4For several reasons, there was never a more appropriate time thannow to publish a fresh edition of BEST OF UAE. Not only is this yearthe 40th anniversary of the founding of the UAE, but 2012 has alsoemerged as the year in which the ‘growing pains’ that characterisethe incipient socio-economic maturity of the region, are being feltfar and wide.Tracing this evolution through the prism of the nation’s marchtowards sustainability and diversification, a collection of innovativeorganisations, brands and entrepreneurs have been showcased toemblemise the development for which the UAE is today renowned.As a pillar of stability and progress in an environment of geo-political fragility, this seven-emirate confederation that cameinto being on December 2 1971, thanks to the lucid vision of itsfounding father late H.H. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan inmany ways reflects the best of what the region aspires to; namelypeace, prosperity and progress.Developing global business networks by sharing success storiesin an informative and visually appealing way is essence of howwe have developed our gvpedia brand that now has expanded itsannual book series published in over 40 territories worldwide.As one of its founding partners and a firm believer in the powerof promoting brands and places in this uniquely creative editorialformat, I take this opportunity to wish you happy reading.40 Glorious YearsChairman & InternationalGroup PublisherSven BoermeesterPublisher &Managing Group EditorLisa DuranteProject ManagerRitesh MatlaniCreative ProductionGVP ProgenyA division of GVP Media FZ LLCGraphic DesignerShahab SayedEditorial TeamDinesh RamanathanFrancesca LeenenGere GeorgeHeena MakLavanya NarayanNikita AroraSonam BhoneshwarSrijita ChattopadhyayWebsitegvpedia.comPublished byISBN # 1-904566-78-2Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracyof the information in the ‘Best of UAE’ publication.Neither ‘Best of UAE’ nor Tribe Media takes anyresponsibility for errors or omissions.All rights reservedThe Best of UAE is published under license fromGVP Media FZ LLC. No part of this publicationmay be reproduced, copied, transmitted, adaptedor modified in any form or by any means. Thispublication shall not be stored in whole or in partin any form in any retrieval system.Lisa DurantePublisher & Managing Group Editor
12Celebrating its 40th anniversary on Dec 2, 2011, the UAE has established itself as a bastionof regional prosperity and stability. Based on principles of sustainability that puts to effectiveuse abundant natural resources to build human capabilities and a diversified economy, it isestimated that an annual GDP of USD 358 billion will be reached by the end of 2012. Thecountry has shown remarkable growth since it was first founded by Late H.H. Sheikh Zayedbin Sultan Al Nahyan, Father of the Nation. Underlining its thirst to gain global recognition,the UAE follows a simple and effective strategy based on creating magnificent landmarks todraw inbound tourism and making bold strategic investments locally and abroad to boostthe nation’s profile and foster the contemporary world-class lifestyle that the UAE hasbecome legendary for.Emerging UAE
14BestofUAEVol.1While investing its vast financial surpluses to positivelyimpact world oil prices and build its infrastructure, diversifiedopportunities to accelerate the development process are takingroot. The UAE has also seen growing roles played by the non-oilsectors in boosting the national economy. By luring internationalbusiness and investors, an upsurge in inbound investment haskept the business scenario buoyant despite global economicchallenges.Reviewing the UAE’s economic and social blossoming, theprocess of development can be credited to the solidarity amongits people, the visionary leadership of its rulers and its confidencein the state and its policies overall. In addition, the multiculturalnature of the environment centrally positioned between diversecontinents and time zones has helped the UAE to become asymbol of growth, prosperity and globalisation.With a per capita income of USD 48,500 as of 2011, theUAE ranks 11th competing with dynamic economies of theWest. A liberal environment prevails ensuring that the over200 nationalities residing in this seven-emirate federation thatborders Oman and Saudi Arabia, live to their fullest potential.Political ReformIn line with the UAE’s rapid socio-economic developments, majorsteps have been taken, both at the federal and local levels,to reform the political system in the UAE in order to make itmore responsive to the needs of the country’s citizenry and toensure that it is better equipped to cope with the challenges ofdevelopment. Elections to the Federal National Council (FNC)are regarded as one of the most important developments in thereform process. To be re-elected every 5 years, this advisorycouncil was formed under the provisional constitution of the UAEin 1971. In 2011, an electoral college of 130,000 voters turnedout to vote at all polling centres across the Emirates. The ratio ofwomen voters at most of the centres was higher than men.EmiratisationTo further enhance opportunities of UAE citizens, which currentlycomprise a mere 11.5 percent of the overall population of 7.2million, the government has launched a proactive employmentpolicy called Emiratisation. Applicable in public and private
15sectors, this multi-pronged initiative is the government’s way oftackling unemployment. With aims of reducing its dependencyon foreign workers, the policy is helping Emiratis grow their skillsand knowledge needed in a diversified economy. In a bid tointegrate them successfully into the workforce, the governmenthas established a mandatory quota system in certain sectors,particularly in banking and telecommunications, and is imposingquotas on the private sector for employment of Emirati nationalstoo.HealthDespite promising figures, the UAE has several issues to address,such as worrisome health trends. High fat, high sugar diet andsedentary lifestyles have increased the incidence of diabetes,obesity and high blood cholesterol in the region. According tothe World Health Organisation(WHO), the UAE is ranked 18th inthe list of countries that have the most number of obese peoplewith 75 percent of the population being overweight. Diabetesoccurrence stands at 18.7 percent but expected to rise to 21.4percent by 2030. The rapid pace of modernisation may havebeen positive on many fronts, but in terms of the health of thenation, embracing fast food and sedentary lifestyles has wreakedhavoc on the nation’s wellbeing. Now that the awareness of thisemergency exists, initiatives are being pursued to improve thesestatistics.UAE and the Arab SpringIn the light of the Arab Spring, UAE became the saving grace forpeople in the Middle East looking for peace and stability. While, ittook a communist revolution in China to expand Hong Kong intoa major global city in the late 40s, similarly, UAE has also seen anon-going improvement with the influx of people and their savingscoming into Dubai. In its annual review, Daman Securitiesreported an 11.5 percent surge in UAE Central Bank deposits as asign of money flowing back into the country.Making its mark as a politically stable region amongst itspeers, UAE remains the top favourite country among Gulf nationsfor attracting expatriate talent and provision of employment. Inthe past year, more than Dh 36.73 billion in foreign investmentmade the UAE the ultimate hotspot for foreign direct investment(FDI) projects in the Middle East and Africa.
16UAE and New MediaThe 140-character trend has caught on to the users in theUAE. Social Media has become popular amongst top officials,academicians, citizens and expatriates. A whooping 200,000users on Twitter are from the UAE. A survey by Interactive MiddleEast revealed that most users from the region are guilty oflogging on to Facebook before other websites.His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum hasalso established himself as a social media disciple by regularlyinteracting with the world through Twitter and Facebook.The Emirates eGovernment, a part of the TelecommunicationsRegulatory Authority (TRA) institutes itself at raising thecompetitiveness of UAE through adopting excellent practices inall fields of eGovernment. The eGovernment strategy is part of acomplete and integrated system involving different governmententities with the aim of improving government services andmaking them available through innovative channels 24/7.International Relations and Human RightsSince its establishment, UAE has approached the realm ofInternational Relations with utmost diplomacy and acumen.The main features of the foreign policy is based on adoptionof dialogue, respect of international conventions,commitmentto the United Nations Charter and non-interference of othercountry’s internal affairs, and the settlement of disputes bypeaceful means. The main anchor of UAE’s foreign policy hasbeen building cooperation-based relations with all countries ofthe world.Strong on humanitarian philosophies, UAE is one of the mostliberal countries in the Middle East. The Human rights are legallyprotected as per the constitution of the country, which confersequality, liberty, rule of law, presumption of innocence in legalprocedures, inviolability of the home, freedom of movement,freedom of opinion and speech, freedom of communication,freedom of religion, freedom of council and association, freedomof occupation, freedom to be elected to office and others onto allcitizens, within the limit of the law.
17Environmental ProtectionThe UAE outdoes several big economies in levels of prosperityand standards of living. The ambition of providing world-classinfrastructure to its residents has often turned off the country’ssensitivity to resources. Not only does the UAE have the highestper capita Ecological Footprint in the world, but also, it ranksthird in water consumption after the US and Canada. Despitethese abominable figures, free water supply to Emiratis wasincreased by 20 percent annually with desalination of waterin the UAE increasing pressure on supply systems as demandcontinues to rise.The dichotomy here lies in holding questionable records ofpoor environment protection while sporting the world’s tallestbuildings and grandiose infrastructure. The Federal state is takingon a leadership role in raising awareness and campaigning forchange.Laws have to be followed by structural implementation.Though there exists a plethora of governmental agencies andnon-governmental organisations working towards the Greencause, coordination and cooperation will help in exploringpossibilities of a culture sensitive to environment protection.Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) has embarkedon building the first 10 MW solar PV power plant of theMohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, thelargest solar park in the region, which accords with theDubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030.Mohammed bin Rashid Gardens Project, worth Dh 200bnlaunched by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai,has received wide acclaim across the globe as it promises to strikebetween ecological integrity and real estate necessity.
