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What Is Dubai UAE Known For?
Located on the southeast coast of the Persian Gulf, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, is one of the most popular vacation spots in the world. Thanks to its weather—the tropical desert climate features year-round hot, sunny weather, even in its coldest months—and many attractions, this progressive independent city-state drew in over five million visitors in 2020. By 2025, Dubai expects to attract 25 million people.
Dubai is known for its abundant wealth, luxury shopping, lively nightlife, and state-of-the-art architecture, such as the Burj Khalifa. Dubai is also famous for its artificially constructed palm islands, diversity, food scene, and all-inclusive accommodation options.
Its blue-green waters, white sandy beaches, and ever-changing skyline never fail to impress. Read on to learn more about Dubai and what this wealthy tourist destination is known for.
Dubai Is Incredibly Extravagant
Considered one of the most extravagant places in the world, Dubai is known for its massive wealth and love of luxury. As a testament to this, Dubai is home to nine of the world’s billionaires.
A couple of examples of the opulence in Dubai include the Palazzo Versace Dubai Hotel, where visitors can stay in a luxurious suite for $20,000 a night. Second, is the Burj al Arab which is the world’s best known 6 star hotel. The Burj al Arab is located on a private island and is shaped like a sail. The cheapest room in this hotel starts at $1,000/night.
Feeling thirsty? Stop by Dubai’s Karama district and visit Food ka Mood for a 24-karat gold-infused tea. The Burj Al Arab Jumeirah Hotel even offers up a 24-karat gold cappuccino.
Dubai’s love of gold is evidenced by the fact that they hold the world record for creating the world’s longest gold chain. Not only that, but the city-state boasts ATMs around the islands where you can get gold bars instead of cash.
In addition to their love of wealth, Dubai is a pretty wealthy city-state. Its economy represented a GDP of 102.67 billion dollars in 2018 with a tourism and real estate-based economy. There are over 500 hotels and regular housing/business developments. Dubai International Airport—which carried nearly 50 million people in 2015—is a massive part of Dubai’s economy.
It’s Home to Some of the Best Luxury Shopping
Shopaholics visiting Dubai are nearly guaranteed to fall in love with Dubai’s rich shopping experience. The city-state is home to the world’s largest mall and boasts over 1,200 stores and 200 eateries and beverage options.
Because Dubai Mall is so large—over 5.9 million square feet (548,127 square meters)—it feels more like a small town than a shopping center. Dubai Square, however, actually is something like a mini-community.
Dubai Square surpasses Dubai Mall in size. The square is an entire one square mile (2.6 square kilometers) district that offers shopping, entertainment, lodging, and even over 9,000 homes. You’ll find avenues and plazas lined with retail space.
As we mentioned previously, Dubai loves extravagance. The Dubai Mall and Dubai Square developments are yet two more examples of how Dubai longs to be the most over-the-top, unique tourist destination on earth.
The Wealthy City-State Boasts a Lively Nightlife
When it comes to nightlife, Dubai comes out on top. The environment in Dubai is ideal for the night scene, from viewing the incredible city-state from the top of the Burj Khalifa to clubbing in the many upscale lounges.
If your idea of a good time at night involves alcohol, then you’re limited to hotels, restaurants, and bars. The United Arab Emirates has strict laws regarding alcohol, so you cannot purchase and consume alcohol in your hotel room unless you receive a temporary liquor license. You do not need a permit to drink in one of Dubai’s many stylish lounges, rooftop bars, and lavish clubs.
Some of Dubai’s most popular clubs and lounges include:
- WHITE Dubai, boasted as one of the top nightclubs in the world, is a vast, open space located on the rooftop of the Meydan Grandstand. For spectacular light shows and a dance floor teeming with people, this is an ideal club for social butterflies looking to have a good time.
- Armani/Privé, located in the Armani Hotel Dubai, features thick marble seating areas and tables, surrounded by a dark, sleek design with plenty of ambient backlights. The hotel’s nightclub opens Tuesdays, Thursdays, and weekends.
- The Penthouse is the ideal spot for those looking for a jaw-dropping experience. The Penthouse is located at the top of the Five Palm Jumeirah Hotel in Dubai. Featuring a glamorous scene, a vibrant dance floor, and glass-lined swimming pools, this adult-only rooftop club is a place to relax and play.
- Zero Gravity, found at the north side of Jumeirah Beach Residence, is a beach club that boasts a large pool, dance floor, and a breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu. Patrons can sip cocktails right there on the sandy shore while the sun sets.
Dubai is expensive when it comes to partying, but the vibe makes the experience worth it. Have fun dancing, relaxing, and socializing in the stylish lounges and outdoor terraces.
It Features Modern Architecture and Skyscrapers
The skyline of Dubai is ever-changing due to its constant new developments, but many of the current buildings stand out. The eye-popping architecture is much different than the skylines of other big cities that usually feature historical buildings.
Dubai features space-age structures and luxurious hotels, all of which are unique and make this city-state look more like a futuristic utopia than a regular tourist destination.
This wealthy city-state is home to not only the world’s tallest building but also twenty percent of the world’s tallest residential facilities and seventy percent of the world’s tallest hotels. The skyline is a spectacular sight, with no other city quite like it. The luxury residential towers and sprawling malls represent a once humble town transformed by wealth.
Burj Al Arab
The hotel looks like a massive sailboat jutting out of the sea and is one of Dubai’s most well-known sights. It is the third-tallest hotel in the world and regularly appears on the list of the most luxurious hotels. The inside of the Burj Al Arab is equally impressive, with an interior coated with around 19,267 square feet (1,790 square meters) of 24-karat gold leaf.
