Doha is the second most expensive city in the Arab world

DOHA: Doha is the second most expensive city in the Arab world, according to a latest study. The USB, one of the world’s leading financial firms, recently released the 14th edition of its ‘Prices and Earnings’ review which has included Doha for the first time in the list of 73 international cities.

Placed in the 39th position in global ratings, Doha is the second most expensive city in the Middle East after Dubai and before Manama. The rating is based on 122 common goods and services. The study looks at the prices of goods and services, and wages and working hours for 14 professionals in 73 cities round the world.

The study reveals that Dubai has surpassed New York and London which were the biggest financial cities in the world. The finical crisis had lead to fluctuation in the rankings of many cities. London which was the second most expensive in the 2006 review plummeted nearly 20 places, landing in the middle of the Western European rankings. Doha is the most expensive city in the world when it comes to a low-class furnished four bedroom flat. With a monthly rent of $4,210, even posh cities like New York ($4,110) and Dubai ($3,950) come after Doha.

However, in high-class four-bedroom apartments, Dubai is one of the most expensive following New York, Hong Kong and Tokyo. In Dubai, such apartments cost $7,090, whereas in Doha they cost $5,580 and $ 3,400 in Manama.

The average rent in most local houses in Qatar is $1,650, $2,160 in Dubai and $890in Manama. With this Doha and Dubai rank among the top 10 most expensive cities in terms of average rents.

Expenditure on some of the 122 goods and services in Doha came to $2,006, while in Dubai it was $2,522 and in Manama $1,773.

One of the common features of ‘Prices and Earnings’ is the ‘Big Mac index’, which has been a trusty indicator of how long an average wage-earner has to work in order to afford that universal meal in each city. This type of comparison is ideal for products that can be purchased around the world in the same quality — products such as an iPod.

People in Doha had to work more as per this index. To earn a Big Mac, people here had to work 34 minutes, whereas in Dubai people could earn the snack with 18 minutes of work and in Manama with 25 minutes of work. To buy an 8 GB iPod nano, Doha residents would have to labour for 35 minutes, compared to 20 minutes and 23 minutes for those in Dubai and Manama, respectively.

While Zurich in Switzerland paid its employees the most (more than $22 an hour), Dubai paid an average of just $10.10, Doha $5.40 and Manama $6.30. The lowest pay was in Mumbai, where workers received an average of just $1.20 an hour.

Food prices are the highest in Japan, at $710, and Geneva ($660) based on 39 standard western food items. In Doha, food cost $379, in Dubai $426 and in Manama $341. Mumbai had the cheapest foods, costing $153.

Taxi prices were the cheapest in Doha at $3.69 for a five-kilometre ride. In Dubai, the same ride cost $4.27 and in Manama $10.61.

Meanwhile, an evening three-course-meal in a good restaurant in Doha cost $59, ranking it the fourth most expensive place, close behind Dubai where such a meal cost $60.

Also, for a short break, which includes an overnight stay in a first-class hotel and various other services, the city could be the second most expensive after Tokyo. A break in Doha and in London cost $1,000 each, following Tokyo, where it can cost $1,130.

The ultra-liberal economic policies of Qatar and Dubai have created an extremely favourable environment for foreign companies and workers here. However, employees in Middle East work more than their counterparts in other countries. Workers in Doha, Dubai and Manama racked up longer hours, averaging 2,210 per year, 308 more than the global average.

