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Dubai and Abu Dhabi, UAE

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Old 24-03-2014, 01:14 AM   #1
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Dubai and Abu Dhabi, UAE

OK, share with you all about this place. I just returned from a company trip for some exhibition event.

I flew by Emirates. It lands on their latest terminal, Terminal 3. Last time my colleague fly SIA there, they land on their most "lan" terminal which is Terminal 1. So go to Dubai, fly Emirates. But on the return, you will get a shock. I will explain.

After landing we took a rental to get to Abu Dhabi. Had to give a talk and also explain to people new advances in my field. Yes! "Everything you imagined is REAL" - Pablo Picasso.

In the evening, nothing to do so we visited the SheikZayed Grand Mosque. It is really very grand. Unlike the opulent mosques of Brunei which costs what? 5 billion BND to build but nobody can go in to photograph but can admire outside, this one, you can go inside. BUT! if you are a woman, make sure you got head scarf, wear pants or skirt until it covers every inch of your bare skin. If not, have to rent an abaya.

In the courtyard of the Grand Mosque


Inside


Beautiful chandellier


Moat around the mosque


Photos still processing. So please be patient.

The moon rose over the mosque. Photo opportunity!

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Old 24-03-2014, 01:30 AM   #2
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Returned to Dubai and then stayed at the Number One Tower Suites. My room faces directly into Sheik Zayed Road (affectionately known as SZR). Opposite is the Rolex Tower and the Emirates Grand Hotel which is the sister building to the Warwick Hotel next to it.

At sunrise I captured this from my balcony. The UAE architecture is very unique. Seems like the planners have a concept and are willing to execute the plan to make the most chio looking building ever. The buiding here is one of the Dubai Park Towers. They form a pair and the other one is blocked by the Rolex Tower that is on the right. Most of them have this "sail" look that is popularized by the Burj Al Arab. Even the main telecom tower that is near to the city center is also in this "sail" concept.



I also visited the Jumeirah Open Beach but only did so in the day time. Maybe I wanted to see bikinis. At night the view will even be better. From this beach you can see SZR and all its buildings.

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Old 24-03-2014, 01:45 AM   #3
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Went to the Dubai Mail which is accessible by their Dubai Metro. But walk very far however, got travelator to help you.

At the Dubai Mail which is damn huge, BTW, is the Dubai Fountains. They play music and the fountains will dance. Very much like the Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas.

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Old 24-03-2014, 01:53 AM   #4
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jin satki!!!
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Old 24-03-2014, 02:39 AM   #5
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Went dune bashing in a desert tour.

Went to see the historic town of Hatta with a museum of sorts of how they lived before. On the way there have to pass through several checkpoints. Look up the map to see why this is so. I went out to UAE, then into Oman then into UAE then to return, into Oman then into UAE. They just see your passport and let you go. The Omani police very satki, their uniform is purple camo one.

In Oman, went to see Afghan rugs. Want to buy but opening price too expensive. But friend bought one.



This is sunset.


Managed to capture a horserider. A tourist went for it and this gave me an opportunity.

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Old 24-03-2014, 02:59 AM   #6
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Woke up in the morning and it was a clear day. From the Number One Tower Suites, the Burj Khalifa shows off her gleam from the morning sun.



Another landmark with a Metro Station named after it. The Emirates Towers. This view has the Burj Khalifa in-between.


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Old 24-03-2014, 03:27 AM   #7
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Burj Khalifa up close and at night. It is next to the Dubai Fountains.

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Old 24-03-2014, 08:58 AM   #8
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Got word from the Dubai Expat forum that a good place to take pictures of the Dubai Downtown area is on top at the 10th floor of the Cinema Carpark, Dubai Mall. Went there. Walk very far because the mall is very big. Got this pictures.



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Old 24-03-2014, 09:53 AM   #9
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Visited a wadi. Emerald green waters that is very clear. No fish. It is collected from rains and springs.





You can actually swim in it. Very inviting in the desert.

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Old 26-03-2014, 03:49 AM   #10
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Went to the Dubai Marina. Lesson learned here. Do not trust a Korean to recommend you places to eat. SGers and even MYers have an uncanny knack to choose the best and cheaper places. I came here went to his recommended restaurant but it is very expensive. Compare that to the SGer recommended place which is down town in 2nd December St. Same Lebanese food but so good due to the price which gave you so much more satisfaction.

Here is the Cayan Tower at Dubai Marina. The world's tallest twisty tower block.



Part of the marina. The Dubai Marina is the world's largest marina.

