A SYNTHESIS OF TRADITIONAND FUTURE: DUBAI

SURROUNDED BY SAND DUNES, THIS OASIS OF HEAVEN WHERE PLEASURE AND LUXURY CAN BE EXPERIENCED AT THE HIGHEST LEVELS IS ALMOST LIKE A PLAYGROUND DEDICATED TO ENTERTAINING ADULTS.

The number of people who approach Dubai with different prejudices is not small. However, Dubai still has many fans that crowd the city’s golden beaches of the Arabian Peninsula. In a geographical region where the sea meets with the desert, this mix of traditions and assertive futuristic perspectives arouses curiosity even in those with prejudices. Surrounded by sand dunes, this oasis of heaven where pleasure and luxury can be experienced at the highest levels is almost like a playground dedicated to entertaining adults. Each of Dubai’s districts and neighborhoods has a different atmosphere. Cultures from all over the world have united here. With its beaches, Bedouin cuisine, nightlife, local art, and desert safaris, this diversity makes itself felt everywhere.

Travel to the future
Projects that cannot go beyond planning in some other places on earth can turn into reality in Dubai with unlimited courage, ambition and some dreaming. It would be fitting to deliver this skill of Dubai. The world’s tallest building, the artificial island that resembles palm trees, an indoor ski paradise, the world’s fastest roller coaster… Dubai gives you the feeling that you are traveling into the future also with many projects being done for the ‘EXPO 2020 Dubai’.

Remainder of history
It is possible to see the city’s former appearance before the 1980s, before it was suffered the rage of the city planners, in the historical district Bastakia. A merchant group that came from Bastak in Iran in the 19th century, when the Sheikh promised not to demand tax, inhabited this place first. As the merchants got rich, they built mansions here for their families. Today, this gallery that was restored hosts souvenir shops and cultural organizations. Traditional towers called ‘barjeel’ rising over the plain walls are remarkable. When the buildings began to crumble in the 1970s, the local people migrated to more comfortable neighborhoods. In the 1980s, faithful people, and even Prince Charles, had prevented the collapse of this place. Bastakia is livelier in the evenings. For a more in-depth experience, it is worth participating in the Sheikh Mohammed Center’s “Cultural Understanding” themed tour.

One symbol, one sensation
Burj Al-Arab’s construction made Dubai more visible. Burj Al-Arab that maintains its fame by taking place in many famous design magazines with its curved exterior since the day it was opened in 1999, where Sheikh Mohammed caught the opportunity to attract the attention of the world with high-budget commercials, has been a source of sensation as well as a symbol of the city. Designed by Thomas Will Wright, this artwork is built on a small island and is also known for glass construction, ambitious architecture, and its engineering that is associated with some technical issues. Burj Al-Arab, which is said to be the world’s first ‘7-star hotel’, designed like a sailboat in the wind with its graceful curvilinear movements, grabs interest with its exterior as well as its interior. The owner, Jumeirah Hotels, insists that this is only a 5-star hotel. The hotel has one of the highest inner courtyards in the world, in addition to bright blue, red, green, and gold-plated decorations. From the Skyview Bar, you can view the stunning landscape of the beaches and The World and Palm Jumeirah. Even if you do not stay in this hotel, you should go there for lunch or dinner.

The newest and the highest
Burg Khalifa is the world’s latest built, highest building. It has a stunning architecture and engineering, especially with its panoramic view from the terraces on the 124th and 148th floors and the restaurant on the 122nd floor. It was opened in 2010 after a foundation digging of six years and was the world’s tallest building with a height of 828 meters. In order to avoid waiting in long lines and paying high price, it is useful to reserve tickets one month in advance. Sometimes the landscape in Dubai is not as impressive as expected because the humidity causes hazy weather. The most popular entrance ticket is for the 124th floor (452 meters). The powerful telescopes in here bring distances near you. The nights are simulating the scenes from 35 years ago. The terrace is reached through many interesting exhibitions. The world’s highest observation platform is on the 148th floor (555 meters). Interactive tours may attract your interest.

Bedazzling market place
You may need sunglasses to visit the city’s Gold Market at any time of day! The jewelry and precious stones displayed in the showcases are so bright… This is one of the most important jewelry markets in the world, where people from the Gulf region and from abroad come and shop intensely. 35 percent of the shopping there is done by locals and 65 percent by people from other parts of the world. For the people who had the Bedouin migratory lifestyle only one generation ago, jewelry and gold are more important as a precious commodity than as a contribution to beauty. Jewelry is in fact seen as a means of preserving wealth and gold, still taking place in women’s dowry, has a significant place in Africa, the Arabian Peninsula and Indian societies.

Aesthetics of worship
In the first Golden Age of Islam, the end of the first millennium, as the choice of the Egyptian officials in Cairo, inspired by classical architectural style, Dubai’s most beautiful mosque was made. Jumeirah Mosque is the only mosque open to non-Muslim visitors with its limestone dome and minarets made with detailed engraving art and its impressive panels inside. However, it is necessary to take a tour from the cultural center in Bastakia to get here.

The beauty of Islam
Madinat Jumeirah (means town of Jumeirah in Arabic), which is composed of three hotels, a shopping mall and an entertainment district, is a ‘resort’ as well as a reference to the aesthetics of classical Islamic architecture and art. Tradition is not excluded in this ‘city’, which is located in artificial channels and abundant greenery. There is also a Souk Madinat, with its narrow roads, traditional market atmosphere, and air-conditioned comfort. The works of art, carpets and furniture are quite good quality and expensive. For an enjoyable lunch or dinner, the waterfront of Madinat Jumeirah is a good option. There are restaurants along the canal road. This holiday complex will look even better at night with illuminated pastel-colored buildings, typical architecture, and courtyards paved with paving stones.

DO NOT MISS
Visit the beautifully designed Dubai Museum to experience the once livelier and exciting harbor town life of the Arab world.

SHOPPING
Dubai offers a shopping experience along with fun and excitement through shopping malls that sometimes resemble an Italian mansion or sometimes an Iranian palace, a ski ramp that takes place indoors or a giant aquarium.