Source: The Peninsula, 27 August 2009

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UAE & Oman Trip: Wrap Up, Best Practices/Lesson Learned & One Riyal Thoughts

Here is a complete list of travelogues for UAE & Oman Trip for your easy navigation:
UAE & Oman Summer Trip: Plus and Minus
Preparation – Immigration,  Documentation, Car
Itinerary and Distances
Accommodation Review
Crossing 16 borders – A step by step process
Day 1 – Doha – Muscat: 4 countries, 6 borders, 1105 km
Day 2 – Muscat – Why you’ll want to visit again and again

Day 3 – Part 1 – Muscat – Nizwa – Back to old Oman and visit areas home to stunning views
Day 3 – Part 2 – Ibri – Al Ain – Fujairah –Summer Rain,  Sandstorm, and Border Blues
Day 4 – Fujairah
Day 5 – Fujairah – Musandam
Day 6 – Musandam – The Norway of Arabia
Day 7 – Musandam – Khasab Town, Khasab Castle/Museum and Road to Dubai
Day 8-10 – Dubayy – A City of Superlatives
Day 8-10 – Dubai – Mall-to-Mall Adventure (Shopping, Fountain, Aquarium, Underwater Zoo, Ski Dubai)
Day 8-10 – Dubai – Jumeirah: Mosque, Madinat Jumeirah, Burj Al Arab
Day 8-10 – Dubai – The Palm Jumeirah
Day 8-10 – Dubai – Dubai Heritage Village and Museum
Day 11 – Dubai – (Abu Dhabi) – Doha – No trips last forever
 

UAE & Oman Trip - Actual Routes
UAE & Oman Trip – Actual Routes

Best Practices & Lesson Learned
(to be elaborated later)

  1. Let’s get lost Be an informed travelers
  2. Accept the fact that you will gonna miss something.
  3. Use GPS as a map not a perfect guide.
  4. Been there. Done that. Hit the must or you will regret
  5. Give an allowance and prepare a backup
  6. Learn how to pack efficiently
  7. There is always  a better way to do and have something
  8. Know some Arabic vocabulary particularly for use in immigration
  9. Safety is still your paramount priority

 
One riyal thoughts:

  1. Travelled in family-oriented countries is a privilege you have to get benefits from.
  2. The different cultures among Qatar, Saudi, UAE & Oman are summed up best by an experience exiting and returning through the borders! Experience them and share how you compare them!
  3. Observe how Qatari, Saudis, Emiratis and Omani dress in their national gear. Can you spot the similarities and differences?
  4. Qtel was very nice by sending us nice greetings (though a computer generated text message) while we’re abroad, wished a nice stay and provided us with Qatar Embassy number in destinations.
  5. What can we take away from different petrol prices among Qatar, Saudi, UAE & Oman? As does with speed camera?
  6. A single GCC currency and visa is a must, I think.
  7. I wish a disputed/undefined border is resolved so that there is a direct road to UAE from Qatar

Special Thanks to:

  1. My kids for being nice during the trips and my wife for her excellent companionship during the trips
  2. Mochamad Taufiq Fuady and his family: Teh Ratih, Naresya, Kayla, and Marden Pasaribu and his family: Tante Ita, Bang Ray, Dissa, Blessva for making this trip with all of you unforgettable experience. Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, next?

Notes:
All pictures posted within the above travelogues are personal documentation unless otherwise stated.
Disclaimer: I shall not be held responsible for any inconveniences, losses, injury resulting from the use of information contained within these blogs.

UAE & Oman Trip: Day 11 Dubai –( Abu Dhabi ) – Doha: No trips last forever!

Every beginning has an end. So does our trip. This is our 11th day of trip, marks the end of an unforgettable 11-day long UAE & Oman trip. A trip is diversion to our normal day-to-day routine and today we should come back to a real life, however, with rejuvenated mind, body and soul.

We made it straight forward to be back to Doha from Dubai, with only a short stop in Abu Dhabi for Friday prayers and lunch  in Abu Dhabi Mall and a visit to Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach and . Well, actually we did have a plan to visit Emirates Auto Museum, off Road E11, but due to safety reason (we tried not to drive during night at 130-km Saudi’s unlit road), we abandoned that plan.

Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach (Ticket 5 Dhs per adult, only family allowed)
Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach (Ticket 5 Dhs per adult, only family allowed)
14 rules at Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach!
14 rules at Abu Dhabi Corniche Beach!

