Driving past the exciting skyline of Dubai, what impresses you most is not the stunning architecture of the existing buildings you see here in the night, but the apparently endless numbers of cranes that suddenly appear at daybreak! Cranes being
used to build more and more exciting buildings to add to those already there. This place is Happening!
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The United Arab Emirates is a federation of seven emirates or states, each with its own unique character, personality, and ruler. Among the seven, Dubai is unquestionably the hottest travel address.
Irrespective of the market prices for a barrel of oil, geologists predict the oil beneath Dubai will be gone within 50 years. The ruler, His Highness. Sheikh
Maktoum, knowing oil’s days are numbered, set upon an ambitious plan to convert his Emirate into the world’s Number One travel destination. Everything will be in place long before the
oil runs out.
What to say about Dubai? How about, “Like, WOW”. Or, if you were limited to only one word that truly describes the feeling you get walking down the streets of Dubai,
that word would be SUPERLATIVE.
The architecture is fabulously futuristic and appealing, with one building surpassing the one next to it in some etheric desire to be "The Best in Show".
Dubai will ultimately have the World's largest amusement park, greater by far than anything Disney has yet built. Dubai will also have the finest golf course in the World; the tallest skyscraper; the largest shopping mall.
The Emir wants to make this place THE ULTIMATE vacation destination. It already has the World's only SEVEN star hotel, The Burj al Arab.
It is built to represent the full sail of a sailboat, blown out by the wind from the sea. You cannot see it during the daylight, but the entire building is covered by a gossamer screen of white Kefflar. At night, lights of different colors play off of it, synchronized to change with the fountains and fire torches at ground level.
The cross piece behind the "mast" is a restaurant which has, we are told, a very long waiting list for those wanting to dine there. They are most considerate of our "special needs" situation, however, and Nancy and I have reservations.
The view overlooks the ocean and the fabulous Palm Island Development, an entirely man- made island complex with some of the World's most expensive real estate. How expensive? The prices in the restaurant take your breath away- we wouldn't expect the properties to be any less so. Here is a peek at what you can consider before you purchase your villa.
We have come to Dubai as the final port on a cruise that started in Singapore. The cruise line, Seabourne, has planned an Arabian Nights Experience for us. Whisked out of the city proper, we drive out to the desert some distance from the city itself for what turns out to be a most memorable celebration.
Late one afternoon, we drove out of the city on a large motor coach, then transferred to a 4WD Mercedes Benz that immediately left the main road and headed across sand into the desert. After
a thrill ride of bouncing over sand dunes that suddenly dropped away, leaving your stomach about 15 feet in the air above you, we arrived at a camp set with tents around a central square, complete
with lots of food, and a small band.
There are camels available for those who wish to try a ride.
This particular camel is eyeing us, and you can almost read his mind: "Don't even think about getting that wheelchair up on my back!"
We don't! We are perfectly content to let others around us indulge. Besides, with me to push, who needs a camel?