20Abu Dhabi OverviewFast paced and electrifyingly dynamic, Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United ArabEmirates is rapidly underlining its position as the Sheikh among emirates in the UAEand a jewel among the members of the GCC. With every passing hour, the city is takinggreat strides towards success and finds itself placed rather admirably among the world’selite cities today.With the Ruler of Abu Dhabi and also the President of theUnited Arab Emirates, H. H. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyanat the helm of the city’s progress, it is no surprise that Abu Dhabihas carved itself a rather conspicuous niche under the spotlightand continues to taste constantly expanding success. Blendingcontemporary ideals with traditional glory, Abu Dhabi has seenitself transcend all expectations over the years, something thatcan be attributed to the crown prince, H. H. Sheikh Mohammedbin Zayed Al Nahyan, who serves as chairman of the ExecutiveCouncil and has constantly been a major driving force behind theskyrocketing success Abu Dhabi has seen of late.As has been known since time immemorial, the Arab worldhas been awash with a considerable portion of the world’s oilresources, and since the discovery of oil in Abu Dhabi in 1958,the city has capitalised on the immeasurable value of thisresource whilst developing a non oil-centric economy supportedby tourism, industry and financial services.Shaikh Zayed Bridge, Abu Dhabi
21EconomyThe government of Abu Dhabi has been surging forward withstate of the art infrastructure and development activities outliningtheir long term economic blueprint, with the Department ofEconomic Development aiming to reach the goals set out by theemirate’s Economic Vision 2030 plan. The plan highlights many adiverse aspect, shrouding the manufacturing and financial sectorsas well as throwing light on health and education. With regardto the foreseeable future, Abu Dhabi is set to face challengeswith a possible dip in the property market as well as consumerexpenditure, which in itself has accounted for more than half theGDP in recent years. But financial crises and monetary issuesaside, Abu Dhabi follows a determined tunnel vision approachtowards future economic growth.FinanceThe National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), followed by the AbuDhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) are the largest among banks inthe capital, both of which are majorly owned by the Abu DhabiInvestment Council.Thanks to thoughtful measures taken by theCentral Bank and the local government, the Abu Dhabi economywas insulated against damage during the global volatility with theMinistry of Finance setting up a generous liquidity facility at thetime.Continuous injection of capital into the Abu Dhabi economy bythe government has seen the emirate strengthen itself againstall odds over the years. The Abu Dhabi National InsuranceCompany (ADNIC), a public/private enterprise in operation since1972, leads the sector. The massive National Health InsuranceCompany (Daman), established by the government, has alsogrown in prominence as the UAE’s first specialised health-insurance company. The Islamic banking segment too is startingto take a larger share in sector activities and gaining regionalprominence.Energy SourcesAbu Dhabi is affluent in the UAE’s hydrocarbon reserves, whichsum up to approximately 97.8bn barrels of oil and up to 5percent of the world’s gas reserves. The oil sector has continuallybeen the pinnacle of Abu Dhabi’s economy, accounting for 80percent of government revenues and pumping in capital to fundindustrial and financial services. On another note, independentwater and power projects are being installed via the Abu DhabiWater and Electricity Authority (ADWEA) to ensure sufficientavailability of these resources.Abu Dhabi is also placing heavy emphasis on being a globalpower in renewable energy and green technology, headed bythe efforts of the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (ADFEC),known more popularly as the Masdar Initiative. As a zero-carbon,zero-waste city – Masdar is a USD 22bn mixed-use developmentthat will eventually house 40,000 people, create 70,000 new jobsand bolster the emirate’s GDP by more than 2 percent, is slatedto steal the show when proceedings finally take shape. Solarand wind power are also alternatively being viewed as energysources that can assist in taking the pressure off the oil sector,as is renewable energy in the case of water and electricity. Inaddition the government aims to have renewable resourcesaccount for 7 percent of power production capacity by 2020.Transport ServicesThe transport sector constantly undergoes improvements andexpansions across various segments in order to ensure optimummobility of infrastructure and resources. Given the spike inpopulation growth, which hit 2.9 million at the end of 2011, AbuDhabi is eager to aid the next wave of urban development. Airtraffic has seen an increase in recent times, as has the capacityof the Abu Dhabi International Airport, the government isinvesting furthermore while the greater portion of the estimatedUSD 6.8bn worth of expansions have already been completed.Major changes are progressing at Abu Dhabi’s ports aswell. Under the patronage of the Abu Dhabi Ports Company(ADPC) and the Department of Transport, the emirate isshifting operations from the main port at Mina Zayed to theenormous Khalifa Port in Taweelah. In a pioneering venture forthe UAE, the federal government has set the ball rolling for along-discussed vision, which entails the connection of all sevenemirates via railway. The USD 3bn railway project will eventuallylink up with the larger 1940-km rail development that aims tospider into all six countries of the GCC.
22TourismAbu Dhabi’s reputation as a business hub has been bolstered byits rapid transition into a cultural and eco-tourism destination.The emirate is shedding light on the high-end, low-volumesegment through luxurious developments and cultural offerings.The Louvre and the Guggenheim are branching out to the Gulfregion with branches in Abu Dhabi on Saadiyat Island, the USD27bn cultural district project.The Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC) isalso going after the escalating eco-tourism segment by carefullydeveloping some of its most naturally beautiful places onoffer. Sir Bani Yas Island, situated 170 km west of the capital,stands out as a prime example. TDIC is integrating sustainabledevelopment practices within the luxury resort planned on theisland, complete with an animal sanctuary and a promise to planta mangrove seedling for every visitor to the island. Various hoteldevelopments are underway to deal with demand as well asfuture increase.Most importantly, the introduction of the Yas Marina Circuitand the Ferrari World amusement park have reignited theinterest of tourists, whose volume has increased massively intothe emirate, which acts as a motorsport colossus in the regionplaying host to the annual Etihad Airways Formula One GrandPrix among various other events. Abu Dhabi has successfullyemerged as a tourism and entertainment hotspot in the region,with visits by world-renowned personalities taking centre stage,as have popular annual events like the Mubadala World TennisChampionship and the Formula One Grand Prix.IndustryThe emirate, like the most part of the Arabian Gulf, is widelyknown for its petroleum resources, but as part of economicdiversification, measures are being taken towards industrialproduction. Non-oil industry activities accounted for about50.3 percent of GDP at the end of 2010, and manufacturingin particular has made a significant contribution, increasingby more than 10 percent. The food, tobacco and beveragesegment accounted for most of the investment in manufacturing.Petrochemicals and plastic production is expected to grow as thegovernment pours more resources into heavy industry.Currently, heavy industry ventures are focused on the townof Ruwais and the industrial port of Mussafah, site of the AbuDhabi Industrial City and the planned Abu Dhabi Polymers Park.Upon completion the Khalifa Port and Industrial Zone (KPIZ) willalso feature the world’s largest petrochemicals complex. Themetals manufacturing sector is also set to grow as the USD 5.7bnEmirates Aluminium smelter, under construction in Taweelah,becomes the world’s largest greenfield aluminum plant. Theindustrial sector will play an increasingly prominent role in theeconomy and is a crucial part of the emirate’s diversificationscheme.MediaAbu Dhabi is steadily developing as a regional media andcultural supremo as government-sponsored initiatives andforeign investors director the sector to greater heights. The printsegment still dominates the UAE advertising market, accountingfor twice the amount spent on television. Promising inclusionssuch as The National, and expansions planned by Reutersshould ensure the industry stays on the move constantly. In therealm of television, locally based channels aim to take on moreestablished pan-Arab stations, like Middle East BroadcastingCompany (MBC) and Saudi TV.ADMC is viewed as a point of stability within the region thanksto generous government funding. The government inspiredlaunch of twofour54, an umbrella organisation that providessupport for the media sphere across the Arab world, has provenYas Marina Hotel, Abu Dhabi
23to be highly fruitful with its continuous involvement spurring aregional media outburst and constant growth in the media sector.Imagenation, the government’s film production firm, is alsoinvesting generously in the media sector, which could potentiallyprove to reshape the Abu Dhabi media landscape.TelecomThe IT and telecommunications sector has rooted itself asone of the strongest in the region, owing to ever growingdemand and efficient investment practices by the government.The Telecommunications sector has recorded extremely rapidgrowth over the past five years. Since Emirates IntegratedTelecommunications Company (du) hopped onto the telecombandwagon and consequently ended the monopoly of EmiratesTelecommunication Corporation (Etisalat) in 2006, prices havedipped and market competition has helped instigate considerablegrowth. Over the past decade, mobile penetration rates havealmost tripled. In the fixed-line segment, coverage is largelydelineated geographically, with du dominating in Dubai andEtisalat holding the advantage in the rest of the UAE. Thetelecommunications sector is an integral part of the Abu Dhabi:Economic Vision 2030 and the emirate is seeking to raise Internetpenetration to 60 percent by 2030.Primary focus generally lies on increasing the speed andpenetration of broadband Internet connections, and thegovernment is implementing stringent measures to increaseusage, such as free Internet hotspots throughout the city. BothEtisalat and Du are improving broadband infrastructure and areinstalling a fibre-optic network that maximises Internet speedstenfold. This network also provides the foundation for thedevelopment of new value-added services and products.Health Services and EducationAbu Dhabi’s health sector is continuously undergoing ametamorphosis as structural changes have seen privateinvolvement and competition flourish, driving up standards andbringing in greater investment. In Abu Dhabi, over one-fifthof the population is afflicted with diabetes and drastic ratesof obesity have also been recorded. The General Authority forHealth Services has been reformed into two separate entities toincrease efficiency - The Abu Dhabi Health Services Company(SEHA), responsible for public health centre management, whileboth the public as well as private sectors are regulated by theHealth Authority Abu Dhabi. Participation of the private sectorhas certainly been encouraged and SEHA has already engagedwith internationally renowned names such as John Hopkins andCleveland clinic to manage various public facilities. Meanwhile,mandatory insurance coverage has provided access to servicesfor expatriates. The National Health Insurance Company(DAMAN) provides the base of universal coverage.
