’s open to everyone, with or without a ticket to any of the adjoining parks. So whether you’re after a pre or post-ride pit stop or simply a day of foodie fun in the sun, it’s a treat you’ll want to make room for. For the low-down on this and all the other exhilarating experiences that await, turn to page 34, and to find out more about Riverland, visit riverlanddubai.com visitdubai.com 11


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A sporting CHANCE Dubai plays host to myriad sports events over its winter months. Here’s where to catch all the action 19 FEB-4 MAR Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships The best tennis players in the world descend on the emirate from 19 February to contest a title that’s celebrating its 24th year. Defending ladies’ champion Sara Errani will be hoping to emulate her biggest career win to date while, in the men’s tournament, title holder Stan Wawrinka will be looking to stay on top after defeating Marcos Baghdatis in last year’s final. dubaidutyfreetennischampionships.com

Four more to bookmark…

16 DEC Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge Two and a half thousand cyclists will take on this 92km challenge on the streets of Dubai, flanked by cheering crowds. If you don’t have a bike in town, cycle and helmet rental is available. And off track at the cycle village, you’ll find bouncy castles, rides and food stalls galore. cyclechallenge.ae 12-14 JAN Hankook 24H Dubai 2017 The Dubai Autodrome in Motor City stages one of motorsport’s toughest missions as the 24-hour endurance race rolls into town and drivers are pitted against the clock – and each other – in a variety of touring cars. 24hseries.com/24h-dubai 20 JAN Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon Expect to see enthusiasts and professionals taking part in the annual Dubai Marathon. Starting and ending opposite the Burj Al Arab, the 42km race is the main event and starts at 6am, followed by a 10km road race at 9am and a 4km fun run at 11am. dubaimarathon.org 2-5 FEB Omega Dubai Desert Classic This PGA European Tour-sanctioned event happens at Emirates Golf Club’s Majlis Course, and attracts the biggest hitters in the business. Rory McIlroy, a favourite in Dubai, was a tender 19 years old when he first won here in 2009, and will be hoping for a hat-trick of titles following further success in the last year. dubaidesertclassic.com 12 - visitdubai.com

CLICK TO PLAY


The

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WHERE to STAY Recent openings, luxury hotels and the city’s most exciting new check-ins

The Westin Dubai, Al Habtoor City The largest Westin in the Middle East, Europe and Africa has opened its doors in the buzzing Al Habtoor City, Dubai’s newest luxury destination on Sheikh Zayed Road. Promising a focus on urban wellbeing, The Westin Dubai, Al Habtoor City offers a host of wellness offerings in keeping with The Westin philosophy. All 1,004 rooms feature comprehensive ‘Sleep Well’ menus, invigorating rainforest showers and dreamy bathtubs to help guests unwind. The appropriately titled Heavenly Spa offers a whole range of renewal experiences, while the Workout fitness studio and RunWestin programme are perfect for those who want to keep active while they’re in town. Neglected to pack your fitness gear? No sweat – the hotel can lend you top-quality kit for every eventuality. After building up an appetite with all this fitness, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to dining options. Try the industrial Cook Hall for American gastro eats or Il Capo for hearty, New York-inspired Italian dishes. Meanwhile, Firefly looks set to become Dubai’s new rooftop party spot. westindubaialhabtoorcity.com

THREE MORE ON OUR RADAR…

Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai Right out on the ocean near Jumeirah Public Beach, this all-white haven within the new Pearl Jumeira island development has views of both the Arabian Gulf and the famous Dubai skyline. Glorious sunsets are guaranteed, as is sophisticated accommodation in keeping with the Nikki Beach brand. Take a break from the sun in the relaxing Nikki Spa and complete the indulgence at one of five laid-back restaurants. nikkibeachhotels.com/dubai

Jumeirah Al Naseem With the iconic Burj Al Arab and the beautifully arabesque Madinat Jumeirah for neighbours, Jumeirah Al Naseem is perfectly placed if you’re looking for a beachfront base in the heart of Dubai. An extension of the Madinat resort, it offers 430 stylish, Arabian-infused rooms and suites – but with a more contemporary, calming feel. Add to that 10 restaurants and bars, plus a private beach club, and guests will want for nothing. jumeirah.com

Dukes Dubai Bringing a quintessential taste of Britain to Dubai’s shores, Dukes Dubai on Palm Jumeirah is inspired by its London counterpart. With 442 rooms and 64 luxury suites spread over 15 floors, it will even feature a Duchess Floor catering entirely for women. Guests can enjoy an outdoor infinity pool with gorgeous views of the sea and private beach, plus a temperature-controlled indoor pool. Old-fashioned glamour at its best. dukesdubai.com visitdubai.com 13


The

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FESTIVAL fever From film to fashion, Dubai plays host to a plethora of festivals throughout the year. This season, it’s all about the Dubai Food Festival

Dubai Food Festival Forks at the ready for this gastronomic extravaganza

CLICK TO PLAY

While healthy living is de rigueur in Dubai, for one week every year, all thoughts turn to indulging. The Dubai Food Festival runs from 23 February to 11 March and celebrates Dubai’s rich and varied culinary lansdcape. Highlights include Dubai Restaurant Week, with some of the city’s finest eateries offering huge discounts, and the popular Beach Canteen, which sees home-grown eateries set up shop on Kite Beach. And don’t miss Eat The World DXB – a food-truck gathering in Burj Park. dubaifoodfestival.com

News Bites

TUCK IN

Kicking things off, the newly opened Jumeirah Al Naseem brings Il Borro Tuscan Bistro Dubai (jumeirah.com) to the table. At this first international outpost of the famous Tuscan estate owned by the Ferragamo fashion family, fresh fish, aged meats and fine cheeses form the backbone of a menu you’ll enjoy in stylish environs. Just across the water, on Palm Jumeirah, the Dhs120 million Vista Mare dining complex has launched with seven restaurants, all set directly on the beach boasting great views of the city’s landmarks. Top picks here include Aji (aji.ae) for fusion Japanese and Peruvian dishes, and Ibn AlBahr (ibnalbahr.me), home to fabulous Lebanese seafood. For families, South African Walnut Grove (citywalk.ae) at City Walk offers a wealth of sweet and savoury options, from super salads to its signature rainbow cake. Kids will love it.

FooDiva

Once you’ve eaten your way around the food festival, these are the freshest restaurant openings you’ll want to try

14 visitdubai.com

For an insider’s guide to this culinary melting pot of a city, book a specialist food tour

This magical mystery tour takes in three high-end restaurants, with a different course served up at each, alongside fun foodie trivia. foodiva.net

Flavours of Dubai Sample regional street foods and learn about local culture before sitting down to a traditional Emirati meal. arabian-adventures.com

Frying Pan Adventures The authentic tours on offer include the indigenous Middle East Food Pilgrimage and The Indian Express, which picks up the spice trail in the city’s Karama district. fryingpanadventures.com


The

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BOOK IT list Make sure you don’t miss any of Dubai’s upcoming happenings with our look at what’s on the horizion

The main act

CATS

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s record-breaking, multi-awardwinning musical CATS comes to the Dubai Opera from 16 to 28 January in a sparkling fusion of song, dance and verse. It tells the tale of TS Eliot’s Jellicle cats and their yearly meet at the Jellicle Ball, where they await a decision by wise leader Old Deuteronomy as to which of them will ascend to the Heaviside Layer, and be reborn into a whole new life. With timeless music, exciting choreography and stunning sets, it’s an unforgettable night of magical music and memories. dubaiopera.com

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For up-to-the-minute, comprehensive listings, download the new Dubai Calendar app at dubaicalendar.ae

SUPPORTING ACTS

Book your tickets now for these set-to-thrill events taking place all across the city

West Side Story Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the epic show that is West Side Story comes to Dubai Opera from 14 to 18 February. Inspired by Romeo and Juliet, this hit musical is set in New York’s Upper West Side and depicts a passionate tale of street gangs, police sirens, everlasting love and fateful conflict. Memorable tracks like Leonard Bernstein’s Somewhere, combined with a deeply moving story, make it a must-see. dubaiopera.com 16 visitdubai.com

Emirates Airline Dubai Jazz Festival Every year, the Dubai Jazz Festival promises incredible sets from some of the best names in music – and this year looks set to be no different, with Enrique Iglesias and Mariah Carey already confirmed as headliners. Tickets are sure to sell out so get yours now. Running from 22 to 24 February at the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre, it’s a date for the diary for every music enthusiast. dubaijazzfest.com

Guns N’ Roses

White Nights

Get set for one of rock’s biggest ever reunion gigs as Axl Rose’s mob roll into town for one night only on 3 March. Alongside Axl, the line-up includes original guitarist Slash and bassist Duff McKagan, who will set the Autism Rocks Arena on fire as part of their Not In This Lifetime… world tour. It’s the first time all three band members have performed together in over 20 years; make sure you’re there too. tickets.virginmegastore.me

