Dubai for Business and Pleasure

Sitting from my desk looking at another Vancouver rainy winter day, I’m daydreaming about Dubai, and wishing for a little bit of that warmth!

Eventually, all roads lead to Dubai

Location. Location. Location. Situated within eight flying hours of two-thirds of the world’s population, Perhaps the best stop-over, most travellers spend a week or less in Dubai. Dubai offers a myriad of fun-packed itineraries for winter mini-breaks, luxury breaks, and family holidays!

View of Dubai from Sofitel the Palm Resort.

Now is a great time to visit Dubai

Dubai is investing heavily in new hotel construction, and attractions leading up to the 2020 Expo. This means you can take advantage of better hotel prices.

Luxury cannot be avoided in Dubai

Dubai is about luxury, whether it’s the opening of $178,385 gold-plated 50 KG tin of Empress caviar, or the World’s Most Expensive Valentine’s Day Package (at the Fairmont Dubai), or the world’s largest gold ring, currently valued at $3 million – and that’s just this week!

Award Winning – The Exchange Grill at 5-Star Fairmont Dubai. Gotta love a restaurant that readily keeps the Dom on ice!

Luxury, five-star hotels in Dubai make up 33% hotel properties. You can even stay in a self-proclaimed 7-star hotels (Burj Al Arab)!

Dubai is Family Friendly

2016 saw Dubai opening Legoland’s first park in the Middle East. Other theme park and attractions include Wild Wadi Waterpark, MotionGate and Bollywood Parks.  Families can enjoy desert wilderness experiences, overnight camping with Arabic meals.

Sofitel The Palm, Dubai

Dubai offers several all-inclusive resorts tailor-made for families seeking easy, relaxing time together. Emirates offers family check-in desks at Dubai International airport.

Fly Canada to Dubai (DXB)

Once prohibitively far away, today we can enjoy a direct 13-hour, non-stop flight to Dubai (DXB) from Toronto (YYZ) on Air Canada or Emirates.  Or a 14.5-hour, non-stop flight to Dubai (DXB) from Seattle (SEA) on Emirates.

Dubai gets around 15M visitors per year. And it continues to add new hotels and new tourist attractions to stimulate visitor growth, with a goal of 20M visitors by Expo 2020.

2017 saw about 154,000 Canadians visiting Dubai.

‘I got pretty geeky about Dubai. Lots of big numbers! Loved visiting the Tourism and Government websites for statistics.’

Dubai Airport (DXB) is the world’s busiest hub for international travel.  Dubai Airport handled nearly 90M Passengers in 2017. (In perspective, YVR Airport handled 24 million passengers in 2017.)  DXB is also the 3rd busiest airport for total passenger traffic in the world after Atlanta and Beijing.  And it manages more than 1200 flights per day.

First glimpse of Dubai from Air Canada flight from Toronto YYZ to Dubai DXB

Dubai Is Impressive

Bathed in luxury, Dubai is the largest, most populous city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).  Dubai is the capital of the Emirate of Dubai, one of the seven emirates that make up the country. (Up-and-coming Abu Dhabi is the next largest city in the UAE, and capital of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.)

Worlds Tallest, Burj Khalifa

Dubai is the place for grandiose projects. Impressive architecture including the world’s tallest man made structure, the 2,717 ft tall Burj Khalifa. Dubai boasts of 70 shopping malls including the Dubai Mall, the world’s biggest shopping complex by total area.

Worlds Largest Mall, Dubai Mall.

Not surprising that Dubai is top amongst all world cities when it comes to visitor spending. In 2016 the 14.9 million visitors to Dubai spent $28.5 billion USD. (According to the Mastercard Destination Cities Index).  To put that in perspective, in 2016 Vancouver set a record-high with 10 million overnight visitors, contributing $4.4 billion to the Metro Vancouver economy annually. (According to TourismVancouver).

Suite at Fairmont Dubai

Impressive, Dubai went from pre-industrial to industrial to post-industrial in only 50 years, financed by the discover of oil in the 1960s, the city rose out of the desert in the 70s and 80s. In 1979 the Dubai World Trade Centre opened – the city’s first high-rise.  To cope with its climate and growing population, it maintains one of the largest desalination plants in the world.

World Trade Center on Sheikh Zayed Road from the 9th floor Dokuz Lounge at the Fairmont Dubai.

Perhaps most impressive is Dubai’s progressive move away from oil to a green economy. Today, less than 1% of the Dubai’s GDP comes from oil.   Commitment to renewable energy will account for 25 percent of the emirate’s needs in 10 years, with further promise to rise to 44 percent by 2050, when Dubai aims to produce 75 percent of its energy requirements from clean sources.

TIP: When planning a trip to Dubai, bear in mind that the working week runs from Sunday to Thursday.

Outdoor terrace Sunrise Pool with jacuzzi at Fairmont Dubai

Why Now Is A Great Time to Visit Dubai

If you’re planning a vacation or holiday in the UAE, now is a great time to book that hotel property you’ve been dreaming to stay in. According to the latest data, there’s a chance you can score a good room rate over the next few years.

Outdoor terrace Sunset Pool with children’s pool area at Fairmont Dubai

Check out my review of the Fairmont Dubai

Over the next 3 years hotel competition in Dubai will intensify. The major contributing factor to cheaper prices for hotel rooms is new supply coming into market in readiness for World Expo 2020.

Dubai is adding rooms faster than demand can keep up, and it has driven prices down over the past year. At the end of 2017,  Dubai had 82,000 hotel rooms available, with predictions of about 40,000 rooms coming in from now until 2020. About 40% of those new rooms will be going to be in the luxury sector. [1] [2]

All that adds up to some great hotel deals in Dubai over the next few years!

Check out the Visit Dubai website for itinerary ideas.  Enjoy!!