I think I should give Abu Dhabi a longer visit as we missed Emirate Palace, Marina Mall, Al Raha Beach, Yas Island, Heritage Village and many more…..again it’s another reason why I should come back to UAE & Oman.

Driving 350 km E11 coastal road, we arrived at Saudi/UAE border at about dusk to start, yet we couldn’t avoid driving an unlit road stretch for the last 100 km. To make it worse, many road sections were encroached by small sand dunes resulted from previous sand storms, up to half the road. Consequently we need to drive at lower speed and at left lane most of the time.

Saudi Arabia road (between Salwa border to Al Sila border) in the evening
Saudi Arabia road (between Salwa border to Al Sila border) in the evening

Border process at Saudi/UAE checkpoint was seamless except an annoying insurance officer at Saudi border. He successfully made me to go back and forth between his booth and immigration booth (about 50m away) three times for a stamp on an insurance certificate that otherwise could be done by himself.

At Saudi border in Salwa, I got this shocking – an MTV-punk’d-like program – joke by Saudi immigration officer:

“Wahyu Hidayat”

“Yes, I am”

“You are wanted”

“Me? (unbelieved, thought it might relate to insurance case in previous Saudi border)”

“Yes, please park your car at right!”

……..(still confused and unbelieved)…..

(Laugh)…..ha..ha…..no my friend….I’m joking!”

Gosh…that’s scary. I was successfuly punk’d.

From my friend I also got a story where he got punked but that time he was asked ten thousand riyals for getting his passport stamped. Again only a joke. So beware of this joke whenever you pass Saudi Salwa border.

We arrived at Villagio mall at around 9 pm and then had a dinner in Thai Chi. When we arrived home it was almost 11 pm only to find our house full of dust. So, inevitably we vacuumed that dust and did some necessary cleaning prior to stretch our body.

UAE & Oman Trip: Day 8-10 Dubai – Dubai Heritage Village and Museum

Dubai Heritage Village

Coordinate: 25 16’12.18″N 55 17’28.47″E

A traditional heritage village, located near the mouth of Dubai Creek in the Shindagha district, features potters and weavers practicing traditional crafts, as well as exhibits and demonstrations of pearl diving. It is a place where the visitor can take a step back in time and experience some of Dubai’s culture and heritage.

Old traditional houses at Dubai Heritage Village
Old traditional houses at Dubai Heritage Village
Souvenir shops at Dubai Heritage Village
Souvenir shops at Dubai Heritage Village
At Dubai Heritage Village gate
At Dubai Heritage Village gate

There are also a range of souvenir shops where you can buy Dubai’s souvenir at lower cost than at other location.

Visiting Hours : Saturday to Thursday : 08:30 am -22:00 pm , on Friday: 15:30 -22:00 pm.

Visiting Hours during Ramadan: Saturday – Thursday from 09:00 to 14:00 hrs, then it opens from 20:30 hrs till 12 midnight. On Friday from: 20:30 hrs till 12 midnight.

Public Holidays: open.

Location: Al Shindagha Area, facing end of Dubai Creek next to Sheikh Saeed’s House.

Telephone: 04-3937139

Entry Fees: free

Dubai Museum

Coordinate: 25 15’48.87″N 55 17’50.07″E

Al Fahidi Fort, which houses the Dubai Museum, was built around 1787, believed to be the oldest building in Dubai that still exists today and once guarded the landward approaches to the town. It has also served, at various times throughout history as the ruler’s palace, a garrison, and a prison. Renovated in 1971 for use as a museum, its colorful life size dioramas vividly depict everyday life in the days before the discovery of oil. Galleries recreate scenes from the Creek, traditional Arab houses, mosques, the souk, date farms and desert and marine life. One of the more spectacular exhibits portrays pearl diving, including sets of pearl merchants’ weights, scales and sieves. Also on display, are artifacts from several excavations in the emirate, recovered from graves that date back to the third millennium BC.  The most popular exhibits are housed in the archaeological halls, which also displays artifacts from Al Sufouh and Hatta. Islamic period discoveries were made at the Jumeirah site, dating back to the 7th century. A total of 50 tombs were found on the left side of the Jima Valley, which dated from 3,000 B.C.