24Dubai OverviewOver recent years, Dubai has enjoyed a diverse flavour in its make up with touristattractions, people friendly hotspots and record shattering structures like the Burj Khalifaand the Burj Al Arab highlighting much of what the city stands for. Abuzz with all kinds ofactivity, the emirate, situated in a geographical location palatable to hordes of travellersfrom around the world has highlighted the importance of diversifying from oil based wealthand resources. The Prime minister and ruler of Dubai and Vice-President of the UAE, H. H.Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has, followed liberal principles and spearheadedthe transformation of the emirate into a model for fast-track development and successfuldiversification policies.
25EconomyDubai has headlined non-oil sector growth in the UAE overthe past couple of years with wealth from hydrocarbons beingprimarily invested in the service sector, with special emphasison real estate and tourism. Dubai’s placement on the regionaland world map attracts a plethora of developers and touristsfrom around the globe, with Dubai’s ports, making it an idealmarket for the rising powerhouses of India and China. DubaiInternational Capital (DIC), a section of Dubai Holdings, hasacquired stakes in the UK’s HSBC Holdings and StandardChartered, as well as Munich-based European AeronauticDefence and Space.Financial ServicesThe banking sector in Dubai has seen a spike in recent times,due to a banking-smart population. The Dubai Chamber ofCommerce and Industry, is however well aware of the inevitabletrends in booming competition and has since opened itsbanking sector to fresh entrants to uphold growth levels. Theretail sector sees itself well diversified with strong consumerspending, negative real interest rates and product innovationwhile corporate loans and project finance deals remain atlarge. The UAE’s insurance sector is also shooting up at a rateof over 25 percent a year. Dubai leads in terms of insurancemarket share per emirate. Sharia-compliant insurance, betterknown as ‘Takaful’ is engulfing the market, with future growthprojected rather positively. Life insurance and motor insuranceis also on the rise, as is policies for fire and the marine, aviationand transport segments. The Dubai Health Authority has alsotaken a gigantic leap towards the growth of the health sector,with mandatory insurance for workers becoming a headliningphenomenon in the health sector.Energy SourcesOwing to its geographical placement at the centre of one ofthe world’s largest energy producing regions and its positioningbetween Europe and Asia, Dubai is well en route to becoming afinancial and corporate hub for the global energy industry. TheDubai Mercantile Exchange (DME) has set up two new crude oilfutures spread contracts while the government has embarkedon a massive liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage facility project.Oil industry heavyweights like Halliburton have relocated theircorporate headquarters to Dubai while companies such as BritishPetroleum and Shell have a strong presence in the locality. Dubaiis also exploring renewable energy options, such as solar andwind power and hydrogen and nuclear-based power stations.Electricity consumption has steadily risen of late and is projectedto double by 2015. Consequently, the Dubai Electricity and WaterAuthority (DEWA) increased its production capacity at a cost ofabout USD 19.9 billion in capital expenditure.TourismContributing an approximate one-fifth of the Dubai’s direct GDPand about one-third indirectly, Dubai’s hospitality sector attractedover 8 million visitors in 2011. Dubai’s tourism sector is surgingahead in retail, sports, and meetings, incentives, conferencesand exhibitions and medical tourism as well. Dubai is home tothe world’s only seven-star hotel, the iconic Burj Al Arab amidsta cosmos of other luxury resorts surrounded by opportunityfor adventure and world-class recreation. Al Maktoum Airport,scheduled for completion by 2015, will cater to the increasinginflux of visitors. It is expected to be the world’s largest airportcomplex with six runways, a port, attached residential areas andhotels as well as a free trade zone with the capacity to welcome150 million passengers annually.
26Transport ServicesDubai’s position as an aviation hub looks rigid courtesy of theexpansion of the existing Dubai International Airport (DXB) andthe construction of Al Maktoum International Airport, whichhas been poised to become the world’s largest aviation facility.Economic development is adding pressure to the Emirate’s roadnetworks and the Road and Transport Authority (RTA) has takenconsistent efforts to enhance the public transport system andoffer new solutions to congestion. Vital to this strategy is themultiple award winning Dubai metro, which opened in 2009,and now holds the record of the longest driverless system inthe world, after having revolutionised the transportation systemin Dubai while buses, waterbuses and water taxis have beenupgraded to serve the people better. The RTA is investing USD1billion in a state-of-the-art tram network along the Al SufouhRoad. Additionally, the upcoming venture of Dubai’s Logistics CityBestofUAEVol.1will enable companies to distribute cargo via land, sea or air fromone location to another.IndustryIndustry is taking monstrous strides across the UAE as a whole,with the sector contributing to a massive chunk of the economywithin the past decade. Dubai has carved a niche for itself asa hotbed for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) andrealises the importance of a flourishing industrial sector. To thisend, developers are working on the 52 million square metreDubai Industrial City (DIC), set to open by 2015 and aiming tobecome a centre for the region’s industrial and manufacturingsectors, including chemicals, heavy industry and F&B. DubaiMaritime City, part of Dubai World, will be the world’s firstindustrial centre dedicated to maritime and associated industries.Dubai Aluminium Company (Dubal) is another feather in Dubai’sindustrial cap and is the largest single non-oil contributorto Dubai’s economy. Opportunities also exist for local steelproducers, the food and beverage industries as well as fertilisers.Telecommunications and TechnologyThe UAE’s telecommunications market has grown rapidly inrecent years. Etisalat has metamorphosed itself from a smalllocal company into a leading global telecommunications giant,while Du, has diversified its network and has grown into afully operational service provider today, proving to be fiercecompetition to Etisalat . Providers are looking towards the arrivalof mobile television, which is television beamed to a mobilephone handset. Information technology in the UAE has seenmajor investment over the past decade with Dubai Internet City
27attracting some of the world’s top IT companies. The IT sectoris still positioned for further growth, with Microsoft set to openan innovation laboratory in Dubai, to develop, in conjunctionwith Emirates Airlines, information technology solutions for theaviation and travel industries. Dubai has racked up a reputationas a major retail and shopping destination as well. Retailcomplexes occupy prime space with tourism and shopping beinginextricably linked. With a young, growing brand-consciouspopulation contributing to the metropolis that Dubai is, the city’sunique retail sector looks towards a rather promising future.Real Estate and ConstructionThe well-known fact that one-third of the cranes in the worldare in Dubai still holds true despite vicissitudes in real estateand construction market. Dubai Land Department has recentlyconfirmed the rise in increase of purchase of home and officeproperty. This comes as good news changing the otherwiseneutral gears of the property market. Despite rising costs andlabor and materials shortages, the sector has over USD 1.1trillionworth of projects underway. To begin with, the Business Bayproject, being developed by Dubai Properties and conceivedas a new central business district along with Dubai WorldCentral, which will be the largest development of its kind, withthe infrastructure to support 900,000 residents and 700,000workers. The emirate also promotes regional environmentalissues and with all builders and developers in Dubai having tomeet a stringent set of green building regulations. The realestate market in Dubai has witnessed an increase over the pastdecade; with growth in the residential segment in addition tothe commercial segment, Dubai is continuously expanding itsbusiness infrastructure to become a major financial servicescentre. The tourism sector is a primary driving force of thereal estate industry in Dubai, and, with millions more touristsexpected to flock to Dubai’s shopping and beach attractions overthe coming years, demand for luxury hotel rooms is on the riseand several large-scale developments look to fill in the mentionedspot. Similarly, the retail market is integral for the real estatesector, and the government is seeking to impose some order tothe mostly unregulated property market by introducing new laws,with a rather broad minded view of improving investment.Health Services and EducationMushrooming population indicate that the demand for healthcareservices in Dubai has increased with the need for hospital bedsset to double by 2025. The UAE government has reworked thepublic health infrastructure at primary, secondary and tertiarylevels and nine major hospital projects are underway at avalue of USD 596 million. Dubai has also invested generouslyin specialist care units and health education is becoming apriority in schools with public health initiatives underway. Fundsare also being allocated for research and development at theDubai HealthCare City (DHCC) with a USD 1.8bn public-privatepartnership with the Tatweer group. The private sector is alsoexpected to play an increasingly important role, with globalhealth care providers eyeing the Dubai market as a potentiallylucrative option. Changing scenarios here, Dubai’s educationsector is seeing a promising expansion with focused governmentinvestment and increased private sector involvement at everylevel. The creation of education and research free zones hasattracted world famous names in the field of education, whichcan be emphasised by the likes of Dubai Knowledge Village aswell as Dubai International Academic City (DIAC), which is hostto a galaxy of educational institutions from countries aroundthe world like Canada, Ireland, the UK and Belgium. The UAEgovernment has also localised education efforts to some extent,with each of the seven emirates encouraged to establish bodiesto liaise between local educators and the federal government onthe implementation of modernisation programmes.
