Consumer March 2013

Dubai Update
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With its shimmering skyscrapers, glamorous hotels and Michelin starred restaurants, Dubai’s reputation has become synonymous with luxury. However, Dubai can also provide a perfect holiday for those on a budget who still want to enjoy the city’s high standards of service, long stretches of gold sandy beaches and quality tourist attractions.

Dubai now welcomes over 10 million visitors a year and this has led to a boom in two to four star hotels. Take a look at this edition’s ‘Top 5 Affordable Hotels’ article (see right) to explore some of the best value accommodation options.

There are plenty of fantastic attractions in and around the city that provide excellent value for money. The fascinating Dubai Aquarium costs just £8 and has recently been awarded a Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence. The historic Bastakiya district has the Dubai Museum, which is housed in an 18th century fort and tells Dubai’s amazing transformation from pearl fishing village to cosmopolitan world city. Entry costs just 50p and for just 20p you can take a ride across Dubai creek on a delightful wooden abra water taxi.

For bargain hunters, head to the Dubai Outlet Mall, where 260 designer and high-street names offer discounts of up to 70%. And make sure you visit the traditional Souks and barter on gold, rare spices and textiles. The malls also serve up some delicious restaurant options at pocket friendly prices.

In the evening, make sure you take in the spectacular free fountain show located at the base of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Down Town Dubai. Water spouts as high as 500 feet and ais choreographed to famous songs. And to relax from all your excursions, visit one of Dubai’s free public beaches, where long stretches of immaculately kept golden sands meet the tempting waters of the Arabian Sea.

Paula and Tony recently took their family on holiday to Dubai and were pleasantly surprised at just how affordable it was. Click on the video below to find out more.

Dubai also has a great array of affordable hotels for all budgets, where high levels of service and comfort come as standard. Below are five examples of great hotels that are fantastic value for money.

The Ocean View has only just opened. It is Dubai’s first 4 star beach-front hotel and every room has a sea view.

For those looking for something chic, the Orient Guest House is a boutique hotel, located in the Bastakiya heritage district and close to downtown Dubai.

Guests at the Hilton Jumeirah Residences can opt for self-catering apartments while enjoying all the facilities of the Hilton Jumeirah Resort.

The Jebel Ali Golf Resort offers an all-inclusive offer, which includes breakfast, lunch and dinner at one of their 15 restaurants, beverages and complimentary leisure activities at its fantastic sports centre.

If you are looking for a city location, the Park Regis Kris Kin has competitively priced superior rooms, an impressive rooftop swimming pool and is a great base to discover historic Dubai and the shopping malls.

From musicals, to world class sporting events, via pop star concerts and religious festivals, Dubai’s varied events calendar is a reflection of the exciting diversity of the city. Take a look at some of the exciting events listed below, which show that there is truly something for all tastes to enjoy on holiday in the emirate.

Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (29 March – 13 April)
The ever popular Andrew Lloyd Webber musical comes to the Madinat Theatre and features stars from London’s West End.

The Middle East Film and Comic Convention (5-6 April)
Back for its second year after 2012’s success, the MEFCC
brings together stars of cult entertainment and comics and attracted visitors as far afield as New Zealand!

The Jebel Ali Bruno Mars (12 April)
Nominated for 13 Grammys and with 2 hit records under his belt, Bruno Mars will be performing to a sell-out crowd at the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre .

Dubai Desert Road Run (27 April)
Perfect for running junkies, the Dubai Desert Road Run is a 10k, 2 lap course located out in the amazing Arabian desert.

Justin Bieber (4 May)
The worldwide pop sensation that is Justin Bieber will play The Sevens stadium as part of his ‘Believe’ tour.

Eid in Dubai (June)
The celebration of the end of Ramadan, the Eid festivities are a fascintating time to visit the emirate.

For a full list of all of the city’s exciting events, visit the Dubai Calendar website.
Dubai has never been more accessible to the UK holidaymaker. There are no visas or vaccinations required, flight time is just 6 and a half hours and there are now direct flights from 6 UK airports.

There has never been more choice in flight options too.
From 31 March 2013, Qantas will be flying to Dubai* from London Heathrow twice a day with their award-winning A380. With two evening departures, passengers can optimise their trip by arriving in Dubai refreshed and ready early the following morning.

Other flight options to consider are Virgin Atlantic’s Upper Class, where passengers can experience luxury with a business-class price tag, British Airways , who are offering Premium Economy seats from just £888 return, or Royal Brunei , who make Dubai a stopover on their route to Asia.

Last Edition’s Competition Winner

Congratulations to Alan Jenkins, who has won the last newsletter’s competition prize of a holiday for 2 at the amazing Jumeirah Beach Hotel, courtesy of Destinology.

Specialising in luxury, worldwide holidays, Destinology recently won the ‘Best Medium Tour Operator to the Middle East’ award and can help tailor your perfect trip to Dubai. Call them on 0808 163 8094 or visit their website for more information.

*subject to approval.
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Dubai Update is a digest of economic, industrial, commercial, travel and tourism and other news, some of which have appeared in the Dubai press. Items have not been independently verified by the Department. It is sent free of charge to organisations in the UK and Ireland wishing to keep abreast of major developments in Dubai.

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