Model of the Jumairah Archaelogical Site
Model of the Jumairah Archaelogical Site
Dubai Museum - an outside area, displays cannon & traditional dhows
Dubai Museum - an outside area, displays cannon & traditional dhows

An outside area at the museum recreates a traditional desert house, with seating and sleeping area as well as a kitchen. Ancient dhows lay outside the house, with a collection of shiny bronze cannons and cannon balls. A video, updated in 2007, depicts Dubai from before the discovery of oil in the 1960s to the current day.

A diorama inside the gallery. Shown here a daily life of old Dubai.
A diorama inside the gallery. Shown here a daily life of old Dubai.

Near exit area is a souvenir shop and some vending machines.

Visiting Dubai Museum one might find parking is a challenge. There is a parking lot at the right side of Al Fahidi Fort, however this is always full. You can park yours in paid parking area at the left side of Al FAhidi Fort. There is a normal 1Dhs/hour area and also 10 Dhs/hour.


Visiting Hours : Saturday to Thursday : 08:30 am -20:30 pm , on Friday: 14:30 -20:30 pm
Visiting Hours during Ramadan: Saturday – Thursday: 09:00 am -17:00 pm, on Friday: 14:00-17:00 pm
Public Holidays: open
Entry Fees: Dhs3 per Adult – Dhs. 1 Per Child
Telephone: 04-3531862

UAE & Oman Trip: Day 8-10 Dubai – The Palm Jumeirah

Entrance to The Palm Jumeirah Coordinate: 25 06’14.36″N 55 09’10.14″E

The Palm Jumeirah is easily accessed through Jumeirah Beach Road. We drove through the main trunk island up to the last frond and then took a subsea tunnel to reach Atlantis The Palm area. I was told that the original plan to connect the main trunk island to Atlantis The Palm area via onland road abandoned due to aesthetic reason (the palm does not look attractive when seen from above if there is a connecting road). We had to park in the designated parking area and from there took a 5-min interval shuttle bus to Atlantis The Palm, and nearby Aquaventure. Near Atlantis is Aquaventure monorail station where one can take round trip for Dhs25.

The Palm Jumeirah as shown on Monorail card
The Palm Jumeirah as shown on Monorail card
   
Designated Parking Area for Visitors
Designated Parking Area for Visitors

 Designated Parking Area coordinate:  25 08’16.97″N 55 07’32.36″E

 

Shuttle Bus. Shown here Aquaventure Bus Stop
Shuttle Bus. Shown here Aquaventure Bus Stop
   

 

Aquaventure as seen from monorail
Aquaventure as seen from monorail

 

The Palm Jumeirah is an artificial island created using land reclamation by Nakheel, a company owned by the Dubai government. It is one of three islands called The Palm Islands which extend into the Persian Gulf, increasing Dubai’s shoreline by a total of 520 km. The Palm Jumeirah is the smallest and the original of three Palm Islands (Palm Jumeirah, Palm Jebel Ali and Palm Deira) under development by Nakheel. It is located on the Jumeirah coastal area of the emirate of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Construction began on the Palm Jumeirah island in June 2001 and the island has been created using 94 million cubic metres of sand and 7 million tons of rock.

The Palm Jumeirah is in the shape of a palm tree. It consists of a trunk, a crown with 17 fronds, and a surrounding crescent island that forms an 11 kilometre long breakwater. The island is 5 kilometres by 5 kilometres and its total area is larger than 800 football pitches. The crown is connected to the mainland by a 300-metre bridge and the crescent is connected to the top of the palm by a subsea tunnel. Over the next few years, as the tourism phases develop, The Palm Jumeirah is touted as soon to be one of the world’s premier resorts. The Palm Island is the self-declared ‘Eighth Wonder of the World’. The island will double the length of the Dubai coastline.