Bringing together some of the top names on the planet in a nine-day extravaganza at Dubai Opera, White Nights is a fantastic new addition to the city’s music scene. Opera great Katherine Jenkins and jazz popster Jamie Cullum top the billing and are joined by the likes of tenor Alfie Boe and pop violinist David Garrett. Running from 30 March to 8 April, it’s your chance to see seven outstanding artists from across the musical spectrum. dubaiopera.com

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The

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TALK of the TOWN All the places you need to go, attractions you need to see and things you need to know for the months ahead

Where to play

Note it: Fahrenheit Beachsports, Dubai Marine Beach Resort & Spa What’s it all about? After a bit of an absence from Dubai shores, surfing returns in style at a brand-new location. What to expect: As well as firstclass surfing instruction, and all the equipment you need to catch a wave, you can also hire paddleboards, wakeboards and see-through kayaks, and go snorkelling in the natural reef that’s been replanted in the bay. dxbmarine.com

Where to take the kids

Note it: Dubai Garden Glow, Zabeel Park What’s it all about? Dubbed the largest themed garden on Earth, this rainbow world spreads across 40 acres packed with cool sculptures, light installations and gorgeous illuminations. What to expect: For the best experience go at night, as this is when the park really comes alive and the illuminations take full effect, creating a glowing wonderland. Gaze in awe at the tranquil floating jellyfish wall, discover Emirati traditions at the entrancing pearl tower sculpture and even encourage the kids’ healthy eating habits at the crazy vegetable patch and mushroom forest. dubaigardenglow.com 18 visitdubai.com

Where to party

Note it: Zero Gravity What’s it all about? A day-tonight beach club in Dubai Marina, for the ultimate in poolside partying. What to expect: With ocean views, world-class DJs and dancing on the sand, this is the place to come to let your hair down. Its ever-changing roster of events attracts some of the biggest names in dance music – bookmark One Big Friday on 29 January to see the likes of Duke Dumont in action. 0-gravity.ae

Where to eat

Note it: Rüya, Grosvenor House Hotel Dubai What’s it all about? Colin Clague – whose CV lists stints at Burj Al Arab and Zuma – is now showcasing his considerable skills at Dubai Marina’s new go-to restaurant. What to expect: A modern take on traditional Anatolian dishes (think inventive kebabs and rice-stuffed mussels) served in sophisticated surrounds set off by a gorgeous terrace that looks over the vibrant marina. grosvenorhouse-dubai.com

Where to shop

Note it: The Outlet Village, Jebel Ali What’s it all about? Dubai’s first upscale outlet mall, this Tuscan-inspired retail hub boasts over 125 top brands. What to expect: This all-new development delivers all the charm of an Italian hilltop town, with mismatched stonework, fountains and a delightful stone wishing well. Fashion finds, meanwhile, include Ted Baker, Tommy Hilfiger, Dolce & Gabbana and Jimmy Choo. theoutletvillage.ae


DISCOVER A MOUNTAIN RETREAT

with an uplifting new look

Where the look of the resort is as fresh as the mountain air! Experience the bliss comfort of our newly refurbished rooms, enjoy a delicious new menu in the revamped restaurant or enjoy a host of leisure activities available at JA Hatta Fort Hotel.

For bookings or more information, please call +971 4 814 5400 or email reservations@jaresorts.com jaresortshotels.com

/hattaforthotel

@hattaforthotel

Getaways for the real you


DUBAI Dubai Stories

The Arabian Horse DUBAI STORIES

Meet the majestic creature that’s the star attraction of the forthcoming Dubai World Cup

20 -visitdubai.com Issue 6


DUBAI Dubai Stories

D

ubai’s Meydan Racecourse will be abuzz with excitement in March as the equestrian World Cup rolls into town. A spectacle worth beholding, the event spells thundering hooves, race-based adrenaline, chic outfits on show in the stands, gleaming trophies held aloft, and a USD30 million prize purse to be won. The main attraction here, though, is the gallant Arabian horse – an asset whose worth eclipses the numbers on a winner’s cheque; these are sporting and cultural gems whose value is near priceless. Their value goes beyond advantageous characteristics passed down through carefully bred lineage. The DNA is vital, of course, but there’s another layer that is more profound, says Nasif Kayed, founder of The Arab Culturalist. “The horse is important when tracing back to our roots,” he explains. “In the old days, the Arabian horse was everything to us – our pride, our way of travelling, and used for war, too. We have a saying that when we used to bury the man, we buried his horse next to him. Your horse was better than your best friend. There are stories of some horses that died right after their owner died – that’s how close the relationship was. Your horse meant everything to you, even sometimes more important than your family but, naturally, you had to have a balance.” The roots Kayed refers to lie in the emirates’ Bedouin past. The appeal of the Arabian horse to the Bedouin people was layered: although it’s smaller (14 to 15 hands high, compared to 16 to 17 for a thoroughbred), its skull is larger so it’s smarter, and its nose and lungs are bigger so it’s able to run faster and longer. Plus, it’s a very loyal horse that you can ride for days. In fact, long distance is this animal’s forte; it excels in modern-day competitions that can be up to 160km in length. In this discipline the horses complete a cross-country course in loops – it’s a marathon, not a sprint – with periodic veterinary checks. “It tests the horse’s speed and endurance, plus the rider’s effective use of pace and knowledge of their horse’s capabilities,”

Kayed expounds. “In the old days, to defend or go to war you had to ride huge distances, so you don’t really appreciate the Arabian horse’s value until you ride it that far. It’s not a 1km or 2km racehorse – it’s too heavy, so other horses will win.” Arabian horses are world-renowned and the breed has storied origins beyond its Bedouin heritage. When Islam spread from Arabia to North Africa and eventually Spain in the 700s, the Europeans were curious as to what kind of horse could have brought people all the way from Arabia. The Godolphin Arabian – one of three stallions credited with founding the modern thoroughbred racehorse bloodstock – was imported to England in 1730 and, today, some of history’s most celebrated racehorses can be traced back to that sire. A major proponent in the resurgence of Dubai as a thoroughbred hub is the passion of Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He resurrected the Arabian breed by bringing some of his horses back from the UK and into the warmer

In the old days, it was everything to us weather, and the move was an unmitigated success. It’s estimated that by 2019, Dubai will be the capital of breeding, largely thanks to this considerate planning. Explains Kayed, “He was ahead of everybody. He created the concept here of taking care of the horses with the best trainers, the best veterinarians, the best food, the best jockeys.” It’s the latest chapter in a fine equestrian legacy – and, like its racing capabilities, the Arabian horse has plenty of distance left to run in this enchanting tale. Tickets are on sale now for the Meydan racing season and its showpiece, the Dubai World Cup (on 25 March). For the full season schedule, visit dubaiworldcup.com visitdubai.com 21


DUBAI 6 Of The Best

6 OF THE BEST

Rooms With A View If you’re looking for a little romance this Valentine’s Day, don’t book anywhere until you’ve checked out our pick of the city’s hotel rooms guaranteed to steal your heart

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What: Burj View Suite

What: Ocean Superior Club Room

What: Bedouin Suite

Where: Manzil Downtown Dubai

Where: Jumeirah Beach Hotel

Where: Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa

This beautiful arabesque boutique hotel is wonderfully atmospheric after dark, when its charming courtyard is cast in the soft glow of candlelight. Enjoy post-dinner coffee here after a meal at the superb La Serre Bistro – a short stroll away at sister hotel Vida Downtown Dubai – but save space for one more drink to be enjoyed on the terrace of your suite. From here your aspect is of the tallest building on Earth, Burj Khalifa, resplendent when bathed in light come night-time.

How to top a pristine beach view with the sparkling sea beyond it? Ensure one of the world’s most iconic architectural wonders is part of the picture, that’s how. In this case, the architectural wonder is the picture, with your floor-to-ceiling windows framing the famous sail-shaped Burj Al Arab. It’s a postcard-perfect vista best enjoyed at night, when the Burj puts on a multi-hued light show of its own, but also makes for a majestic sight when you open the curtains next morning.

You’ll know of Dubai’s cloud-skimming towers and man-made superstructures, but its other, equally amazing attraction is the work of Mother Nature alone – the desert. There is no better place to marvel at this magical landscape than Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa, Dubai’s foremost desert retreat. Book yourself into a Bedouin Suite, where your list of lavish comforts include a private infinity pool, in which you can float while surveying the never-ending sands around you.

