Located in Downtown Dubai is the city’s landmark building: the Burj Khalifa. Designed by Adrian Smith, the Burj Khalifa officially opened on January 4, 2010. With a staggering height of 828 meters, it has surpassed the 509.2-meter tall Taipei 101 and has officially become the World’s Tallest Building in 2010. The 163-floor skyscraper is the most famous sight in the city, and tourists can visit levels 124, 125, and 148 of the building on both peak and non-peak hours for a 90-minute premium access. The premium access allows you to have a 90-minute WiFi access, a Falcon’s Eye-View access at the 125th level, and a Sky Lounge observation deck access that would allow you to have a bird’s eye view of the majestic Dubai skyline.
At the foot of the Burj Khalifa is another world’s largest attraction: The Dubai Fountain. With 6,600 lights and 25 colored projectors, the 275-meter Dubai Fountain is the world’s largest choreographed fountain system that has been up and running since 2009. The world-famous dancing fountain has daily choreographed performances that make use of diverse, carefully-curated songs that range from classical and contemporary Arabic to world music. The 13 Dubai Fountain shows are executed daily with a 30-minute interval and start as early as 1 PM.
Just a few steps from the Dubai Fountain is the Dubai Mall--the largest mall in the world by total area. With over 13 million square feet of space, Dubai Mall has 1,200 shops, 120 restaurants and cafes, 22 cinema screens, and a 250-room luxury hotel. They have retail stores of all kinds--from furniture and books to candy shops and high-end stores. The mall even has a Fashion Avenue that carries brands such as Christian Louboutin, Coach, Burberry, Gucci, and Chanel. Dubai Mall truly is a shopaholic’s haven. With over 80 million visitors in 2015, the Dubai Mall has been named as the Most Visited Lifestyle Destination on Earth.
If you’re looking for a place to learn more about the Emirati culture, then The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) is the one for you. Located at the Al Mussallah Road, SMCCU is a non-profit that promotes the Emirati culture. For only 90 – 100 AED, you would have 90 minutes of Emirati cultural talk, an Emirati feast, and a deeper understanding of the Muslim world. Cultural meals vary depending on the time you’ve booked your tour; you may choose between a traditional Emirati breakfast, brunch, lunch, afternoon tea, or dinner.
After learning about the Emirati culture, soaking it all in by interacting with the locals would further enhance your Dubai experience. Souks, or Arab marketplaces, is a good place to start your culture tripping. There are numerous souks in Dubai, ranging from Spice Souks and Gold Souks to Jewelry Souks and Textile Souks, but Souk Madinat is a place wherein Middle Eastern cultures meet. Located at the Al Sufouh Road, Souk Madinat houses 25 restaurants that would cater to those who are craving Persian, Arabic, Lebanese, Indian, and even Asian, Italian, French, and American cuisine. This souk also has a variety of goods—ranging from boutiques and jewelry stores to luxury fashion stores and souvenir gift shops—some of which are exhibited in stands, barrows, and stalls. In addition to the diverse shopping selection, Souk Madinat also provides visitors with performances at the Madinat Theater, Abra Tours of the water canals, and a vibrant nightlife.
Just a few minutes from the Souk Madinat is the iconic Burj Al Arab. Standing on an artificial island, the 56-floor luxury hotel is the 3rd Tallest Hotel in the World and is one of the must-sees in Dubai. Although it is one of the top tourist attractions in the city, Burj Al Arab can’t be easily accessed by tourists. A private bridge must be crossed in order to get to the hotel in which a security guard will check your proof that you have business at the hotel. Booking an afternoon tea at the SkyBar one way of securing your entrance at the Burj Al Arab.
If you’re wondering where to stay on your Emirati holiday vacation, All Luxury Apartments offers luxury homes for rent in Dubai that would fit a range of location, budget, and duration of stay. With a number of accommodation choices, ranging from luxury apartments to villa rentals, All Luxury Apartments can provide holiday rentals—be it for short term or long term vacation rentals—that would suit your needs.