28Sharjah OverviewSharjah is the third largest economy in the UAE, after Dubai and Abu Dhabi, covers 2,600square kilometres and includes three enclaves on the Gulf of Oman - Khorfakkan, Dibba,Hisn and Kalba, as well as two islands, Abu Musa and Sir Abu Nuair. It is the only emiratewith ports on the Gulf and the Indian Ocean, thus occupying a crucial axis at the hub ofglobal trade routes, ensuring its place as a centre of international commerce.The leadership of H. H. Sheikh Sultan Al-Qasimi is at theforefront of democratising the political process; bringing womeninto the political system, for example. Sharjah has achieved theright balance between economic development and preservingits unique cultural heritage, with visitors welcomed by ornateminarets, green parks and Dhows. The construction and realestate sectors are booming, as is the burgeoning tourismindustry.This emirate is carving out a distinct tourism niche for itselfin the Gulf, focusing on culture and attracting families. Sharjah’sruler has placed an emphasis on funding cultural projects. Aprime example is the Sharjah Heritage and Arts area, locatedin the heart of Sharjah; the buildings, historical sites, narrowalleyways and souks have been renovated.The emirate has the third largest share of the UAE’s 97.8billion barrels of proven oil reserves, with an estimated 1.5 billionbarrels. Over the past three decades, the ruler has sought tomake the emirate the centre for non-oil industrial manufacturingin the UAE, complementing the focus on real estate and businessin neighbouring Dubai. Much of this has been achieved throughits 19 industrial areas, which account for more than 40 percent ofall industrial activity in the UAE and 48 percent of the country’sindustrial gross domestic product.It is also the home to 45 percent of the UAE’s industrialactivities and makes up 40 percent of industry-derivedcontribution to GDP. The emirate’s geographical position meansit is in the middle of one of the fastest-growing regions in theworld. After setting up the first petrochemicals plant in 2007,more than 52,979 licences were renewed in 2010 with HamriyaFree Zone while the upcoming Sharjah Airport International FreeZone had 5,542 registered licenses in 2011.Sharjah is investing in real estate by building an island life,
29as, like other emirates. Sharjah’s Nujoom Islands developmentwill be built on a plot of land more than 5.6 million squaremetres off the emirate’s northern coast, with the initial phase ofconstruction estimated to cost around 35 percent of a total USD4.9 billion. The island will include 40 towers containing residentialand commercial space, alongside 145 apartment buildings, fourhotels and five yacht clubs. Growth is expected to continue in theconstruction sector, despite the rising costs of building materials,as population growth demands new homes and the infrastructureto service them.HE Sheikh Essam bin Saqer Al Qassimi, Chairman of the Officeof His Highness, the Ruler of Sharjah, and Head of the UAE’sAffairs in WHO, and Dr. Said Arnaout, United Arab EmiratesCountry Desk Officer, signed the agreement that allows for theaccession of Sharjah into the Healthy Cities Programmeme by theUnited Nations. This is another step taken by Sharjah towardsthe betterment of the emirate’s health as the programmemefocuses on the health related challenges produced by fast-pacedurbanisation that leads to poor health among people due to itsadverse effect on the environment, and the unhealthy eatinghabits and lifestyles it creates; a problem which a number ofcities around the world now face.Sharjah also possesses a rapidly developing educationalsystem that has recently several advancements at the primaryand high school levels. For higher education, the landmarkSharjah Education City, established in 1988, attracts studentsfrom the UAE and the Gulf. Reputed colleges like the AmericanUniversity of Sharjah, which is a coeducational university basedon American institutions of higher education but thoroughlygrounded in Arab culture, the Skyline University of Sharjah andthe University of Sharjah itself. The emirate is expanding itseducational capacity with its Ruler funding a multi-million dollarproject at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada to establish achair in Global Islam Studies in Sharjah.The land of MuseumsFor long the Emirate of Sharjah has taken pride in preservingand exhibiting local culture. Sharjah is the land of heritageas museums abound the city. Namely, the Museum of IslamicCivilization; exhibiting the world Islam since the early stages ofthe faith, Sharjah Science Museum; which is very popular withchildren and adults alike, the Maritime Museum; that catersto marine enthusiasts, the Sharjah Archaeology Museum; thathouses artefacts of the early Bedouins and the Sharjah ArtMuseum that promotes Emirati talent and art in the region. Whilethe Sharjah Aquarium remains a popular site for family visits, notto be missed are the elegant and Arabesque Souqs that offer agreat chance to observe an ethnic Arabian market.
30Ajman OverviewAjman, located near Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain, is one of the smallest emirate with an areaof just 260 square kilometres. It is a perfect blend of old and new that encompasses three mainareas: Ajman City, Masfout and Manama.
31Almost 90 percent of its population resides in the city, which hasgrown considerably due to an influx of people from neighbouringDubai and Sharjah. The strategic location at the entrance of theArabian Gulf places the emirate at an advantageous trade junctionbetween the east and west. Through leadership, strong politicalties in the region, generous development and efforts to encourageforeign investment, Ajman has garnered positive reputation as therising star among all the Emirates.Ajman has become a an inexpensive getaway from busiercities like Abu Dhabi and Dubai for residents, citizens and eventourists who wish to indulge in the newfound Arabian stylehospitality it has to offer. For instance, the Al Zorah project,located on the eastern side of Ajman Creek provides an exclusive,integrated holiday and residential destination. It is a USD 60 billionsustainable development project, established to a clean emirate.Historically, the textiles industry has dominated, but there hasbeen a recent shift to investments in the areas of chemicals andmachinery production. The boat-building sector is also expandingbeyond traditional Dhow building. Especially with burgeoningdemand for luxury yachts, manufacturers are meeting localdemand and developing a sustainable export market. With agrowing population eager for more retail opportunities, shoppingcomplexes are also being constructed. The Dana Mall spreadingover 150,000 square foot, worth Dh 400 million is one suchexample.Ajman’s property market was worth about Dh 3.5bn (USD953.05m). The cheaper and more liberal work permits in theemirate mean fewer problems with labour compared with the restof the UAE. Although as far as infrastructure is concerned, theemirate remains a key destination for new investment. Focus isdirected at further updates and possible relocation of the AjmanPort, better road links to neighbouring emirates and a new sewageand wastewater treatment plant. As air-conditioning drains theelectricity supply, district cooling that cools from a central locationto various locations has been introduced as an alternative.As for the economy of this emirate, Ajman Bank remains wellon track and is strategically positioned for growth. The Banksustained profitability after just three years of operation, is atestimony to the strength of the weatherproof and sustainablebusiness model, which is firmly anchored in the real economy.Ajman Bank delivered exceptional results in 2011 with a positivenet profit of Dh 7m for 2011, a year-on-year increase of 75percent. In December 2011, the bank recorded one of the highestEmiratisation levels across the banking sector.
32Umm Al Quwain OverviewKnown as the ‘mother of two powers’ due to its powerful seafaring tradition and influenceover land and sea, Umm Al-Quwain covers an area of 750 square kilometres. Laden withnatural allure, the emirate stretches from the beautiful, lush green coastal mangroveslining the shores of the Arabian Gulf, inland across the rolling sand dunes to the fertileoasis surrounding Falaj Al Moalla (a stretch of huge sand dunes). With an estimatedpopulation of 62,000 the emirate offers residents and tourists alike, a tempting mix ofextreme sports and historical sites.
33Rush of ExcitementThe scream of people as they jump off their planes can beheard in the air, the smell of burnt rubber looms over the areaand the booming sound of shotguns fired into the air awakenspeople from their dreamy state. Umm Al-Quwain is the fastestgrowing destination for extreme sports.1. Umm Al Quwain AeroclubSky diving is the primary activity and there is a team ofdedicated instructors. The training courses are completedmostly on time, due to the excellent weather conditions thatprevail throughout the year and because of the availabilityof a specially modified aircraft for this purpose. Besides thelarge numbers of UAE Nationals and Licensees who enjoy thissport, sky divers from the GCC and Europe have made thisdestination and activity uniquely popular in the UAE.2. The Emirates Car and Motorcycle Racing clubFounded in 1999 by H.H. Sheikh Marwan bin Rashid AlMu’alla, a motor car enthusiast and champion race driver,the racing club is the only one in the UAE to be recognisedby the Federation Internationale de L’Automobile (FIA) andFederation Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM). Withregular international participants from Australia, New Zealand,Japan and India the club has a multitude of facilities formembers and non-members with its objectives derived andimplemented under the ordinance of the Supreme OrganizingCommittee.3. The Umm Al-Quwain Shooting ClubSpread over a large area, opposite to the Dreamland AquaPark and the UAQ Aeroclub, the shooting club is a safe andsupervised environment offering comprehensive outdoor andindoor ranges, various ammunitions and exclusivity. Underthe watchful eyes of qualified instructors and professionals,amateurs and the more experienced will enjoy the thrill of theshoot.Rich HeritageThe modern history of Umm Al-Quwain dates back some200 years when the Al Ali tribe moved their capital from AlSinniyah Island to its present location in the mid 18th century,excites everyone alike. Keeping in stride with the UAE history,the road networks are connected to charming villages wheremany Bedouin settlements still thrive.1. Al Dur IslandLocated along the coast near Umm Al-Quwain is the famousarchaeological site with the remains of a once important townof the region dating over 2000 years ago. Several interestingobjects including impressive tombs, stone houses, largestorage jars, and glassware from Egypt and Syria have beenunearthed with successive excavations.2. Umm Al Quwain FortThe fort has a well displayed jewellery collection, in-depthweapons collection and material from the emirates Al-Durarchaeological site. Most interesting of all, however, is theextraordinary story pinned to a wall of one of the towersrelating to the murder of Ruler H. H. Ahmed Bin Ibrahim AlMu’alla.
