Dubai, the futuristic city

As my businesses partners and I entered Dubai, the first adjective uttered to describe Dubai was “futuristic”, with glossy buildings and man-made islands

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The first couple of days were hectic, we didn’t get to see much of the city as we were preparing for our pitch. During this time, we realized Dubai is very diverse city with 85% of it being expats, we met people from so many different countries, from Spain to the Philippines to Latin America and the USA

After the competition was over, we were invited to eat a delightful dinner buffet at Jumeirah beach hotel. The food was incredible, from local Egyptian food Koshary being offered to grilled shrimp and chocolate fountains. It was by the beach, overlooking the Burg Al-Arab, a beautiful sail-shaped building. (the room sticking out at the top is actually a tennis room).

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Although I did not have much time to check out the city’s extravagance, I was able to visit the tallest building in the world: Burg el khalifa. It reached up to the sky, and the building was covered with a lightshow- the building changed colours, patterns, lights shot up from the bottom of the building to the top, I was in awe.

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I also got a chance to see their dancing fountain, which is right next to the building. It is unlike any I have seen before, the water shot up into the sky exactly in sync with the music, lights changing based on the emotion being sung. The crowd gasped and cheered, there was even an applause… yes an applause for a fountain!

IMG_2040.pngInside the Dubai mall, there is an Area called SkiDubai with artificial snow- where you can ski, pet penguins and more. To get pumped up, I went zip lining in Ski Dubai, it was really cold, my face went numb, my eyes watered, it was hard to remember I was still inside a mall.

Finally, I also got away from the city, and we went to a park. The park was just beautiful, the colours, the butterflies, it was a refreshing change. It had houses, shapes, bridges built from flowers. It was simply breathtaking- it’s one of my favourite places visited so far.

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Dubai is the pinnacle of capitalism, a city of luxury and extravagance. I recommend it to all city-lovers!

Special thanks to my friend and business partner Mahmoud Sultan for letting me use his pictures in this post.

Thank  you for taking the time to read this post- hope you enjoyed it! I’ll be with you again next week, stay healthy.

Life in Cairo from the eyes of a Local

I’m filling in for the writer while he is traveling across Europe. In this post, I will be showing you my beautiful city, Cairo Egypt.

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When people think of Cairo, usually they picture a vast desert, pyramids, camels and tents. But that’s nowhere near reality, while you can go for hikes in the desert and ride camels or go sand boarding, Cairo is also a bustling city, where nothing closes and no one sleeps.

This city is perfect for those who love diverse spontaneous activities, from getting lost downtown among bright lights and loud music to taking a Nile cruise.

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This is a country that loves life and laughter, you can find a group of street cleaners kicking off the morning with some dancing, and people are not afraid to join in and enjoy the music.

Walking down the streets of Cairo, the smell of spices and street food lingers in the air. In the morning, street carts set up selling an delicious popular dish- Ful (Beans) and Egyptian local bread. People from all classes and backgrounds will stop at these food carts before work for breakfast. It is one of my favorite Egyptian meals.

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Drawing of a Ful Truck

For those who have tried falafel, Egypt is home to that delicious snack. This is my favorite local restaurant: I guarantee you will find the best falafel and Egyptian Dolma there.

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Felfela can be found on Hoda Shaarawy Street, Bab Al Louq, Abdin, Cairo

The markets of Cairo are rowdy and colorful- one of the most well-known market is khan el khaleeli, which is in Islamic Cairo in the heart of the city. There you can find shops of souvenirs, antiques and jewelry, as well as small traditional coffee shops that serve Arabic coffee and Shisha (hookah). In addition to being a major bazaar, its history runs deep with several empires influencing it’s structure, parts of which are still visible today such as the Ottoman’s empire Bab al-Badistan and Bab al-Ghuri gates

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Cairo has taught me to appreciate street-art as a form of expression. Graffiti can be found throughout the streets of Cairo, especially downtown near Tahrir square, where the Egyptian Revolution occurred. I often stumble across beautiful Murals and deep political graffiti-

 

Even though I grew up here, I am always finding new treasures and hidden gems, Cairo is a place I am proud to call home.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I’ll also be writing next week’s post, I’ll take you to the New York of the Middle East: Dubai. Stay healthy!