Get booking: vida-hotels.com

Get booking: jumeirah.com

Get booking: al-maha.com

22 visitdubai.com


DUBAI 6 Of The Best

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What: Aspen Ski Chalet

What: Underwater Suite

What: Armani Fountain Suite

Where: Kempinski Mall of the Emirates

Where: Atlantis, The Palm

Where: Armani Hotel Dubai

If you thought the idea of a ski slope in the desert was radical enough, how about curling up in front of a fireplace? That’s one of the rustic features inside the Aspen Ski Chalet, designed to mimic authentic alpine décor right down to the use of wooden beams and flooring. The city’s winter wonderland, Ski Dubai, is right outside your (expansive) window, while access to a dedicated butler service means you won’t have to lift a finger.

There was a time when being invited to sleep with the fishes would have rightly sent a shiver down your spine – but then Atlantis, The Palm opened, and with it the world was introduced to the Underwater Suite. Now everyone is clamouring to bed down with Nemo and co. From your bed, bath and lounge area, the outlook is the same – sharks, rays and myriad other marine life gliding gracefully past your window in the resort’s Ambassador Lagoon.

Occupying the lower floors of the world’s tallest tower, Burj Khalifa, the Armani Hotel Dubai is beautifully designed – courtesy of Mr Armani himself. Its Fountain Suite is no different, featuring a magnificent entrance hall and chic living room. But its real draw is the unbroken view of the spectacular Dubai Fountain it affords its guests, who watch transfixed as the fountain dances its way into the night sky at regular intervals. Heart tugging.

Get booking: kempinski.com

Get booking: atlantisthepalm.com

Get booking: armanihoteldubai.com visitdubai.com 23


DUBAI Ask The A Insider Local

THE INSIDER

Kelly Lundberg Welcome to our insider’s guide to Dubai, where we ask a local for their top tips on getting the very best out of this city of ours. This issue, superstylist Kelly Lundberg gives us the low-down on the plethora of incredible shopping experiences on offer

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ith her warm smile and lilting Scottish accent – not to mention her own inimitable sense of style – it’s easy to see why people want to work with Kelly Lundberg. Having first ecountered Dubai as a member of the Emirates cabin crew, Lundberg was instantly fascinated by the entrepreneurial spirit that runs through the veins of the city. Inspired, she put her heart into launching a business of her own, Style Me Divine. At the time, there were no personal styling services available in the entire Middle East region, so hers was the first of its kind; today, she’s the queen of her very own style empire. “In the first 12 months,” she recalls, “I targeted the vast number of tourists visiting Dubai, who were short on time but wanted to experience the buzz of shopping, and those already living in the city, from the growing expatriate community to local Emirati women looking for a stylish yet conservative look.” The idea took shape and, 11 years on, Style Me Divine has surpassed all Lundberg’s expectations. Having clocked up over 15,000 shopping hours in the capital (and splurged on more than 5,000 pairs of shoes), who better to spill Dubai’s most coveted style secrets? Give us your number-one tip for shopping in Dubai… If you want to avoid the crowds and snap up the best buys, head to the shops in the morning. With lots of new arrivals hitting stores just before the weekend, the best time to shop is on a Thursday. What’s the street style like here? It’s pretty polished compared to almost everywhere else in the world. I think that’s because we’re fortunate we can wear heels a lot of the time – as we never have to walk too far – and we also have every high-street and designer label you can think of right on our doorstep. visitdubai.com 25


D UBAI The Insider

S*auce

Who’s your favourite local designer? That’s a tough choice as a stylist – I really can’t pick just one as I tend to wear whatever suits my mood on the day. When I want to be fun and quirky I turn to Zayan The Label, which you can find at Galleria Mall on Al Wasl Road. Dee by Dalia is another great choice, stocked at S*uce in The Village Mall on Jumeirah Beach Road. For an on-trend everyday look, I would turn to Deborah Henning. She has a minimalist collection that features my favourite shades, black, grey and white – check it out at the Iridium Building on Umm Suqeim Road. For a show-stopping red-carpet or event dress, my go-to would be Aiisha Ramadan – her innovative cut and creativity win every time. Where can we go for vintage fashion? There are a number of good vintage places – one that stands out is Bambah at City Walk. You can also pick up a bargain designer gown or pair of shoes at Garderobe, a pre-loved boutique on Jumeirah Beach Road, or online at theluxurycloset.com. Your one-stop shop for beauty buys? Sephora. As well as the big international brands they have amazing ranges 26 visitdubai.com

from insider favourites like Kat Von D, Anastasia Beverly Hills and Huda Beauty. Where can we buy a special souvenir? Jewellery is always the best memento of a place, whether you go for quality diamonds or a creative costume piece from a local designer. Town Centre Jumeirah has a little shop called Boom & Mellow, which has a great selection. Is Dubai a good place to buy investment jewellery pieces? Yes, absolutely. The Gold and Diamond Park is easy to get to and has an array of jewellers to choose from. I work with a number of reputable jewellers and, on countless occasions, clients have had their buys valued once they return home to find the jewellery has a much higher estimated value than what they paid. Where should we go to see and be seen? The buzzing Jamaican outpost Miss Lily’s in the Sheraton Grand Hotel is one of the newest haunts in the city; it’s casual and has a great atmosphere. I’m also a fan of Weslodge at the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel for its spectacular views, and I love the W Dubai hotel – it’s got such a creative and upbeat choice of dining and entertainment options.

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Shop up a storm Celebrating its 22nd anniversary in 2017, the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) is the largest retail and entertainment extravaganza in the Middle East. It’s when the city’s shopping obsession peaks each year, and runs from 26 December 2016 to 28 January 2017. The longestrunning festival of its kind, DSF offers unbeatable deals, celebrity performances and plenty of amazing events to celebrate Dubai’s favourite pastime. From fashion flash mobs to daily fireworks, there’s something for everyone during DSF 2017. Whether you’re exploring the old souqs or the grandiose modern malls, there are plenty of ways to save and win – or try your luck at one of the daily raffles, with prizes including cash and even cars. Find out more at mydsf.ae


DUBAI Perspectives

Capturing The PERSPECTIVES

Weaving its way through this modern metropolis is the historic Dubai Creek. It’s here that the city’s roots were planted and it remains a living, breathing ode to the magic of Dubai. Jump on board as we take you on a visual odyssey through the eyes of the Emirates Falcons Photography Club

Creek

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DUBAI Perspectives

Shot by Rowdha Ahmad Alsayegh “I am simply a proud Emirati who believes what she sees today will be the history of tomorrow. My main inspiration is my culture and, for me, one of the best authentic cultural experiences is to glide along the Creek in an abra.�

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DUBAI Photo Story

O

n 2 December 1971, the United Arab Emirates was officially created when the separate sheikhdoms came together to form a union. Each year, this National Day is celebrated with pride as the nation recognises the incredible progress it has made over the years and takes time out to salute both its culture and heritage. In Dubai, one place that heritage is felt most strongly is the history-rich Dubai Creek. It was by the Creek that the Al Maktoum arm of the Bani Yas tribe first settled in 1833, living in barasti huts, plying their wares in the souks and relying on fishing and pearling for survival. The area soon became central to what we now know as Dubai, and it was here that the city’s reputation as a global commercial hub was built. By the turn of the 20th century, Dubai had become an increasingly successful port with the souq on the Deira side of the Creek boasting over 350 shops and stalls, making it the largest market on the coast. However, come the 1950s, perhaps due to the volume of vessels using it, the Creek began to silt. HH Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum wisely decided to have the waterway dredged, which, despite the financial implications, ultimately strengthened Dubai’s position as a major trading hub. Today, Dubai Creek remains a buzzing bastion of history and culture, its significance still integral to the emirate. To give you a taste of the distinctive atmosphere of Creekside Dubai and all the wonder of Arabia, members of the Emirates Falcons Photography Club share with us their favourite scenes that capture the essence of this historic area. 30 visitdubai.com


DUBAI Photo Story

Shot by Asma Salem Ahmad Alsuwaidi “For an adventurous shopping experience, lose yourself among the sikkas (alleyways) around the Spice and Gold Souqs, and keep your camera always at the ready to capture the scenes.”

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D UBAI Perspectives

The Emirates Falcons Photography Club, which is also a member of the International Federation of Photographic Art, was set up in 2012 to encourage budding photographers in the UAE to capture and preserve Emirati culture on film. Today the club participates in numerous artistic exhibitions and events throughout the city. Find out more at facebook.com/emiratesfalconsphotography

ABOVE: Shot by Ahmed Abdulla Nasib Alnuaimi “Comparing old and new, the barjeels (wind towers) are architectural masterpieces of a bygone era, just as the mighty Burj Khalifa seen in the background is of today.” OPPOSITE: Shot by Maryam Mohammed Al Shehhi “The banks of the Dubai Creek are where trade in the Middle East began, and still today, it’s a 24-hour commercial hub where the world comes together.”