34Ras Al-Khaimah (meaning ‘the top of a tent’) covers an area of 2,900 square kilometresalong the eastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula. It is heavenly to snorkel and dive into thewarm waters and experience an occasional encounter with dolphins, turtles, sea cows orwhales while exploring the coral reef. The 300,000-populated emirate also offers an upwardglance at the majestic Al Hajjar Mountains.Ras Al Khaimah Overview
35This dramatic juxtaposition of red-dunned desert and rockymountain and the blue water of the peninsula, create a stunningbackground for those wanting to trek into the rustic villages fora closer look at its inhabitants and the traditional way of locallife. Or maybe visit the various archeological sites, forts andabandoned villages that reveals a history dating back to 5000 BC.The Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Board ensures the emirateis positioned as a historical destination. Because this emiratehas a very old heritage and the Department of Antiquities andMuseums have taken the initiative to manage the restoration ofmonuments of local and visual importance, like the watchtowersof the coastal towns of Jazirat Al-Hamra, Ma’arid and Rams.To accommodate the growing number of tourists, expatriatesand businesses, RAK is improving and developing an integratedtransport infrastructure. RAK International Airport will seek USD150m from the government over the next 20 years to improveboth cargo and passenger facilities with upgrades set to increasecapacity to 1.5m passengers per year. Improvement to roads willalso be made with about USD 272m to be spent in the next 10years.With the oil and gas sector contributing about 3 percent ofGross Domestic Product (GDP), RAK is diversifying its economyto investment, trade, industry and tourism. A major initiativetowards this has been the RAK Free Trade Zone Authority, theRAK Investment Authority and the Investment and DevelopmentOffice. The emirate’s business-friendly policies have seen aninflux of foreign investment in and outside of free trade areas.RAK’s young population is creating the need for moreresidential space. The emirate’s population is expected torise from around 300,000 to 750,000 by the year 2020.The government has established two property developmentcompanies: RAK Properties and Rakeen, to encourage buildingand investment in both the real estate and tourism sectors.Considerable effort is being directed towards the public sectorand social infrastructure, such as new schools, hospitals andresearch centres.Fun time in RAKRas Al Khaimah conducts the annual Ras Al Khaimah HalfMarathon. Registered with the International Association ofAthletics Federations (IAAF), the race calls for attention fromleading athletes and global sports media placing RAK at aninternational pedestal. One must get a glimpse of the UAE AwafiFestival, an annual desert event celebrating Arab culture. Themain attraction here is the dramatic sand dune drives and manyother interesting sites like a heritage village with traditionalfood and dance as well as shops for food and souvenirs. For thechildren, a petting zoo and plenty games are available. RAK alsoholds its own Terry Fox Run to raise money for cancer research.
36Fujairah, known as the ‘Jewel of Arabia’ possesses spectacular views of the HajjarMountains, white sandy beaches, and lush green landscapes filled with palm trees. Thedramatic mountain scenery delivers a stunning backdrop to the glorious blue ArabianSea and pristine stretches of beach. It is the only emirate that has a mountainous terrainand has a higher than average yearly rainfall, allowing agriculture to take place amongstthe sand. The government of this 130,000-populated emirate is actively promotingthe ongoing development of Fujairah as a tourist destination. The Fujairah Tourism &Antiquities Authority (FTB), established since 1997, works at developing and promotingtourism, and to utilise the various natural and cultural attractions.Fujairah Overview
Apart from a visit to KhorKalba, with its beautiful wide openbeaches, bird life and a view of families enjoying a nice picnic,the town of Fujairah is just splendid to gaze at, during thedusk. When the sun sets behind sand dunes, the sky glowswith heavenly beauty manifesting a sight that you have alwaysimagined. About 30 kilometres before Fujairah on the roadfrom Dhaid, you’ll drive through Masafi’s famous Souq Al-Juma(Friday Market) which is open everyday from 8am to 10pm andis abound with rugs, fruit, vegetables, household goods andsouvenirs.This emirate is also a paradise for water sports enthusiasts.The warm crystal water here makes it a perfect spot for divers,snorkelers and fishers. Apart from that, visitors can laze bythe pool or on the beach at the many hotel resorts aroundKhorFakkan and Badiyah.As far as the local industry is concerned, it consists ofcement, stone crushing and mining as well as an increase inconstruction activity. The federal government employs most ofthe local workforce with many working in the service sector.The free zones have also flourished as full foreign ownershipis allowed. H.H Sheikh Saleh Al Sharqi, younger brother tothe ruler, is widely recognised as the driving force behind thecommercialisation of the economy.Freedom of BusinessFujairah, the only emirate on the East Coast, has seen growthbut traditionally relies on fishing and agriculture. While theemirate has evolved into one of the world’s leading oil-bunkeringports, it also has several important industries including cement,stone and mining. In the recent years, there has also been amajor progress in construction industry and tourism, while thestandard of living in the emirate remains high. However, thebusiness potential of Fujairah remains relatively unexploitedoffering unique investment and business opportunities for bothdomestic and international investors and entrepreneurs.The Port of Fujairah next to the Free Zone enables investorsand entrepreneurs to fully take advantage of the emirate’s uniquestrategic location as the available shipping services provideaccess to all Arabian Gulf ports as well as all major ports in theRed Sea, India, Iran and Pakistan, not to mention at least weeklyservices to Europe, Far East and North America. Fujairah is alsohome to the Fujairah International Airport, the only airport onthe UAE’s East Coast and Northern Oman. The airport’s closeproximity to the Port of Fujairah makes it ideal for sea-air cargoand logistics. In addition, both the port and airport are close tothe Free Zone of Fujairah offering 100 percent tax exemption,100 percent capital and profits repatriation, 100 percent foreignownership and variety of other investment and business friendlypolicies and facilities.The emirate lacks the oil and gas deposits that benefitedAbu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah, and instead has focused ondeveloping tourism and industry. While industry has relied onoil bunkering and other marine services that take advantage ofFujairah’s prime location outside the Strait of Hormuz, the touristtrade is almost entirely reliant on guests arriving by road fromother emirates. A new federal motorway between Fujairah andDubai promises to peel 45 minutes off travel times and boost thetourism, property and air cargo sectors. This will definitely attractmore trade with established business communities in Dubai aswell as improve real estate.
38UAE EducationNo more is it a privilege. It’s a necessity, a must-have, a must-do and most definitely amust-be. Education encompasses the essence of all the hopes, ambitions, and dreams thatwe’ve envisioned for the nation in the years to come. To turn this vision into a reality, UAEhas embarked on a sweeping journey to imbibe in its citizens a thirst for knowledge anddevelop leaders for a better and brighter tomorrow.Local UniversitiesThe first step in the sweeping journey to an enlightened futureis rooted in the country’s belief that every citizen of the nation isprepped by its educational institutions to compete and thrive in aglobal environment.Acknowledging the growing emphasis on education, almost11,532 Emirati students were enrolled at local universities in thefall of 2011-2012. “ This is the largest group of freshmen studentsin the history of UAE higher education institutions,” said SheikhNahyan, UAE Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research.Close to 5,533 enrolled in the Higher College of Technology(HCT), with 3,737 enrolling in the United Arab Emirates University(UAEU) and 2,272 set to join Zayed University (ZU). Basing theirfoundations on the pillars of innovation, inspiration and education,all three government backed institutions strive to provide citizenswith the highest standards of education and offer them a future ofsecurity and progress.Local universities are currently providing over 200 majors andscientific programmes that cover all knowledge fields to placeEmirati’s on a level playing field with students coming from majoruniversities across the globe.Zayed University, founded for UAE National women in 1998, withcampuses in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, today educates more than7,000 male and female students from 19 countries providing themwith the opportunity to broaden horizons in various fields includinggovernment studies, arts, business, media and IT.Similarly, the United Arab Emirates University, established in1976 has expanded from an original four departments to thecurrent nine faculties. As of 2011, 650 faculty members of theUAEU offer over 12,000 students; graduate, postgraduate, PhDand Continuing Education Programmes in a variety of fieldsincluding Business and Economics, Engineering, IT, Food andAgriculture, Humanities and Social Sciences, Law and Medical andHealth Sciences.Last but not the least, the system of the Higher Collegesof Technology, founded in 1988, the largest higher educationinstitution in the UAE is currently educating more than 19,000students across 17 campuses in the UAE. With almost 2000 facultymembers, HCT offers 90 different, English-taught programmesin Applied Communications, Business, Engineering, InformationTechnology (IT), Health Sciences and Education at various levels.The Ministry of Education has adopted strategy “Education2020,” a series of five-year plans designed to introduce advancededucation techniques, improve skills, and focus on the self-learning abilities of students.International FranchisesHome to a wide expatriate population, the UAE is reinforcingits multicultural outlook by opening doors to several reputeduniversities from across the globe by encouraging them toestablish branches in the country, widening horizons in theeducation sector.Zayed University, Abu Dhabi Campus
39Private universities in Dubai and Sharjah have reportedan overall increase in their undergraduate student enrolmentnumbers at the start of the 2011-12 academic year. Variousreputed universities from India, Pakistan, America, Europe,Australia, Russia and Philippines have established educationalfranchises, hoping to provide quality education to citizens andexpats residing in country. The Dubai International AcademicCity (DIAC), education cluster of TECOM Investments has alonereported an approximate increase of 15 percent on total studentnumbers.To cater to the growing student and industry demand, privateuniversities have also increased the number and type of coursesbeing offered to students. The institution reporting the highestleap in its new undergraduate student intake is one of UK’s leadinguniversities, Heriot-Watt University whose Dubai campus hasreported an approximate increase of 40 percent. The institutionhas recently moved to its own campus and has introduced in total,nine undergraduate and postgraduate courses into its curriculumthis year.Next in line for universities with the highest enrolmentnumbers are India’s Manipal University and London’s MiddlesexUniversity. Both institutions have experienced an approximategrowth of 30 percent for new students. Keeping with the trendof introducing new courses, Middlesex has introduced an MBAwith five specialisations, a postgraduate programmeme in PublicHealth, another one in Human resources and labour relations,and a coming Master’s law degree next autumn, to add to itspresent range of courses. Manipal also recently introduced aDoctoral programmeme in biotechnology and has moved to itsown 750,000 square foot campus as of September 2011. Outgoingpresident of the University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD),Professor Rob Whelan also reported an expected 17 percentgrowth. The leading Australian University also announced theintroduction of master’s degree courses in international studiesand media and communications as well as a Bachelors inEngineering, all accredited by the Ministry of Higher Educationand Scientific Research. In addition, the American University ofSharjah (AUS) and the Rochester Institute of Technology Dubai(RIT) expect their new enrolment numbers to increase between15 and 20 percent. RIT is also preparing to move to its owncampus.Moreover, AUS has launched an undergraduate programmemefor industrial engineering and is considering the introductionof postgraduate degrees in architecture and fine arts. Anewcomer to DIAC, Amity University, tops the list with most newprogrammemes introduced onto the market as it offers studentsThe University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD) is one of the UAE’s oldest and most prestigious universities. Established in1993 by the University of Wollongong in Australia, currently ranked in the leading universities in the world.