According to the developer’s publicity material, the Jumeirah Palm island will feature themed boutique hotels, three types of villas (Signature Villas, Garden Homes and Canal Cove Town Homes), shoreline apartment buildings, beaches, marinas, restaurants, cafés and a variety of retail outlets.

A residential complex at one of the fronds
A residential complex at one of the fronds

Monorail

The 5.4 km (3.35 mile) Palm Jumeirah Monorail, connecting the Atlantis Hotel to the Gateway Towers at foot of the island, opened on May 6, 2009 through several stations. From the main trunk island, the monorail turns to the right whereas the subsea tunnel to the left.

Palm Jumeirah Monorail track (Atlantis Hotel on the background)
Palm Jumeirah Monorail track (Atlantis Hotel on the background)
A view to Atlantis Hotel from Monorail
A view to Atlantis Hotel from Monorail

The monorail connects the Palm Jumeirah to the mainland, with a planned further extension to the Red Line of the Dubai Metro.The line opened on April 30, 2009. It is the first railway in the history of the whole of Eastern Arabia and the first monorail in the Middle East

A journey on the monorail costs Dhs15 one-way, 25 return.

The project budget is US$400 million, with an additional US$190M set aside for the 2-kilometre (1 mi) extension to the Dubai Metro.

As of August 2009 only the Atlantis Aquaventure and Gateway stations are open

Note:

Monorail ticket card is to be returned upon exiting the station. However, it is too good to return hence I keep it as a souvenir for my kid….  🙂

 

Inside Monorail
Inside Monorail

Atlantis, The Palm

Coordinate: 25 07’49.29″N 55 07’01.43″E

Atlantis, the Palm is a resort at Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. was opened on 24 September 2008. consists of two towers linked by a bridge, with a total of approximately 1500 rooms. Palm Jumeirah Monorail stations connecting the resort to the main section of the Palm Jumeirah islands.

Atlantis The Palm as seen from the outermost road
Atlantis The Palm as seen from the outermost road

The seven stars resort also includes a water Aquaventure theme park (160,000 square meters), a conference center, and 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2) of retail space. The resort also has a Dolphin Bay (45,000 square meters) in which guests can swim and interact with the dolphins at Atlantis.

Inside Atlantis The Palm Mall
Inside Atlantis The Palm Mall
Acting as though a prince. Find this near hotel receptionist
Acting as though a prince. Find this near hotel receptionist

 

The Palm Jumeirah itself is one part of a trilogy including the larger Palms Jebel Ali and Deira, which are still under construction. Visit http://www.thepalm.ae to know the palm trilogy.

A map showing the palm trilogy: Palm Jebel Ali, Palm Jumeirah and Palm Deira. Also shown The World. Not shown is The Universe planned to be built around the world. With global downturn projects are uncertain
A map showing the palm trilogy: Palm Jebel Ali, Palm Jumeirah and Palm Deira. Also shown The World. Not shown is The Universe planned to be built around the world. With global downturn projects are uncertain

http://www.atlantisthepalm.com/

Ambassador Lagoon & Lost Chamber

Ambassador Lagoon is free for visitor but not with Lost Chamber. However,  if you  stay in Atlantis The Palm Hotel you will get free accesses to Aquaventure and Lost Chamber

From Atlantis The Palm website:

“Imagine exploring the mysterious ruins of Atlantis, lost for thousands of years deep beneath the sea. Now picture looking up to see 65,000 marine animals swimming in placid waters around you. Visitors can live out their own Atlantean adventure in The Lost Chambers, the maze of underwater halls and tunnels under the Ambassador Lagoon.