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DUBAI Photo Story

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D UBAI Dubai Parks Family and Resorts

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DUBAI Family

Pa rk Li fe Go beyond the blockbuster at MOTIONGATE™, get swept up in the song-and-dance spectacular of Bollywood Parks™ and build your own fantasy in LEGOLAND®. Welcome to Dubai Parks and Resorts – the fun starts now

MOTIONGATE™ Dubai The big idea: MOTIONGATE is all about the movies. Inspired by 13 of Hollywood’s most beloved films, step inside the magical world of Shrek, answer the call of the Ghostbusters, check into Hotel Transylvania and tackle The Hunger Games, if you dare. What’s inside: Spread across five zones are no less than 27 interactive rides and attractions including five roller coasters, multimedia dark rides, interactive play labs, a 1,000-seat Hollywood Theatre, and 15 live entertainment experiences – from street performances through to character encounters and photo opportunities. We love: The charming, mushroomcapped Smurfs Village – they’re even cuter in real life. Refuel at: There are nine fabulously themed outlets to choose from. Perfect for: Fans of the silver screen and families of all ages. visitdubai.com 35


DUBAI Family

Bollywood Parks™ Dubai

Riverland™ Dubai

The big idea: This is where all the passion, energy, colour and glamour of Bollywood are brought to life. Prepare for a toe-tapping, hip-swaying extravaganza of immersive rides, music, dance, costumes and drama.

The big idea: A multi-themed dining and retail destination at the centre of Dubai Parks and Resorts. Linking all the parks together, this is the place to meet, eat, shop and be regaled by street entertainers.

What’s inside: Themed attractions and rides in each of the five areas – Bollywood Boulevard, Mumbai Chowk, Rustic Ravine, Royal Plaza and Bollywood Film Studios, featuring Hall of Heroes.

What’s inside: Four zones make up the Riverland Dubai hub, each offering a glimpse of a bygone era. Stroll through medieval France in The French Village, revel in 1950s America on the Boardwalk, experience the colonial splendour of India Gate and relive the 19th century in Peninsula.

We love: The Broadway-style, Bollywoodthemed musical that takes place in the whopping 850-seater Rajmahal Theatre. Plus, expect up to 20 live shows a day across the park’s five stages.

We love: The boat rides. Take a trip down the 1km river and enjoy the ever-changing scenery en route.

Refuel at: Six themed restaurants will take your taste buds on a tour of India’s diverse and rich cuisine.

Refuel at: With over 20 restaurants to choose from, you won’t go hungry.

Perfect for: Families of all ages, themepark buffs, and fans of Bollywood movies, music and dance.

Perfect for: Everyone. Riverland is open to all – with or without a ticket to the adjoining parks.

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DUBAI Dubai Parks and Resorts Opening page: Lost Kingdom Adventure at LEGOLAND Dubai These pages, from far left: The Smurfs Village at MOTIONGATE Dubai; Bollywood Parks Dubai Next page: The IMAGINATION centre at LEGOLAND Dubai

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Top tip

Why be restricted to just one park when you can enjoy the fun of all four with a single no-fuss ticket? Choose either a one, two, three or four-day pass that gives you access to all areas; multi-park tickets start from Dhs480 for adults and Dhs430 for children. For true theme-park enthusiasts, the annual pass is a fantastic, great-value option, starting from Dhs755. For tickets and more information, visit dubaiparksandresorts.com

Arrive

Located on Sheikh Zayed Road, past Dubai Marina, Dubai Parks and Resorts is a 40-minute drive (traffic permitting) from Dubai International airport and a 10-minute drive from Dubai World Central airport. If you’re travelling by metro, take the red line to Jebel Ali station and jump in a taxi for the remaining short ride.

Play

MOTIONGATE Dubai: Adults, Dhs330; children, Dhs280. Bollywood Parks Dubai: Adults, Dhs285; children, Dhs245. LEGOLAND® Dubai: Adults, Dhs295; children, Dhs250. LEGOLAND® Water Park: Adults, Dhs240; children, Dhs205. LEGOLAND Dubai and LEGOLAND Water Park combo: Adults, Dhs395; children, Dhs350.

Stay

The Polynesian-themed Lapita Hotel Dubai, located within Dubai Parks and Resorts, is dedicated to families and friends who want to be right in the heart of the action. Offering 504 chambers, including 60 suites and three villas, it also boasts five food and beverage outlets, a family pool, a children’s lazy river, play lagoon and water playground, and a spa and health club, as well as meeting and event facilities. visitdubai.com 37


DUBAI Dubai Parks and Resorts

Admire around 15,000 LEGO model structures before dipping into all the fun of the water park

LEGOLAND® Dubai and LEGOLAND® Water Park The big idea: Embracing every child’s favourite toy, allow your imagination to run wild in the multicoloured world of LEGOLAND Dubai. The first in the region, you can admire around 15,000 LEGO model structures made from some 60 million LEGO bricks, before dipping into all the fun of the adjoining water park. What’s inside: More than 40 interactive rides, shows, attractions and building experiences across six themed lands: LEGO® CITY, KINGDOMS, IMAGINATION, ADVENTURE, MINILAND and FACTORY. Die-hard LEGO fans should head straight to MINILAND, a dazzling collection of the region’s most iconic landmarks recreated using over 20 million LEGO bricks. And let’s not forget the water park! The whole family can make a splash on more than 20 water slides and wet-and-wild attractions. We love: The IMAGINATION centre, where you can build and race your own LEGO cars or get to grips with LEGO MINDSTORMS® robotics. Refuel at: You’ll find everything from fried chicken to Granny’s Apple Fries here. Perfect for: Families with children aged two to 12 (and big kids who’ve never 38 visitdubai.com


DUBAI Family

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Meet the model maker

We catch up with LEGOLAND model site manager Stefan Bentivoglio, who’s been building with LEGO for as long as he can remember

What does your job involve? I’m responsible for making sure all the LEGO models are correctly installed, along with the international Merlin Magic Making team. I started as a model builder 13 years ago at LEGOLAND® Germany and, before coming to Dubai, was the model shop manager at LEGOLAND® Malaysia for four years. What’s your first memory of LEGO? I started playing with LEGO at about three or four years old. It was always the most exciting toy for me – and still is today. As a child when I received presents, I would shake the box, hoping to hear the noise of loose LEGO bricks. How did you get the job? I saw a TV show documenting the dayto-day life of a LEGO model builder at LEGOLAND Germany, and at the end the presenters said they were looking for more model makers. It occurred to me that this would be my dream job, so I went down to my basement and dug out some LEGO models I had made as a child, and sent off my application. After a couple of interviews and building tests, I received the good news from the model-shop team and, today, it still makes me the happiest person on earth. What’s it like planning a new park? Planning and building a new park is really an amazing challenge. To see it grow from nothing right through to the opening is awesome. When we open a park and I see the kids coming in, that is exactly what makes me happy and proud.

How many people worked on the structures at LEGOLAND Dubai? We have a huge team around the world building LEGO models for LEGOLAND Dubai and future parks. I’m not sure of the exact number, but I guess around 300 LEGO builders and designers were involved. The Taj Mahal recreation used an incredible 280,741 bricks. How long did it take to build? It took a team of four to six builders, all working at the same time, around 2,019 hours to complete. It was made at the model shop in Malaysia before being shipped to Dubai. We also have LEGO model shops in Denmark, Germany, the Czech Republic, UK and USA, and transport the finished models by various modes – truck, train, boat and sometimes even plane – to get them to the site. How do you keep something as big as the Taj Mahal or the Grand Mosque intact on a journey of that scale? We use special LEGO glue to connect the LEGO bricks permanently. We also assemble each model brick by brick, which means we have to always be very focused during the building process. What’s the most challenging model you’ve ever worked on? I would say the football arena at LEGOLAND Germany, and all the Star Wars models currently on display in the different LEGOLAND parks, including the stormtrooper you can find in The BIG Shop at LEGOLAND Dubai. visitdubai.com 39


DUBAI Promotion

Discover Your Polynesian Oasis Located in the heart of the action at Dubai Parks and Resorts, Lapita – a Marriott Autograph Collection hotel – is truly one of a kind