40undergraduate degrees in the niche fields of nanotechnology,aerospace engineering, nuclear science and technology, solar andalternative energy and forensic science. Recognising the needfor localised courses, the Canadian University of Dubai recentlylaunched a MBA in Islamic Banking at the Najah Education andCareers exhibition in Abu Dhabi last October.All the above mentioned universities are eminent institutionsand have adapted themselves to meet the needs of UAE’spopulation. The aim is to allow students to build a globalperspective by offering internationally accredited courses that willequip them to survive in a globally competitive environment.Dubai International Academic CityDubai International Academic City (DIAC) the world’s only FreeZone dedicated to Higher Education has been developing theregion’s talent pool and adding to its knowledge base since itsestablishment in 2007.Dr. Ayoub Kazim, Managing Director, Dubai Knowledge Villageand Dubai International Academic City, and member of TECOMInvestments Education Cluster said, “The formation of DubaiInternational Academic City was the result of an unprecedenteddemand for higher education from both regional and expatriatestudents in Dubai. Incidentally, a greater demand rose out of thetremendous growth of Dubai Knowledge Village, the precursorto DIAC, which facilitated the emirate as a whole to attractrenowned educational institutions from around the world.”Spreading knowledge across an 18 million sq ft. campus,the community with state-of-the-art modern facilities hostsrenowned academic institutions from Britain, Unites States,Australia, India, Pakistan, Europe, UAE and Menasa. In 2010,DIAC hosted 53 percent of the universities in the UAE and 23.5percent of the universities in the GCC. Above 20,000 studentsfrom 137 nationalities have access to over 300 Higher Educationprogrammemes. Diplomas, undergraduate and postgraduatecourses allow students to choose from several fields such asEngineering, IT, Mass Communication, Healthcare, BusinessManagement, Fashion and Interior Design opening for them aworld of opportunities.Apart from academic offerings, the campus also offersstudents a wholesome college experience by offering leisureactivities, including pool tables, table tennis, foosball, air hockey,and video games. Popularly called the “Recreation room”, thefacility also features many indoor events like photographyexhibitions, talent shows, fashion shows and gamingcompetitions.In addition, DIAC students are supported by the StudentHub Team that organises social, cultural and sporting events.DIAC also supports AIESEC, the world’s largest non-political,independent, non-profit organisation run by students who areinterested in world issues, leadership and management. Itserves as an international platform for the youth to discover anddevelop their potential and build personal networks for a strongerfuture.Its motto “We believe in the journey, not the destination” iswell reflected in its vision to be a reputed, sought-after and wellrenowned education hub in the UAE.Knowledge VillageSpread across a picturesque one km long campus in the heart ofDubai, Dubai Knowledge Village the world’s only Free Zone areadedicated to Human Resource Management aims to develop theregion’s talent band and establish UAE as a knowledge-driveneconomy.Established in 2003, the community serves as a uniquehub for the best selection of Human Resource Management,Consultation, Training and Personal Developmentprogrammemes. With over 450 business partners, DKV aims toestablish itself as both a trusted business partner and a centre ofexcellence for proficient development. Some of the most famousuniversities from Belgium, Canada, Iran, India, Pakistan, Ireland,UK, Russia and Australia have established a separate branch inDubai Knowledge Village.Dr. Ayoub Kazim, Managing Director, Dubai Knowledge Villageand Dubai International Academic City, and member of TECOMInvestments Education Cluster said, “In line with the UAE’svision to create a knowledge-based economy, Dubai KnowledgeVillage aims to develop the region’s talent pool through settingup training and development institutions that focus on humanresource management, consultancy and personal development.”Today, a large number of DKV business partners have set uptraining centers, institutes and HR agencies to sustain and securetheir market share in this booming sector. DKV offers state-of-the-art campus facilities including a 330 seat auditorium, fullyequipped meeting rooms, 24-hour security monitored buildingsand campus, ample parking space, a food court, a 24-hourconvenience store and wireless Internet services.The growing demand for human capital influenced by Dubai’seconomic strategies is one of the key factors that contributes tothe zone’s success.
41School EducationThe difference between right and wrong, good and bad, selfishand selfless, respect and disrespect is all imbibed in children atan age when they start attending school. The values imparted tothem by their teachers are upheld throughout their life, which iswhy the choice of school is a critical decision in the lives of parentsraising young children.As President His Highness Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan,founder of the UAE said, “The greatest use that can be madeof wealth is to invest it in creating generations of educated andtrained people.”Currently valued at USD 2.8 billion with private sectorenrollment growing at 10 percent, the UAE is among the GCC’slargest education sectors. The country offers private and public,primary and secondary education for citizens and expats to choosefrom. Most of the secondary schools require students to takestandardised tests such as Advanced Placement, SAT, IB Diploma,IGCSE, GCE Advanced level or CBSE at the end of which they areawarded either a Secondary School Leaving Certificate or TechnicalSecondary Diploma.To ensure that educational opportunities and experiences arenot limited to those with financial blessings, the country offersfree primary and secondary education to all its nationals andmakes it compulsory for boys and girls from the age of 5 to 15to be adequately learned. To cater to the extensive expatriatepopulation, several reputed private schools are also in place tooffer a wide range of curriculums including those from America,Britain, France, Germany, India, Pakistan, Philippines and Russia.GEMS education, a forerunner in the private education sectorin the UAE, is currently running 35 educational institutions withhopes of expansion in the near future. Curriculums require allstudents to take Arabic language classes and Muslim students areencouraged to take Islamic studies as well.Although, the medium of instruction in public schools is Arabic,the growing demand for global competence has put specialemphasis on English as a second language to ensure that studentsare fully prepared to attend universities around the world andcompete in the global marketplace. In addition, rote instructionis being replaced with more interactive forms of learning withthe hope of turning education into an enjoyable experience. TheAbu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), Dubai Education Council(DEC) and UAE Ministry of Education accomplish this and more,by developing reform activities, auditing schools and consistentlymonitoring and developing professional qualifications of teachers,at the same time making sure that local traditions, principles andthe cultural identity of the UAE is sustained.DID YOU KNOW?1. 11,532 - Emirati students enrolled at local universities inthe fall of 2011-20122. 15 percent increase in student numbers for DubaiInternational Academic City3. 21,000 students enrolled at Dubai International AcademicCity and Dubai Knowledge Village (as of September 2011)4. Dh 200m spent on a new campus recently completed forHeriot-Watt University Dubai5. Dh 120m spent on a new recently completed for ManipalUniversity Dubai6. Dh 90m spent on a new School of Business andManagement recently opened at AUS7. USD 2.8 billion – Current value of UAE’s education sector8. Primary and secondary education - Free for all UAEnationals in public institutions9. Number of schools in Dubai as of 2011 sums upto 227,with 79 government schools and 48 private institutions10. Literacy rate of the UAE youth in 2010 - 94 percent malesand 97 percent females
42UAE AttractionsAccording to statistics from Visa, the world’s leading payment solutions provider, 2010 wasthe year of recovery for the tourism sector in the UAE. Of the total spend on Visa cardsby international visitors, USD 1.9bn came from just 10 markets with the British being thetop spenders by far, contributing over USD 441.2 million electronically towards the UAEeconomy in a year. Followed by American and Russian visitors, that spend USD 302.9 andUSD 238.1m respectively, these figures come as no surprise as the country has voted as thefavourite summer getaway.Among the many records held by UAE for its extravagant tourism offering, let’s not forgetthese includes an indoor snow park, a Ferrari theme park, a scenic view from the top ofthe world and so much more. These top tourist spots cannot be missed and are writingcontemporary history parallel to country’s striking past.Ski DubaiA fan of superlatives, the Emirate of Dubai has set newbenchmarks for the global recreation industry after the creationof the world’s largest indoor snow park in November of 2005 atthe centrally located Mall of the Emirates. An obvious favouriteof the kids, the 22,500 square metres marvel offers even grown-ups the opportunity to enjoy childlike excitement and transcendbehavioural stereotypes associated with adulthoodSnowboarding offers you the chance to slide and glide overa 400-metre long run, and keeps the adrenalin high throughthe ‘Freestyle Zone’ designed specifically with jumps and rails toappease your adventurous side. If you’re not the adventuroustype, build a snowman, take a tour of the snow park or simplyenjoy the view over the Ski’s main slope. To make possible theseemingly impossible, is something the UAE thoroughly seems toenjoy. Visit www.skidxb.comAt The Top, Burj KhalifaThe view from descending airplanes was hard to match until theworld’s tallest tower opened doors for an unprecedented view ofmatchless scenery. “At the Top”, lets you experience the splendourof the world’s tallest building from your vantage point on level124.The visit begins in the reception area on the lower groundlevel of The Dubai Mall and aboard a 65-metre long travelator.As the exciting journey catches speed, in a vertical ascent tothe observation deck, the doors open, and floor-to-ceiling glasswalls provide a spectacular unobstructed 360-degree view of thecity, desert and ocean. By night, sparkling lights and stars addto the splendour and grandeur. Special telescopes provide virtualtime-travel visions of the scenes beyond and below. The open-airterrace offers another perspective of the sweeping views belowand you can stay as long as you like before making the returnjourney. Visit www.atthetop.ae