The Ambassador Lagoon is a window into the wonders of the ocean and the importance of conservation and preservation. There are over two hundred and fifty species of fish and sea creatures to be seen in the open-air marine habitat at Atlantis, including sharks, eels, rays, piranhas, as well as multitudes of exotic fish. This rich variety of marine life is managed by a team of more than one hundred and sixty five full-time Marine Specialists. The veterinarians, biologists, aquarists, divers, laboratory managers, food technicians, mechanics and curators tend to this delicate eco-system from renowned marine institutes and facilities across the globe”.

Tips:

A silhouette photo with supertall aquarium as a backdrop is stunning. Try it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ambassador Lagoon, Atlantis Hotel
Ambassador Lagoon, Atlantis Hotel

 

 

 

 

 

Open Daily 10.00am to 11.00pm

Dolphin Bay – Not Visited

A four-and-a-half hectare lush tropical setting modelled carefully on their natural habitat is home for the dolphins at Atlantis. There are three vast lagoons where you can meet these graceful charismatic creatures through a choice of interactions. Whether you’re a hotel guest or visiting for the day, dolphins offer an unforgettable once-in-a-lifetime experience….said its website.

Open Daily 10.00am to sunset

UAE & Oman Trip: Day 8-10 Dubai – Jumeirah Mosque, Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Burj Al Arab

All these must-see destinations lined up along Jumeirah Road.

 

Jumeirah is a coastal residential area in Dubai, United Arab Emirates mainly comprising low rise private dwellings. It has both expensive and large detached properties as well as more modest town houses built in a variety of architectural styles. The area is popular with expatriates working in the emirate and is familiar to many tourists visiting Dubai.

Historically, Arabs living in the Jumeirah were fishermen, pearl divers and traders. In modern times (1960 onwards) Jumeirah was the principal area for western expatriate residences, but the huge expansion of the emirate since 1995 has seen a growth in housing developments across Dubai. Jumeirah is generally agreed to be one of the most exclusive parts of Dubai and this has led to the use of the Jumeirah name as a brand which signifies exclusivity.

There has been a great deal of hotel and leisure construction along Jumeirah Beach including the world famous Burj Al Arab hotel. Jumeirah has a mosque, the Jumeirah Mosque, which is open to non-Muslims for special tours to give insights into Islam.

Recently, a complex named Madinat Jumeirah, or “Jumeirah City,” opened. It consists of an architecturally interesting shopping mall, two luxurious five-star hotels, and a few residential areas. It is advertised to be the “epitome of Arabian hospitality in Dubai”.

Although there is competition from many new areas, and although many of Jumeirah’s well-to-do have already moved to some of those areas, such as Dubai Marina, the new Palm Islands, The Lakes, The Springs and The Meadows, Jumeirah is still one of the more expensive and exclusive areas in Dubai.

Jumeraih Mosque

Coordinate: 25 14’02.34″N 55 15’55.38″E

Situated on Jumeirah Beach Road, the enchanting Jumeirah Mosque with its huge central dome is the best known mosque in Dubai and is the only place of worship that non-muslims are allowed to enter.

Jumeirah Mosque from parking area near Jumeirah Road
Jumeirah Mosque from parking area near Jumeirah Road

 

Inside Jumeirah Mosque. Though missed the organized tour we're allowed to enter for couple of shots
Inside Jumeirah Mosque. Though missed the organized tour we're allowed to enter for couple of shots

 

There is an organized tour of the mosque every Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday at 10am and the tour may be booked by calling the Seikh Mohammed Center for Cultural Understanding on 04-3536666. The entrance fee is Dhs 10.

Please remember that Jumeirah Mosque is a place of worship and you will be expected to cover shoulders, arms, and legs whilst inside the building.