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DUBAI Promotion

Y

ou can glean plenty from observing how someone pens their signature – the care they apply to a precise sweeping motion that appears effortless, yet is a reflection of their personality, and an extension of their pride. Not only that: it is unique, with no other like it in the world. That is what makes the Autograph Collection by Marriott so distinctive – you’re afforded the opportunity to experience the brand at its expected best, yet with an additional flourish. Its Lapita property is very special indeed, partly because of its geography – it has the distinction of being the only hotel within Dubai Parks and Resorts thus far. The family-friendly hotel is the yin to the yang of its vibrant surrounds; after a day of adrenaline-fuelled fun, this is the place to retreat, relax and replenish your energy, ready to do it all over again the next day. Comprising 504 abodes (including 60 suites and three private villas), Lapita’s name is inspired by Polynesia,

its fascinating people and the culture of the Pacific Ocean islands. The hotel design follows suit – lush, tropical garden landscapes, lagoon-style pools and exotic flora. This also means, deliciously, the opportunity to sample local fare from that part of the world: at Lani, a rooftop bar and restaurant serving up Polynesian tapas, or Waka, where the buffet sings with the same flavours. If your adventure reserves have been exhausted in the theme parks and you’re craving the familiar, there are also restaurants offering clay oven-baked pizzas, Cantonese and Middle Eastern specialities, and internationally themed buffets to comfort the taste buds. In every sense, Lapita is tailored to guests of all ages. When it comes to amenities, the family, kids’ and toddlers’ swimming pools are complemented by a lazy river (we did say that the pace slows at this hotel, and this is a prime, H2O-centric example. More pampering can be found at the cutting-edge Ola Spa – your ‘escape to Polynesia’ with soothing treatments). Luna & Nova Kids and Teens Club ensures a day chock-full of activities, when venturing beyond the hotel boundaries seems too strenuous but the little ones still have energy to burn. Up the adrenaline ante at Mana, the extensively equipped fitness centre, or with memorable off-site bouts of sand skiing, paragliding or a dhow cruise, all easily arranged by the expert concierge. When it comes to accommodation, space is the name of the game here, and if you’re travelling with a sizeable clan we recommend you opt for the two-storey, three-bedroom private villa. With resort and river views, it boasts a generous outdoor space, with a private terrace or patio and plunge pool. Marbled baths, sumptuously soft linens and signature essentials raise the bar of comfort. The beautiful thing about Lapita is that you’re within touching distance of so much. If, despite all the on-site delights, you crave more, a host of dining options, retail-therapy venues and cultural delights are right on the proverbial UAE doorstep. However long your visit to Dubai, with a stay at Lapita you’re assured to mark your time here in a distinctly memorable manner. visitdubai.com 41


D UBAI Outdoor Adventure

SURF’S UP

Take a stroll along Kite Beach during winter and you’ll likely find the sky dotted with enormous, brightly coloured kites. Fancy joining them? There’s no better place in the world to learn the exhilarating art of kitesurfing, says Dukite’s Mostafa Al Hussaini

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure Adventure

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“K

itesurfing is my passion. Out there on the water, I cherish the peace and nature. I love that feeling of freedom; I love being carried by the wind, whizzing across the surface of the water, changing direction and doing my tricks. Of course it’s very reliant on the wind speed and direction, and you need to understand how the wind works. The wind is your playmate; you can’t see it but you can feel it. On a good day, when the wind speed and direction are perfect, you can reach speeds of up to 55km per hour – and on those days, I can be out there for hours. After 15 years, I still get an adrenaline buzz when I leap into the air. When I’m airborne it’s as if time slows down, and I savour the moment. One of the most appealing things about kitesurfing is that, no matter your level, there’s always something new to learn; there’s a long list of tricks that can be mastered. I’m still learning – and I still fall flat on my face sometimes. But landing in the warm Arabian Gulf is hardly a problem, not like landing in the cold waters of Europe. Most of the year you don’t even have to wear a wetsuit. In my opinion Dubai is one of the best places (if not the best) in the world 44 -visitdubai.com visitdubai.com

to learn to kitesurf. It has wide open beaches, consistently light winds, there are no hidden rocks and the waters are beautifully warm. Obviously Dubai’s shoreline has been hampered significantly over the years as its coastal infrastructure has developed, but I’ve watched it all come back to life. I’ve

When I’m airborne it’s as if time slows down, and I savour the moment seen the coral beds begin to grow again and now, when I go out, I spot turtles, stingrays, dolphins and loads of schools of fish. And of course, the city skyline is one you can never tire of. I have to pinch myself sometimes because I feel so lucky. Kitesurfing is so popular in Dubai that we have a whole stretch of golden sand named after it – Kite Beach. Here, kitesurfers take precedence over other marine traffic so it’s the meeting place for the kitesurfing community. It’s such a fun sport to watch, we always get a lot


DUBAI Adventure

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DUBAI Adventure

Kite Beach is what it is today because of kitesurfing and, as a result, there’s a real sporty, hip, relaxed vibe about the place

of spectators, too. Kite Beach is what it is today because of kitesurfing and, as a result, there’s a real sporty, hip, relaxed vibe about the place. And with a string of cafés, changing facilities, games and entertainment all along this busy beach, it’s a great place to be. While many people refer to kitesurfing as an extreme sport, it needn’t be dangerous if you’re taught properly and take all the right safety precautions. Nowadays the focus is on safety – we wear harnesses and helmets, and the equipment is very advanced. That certainly wasn’t the case when I started out in 2001. Back then, no-one knew anything about the sport; it took me 46 visitdubai.com

over a year to get hold of all the equipment and find someone to teach me. Once I’d learned how, I started coaching my friends and soon word started to spread. In 2005 I set up my company, and today we have 11 fully qualified kitesurfing instructors working at Dukite. Almost anyone can learn to kitesurf. You can start from as young as 14 years old. You don’t have to be particularly strong – most of the power comes from the harness – but a sense of balance helps. If you’ve been snowboarding, skateboarding or windsurfing before then you’ve probably already got a good sense of balance and some board skills.


Meet the instructor

Charlene Michel

Mauritius-born Charlene Michel is a qualified kitesurfing instructor with Dukite – and her slender frame is proof that you don’t need massive muscles to be a kitesurfer. “You don’t necessarily have to be strong; you just need to be motivated and learn the right technique,” she says. Michel fell in love with the sport five years ago, and gave up her job in Mauritius so that she could kitesurf full time: “I couldn’t think of a better job – doing what I love for a living.” The option of a female instructor puts many students at ease, adds Michel. “Some women prefer being taught by another woman, particularly the local ladies and those visiting from within the region. They feel less pressured and don’t get so embarrassed when they can’t do it.” Plus, she says, it’s a full-body workout: “It certainly beats going to the gym, that’s for sure.”

We always start off on the sand before taking to the water. The key with kitesurfing is understanding that when you want to depower the kite, you push the bar away from you. It’s counterintuitive because the natural reaction when you want to slow down is to pull the bar towards you – but by doing so you’re actually powering up the kite. The most useful advice I can give is to stay calm, relax and listen to the instructor. A lot of visitors to Dubai want to try the sport while they’re here on holiday. Depending on weather conditions, it’s possible to learn the basics in as little as five days, taking one two-hour lesson

each day. For beginners, we’re looking for wind speeds of around nine to 11 knots. In Dubai the wind tends to swing round in the afternoon so that’s the best time to give it a go. During the lessons you’ll learn the basic safety techniques, how to pilot the kite and manoeuvre the board, launch the kite and depower it – let’s face it, we want you to be able to get back to the beach! Once you’ve cracked the basics then it’s just a matter of practise. But be warned, it’s an addictive sport – there’s nothing like it.” A one-hour private lesson with Dukite costs Dhs350, including all equipment; group lessons cost from Dhs250 per hour. Visit dukite.com to find out more

Stand up paddleboarding If kitesurfing doesn’t take your fancy, or you’re only here for a short time, how about a bit of stand up paddleboarding (SUP)? You can usually get the hang of it in just one lesson, particularly in Dubai where the winds (especially in the mornings) tend to be light, and the waters calm. You start on a wide, flat board for maximum stability, and once you’ve gained the confidence to stand up, you simply take hold of the paddle and… you’re off! Dukite’s SUP lessons cost from Dhs250 per hour; board rental only costs from Dhs100 per hour visitdubai.com 47


DUBAI Shopping

Eat,

Play,

Dubai is renowned for its fabulous shopping and wonderful weather. Enjoy the best of both at the city’s al fresco retail, dining and entertainment hot spots