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Old 26-03-2014, 01:31 PM   #11
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Do note that I like photography and I was in the company of 2 other photo siao company guys. So if you are going to the UAE to have other forms of fun it may not work out for you. Here is a picture I took of kids playing at the fountain at the Dubai Marina.

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Old 29-03-2014, 01:39 PM   #12
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People I met in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

A girl Filipino girl selling falafel in Dubai's Deira City Center food court


Girl from India working in a Superdry store in Dubai's Deira City Center.


Emirates counter person at DBX. She comes from Uzbekistan.


I stumbled upon Indians celebrating the festival of Holi at Abu Dhabi's Corniche Beach.


A father and child at the Holi celebration


A regal gentleman at the Holi celebration


A very enthusiastic guy from Egypt at the Abu Dhabi Fish Market.


A merchant at the textile souk in Dubai. I corrupted the women-folk in my entourage and they got psycho'd to buy pashmina shawls and cashmere scarves. He owed me big.

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Old 29-03-2014, 02:05 PM   #13
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OK someone reminded me of the shock for the return flight.

Upon landing you feel it is like Changi but of course cannot compare to Changi lah. 2X consecutive best airport winner. How to fight? Besides our zoo, Changi is the one thing left for SGers to be proud of. SMRT scratched off the list.

Now for the return flight it is weird. Terminal 3 is the most satki terminal they have and yet, some gates don't have aerobridges. So you have to board buses that will take you to the planes! So it got the feel of KL's LCCT!

I was sitting around waiting for the gate boarding when a tudung clad lady asked me for a survey to ask about DBX. I replied "you have to know I come from Singapore and I have to compare DBX with SIN." She smiled with a defeat.

DBX is sibeh big. The Emiratis really show off their power. The airport ceiling is so high, I think remote controlled helicopter before reaching the top will run out of batteries.

Then there is this wall fountain with cascading water like a waterfall they have. Much like the Dubai Mall one but without those sculptures of diving men. From the top the airport all the way down to the lowest floor and covers the wall like a football field size! You will be greeted with it when you arrive.

Changi is big but can be considered cramped when compared with DBX. However, the people invited-ness of Changi is much better. Changi use carpeting all throughout. They use hard flooring. The shops in DBX are quite a cacaphoney of sounds selling all sorts of trinkets but can't rival the atas shops that SIN has. The other thing about DBX is the army of cleaners. I went into the toilet and there are 3 cleaners wiping and cleaning the floor to keep it dry *constantly* with all the transit passengers coming and going. Even more busy than SIN's.

For all the power of water they show with the fountains on the roadsides and junctions at Abu Dhabi and Dubai, they don't have drinking fountains at the gates. Something I mentioned at the survey and hope they take it into consideration. The immigration also not friendly. I jumped a queue because the other queue was empty. The guthra (arabic headgear/scarf) wearing immigration officer very buay song with me already. Ask why I jump queue? I said in the name of efficiency. I hope I don't get marked for the next visit.

I rank their airport just below HKIA. HKIA is also a very busy airport and it is also very efficient.

To get an idea of how busy it is. My flight is in the morning. But there are so many planes taking off, all the planes were queueing up to take off. My plane is 7th in the queue, took 45 mins before I took off for the return.
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Old 29-03-2014, 02:14 PM   #14
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This thread is of course worthless without pics of FOOD!

I ate at this place called Al Mallah. Quite an institution by itself. Search it up. It is on 2nd December St.

Tabbouleh (parsley-cucumber-tomato salad)


Vines. Basmati rice wrapped in leaves. Eat the leaves together with the rice inside. Think of it as ba zhang but can eat the leaf.


Another salad. Forgot the name.


Fresh greens. The rockets are damn fresh. Nice peppery kick!


Seafood platter


Roast chicken covered with bread. We had choice of saj bread, Arabic bread to go with all these. There is generous serving of hummus.


They have this glass roaster and they are roasting chickens in plain view of everyone. Sibeh chek ark! Not hungry on diet also will stop and eat.
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Old 29-03-2014, 03:03 PM   #15
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This post is NPNT really. I met a lady from Saudi Arabia. Unlike the rest of the Saudi women I met who are all veiled up, she was w/o a veil and I guess she is some high ranking elite. She hails from the King Abdullah Brain Genome Research Center. When she appeared, sibeh atas siah! Her eyes are made up with the Egyptian queen tear drop trailing edge. Her abaya has peacock feathers on the shoulders. Then there is this man whom I guess is an escort so that she does not get in trouble with religious people. He also not so simple, well fitted suit but with modern slim fit lines.

Friend who works there tells me the Saudis all act very religious when in their own kingdom but most of them dying to come to Dubai to revel in the freedom and night life.
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