A square building that twists like a corkscrew? That’s Cayan Tower. Cayan Tower utilizes helix-like architecture, with each floor slightly rotated to achieve a full 90-degree twist. Today, Cayan Tower remains one of the most eye-catching structures in Dubai. From the top floors, you can overlook Jumeirah Beach.
Zaha Hadid, an iconic architect, created The Opus. Looking at it from the ground, the building appears to be a geometric anomaly. It features sharp, straight lines combined with a curvy, almost fluid-like empty space at the center. Today, the building houses the five-star ME Dubai Hotel.
Museum of the Future
The Museum of The Future is a strange, curvy, almost spherical structure covered in Arabic calligraphy. It’s a design from Killa Designs.
The Museum of The Future used the aviation industry as inspiration for the oddly-shaped building, utilizing jointless stainless steel and fiberglass to create a smooth, seamless shape.
Dubai Hosts the World’s Tallest Building
As mentioned in the previous section, Dubai is home to the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa. The building standing tall in the sky is unmistakable from the sea and is the centerpiece of the skyline. It lights up the city from every angle, whether you’re on the ground or at the top of The Penthouse at the Five Palm Jumeirah. On New Year’s Eve, the building lights up with incredible light shows.
Standing at 2,722 feet (830 meters) and containing 163 stories, the Burj Khalifa continues to maintain the number one spot for the tallest building in the world. The building’s height is such that it is visible from 59 miles (95 kilometers) away. In addition to being the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa also has one of the fastest elevators, so you’ll get to the observation deck in no time.
The Burj Khalifa is an excellent representation of Dubai’s continued success, growth, and grandeur.
Dubai Constructed Artificial Islands
The world-famous Palm Islands in Dubai are artificial islands. These islands are the largest artificial islands in the world, created using nearly 94 million cubic meters (over 3 billion cubic feet) of sand and rock.
The prime minister of the UAE is responsible for the construction of Dubai’s artificial islands. It was a plan designed to increase tourist revenue across the city-state and expand Dubai’s land area. As of 2021, the most famous island is Palm Jumeirah. This palm-shaped island features permanent residences, hotels, restaurants, and other attractions, including a waterpark.
There are multiple other artificial islands in Dubai, including Deira Islands and Palm Jebel Ali. Deira Island is not yet completed but comprises four different islands. Construction on Palm Jebel Ali, another palm-shaped island, was halted in 2018.
The Area Is Known for Its Incredible Diversity
In the United Arab Emirates, Dubai is one of the most diverse cities in the world. Fifteen percent of Dubai’s population are Emiratis, whereas the majority is made up of expatriates. The city-state is considered globally significant and features an abundance of different religious facilities, restaurants, schools, and events. No matter who you are or where you come from, you’re likely to find a place in Dubai that feels like home.
The people of Dubai speak a number of languages. Arabic is the official language, but English is common, especially among people staying within the resorts. Other common languages include Malayalam, Sindhi, Hindi, Tagalog, Persian, Bengali, and Kurdish.
Even though Dubai is culturally diverse, it’s still considered an Arab state with Islam as the dominant religion. It’s important that visitors and tourists respect the customs and norms that make up Islam—this includes laws, regulations, and societal norms. There are hundreds of cultural and legal differences in Dubai, especially when compared to Western countries.
There Is a Unique Food Scene
Because of Dubai’s diverse population, the food scene boasts a wide variety of different international foods. Visitors can stop and indulge in beach food stalls or five-star restaurants that serve up lavish dishes—often incorporating gold flakes.
Local cuisine includes harees (ground wheat, meat, and seasonings), machboos (meat—usually lamb—with rice and spices), and shawarma (thinly sliced roasted lamb, often wrapped in pita). The dishes mentioned earlier are considered Middle Eastern cuisine, which is a popular food option in Dubai. In addition, you’ll find Italian from Massimo’s Italian Restaurant, Chinese from Maiden Shanghai, or even American favorites like The Cheesecake Factory.
Fine dining is also an integral part of Dubai’s food scene, with dozens of upscale restaurants.
Trèsind Dubai, a fine dining establishment located at VOCO Hotel, features innovative Indian cuisine in an upscale setting. Pierchic is a fine-dining Italian restaurant that offers romantic seaside dining.
In addition to its wide variety of restaurants and beach stalls, Dubai boasts an incredible delivery service. You don’t even have to leave your hotel room to indulge in Dubai’s food and beverages. Almost every restaurant (and store) delivers directly to consumers. This exceptional service is designed to keep visitors comfortable, considering that Dubai is home to an unforgivable desert climate.
It’s Famous for Its All-Inclusive Accommodation
While Dubai is an expensive vacation destination, there are ways to save money by choosing an all-inclusive accommodation. One of Dubai’s all-inclusive resorts includes Rixos The Palm Hotel & Suites. Located in Palm Jumeirah, Rixos The Palm Hotel & Suites is in the heart of the entertainment district and features a private beach. The resort features three restaurants—a buffet with a pool view, a fine-dining establishment, and a steakhouse.
The resort offers a full-service spa, free WiFi, deep tubs, minibars in every room, and plasma televisions. Room rates are all inclusive, along with included gratuities and taxes. Food and beverages—including buffet and à la carte meals—are included. In addition, guests have access to 24-hour room service.
When you think of Dubai, you’re likely to envision riches, extravagance, and wealth. Even though luxury plays an integral role in Dubai’s image, the city is so much more than that. The sand dunes and beaches are remarkable, and the skyline is a sight to behold at night. In addition, Dubai is home to some of the best shopping opportunities, a bustling night scene, unmatched modern architecture, an unmistakable skyline, man-made islands, cultural diversity, varied food options, and all-inclusive resorts.
If you’re planning a trip to Dubai be sure to check out this guide on Amazon!