43Dubai AutodromeThe region’s first fully integrated motorsports facility, DubaiAutodrome, lets you experience the thrill of smouldering rubber,speeding steel and growling engines as you see the fastest driversin the world in action and feel the adrenalin of the Kartdrome firsthand. Located 25 minutes from central Dubai, Dubai Autodromeserves as an exciting destination for large crowds, especiallytourists.Officially inaugurated in October 2004 when it hosted the finalround of the FIA GT Championship, Dubai Autodrome is designedto accommodate all types of motorsports events including thewell-known GP2 Asia, A1GP, and the Dunlop 24H enduranceI-Fly, DubaiDreamt of flying ever since you were young? Live your dreamswith the World’s first double skydiving simulator, I-FLY. Locatedat Mirdiff City Center in Dubai and spread over an enormous773 square metres, the 10 metres vertical wind tunnel offers aonce in a lifetime opportunity to rise to new heights. It makesthe experience worthwhile by bringing together state-of-the-arttechnologies and one-on-one instructions about exciting skydivingtechniques.The 35-minute first I-FLY lesson allows you to learn the basicsand then gives a two-minute flight with a professional instructor.Complimentary skydive gear is also rented out to enable youto experience actual flight at one-tenth of the cost of a tandemjump but much longer free fall time. Safe for kids, challengingfor adults, exciting for teens and pragmatic for Skydivers, I-FLYfeatures something for everyone. Endless excitement and peakinganxiety balanced with utmost safety and crowning professionalismoffer visitors an unforgettable experience. Visit www.iflyme.comchampionship racing series. To ensure that no one isleft out, the Autodrome combines behind-the-wheel andclassroom instruction at the ‘Race and Driving centre’ fornovices and experienced drivers to develop better drivingabilities and lets them experience first hand karting at theKartDrome. Visit www.dubaiautodrome.com
44Ferarri World, Abu DhabiThe world’s first Ferrari theme park and largest attraction of its kind, Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is an intense multi-sensory experienceand a must-visit adventure destination. Owned solely by the Government of Abu Dhabi, the park offers more than 20 Ferrari-inspiredrides, a wide variety of Italian delicacies, the largest Ferrari store in the world and unique shopping experiences in a marvellouslydesigned space. Located at the fork between Europe, Asia and Africa; Abu Dhabi, one of the world’s fastest growing tourist attractionsis as an ideal location for ‘Ferrari World’.The park’s iconic sleek red roof, inspired by the classic double curve side profile of the Ferrari GT body, spans 200,000 squaremetres, hauling the largest Ferrari logo ever created. Home to the world’s fastest roller coaster has the same force one would feeldriving in an F1 car and breaking at maximum speed. Visit www.ferrariworldabudhabi.com
45Iceland RAKThe Iceland Water Park is part of the first offering of WOW RAK,a 120 acres family entertainment destination being developedin the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. Officially inauguratedin September 2010, the 110,000 square metres facility isextensively themed as Penguin Home Land with a day capacity ofup to 15,000 guests. Besides traditional water park attractions,Ice land offers other unique amusements such as the PenguinFalls, World’s Largest Manmade Water fall, Rocky Polar Mountainswith the largest collection of water slides, Penguin Bay World’slargest Rain Dance Pool, Aqua Soccer, Coral Isle Snorkelling Pooland other thrilling experiences at the Arctic Wave Pool and Kidscove for little ones. Visit www.icelandwaterpark.comDubai DolphinariumExpect the unexpected at Dubai Dolphinarium, a part of DubaiMarine World located at Creek Park where one of the world’smost intelligent sea mammals, entertains visitors from acrossthe world. The 5,000 square metre marine facility is the first andlargest, fully air conditioned indoor dolphinarium in the MiddleEast. It is home to five Pacific and Black Sea bottlenose dolphinsand four northern fur seals that form part of the spectacular LiveDolphin and Seal show. A real crowd puller, this dolphinariumstrikes the perfect balance between education, entertainmentand environmental conservation. Interactive lessons enlightenchildren about the beauty of marine life and importance ofmarine conservation.Annually, the facility is visited by a record-breaking numberof 140,000 children. Dubai Dolphinarium also offers visitorsthe unique opportunity to swim with the dolphins and havetheir photos taken to carry home a wonderful snapshot of theirexperience. Since its opening in 2008, the dolphinarium has beenvisited by over half a million guests and visitors. Visit www.dubaidolphinarium.ae
50Hotels&ResortsPrestigious partnershipA brainchild of Giorgio Armani in collaboration with Emaar Properties, a one-of-kind hotel experience that issophisticated with subdued elegance, the Armani Hotel Dubai occupies Concourse Level to Level 8 and Levels 38and 39 of Burj Khalifa, currently the tallest tower in the world.It is well known that every aspect of the guest experience has been crafted and envisaged by the manhimself. The hotel is the manifestation of the designer’s long-held desire to bring his style of life to otherpeople who love to be immersed in an atmosphere that defines luxury and chic. With the highest standardsof excellence, the “Stay with Armani” ideology caters to those who wish to indulge in a ‘home-away from-home’ experience.Sophistication personifiedThe UAE hospitality industry is expecting a real boom with its target of 100,000 rooms for15 million visitors by the year 2015. Currently, there are over 33,731 rooms in the regionwith annual occupancy rate of 85 percent. Among these, a special 160 rooms and suitesare designed by celebrated Italian designer Giorgio Armani. Pushing the envelope andsetting a new benchmark in luxury hospitality is the renowned Armani Hotel in Dubai.
51Fashionable and classyWith unmatched views of the city, the hotel is ideallylocated near The Dubai Mall, the world’s largestshopping mall that had 54 million visitors in 2011 alone.The hotel boasts 160 suites and guest rooms with theculture of warm Italian-style hospitality ingrained inthe services. The elements of design of each roomrange from Eramosa stone floors to zebrawood panels,customised furnishings and hotel amenities offering thepersonal touch of the Armani name.In addition to the luxurious accommodation facilitiesoffered by the Armani Hotel Dubai, the dining sectionensures an exquisite and varied choices of cuisine,with seven different restaurants and fine dining areasto choose from. Not only did Armani Hotel Dubai makeit on the Condé Nast Traveller’s Hot List 2011 but alsoother accolades include being judged the ‘Best BusinessHotel’ and Armani/Amal, the in-house Indian restaurant,awarded the ‘Best Fine Dining Restaurant’ at the GulfConnoisseur Awards 2010.Signature TakeawaysThe retail section of the Armani Hotel Dubai offers avaried selection of high-end products and savouriesto suit your personal preferences and you can takehome a part of the Armani lifestyle for your lovedones. Handmade chocolates, biscotti and other edibledelights can be purchased at Armani/Dolci, the luxuryconfectionary. A floral boutique called Armani/Fiorioffers fresh flower arrangements and centrepiecesdesigned by Giorgio Armani. Haute-couture outletArmani/Galleria holds a vast collection of watches,handbags, jewellery and perfumes, all from the Houseof Armani.Armani to your sensesSaving the best for the last, the highlight of theArmani journey is the Armani/SPA, which embodiesthe foundations of the Armani brand. The threeSPA therapies have been designed specifically toaccomplish different goals of personal wellness.These include MU, FLUIDITÀ and LIBERTÀ. MU isdesigned to provide relaxation and stillness, FLUIDITÀTel + 971 4 8883888www.dubai.armanihotels.comenhances vitality and restores internal balance, andLIBERTÀ encourages freedom of movement andrelease of physical pain. The Armani/SPA offerstailor-made spa treatments to each guest, as well aspersonal fitness and terme facilities. With its uniquecombination of stunning architecture, minimalistelegance and distinctive hospitality, the ArmaniHotel Dubai has become a venue to host events withpanache. The hotel employs a team of committedevent professionals to design events, which best suitthe needs and demands of the client. An event at thehotel would comprise of state-of-the art audio-visuals,thoughtful floral centrepieces and gastronomic relishesmaking your time at the Armani unforgettable.Giorgio Armani, celebrated Italian fashion designer and the mastermindbehind the legacy of Armani Hotels and Resorts. Here with a miniaturecrystal replica of the Burj Khalifa.Amidst top-notch architecture and the buzzing Downtown Dubai, serenitywithin the Armani Hotel is magnetic and luring. Be ready to be spellboundby minimalist elegance and meticulous arrangements, cornerstones ofthe Armani signature, in addition to palatable world cuisines.Chic colours, smooth textures and bespoke ambience merge togetherimpeccably to transport the body, mind and soul to a sublime worldwhere hospitality takes inspiration from fashion and excellence drivesservice. Spread across 40,000 square metres, the Armani is a stalwartsymbolic of Dubai’s refined guest experience.