Jumeirah Mosque
Jumeirah Mosque

Burj Al Arab

Burj Al Arab from Jumeirah Public Beach
Burj Al Arab from Jumeirah Public Beach

The Burj Al Arab (Arabic: Tower of the Arabs) is a luxury hotel located in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. At 321 m (1,050 ft), it is the second tallest building in the world used exclusively as a hotel. However, the structure of the Ryugyong Hotel in Pyongyang North Korea (unfinished for over 20 years), is 9 m (30 ft) taller than the ‘”Burj Al Arab'”, and the Rose Tower, also in Dubai, topped Burj Al Arab’s height at 333 m (1,090 ft), becoming the world’s tallest hotel. The Burj Al Arab stands on an artificial island 280 m (920 ft) out from Jumeirah beach, and is connected to the mainland by a private curving bridge. It is an iconic structure, designed to symbolize Dubai’s urban transformation and to mimic the sail of a boat.

A closer look of the burj from Jumeirah Road
A closer look of the burj from Jumeirah Road

Construction of Burj Al Arab began in 1994. It was built to resemble the sail of a dhow, a type of Arabian vessel. Two “wings” spread in a V to form a vast “mast”, while the space between them is enclosed in a massive atrium. The architect Tom Wright said “The client wanted a building that would become an iconic or symbolic statement for Dubai; this is very similar to Sydney with its Opera House, or Paris with the Eiffel Tower. It needed to be a building that would become synonymous with the name of the country.”

“And now Burj Al Arab becomes the letter D in any Dubai souvenir….”  

The architect and engineering consultant for the project was Atkins, the United Kingdom’s largest multidisciplinary consultancy. The hotel was built by South African construction contractor Murray & Roberts.The hotel cost US$650 million to build.

Several features of the hotel required complex engineering feats to achieve. The hotel rests on an artificial island constructed 280 m (920 ft) offshore. To secure a foundation, the builders drove 230 40 m (130 ft) long concrete piles into the sand. Engineers created a surface layer of large rocks, which is circled with a concrete honeycomb pattern, which serves to protect the foundation from erosion. It took three years to reclaim the land from the sea, but less than three years to construct the building itself. The building contains over 70,000 m3 (2,500,000 cu ft) of concrete and 9,000 tonnes of steel.

Burj Al Arab promotes itself as the world’s only “7-star” property, a designation considered by travel professionals to be hyperbole.

Jumeirah Hotel (left) & Burj Al Arab (right)
Jumeirah Hotel (left) & Burj Al Arab (right)

The hotel is managed by the Jumeirah Group. Despite its size, the Burj Al Arab holds only 28 double-storey floors which accommodate 202 bedroom suites. The smallest suite occupies an area of 169 m2 (1,820 sq ft), the largest covers 780 m2 (8,400 sq ft). It is one of the most expensive hotels in the world. The cost of staying in a suite begins at US$1,000 per night; the Royal Suite is the most expensive, starting at US$28,000 per night. Oh my goodness……

I'm sorry honey for we can't stay back there. A photostop is what I can only afford
I'm sorry honey for we can't stay back there. A photostop is what I can only afford

 Burj Al Arab coordinate: 25 08’28.50″N 55 11’07.96″E

Photostop for Burj Al Arab (in front of Umm Suqeim Park, Jumeirah Beach) coordinate: 25 08’52.83″N 55 11’41.95″E

Souk Madinat Jumeirah

Parking entrance: 25 08′00.26″N 55 11′12.94″E

Quoted from its website:

A unique shopping and dining experience

A colouful and vibrant market or part of a market in an Arabian city. Lively trading culture, animated, interactive.

Meandering paths lead visitors through a bazaar-like atmosphere in which open fronted shops and intimate galleries spill onto the paved walkways.

Souk Madinat Jumeirah features an Arabian architectural structures
Souk Madinat Jumeirah features an Arabian architectural structures

 

Watching sand bottle maker at work is quite entertaining
Watching sand bottle maker at work is quite entertaining

 

.....as is watching this artistic name writing artist
.....as is watching this artistic name writing artist

The sounds of craftsmen and women at work combine with the aroma from street cafes and boutique restaurants. At Souk Madinat Jumeirah, the emphasis is on unique brands, crafted quality and an interactive experience.

