Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Downtown Dubai- Burj Khalifa: A blend of old and new age that will keep shinning the most prestigious address in Dubai for many years to come.

When I arrived in Dubai back in 1996, I was living the opposite side of the Sheikh Zayed road and army compound which is today the Down town Burj Dubai area.

The all area of Burj Khalifa once was empty quarter and then the army barrack. It was made with high rise wall, looked like fort and on each corner, a tower raised with anti-aircraft guns on top although most of the time covered. Also the famous round about known as defence round about (That name originated from the army camp mentioned above) or “the Toyota” roundabout, the first intersection of Sheikh Zayed road, I cannot believe how it is changed today and still construction is going on with many flyovers coming up to smooth the traffic.  The vision of Rulers of Dubai to turn this vast piece of land was more than just keeping the protection of the Emirate - Dubai; they managed to turn to the most luxurious place with the tallest tower and largest mall - Dubai Mall without losing touch the old heritage of Islamic / Arabic cultural building models in this modern time. What they believe is that we can move forward and go with the changes without changing our values.
I personally thanks & salute them very much for their vision in mind. So when you visit downtown Burj Dubai now known as Burj Khalifa area do not think you will find only model structures such the tallest tower the Burj Khalifa, but at the same time you will be taken back to the old century of Arabic / Islamic culture which are present close to the towers surrounded by the water like lake. When you see the photos you will know what I mean, I can't explain enough, I'm not expert on that.

Hotels in Dubai at lowest rates Present:

During the summer months in UAE (May – Sept) which is the low tourists season, many hotels offer summer promotions, and is a good chance for us residence to take this opportunities to visit different hotels in Dubai or around the UAE, this apply even for the tourists from neighbouring countries or from around the world as Dubai is becoming the all year round tourist resort. At the Downtown Burj Khalifa I checked in with my family at the prestigious 5 stars hotel - The Address hotel, a 63 storey property.

Located in the heart of the downtown Burj Khalifa attractions nearby the tallest tower, Dubai fountain and the largest mall -Dubai Mall. In this hotel, also there are serviced apartments which already owned by residence those apartments particularly facing Burj Khalifa lake and the Old town, including Dubai Fountain. You can find more information about the hotels by visiting the links mentioned at the end of this blog and explore yourself.

The other hotels to select from if one wish to stay around this area are:

The Address – Dubai Mall:
The hotel is attached with the Dubai mall one of the largest shopping and entertainment spot in the world and overlooking the world’s tallest tower, Burj Khalifa. The Address Dubai Mall offers a luxurious experience.

The following remaining hotels are all build in old style Arabic structures that present the perfect blend of old and new: include The Palace, Al Manzil and Qamardeen hotels. It will transform you and discover the richness of life; as you explore the area. Just a few-minute walk from Burj Khalifa Dubai Mall and right in the heart of the Burj Khalifa commercial and residential areas.

Back to the hotel the address, the main reception located already in the 5th floor. But honestly the style of their reception in my view will need improvement as guests arrived one cannot know who is turn to go the next counter and only about 4 staff are check in the guests. Same happened during check out, hotel staff seems cannot keep up with the flow of the guests who were check in and checkout in the peak time of the weekend. Security is excellent around and in the hotel, no one can go upto the room unless got the room key to swap in the lift. Also bear in mind that the key will not work if time to check out already passed. The swimming pool area is great, you can see in the photo which I took form the 13th floor.

There are four pools; all interconnected facing the Burj Khalifa, Dubai mall and old town. Also pool bar located at the last pool and there is excellent sitting area with the view of half of Dubai fountain, old town / souk bahar and Dubai Mall. I was swimming in the pool next day and facing the tallest tower in the world. It was unique experience. I always like to explore the area where I’am staying, and below are part of the areas that’s make the Downtown Burj Dubai a new city within the old city.

The old town:
The old town consists of low-rise three storey apartment buildings and mid-rise buildings. Architectural designs are taken from traditional buildings that once was Old Dubai. Is it divided in different residents quarters known as Yansoon, Reehan, Miska, Zaafaran, Zanzabeel, or Kamoon. These are Arabic terms.

Souk Bahar:
Don’t miss to visit Souk Al Bahar and explore the charm, Souk is Arabic word means Market and Bahar means the sea. It is a waterside shopping and entertainment destination located in the Old Town Island. A shining blend of traditional architecture set with a modern context, over 100 shops including more than 22 restaurants and cafés lining the waterfront promenade. You cannot cover in one day and it is also is an extraordinary meeting place for residents and tourists of Dubai. For more details check their website below.

The Residences:
The Residences are the very new way urban living in Downtown Dubai, present new city. The towers surrounded by open water and greenery. Residence enjoy lake views in the morning, and in the evening the Dubai skyline comes alive with light. Here you will find urban life at its best. Construction is going on.

South Ridge:
Is a planned resident of 6 Tower development on the Burj Khalifa Masterplan. Just walking distance to Old Town and The Burj Lake including vibrant Burj Khalifa Boulevard, with its stylish boutiques, cafés, restaurants, enchanting street life of The Old Town and shopping at The Dubai Mall.

The Dubai Mall:
I think until now I could not cover the whole area of the mall. Is huge vast mall and I don’t recommend if you plan to come with aged person unless he or she on wheel chair as you will have to walk a lot to get around the mall. I cannot say enough as I will leave for you to explore their website below and see what you will be interesting in, so next time you will know where to visit first when in the mall.

Dubai Fountain:
Is an added attraction not to miss when you visit downtown Burj Khalifa the show is on every 15 minutes from 6pm to 9:30pm.

So that’s all I can say about the place, and also you can be staying in other hotels around Dubai and visit Downtown Burj Khalifa attractions which I mentioned below with their links to you can find more about them.

Useful Links:

Hotels around Downtown Burj Dubai:
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