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Shop


DUBAI Shopping

City Walk

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DUBAI Shopping

BoxPark Street cred: Dominating 1.2km of Al Wasl Road, BoxPark is a veritable urban oasis in the heart of the city. Its uber-cool selection of shops and cafés, housed within a string of brightly coloured shipping containers, are cutting-edge, trendsetting, offbeat and distinctly different. With instagrammable details at every turn, visitors can take advantage of free Wi-Fi throughout. Retail therapy: There’s nothing run-of-the-mill about this place. At BoxPark, quirky is the norm. Make a beeline for Urbanist, a treasure trove of artwork, furniture and fashion from the likes of Sonia Rykiel and MSGM. They only sell a limited number of each piece, so exclusivity is assured. If you’re a fan of a onesie, the original Norwegian brand OnePiece is here, and offers unique designs for men, women, kids and even pets. For children’s clothes with a difference, check out Poupette à la Plage, which crafts vintage-inspired ensembles using fabrics from high-end stores such as Liberty of London. Feeling peckish: Motorcycle fanatics should head to the world’s only Yamaha Café for Japanese fusion fare (sushi sandwich, anyone?) surrounded by biking paraphernalia. To cool off, dig into Grom, where gelato comes in novel, mouthwatering varieties like tiramisu and mandarin. And for Emirati flavours, Logma is the place to try traditional dishes with a dash of contemporary bite. Entertain me: There are some unusual pieces of art on display here from some of the UAE’s finest creative talents. Keep your eyes peeled for pop-up events and join the festival fever during the winter months. We’re also fans of The Dome Box theatre, where you lie back on beanbags and marvel at the 360° screen set into its domed roof. boxpark.ae 50 visitdubai.com


DUBAI Shopping

Left and far left: BoxPark Above: Global Village

Go Global Another open-air destination, yet altogether different, is Global Village – in fact, you’ll find few places anywhere in the world quite like it. The seasonal leisure hub is home to an imaginative mix of concerts, stage shows, shopping and dining, with a huge funfair thrown in for good measure. Famed for the scaled-down versions of some of the world’s best-known landmarks that denote its region-specific pavilions, this year actually sees a scaled-up cowboy fronting The Americas pavilion. The new addition completes a colourful line-up of 32 shopping pavilions stocked with wares and foodstuffs from 75 countries. What’s more, with fireworks rounding off each day, it’s tons of fun for all the family. Global Village is open from 4pm to midnight, Saturday to Wednesday, and 4pm to 1am, Thursday and Friday, until 8 April 2017. Entry costs Dhs15; globalvillage.ae visitdubai.com 51


D UBAI Shopping

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DUBAI Shopping

Feel the sea breeze and soak up the sun as you stroll between eateries and boutiques

Above, from left: Shopping at The Beach; City Walk; al fresco dining at The Beach Opposite: Playful times at The Beach

City Walk

The Beach

Street cred: This chic new district in Jumeirah is all about city living. Its combination of high-end boutiques, smart culinary offerings and first-of-its-kind entertainment in Dubai has quickly made it a hit with all generations. The fountain that dominates the main square makes a pleasant meeting spot for a coffee al fresco, while the quirky street art in the leafy, European-styled Walk Lane – including an iconic London phone box – adds to the distinctive feel.

Street cred: Feel the sea breeze and soak up the sun as you stroll between eateries and boutiques at this brilliant beachside destination – loved as much by locals as it is visitors, both young and old. Pack your swimming gear and you can even take a dip in the warm Arabian Gulf while you’re there.

Retail therapy: Big-name brands dominate here – think Agent Provocateur, Armani Exchange and Calvin Klein – but a winning number of lesser-known labels more than hold their own. I’m Isola, with its flirty, fun designs, urban-casual hot spot Rag & Bone, and the cool colour combos of Belgian fashion house Essentiel Antwerp are all well worth hunting out. Feeling peckish: Even the food here is out of the ordinary – from Aubaine, an elegant Provençal bistro, to the artisan build-yourown pizza concept that is Project Pie. Sink into a comfy armchair at Mitts & Trays for gourmet home-style cooking, or get your sugar high at iconic Barcelonan patisserie Bubó. Entertain me: Are you dexterous enough to work your way through a laser maze? Or battle a virtual dragon? Find out for sure inside Hub Zero – the region’s only immersive entertainment park where the real and virtual worlds collide. For an adventure of a more natural kind, head to The Green Planet, an incredible indoor rainforest where you’ll encounter sloths, parrots and stingrays. Bonus fun for little ones, Mattel Play! Town is an eduplay centre where the likes of Bob The Builder and Angelina Ballerina come to life. citywalk.ae

Retail therapy: Stand out on the sand in designer beachwear from home-grown fashion hub S*uce On-Sea, which stocks an exclusive edit of regional and international designers. If you want to go all out after dark, Patrizia Pepe has Dubai’s elegantcasual evening dress code covered. And if you’re looking for the perfect souvenir to take home, the I Dubai store has something for everyone. Thrown into the vibrant retail mix are a smattering of well-known high-street names as well as the region’s go-to for all things beauty, Sephora. Feeling peckish: Snaking their way along the beachfront are 45 cafés and restaurants. At one end we love Eggspectation, serving up eggs in every conceivable style with a generous helping of sea views; at the other, Pots, Pans & Boards is an indulgent, lively concept conjured up by Tom Aikens, the youngest UK chef to have been awarded two Michelin stars. Entertain me: The Reel Cinema offers 10 screens’ worth of movie goodness but if you can’t tear yourself away from the sunshine, chill out on a beanbag at the region’s largest open-air beach cinema instead. For a (slightly) more active start to your day, join a morning Yoga on the Lawn session (every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 7am) or take in the array of pop-up exhibitions, art shows and street entertainment on offer from dawn till dusk. thebeach.ae visitdubai.com 53


D UBAI Outdoor Adventure

Dive Into The Desert A trip to Dubai is never quite complete without an adventure amid the dunes. Strap yourself in for a ride to remember

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o-one can say they’ve truly ticked Dubai off their bucket list until they’ve ventured into the vast, beautiful desert and ridden its waves of rolling golden dunes. To see this endless ocean of sand stretch beyond the horizon and witness the setting sun cast a colourful swathe of burnt oranges and reds across this imposing, naturally sculpted landscape is one of those moments of a lifetime that will be remembered forever. The desert is also nature’s playground, and numerous tour operators are at the ready to collect you from your hotel and take you on an exhilarating roller-coaster ride across the dunes. The drivers know this desert like the back of their hands and – more importantly – they know how to drive it. The choice of safari operators is almost as vast as the desert itself, though, so allow us to shine a light on those offering something a little different.

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Hot-air balloon and wildlife safari

with Platinum Heritage

To fully appreciate the magnitude of the desert, take a bird’s-eye view of this aweinspiring landscape as you gracefully glide above it in a hot-air balloon. Along with the sun, you’ll rise some 4,000ft above the sweeping sand, witnessing as you do the desert come to life. See the dunes sail through a spectrum of colours, from soft brown to rich gold and deep red. See roaming camels, graceful gazelles and the rare Arabian oryx start their day, and drink in the expansive, breathtaking views. Once you’ve come back down to Earth, you’ll be whisked to Platinum Heritage’s desert retreat for breakfast. You’ll also be treated to a guided wildlife tour in a vintage Land Rover – the choice vehicle of the 1950s. platinum-heritage.com


DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

Night safari

with Arabian Adventures With only the embers of a campfire and the moon to guide you, it’s in the dead of night that the sheer vastness of the desert makes itself truly apparent. With Arabian Adventures you can capture this emotion with an overnight stay at its desert campsite. This is not camping in the traditional sense, though – this is ‘glamping’. After a sumptuous Arabian feast, you’ll snuggle down under blankets in a warm double bed in your carpeted tent. Fall asleep listening to the sound of silence – the only noise being the odd scuttling lizard or gerbil. But be sure to drag yourself out of bed early to get a front-row seat for nature’s first show of the day – sunrise. It’s magical. Leave your footsteps in the cool sand and trek to the top of a dune to welcome the start of a brand-new day, before enjoying a hearty breakfast back at camp. arabian-adventures.com

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

Feel your stomach lurch as you whizz down the steep dunes

Dune bashing

Nature tour

It’s your turn to kick up a sandstorm when you opt for a desert experience with Desert Rangers. This company is a one-stop shop of adventure, offering quad biking and sand boarding on top of its fleet of dune buggies. It’s the latter we suggest for some full-on fun. You’ll be given a safety briefing and tutorial before donning your helmet and goggles, strapping yourself in behind the wheel and heading off on a roller coaster of a ride across the sand dunes. Be sure to put your foot down if you want to keep up with the leader, and feel your stomach lurch as you whizz down the steep dunes. Thrill-seekers will certainly get their adrenaline fix – and get to test their mettle – when weaving across this challenging terrain. But don’t worry if you edge beyond your limit – help is at hand to dig you out if you get stuck in the sand. desertrangers.net