  • Unique shopping and dining experience
  • 75 boutique shops
  • 23 waterfront cafes, bars and restaurants
  • Open plazas
  • Air conditioned walkways
  • 442 seat Madinat Theatre 
Among those sold at Souk Madinat Jumeirah is antique item
Among those sold at Souk Madinat Jumeirah is antique item

Whether arriving by car, by walkway from the adjacent hotels or by traditional water taxis, visitors to Souk Madinat Jumeirah are greeted by a vivid combination of authentic Arabian style and richly designed landscapes

 

Waterfront Souk Madinat Jumeirah
Waterfront Souk Madinat Jumeirah

References:

Ramadan Mubarak

Ramadan Mubarak

 Ramadan Kareem. Keluarga Wahyu extend warm wishes on the occasion of the Holy month of Ramadan.

SALAM: Ramadan in Qatar
Web posted at: 8/20/2009 23:18:22
Source ::: The Peninsula

Ramadan is the 9th month of the Hijri calendar. It is the month of fasting for Muslims who abstain from food, drink (even water), smoking and private relations between husband and wife, from dawn until sunset.
Fasting is an obligation upon every adult, sane Muslim, who has the ability to fast. It is not an obligation for some groups of Muslims; amongst them children, the sick, travellers and the insane.

In Qatar, Ramadan is a mixture of religion and tradition. Before Ramadan the malls are filled with people who are shopping ahead of time, storing up for the coming month; women make food with their secret combination of spices as well their own recipes which they distribute to their family and friends.

Ramadan in Qatar is very friendly and lovely. The working hours are reduced; retail offers on food and drinks increase; and everyone wants to help you in order to get extra reward from the Lord of the Worlds. Muslims will strive harder to do good, aiming to make a really positive change in their behaviour and become better Muslims not only in this blessed month but for the months and years ahead.

Qataris feel the spirit of Ramadan and relive their traditions. They break their fast with water, yoghurt and a few dates; they do this as the prophet Mohammed, peace be upon him did. After the sunset prayer they will eat their favourite dishes like Haris (the main dish in Qatar), which consists of mashed wheat and mashed meat mixed with crushed cinnamon. Also on the menu will be Tharied, which is a meat and vegetable broth mixed with bread pieces – this dish was a favourite of the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (PBUH).

Qataris have sweets and drink tea after Iftar. The most popular sweet is Al Mahalabi, which is made of milk, rice, saffron and cardamom, but Mathroba and Lughaimat are also enjoyed. After Iftar, men and women go for Tarawih prayer – a voluntary prayer performed in addition to the obligatory 5 daily prayers wherein, during the course of Ramadan, the whole Quran will be recited. Afterwards the congregation will disperse, women gathering in groups at home chatting and talking religion, men going to the Majlis (traditional guestroom) and staying awake until Suhur (meal before fasting) time chatting, eating Mohammar (fried fish with rice cooked with sugar), Haris and Mathroba. In the night, before Imsak (the time that people have to stop eating), a man known as the Musaharati, bangs a big drum to wake people up in order to have the Suhur.

Ramadan is not only a time of fasting and eating but a spiritual time in which the Muslims should set right their affairs with each other in order to obtain the reward of the fasting; as well as ask Allah for His forgiveness and mercy and the good things of this life and the Hereafter.

Qataris, especially the Royal family and the rich, make Mawa’d Al Rahman, – iftar banquets for the poor. Not only do they offer food but clothes and gifts too. Every good deed, Muslims believe, is rewarded 10 to 700 times but more so in Ramadan.

Neighbours visit each other before Iftar and most of them send each other dishes of their cooking. Muslims believe that if someone feeds a fasting person at the time of breaking the fast he/she will be rewarded just as the fasting people