10.12.2013 – 10.14.2013
Without Its Original Culture
Burj Al Arab (the only 7-star hotel in the world) and Burj Khalifa (the tallest building in the world) do not live up to the hype. The skyscrapers spread out so much that it doesn’t even seem like they are there. I am, however, surprised that a desert location such as Dubai is so green. The design of the city reminds me of Shenzhen (a Chinese city) but with fewer people. However, the city planning and road designs make it great with no traffic.
There are too many shopping malls here, all American brands. Dubai is influenced so much by the western culture that you cannot even find Middle Eastern food in downtown. The McDonald line is the longest of all while Kebab express has zero customers waiting in line. It is a shame that it lost its own culture.
The kebabs here are very different from those in the US with a lot of spices and soft ground meat instead of chewy steak cubes, it is also a lot cheaper than the US. They love nuts here: everything has nuts inside! There is an abundance of shops selling sweets and nuts.
10.14. Abu Dhabi, UAE
The mosque in Abu Dhabi is magnificent and costs billions of dollars to build. In accordance with custom, I dress in Muslim clothing to gain access to the marble-made lobby. Abu Dhabi reminds me of Zhuhai (another Chinese city), it is new and clean, situated in the gulf.
Buffet at Burj Al Arab
You cannot enter the hotel unless you have a reservation and even with a reservation for the restaurant you are still not granted access to the Sky Bar or any other floor in the hotel. Lobby is very small.
The restaurant has a Cirque-Du-Soleil-like rainbow theme, which is very lavish and colorful. The food is good, but not amazing, with many Indian themes in the Arabian food. The desserts though are a different matter, and I end up eating 10 plates of dessert!
It is now late afternoon and I decide to take the desert safari trip. The sand bashing ride is like a roller coaster and is the best part of this trip. I also ride a camel and watch the belly dance shows.
For more details of my journal, please refer to “My Book” section.