Witness the waking of the desert when you arrive among the sand dunes of the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve early morning. Your guide will be an experienced falconer, hand-picked from the experts at Royal Shaheen, making this a safari in the truest sense of the word. From the creepy to the crawlies, the scuttling to the slithering, you’ll learn (rather than see) that this landscape is in fact teeming with nature. Your guide will most likely point out the hoof marks of a fleet-footed Arabian gazelle or the heart-shaped tracks of the Arabian oryx. Just like the Bedouins of yesteryear, you’ll learn and partake in the ancient and ingenious art of falconry with these majestic birds of prey. You’ll learn about the local flora, too, and even get to plant a tree before enjoying a lakeside picnic spread. unseentrails.com

with Desert Rangers

with Unseen Trails

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

THE HILLS ARE ALIVE If you think Dubai is all modern skyscrapers and pristine beaches, think again. The mountain town of Hatta boasts breathtaking scenery, a rich, historical heritage and a pace of life that’s far calmer than in the emirate’s buzzing heart

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

The sunken lake is an oasis of clear mountain water that shimmers a deep turquoise in the sun

H

igh in the mountains, some 130km southeast of Dubai, is the small town of Hatta, whose citadels, forts, towers and preserved village tell the story of a rural way of life that stems back hundreds of years. With its cool mountain air, abundance of water and lush green landscape, it’s easy to see why Hatta has long been considered the getaway of choice for Dubai’s royalty and city dwellers. Nestled in the Hajar Mountains, Hatta was originally favoured for its strategic location. The surrounding hills made it a safe haven for government meetings and the summits themselves made perfect vantage points from which to spot approaching enemies – as evidenced by the two imposing watchtowers that grace the peaks of its north and south borders. A trip to Hatta today is a step back in time. It’s here you’ll discover an era where traditional customs were prioritised, and where families relied heavily on nature for survival, adopting ingenious methods for self-sufficiency. Start your visit at the Heritage Village in the heart of the old town, where the reconstructed and preserved houses, mosque and fort offer an insight into that tough yet simple time. Homes were constructed from the fronds of palm trees and mud, or stone dragged from the mountains. The largest house in Hatta, Bait Al Wali, belonged to the ruler and a walk around its rooms reveals how he would have lived; pore over exhibits of jewellery, weaponry, pottery and utensils made by villagers out of clay, leather and copper. From here, the men of the village would set out on hunting trips, and tend to their animals and beehives, while the women would spend their time weaving, cleaning, farming and cooking. The latter would likely have involved the tanour – a primitive oven. Lined with hot coals,

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this hole in the ground (which could be as big as several grown men) was stuffed with meat, herbs and vegetables that, once sealed, would sometimes cook for several days. Not far from the Heritage Village you’ll find the green, tranquil oasis of the sharia. The lifeblood of the village, this was where water would come to the surface, having been irrigated from the mountains via the ancient falaj system – a clever network of man-made tunnels. From this crucial point, water was then distributed to the village farms through a further network of channels. It’s thanks to this steady flow of water that Hatta became a centre for agriculture. Palm trees were key to survival: their husky trunks provided not only materials for shelter but for woven baskets, fans and carpets, while their fronds bore the sweet, nutritious dates that formed the basis of the diet back then. Groves of lemon trees, almonds, mangoes and figs were also cultivated alongside beds of herbs, radishes, onions, garlic and henna. Virtually everything that grew had a purpose – either dietary or medicinal. The traditional falaj system has since been replaced by dams that capture water in the reservoirs and riverbeds, thus ensuring that Hatta’s farming community remains strong for years to come. Today, more than 550 farms operate across the nearly 140 sq km area, representing 10% of the land. From the Heritage Village it’s a short – and steep – walk up to a viewing platform that overlooks the impressive Hatta Dam. Cradled all around by precipitous rock, the sunken lake created by the dam is an oasis of clear mountain water that shimmers a deep turquoise in the sun. It’s perfect terrain for a walking tour, and a prime photo opportunity. Plan your trip at visitdubai.com/hatta


DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

CLICK TO PLAY

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DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

Stay at… Hatta Fort Hotel This charming retreat has been the choice weekend getaway of Dubai’s city-based folk for decades. They love it for a number of reasons: its backdrop is the stunning Hajar Mountain range; it offers a raft of activities for all the family, from mini golf and archery through to off-roading in wadis; its chalet-style rooms come with either a balcony or terrace for soaking up the crisp mountain air; and it’s no more than a straightforward hour’s drive from the centre of Dubai. The ideal base from which to enjoy all that Hatta has to offer. hattafort.com 62 visitdubai.com


DUBAI Outdoor Adventure

See Hatta the active way Craggy peaks, fresh air and an untamed environment make the hilly enclave of Hatta the ideal destination for mountain bikers, hikers and nature lovers Mountain biking One of the best ways to explore the meandering pathways through hills, wadis and farmland is by bike, and multiple trails spanning more than 50km have been set up by the Hatta Mountain Bike Trail Centre. Free to use, the trails are self-guided with clear markers, and divided into different grades of route to accommodate every level and experience of rider: green for beginners, blue for intermediate, red for experienced and black for very skilled riders. Bikes can be hired before leaving the city from Wolfie’s Bike Shop Dubai (wbs.ae). Find out more at hattamtb.ae Trekking The picturesque Hatta Dam is a popular spot from which to start your hike into the hills. Make sure you have your camera at the ready to capture stunning views of the aqua lake contrasted against the rugged mountains. Keep an eye out for wildlife, too – if you’re lucky you might spot the elusive Arabian sand cat. Official trails are currently being mapped out by the authorities, with designated routes for hikers of all capabilities. Kayaking Soon visitors will be able to rent kayaks or paddle boats and enjoy a relaxing glide across the tranquil waters of the vast Hatta Dam. You’ll also be able to venture into hidden territory through curved passageways behind the mountains that can’t be seen from the reservoir viewpoint. Prior reservation is essential. Learn more and book at hattakayak.com visitdubai.com 63


D UBAI Gastronomy

Eating’s NOT

Cheating If you’re on a New Year health kick, you don’t have to break it just because you’re on holiday. Dubai’s home to a host of specialist restaurants serving up wholesome and delicious fare guaranteed to keep cravings at bay

Organic

Low-calorie

Wild & The Moon We love this creative, wholesome café in the heart of Al Quoz. Choose from a range of salads billed as ‘wild, local, plantbased, ethically sourced, seasonal and pure’ and countless cold-pressed juices, smoothies and shakes. For something with a kick, try the golden turmeric latte with home-made sprouted-almond milk, vanilla, dates, black pepper and sea salt. (It tastes much better than it sounds.) wildandthemoon.com

Under 500 If you’re counting calories, you can certainly count on Under 500, located in Jumeirah Lakes Towers and Business Bay. As the name suggests, all the dishes served here come in at under 500 calories. Think chicken lettuce tacos, grilled salmon and avocado, and lean steak and kale, all made fresh daily, plus raw, gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, high-protein and low-carb offerings. under500.com

Also try:

Also try:

Organic Foods and Café With three branches (Sheikh Zayed Road, The Greens and The Village Mall), this was the first place in Dubai to embrace the organic movement. It remains a firm favourite, with all produce sourced from farmers hand-picked by the café. organicfoodsandcafe.com

The Fit Food Kitchen Another JLT bolthole, this place is as much about lifestyle as it is healthy eating. Rather than just calories, the focus here is on protein, carbs and fat content, too – what you get is a great balanced dish that’s perfectly proportioned for you. thefitfoodkitchen.co

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Opposite: Breakfast at Wild & The Moon Next page: Omnia Gourmet’s potato salad Closing page: Comptoir 102’s udon noodle soup


DUBAI Gastronomy

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DUBAI Gastronomy

Specialising in raw foods, the menu is small but each dish is big on flavour

Vegan

Gluten-free

Be Super Natural Kitchen Tucked away in a corner of Galeries Lafayette Le Gourmet at The Dubai Mall, it’s not the location or ambience that is the standout here, it’s the food. Specialising in raw foods, the menu is small but each dish is big on flavour. The lasagne consistently garners high praise – made from raw strips of courgette sandwiched with a creamy tahini dressing and topped with tomato sauce, fresh cherry tomatoes and basil leaves – as does the equally appetising coconut vegetable curry with cauliflower rice. We challenge even the most confirmed of carnivores not to fall in love with this ‘rabbit food’. besupernatural.com

The Gluten Free Kitchen & Cafe The name says it all. Judging by how busy this café is, you’d be forgiven for thinking that everyone in Dubai must be gluten-intolerant. Whether you have a medical need or simply like to eat well, the kitchen serves a scrumptious selection of healthy sandwiches, salads, pastas, quiches, sushi and lots of freshly baked products each day to the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) crowd. What’s more, all its goodies are made without the use of preservatives, flavourings or additives. Don’t feel you have to miss out on dessert, either – we’re particularly partial to the doughnuts. theglutenfreekitchenandcafe.com

