The Dubai Experience

22-26th November, 2012 were the best days of the lives of many people of Fortune Institute of International Business so far- the educational trip to Dubai over a span of 5 days was exciting, full of adventures, learning, experiences, meeting new people, learning about Dubai culture, economics and social life of the local people out there.

The first night in Dubai began with a mesmerizing experience at Dubai Dhow Cruise which began from the lovely Dubai Creek. Everyone was welcomed onboard to the traditional Arabian wooden dhow looking opulent, elegant and ready to sail. The Dhow Cruise slowly took them through the old Dubai with its antique wind houses on one side and gleaming concrete monoliths on the other. Historic and vintage buildings such as The Heritage Village, Sheikh Saeed House, Wind Towers of Bastakia, Al Makhtoum Bridge and the lovely water taxis zipping past the dhow was shown. As Dhow Cruise Dubai moved ahead, other vessels, Abras and luxury yachts moving smoothly on the crystal clear water of the Sea were observed. This Cruise was one of it’s kind that one should never like to miss ever. Since the Dhow sailed slowly, everyone ambled through the deck and wished that this trip never ended. The most courteous Dhow Cruise staff was forever ready to pamper everyone with onboard buffet dinner and refreshing drinks. The cruise which began at around 8.30 pm ended approximately at 10.30pm after which everyone made their way back to Almanar hotel, a 5 minutes drive from the Dubai International Airport, Major shopping mall-Deira City Centre, Al Mamzar park, Al Mamzar beach and just 10 minutes drive from the World Trade Centre and convention centre.

The next destination was Gold Souk located in the heart of Dubai’s commercial business district in Deira, in the locality of Al Dhagaya. Dubai is known for really cheap gold .Whether or not you’re ready to buy, a stroll through the dazzling Gold Souk is a must. The stores offer platinum, diamonds and occasionally silver and street vendors could be seen outside hawking “genuine fake” watches and “Gucci” handbags. All the most elite jewellery brands of Dubai have their center here: Joyalukkas, Taiba, Damas, Pure Gold Jewellers, Al Zain, Kaloti, Dhamani, Tanishq and so many brands more, you can find here, selling the highest quality gold, coloured gold alloy, diamond, silver all in one place.

The Meena bazaar was a Traditional shopping experience for all. It was busy, packed with residents and travelers looking for perfumes, clothes, fake copies of branded bags, watches, belts etc. The bazaar boasted clothing, fabrics, authentic (and imitation) jewellery, watch repair shops and a number of busy eateries. Meena Bazaar can be compared with the Karol Bagh bazaar in Delhi, for the large number of Indian clothing shops on its premises.

Burj Khalifa, world’s tallest building and a free standing structure was a living wonder and a stunning piece of art. More than just the world’s tallest building, it is an unprecedented example of international cooperation, symbolic beacon of progress, and an emblem of the new, dynamic and prosperous Middle East. One sculpture over there said “From the earth to the sky” and this was in fact true when Dubai looked so beautiful from the 124th floor of Burj Khalifa and at that moment nothing else mattered but the view.

Desert safari at Al Hatta desert in Dubai was an exciting tour activity. It was indeed the perfect way to enjoy and appreciate the Arabian sand and culture in the most exciting way possible offering loads of fun activities to indulge in. 4 WDs driven by a professional Desert Safari Guide for an adventurous journey about half an hour from the city and experienced the magnificent roller coaster ride of on the Dubai desert dunes is something worth remembering. The real excitement of the off-road adventure begins when the Desert safari guide maneuveres the 4 WD’s on the dramatic terrains for a thrilling journey on the rolling dunes.

Followed by this unique experience of Dubai desert safari, people got down on the golden sand dunes, took a pause and viewed the splendid sight of camels resting and captured the Dubai desert sun set as it began to lower on the sandy horizon changing the Dubai desert dunes into a sea of gold.

Then, everyone proceeded to the traditional Bedouin campsite in the heart of the Dubai desert where they enjoyed Arabic kava coffee while entering the camp, some hopped on a camel for a ride, decorated their hands with henna, dressed themselves with Arabic costumes to take some photographs, relaxed in the traditional camp for sumptuous BBQ dinner to be served followed by an enchanting belly dancing show. And then, everyone returned with a treasure of unforgettable Dubai desert safari memories.

The most splendid beach ever one has seen, the Jumeirah Beach, a public beach that is pretty much next door to the Burj Al Arab and the Jumeirah Beach hotel. The beach is white sand with a very docile water front. The views from there are spectacular. Jumeirah Beach has a number of luxury hotels on its beach front. The most prominent is the world famous Burj Al Arab hotel, which sits offshore on a manmade island and the architecture of which has become an iconic symbol of Dubai. On the coast of Dubai next to the Burj Al Arab is the Jumeirah Beach Hotel, a hotel that is part of the Jumeirah hotel chain.

The industry visit to Danube, one of the largest Building Materials Suppliers, was a great learning experience. Danube began from a two person’s team and now it is a whopping 1300 + strong employee empire.

Multiplying the growth Danube is spread over in Jebel Ali, Dubai – Deira, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Bahrain, Muscat, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, India & China apart from key procurement office in Canada. With an extensive customer base in the G.C.C, Asia and Africa, Danube has grown from a small trading firm in 1993 to one of the largest building materials company in the region.

With this geographical stretch and a talented work force, several projects and developments have been smitten by the Danube charm. Their credit empire starts from the Emaar projects like Emirates Hills, the Burj al Arab, the Shangri La and the Grand Hyatt hotels, a private palace in Muscat or a dream home of a young couple, the wide range of over 25,000 products stocked by Danube provide value for money and quality solution at all times.

MDF, plywood, boards, exotic timber, veneer, laminates, cladding, steel, kitchen, sanitary, glass, hardware, electrical, aluminium, doors, flooring, adhesives, ceilings, paints and edge banding are some of the products manufactured and sold by the company.

The Dubai experience would have been incomplete without travelling the desert on an off-road safari as this exhilarating adventure took me across rolling dunes to remote villages and camel farms. Luxury evening safari included a desert sunset, camel rides, belly dancing and a Bedouin barbecue around the campfire.

And after all the hustle and bustle of a jam packed 5 day tour, unwillingly everyone packed our bags and headed to the airport waiting for the flight to take off and get back to the normal routine.