Also try:

Also try:

Life’n One This place feeds the soul just as much as the body since it doubles up as a yoga centre. The dishes, created using raw, organic and home-grown ingredients, taste even better when eaten in the serene garden oasis on Jumeirah Beach Road. lifenone.com

Omnia Gourmet Perched beside the water’s edge at Jumeirah Fishing Village, celebrity chef Silvena Rowe’s menu is almost entirely gluten-free, not to mention its extensive range of raw, sugar-free, dairy-free, vegan and Paleo options. omniagourmet.co

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DUBAI Gastronomy

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DUBAI Gastronomy

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DUBAI Gastronomy

Vegetarian

Paleo

77 Veggie Boutique An all-veggie restaurant in Jumeirah Lakes Towers that offers plenty of vegan options, the majority of the produce here is locally sourced, and everything is in season, free from chemicals and preservatives, and non-fried. Better still, nothing comes out of a can. We love the selection of super-tasty soups and crisp salads, particularly the chickpea, carrot, lime and cabbage vegan salad, served in a cute mason jar. 77veggie.com

The Cycle Bistro This Motor City café claims to be Dubai’s only Paleo eatery – although, by its own admission, only 95% of its menu is Paleo diet-approved (leaving a little wriggle room for foods it feels are nutritionally beneficial). The menu consists mainly of fish, grass-fed meats, free-range poultry, eggs, natural fats, vegetables, berries and nuts, and excludes beans, pulses, dairy products, soy, grains and refined sugars. We love the fact that all the sauces – mayo, pesto, dips and dressings – are made from scratch on the premises. Plus, all the ingredients are unprocessed, natural and as organic as can be. thecyclebistro.com

Also try: Comptoir 102 Located within a villa on Jumeirah Beach Road, this hidden gem comforts you from the minute you enter its relaxing surrounds. It feels very homely and, as it happens, also sells a small collection of home accessories, jewellery and fashion. The menu changes daily, according to what’s in season, and is free from sugar and dairy, with vegan, raw and gluten-free options also listed. comptoir102.com

Also try: HEAT A favourite haunt of surfers and watersports enthusiasts, this Beach Road café is a healthy pit stop after all that activity. Try the five-egg-white omelette, avocado skewers, turkey-wrapped chicken tenders or grilled meat and veggie salad. heatcafe.ae

Naughty, but nice We all know that a little of what you fancy does you good. So if you want to indulge your sweet tooth while remaining health-conscious, you won’t go far wrong at Mirzam, the new chocolate factory on Alserkal Avenue – Dubai’s hub for the arts in Al Quoz. The factory is open to the public and celebrates the art of making chocolate, from bean to bar. Mirzam imports its cocoa beans from plantations around the world such as Madagascar, India, Papua New Guinea and Vietnam, before roasting, cracking and grinding them right here in Dubai. Only three ingredients are used in Mirzam chocolate: the beans, a small amount of cocoa butter (depending on how much is naturally in the bean) and unrefined cane sugar. From there, exotic spices like cardamom,

fennel, cinnamon and rose are added to make the most delectable guilt-free chocolate ever. You can watch the whole process of your chocolate being made in the factory machines before buying a bar from just Dhs30. mirzam.com visitdubai.com 69


D UBAI Community

Freshly Picked

For the freshest foodie experience in town, served up with a healthy dollop of family fun, Ripe Market is the place to be. Founder Becky Balderstone gives us the low-down on the Ripe philosophy and Dubai’s thriving organic-food scene. Grab your sunnies, brace your taste buds and get stuck in

“T

he Ripe Market is a fantastic family day out that brings the whole community together, tourists and residents alike. I think markets provide a lovely insight into the culture of any city and the people that live there, and at Ripe you can find fresh, organic produce and plenty of food vendors – whether you want to eat al fresco amid the lush greenery of Zabeel Park or take away something special for lunch or dinner – as well as shop for arts and crafts from local artisans, designers and jewellers. We also have live music and entertainment, yoga and fitness workshops, cooking demos, children’s activities and so much more. We believe people should try to eat local and organic as much as possible. The farming scene is quite developed here; there are plenty of farms around the UAE and many of them are already using organic farming methods and have local and international certifications. Our farmers are very passionate and knowledgeable about what they do. We pride ourselves on working closely with as many regional farms as possible to develop specific growing plans based on local demands – sourcing seeds, trialling new varieties of fruit and vegetables, and making sure we can offer them as many

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channels as possible to get their produce into the area’s wealth of food outlets. All the farms we work with are privately owned, but we’re looking to offer visits to the Ripe Organic Farm in the near future. You can also check out the Ripe Organic Farm Shop, located in the heart of Dubai. It’s small but well stocked with a wide variety of fresh organic fruit and veggies. We grow everything from tomatoes, peppers, carrots, beetroot

Eat al fresco amid the lush greenery or take away something special for lunch and kale to figs and watermelon. We also support local small businesses and have a beautiful selection of artisanal foods like olives, fresh bread and local honey, along with superfoods and dairy and gluten-free products. As well as showcasing the best locally grown produce through our farm shop and markets, we work with lots of hotels, restaurants and cafés that want to incorporate local and organic

food into their menus. At the moment, chefs in Dubai are particularly looking for heirloom varieties and unusual vegetables like heritage tomatoes to create interesting dishes. Some of my favourite places to eat in the city are Cocktail Kitchen and Bystro. Growing your own produce is a fantastic initiative, and we do a lot of work to educate young people through our Raising with Ripe fundraising programme. We pop up our Ripe Organic stand at local schools and 10% of the proceeds goes back to the schools so they can build their own veggie patch, and use it as a hands-on tool to teach students about where their food comes from. Anyone looking to try locally grown food while they’re in town should definitely pay a visit to one of our Ripe Markets, packed full of home-grown concepts from restaurants and cafés to juice bars and delis. With so much choice, you can literally taste your way around the market. And there’s something to suit all palates, from organic, gluten and dairy-free dishes to more indulgent options.” The largest Ripe Market is at Zabeel Park every Friday from 9am to 3pm. Discover more and see where else you’ll find a pop-up Ripe Market at ripeme.com


DUBAI Community

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D UBAI A Look Ahead

Image courtesy of @abdullalbuqaish

Dubai Water Canal A LOOK AHEAD

Welcome to the emirate’s latest ambitious accomplishment – and a whole new place to daydream…

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T

he numbers are staggering. It’s a 2.9km waterway that’s six metres deep at full capacity; 3.2 million cubic metres of soil were dredged for the canal and 300 tonnes of concrete blocks used to fortify the banks; it has nine marine stations between which to ferry an anticipated six million visitors a year… and the budget? Dhs2 billion. We’re talking about the new Dubai Water Canal, which even features a waterfall (state-of-the-art, of course), beneath the Sheikh Zayed Road bridge, with sensors to halt the flow when passing vessels are detected. All these factors and more combine to create the most exciting recent addition to Dubai’s landscape – quite a statement for a city that boasts copious architectural achievements. Three years in the making, the much-anticipated landmark is an extension of the Dubai Creek that links Business Bay to the Arabian Gulf. There are three zones to this environmentally friendly lifestyle hub: The Water Network (comprising said canal, the glittering coastline and

the forthcoming Crystal Lagoon in serene Safa Park), The Green Network (which connects Safa to the ever-popular Jumeirah Beach Park) and The Public Realm (where you can shop and dine to your heart’s content). For residents and visitors alike, this means weekends’ worth of memories with friends and family, and laid-back weekday evenings spent strolling along the scenic 5.7km boardwalk. The stunning locale will take time to fully flourish but, once in bloom, expect to savour both vibrancy and relaxation; mooted to enhance the canalway are a lavish shopping mall, four hotels, 450 restaurants, luxury housing, cycle paths, gardens and much more. There are splashes of exclusivity, too – Marasi Business Bay, for example, will boast a yacht club with 1,250 berths, a park area with amphitheatre, and five palm tree-lined marinas. Dubai Water Canal is truly a vicinity for all. And, as the final touches to this exciting area take shape, one thing is certain: the development is green, pristine and the latest place to be seen.


Experience Polynesia in the heart of Dubai Parks and Resorts. Step into an exciting world of curiosity with an unforgettable stay at Lapita, a unique gateway to the endless fun and enjoyment on offer at Dubai Parks and Resorts. Create moments to treasure with friends and family when you stay at Polynesian inspired rooms, bond over a meal at amazing restaurants or unwind at the Lapita lazy river. Exactly like nothing else.

Find out more at lapitadubaihotel.com


JW MARRIOT T® MARQUIS DUBAI

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DUBAI - December-January-February - 2017  
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