52Hotels&ResortsIn January 2010, Banyan Tree Al Wadi, opened doorsestablishing a new category in the hospitality industryby launching the first-of-a-kind desert resort in the UAE.Contrary to the perception of the desert being a habitatof scarce, BT has turned the tables to provide a luxuryindulgence paradise unparalleled. Located at Al Hamrain the northern emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, this exquisiteretreat is built on 100 hectares of desert plains with themajestic Al Hajjar Mountains as a backdrop.Sanctuary for the sensesLooking out on a striking vista of serene landscapes set across sapphire waters,reclusive at a beachfront villa you can witness a beautiful sunset and experiencehealing power of nature. This is no Utopian fabrication but the reality at theBanyan Tree Al Wadi RAK, a resort that lets you unwind in the most phenomenalyet eco-friendly ways.Famous for their spa treatments, Al Wadi features 10 tented treatmentpavilions. As a fact among all Banyan Tree Resorts, every therapist istrained at the Banyan Tree Spa Academy in Phuket to ensure expertisein wellness of refined kind.
53Realm of romanceJust a mere 45-minute drive away from Dubai, it is soonbecoming a hotspot for romantic weekends away fromthe strings of the city. The interface between the desertand the property has been intended to be as seamlessas possible, with the motive of providing guests withthe experience of staying in the desert. This waterfrontproperty houses about 101 tented villas and 32 privatevillas and has access to a championship 18-hole golfcourse.Symbiotic harmonyThe pool villas are deliberately devised on floors amidsand dunes to let you relish the natural atmosphere andto preserve vegetation of the desert. One distinct featureabout the RAK property is that it is the first BanyanTree property lodging its own nature reserve, horseand camel stables, water home, bird hide and falconsanctuary which occupies 60 percent of the scenario.Symbolic of the brand philosophies of BT, embracingthe natural eccentricities of a place and welcoming localculture is the ideal way to co-exist in symbiotic harmonywith your surroundings.One can see tributes to the Arabian heritage ofthe region, from the tented architecture inspired byBedouin settlements, to customary mud brick villaswhere meticulous details in Arabic woodwork, stylisedembroidered patterns and obscure carvings in arabesquewill reach for the transcendental.Tel +971 7 2067777www.banyantree.comMulti-faceted feastThe prime restaurant of Banyan Tree Al Wadi is situatedbeside the beach right next to the infinity pool where themenu is inspired from the sea and infuses local flavourswith international cuisine. You can enjoy a leisurely mealwith a fine selection of Asian and European flavours attwo major diners. Al Waha, known for serving Arabic andinternational food and Saffron, which specialises in Thaicuisine, are two places for your sensational gastronomicexperience while your eyes feast on the site ArabianGazelle and Oryx assembled at a nearby watering hole.Adventures of ArabiaHome to local desert animals such as gazelles, camelsand oryxes, providing guests with a priceless opportunityto closely interact with the stupendous Arabian wildlifewill for long remain a luxury no other hotel can offer.For the pursuit of adventure, participate in local Arabiansports like falconry, desert safaris, sand boarding,archery sessions and become aware about the flora andfauna. In addition, thrill seekers are encouraged to optfor snorkelling and diving among whale sharks, turtlesand occasionally dolphins, for a splendid experience.The resort provides integrated facilities such as a private pool and sunbathing deck and personal space on the beach, which are linked toyour villa. Moreover, the resort has garnered attention for its signatureAsian-inspired spa treatments conducting in calming environments.FACT CHECK• With humble beginning as a single boutiqueresort in Phuket, Thailand in 1994, BT has nowsuccessfully emerged as prestigious brand on globalhospitality-scape. Receiving of over 300 awardsfor its superb platter of romantic getaways, thisconglomerate is spread across China, Thailand, theIndian Ocean, Mexico, Indonesia and the MiddleEast.• After Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the UAE hospitalityindustry has as many as 14 upscale developmentscurrently in Ras Al Khaimah. The emirate haspresented itself as a lucrative opportunity forinternational hotel chains.
Where life happensThe hospitality industry in the UAE is expecting a real boom with its target of 100,000rooms for 15 million annual visitors by 2015. Spearheading this revolution is TheAddress Hotels + Resorts, the five star premium brand launched by Emaar HospitalityGroup. A swanky twist to your otherwise conventional five-star relishes, The AddressDowntown Dubai is the premium property of the group that goes beyond just offering awonderful guest experience.With the brand philosophy of ‘Where Life Happens’,The Address Hotels + Resorts properties are situatedin the most vibrant locations and cater to corporate,leisure, and group travellers. This modern brand focuseson a ‘one size fits one’ strategy where excellence ispersonalised and prioritised.Launched in 2008, The Address Downtown Dubai isthe brand’s flagship hotel; a place where cool meetswarmth and style meets sophistication, with easy accessThe Address Downtown Dubai overlooking the mesmerizing Dubai Fountain. 54to Dubai’s biggest landmarks and tourist spots. Locatedin Downtown Dubai, billed as ‘The Centre of Now,’ thehotel features 196 rooms and 626 serviced residencesoffering spectacular views of Burj Khalifa, the world’stallest building, The Old Town and The Dubai Fountain,the world’s tallest performing fountain, this is hospitalityin its most opulent avatar.“The hospitality and leisure business of Emaar hasestablished its strong credentials in its primary market ofHotels&Resorts
55Dubai with record occupancy levels and by contributingsignificantly to the Group’s recurring revenue streams,”says Mr Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman of EmaarProperties. He added: “The Address Hotels + Resortshas redefined the concepts of hotel management andoperation through its ‘one size fits one’ approach, whichis gaining international acceptance. Our global expansionplans remain testament to the success of a Dubai-basedbrand, making strong strides internationally.”“The Address Downtown Dubai has set a distinct nicheboth in the business and leisure hospitality segments. Thehotel is now seen as a first-choice for visitors to Dubaiand we continue to welcome guests from new territories.We have strengthened our offerings and look forward toadding more to the hotel’s existing portfolio of world-classrestaurants and lounges,” says Philippe Georges Zuber,General Manager of The Address Downtown Dubai.UAE abounds with five-star spas that offer varyingversions of an escape to the land of bliss and tranquillity.The spa is a focal point of The Address Downtown Dubaiexperience, offering serenity amidst the hustle andbustle of the city. Awarded the ‘1st Runner Up for theBest Signature Facial Treatment’ at the Middle East SpaAwards at The Hotel Show in 2011, it encompasses 11treatment rooms and relaxation areas. The steam, saunaand ice cave ensure an indulgence that knows no rival.The hotel pampers guests with several food andbeverage choices including the upbeat and sophisticatedChinese restaurant, Hukama and Fazaris, an all-daydining restaurant offering a blend of Japanese, Asian,Indian, Arabian and Mediterranean cuisine. Those wholike to socialise in trendy and stylish ambiances canselect from the vibrant Latin-inspired Calabar loungeor the panoramic sky lounge, Neos, located on the63rd floor. The hotel recently launched a modern CigarLounge with the convenience of al fresco seating.According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, thetotal direct contribution of travel and tourism to GDP inGCC countries is expected to reach USD 44 billion in thecoming years. In the United Arab Emirates, this figure isexpected to hit USD 19.9 billion in 2012, compared withACCOLADES GALOREThe Address Downtown Dubai has won severalaccolades including Best Hotel in The World at GlobalTraveler Awards US 2011, Condé Nast Reader’sTravel Award for ‘Oversees Business Hotel’ 2011,‘Best Serviced Residences in Middle East’ at BusinessTraveller Magazine Awards 2011, and ‘UAE’s LeadingBusiness Hotel’ at World Travel Awards 2011, amongothers. It also won the Best New Hotel at the ArabianHotel Investment Conference in 2009, Hotel BusinessLounge of the Year in Commercial Interior DesignAwards in 2008 and was part of the Conde NastTraveller Hot List in 2009.USD 16.6 billion in 2009. The Address Hotels + Resortsis poised to draw on the robust growth in tourism trafficto Dubai.With plenty room for globetrotters, businessmen andfamilies, currently, The Address Hotels + Resorts ownsand operates five properties in Dubai - The AddressDowntown Dubai, The Address Dubai Mall, The AddressDubai Marina, The Address Montgomerie Dubai, a premiumgolf retreat, and The Palace - The Old Town. Last year, TheAddress Hotels + Resorts recorded an average occupancyof 83 percent across its various properties, contributingsignificantly to Dubai’s hospitality sector’s growth.Tel +971 4 4368888www.theaddress.comDowntown Dubai: the centre of now
56Hotels&ResortsNestled in the mountainsAbout 115 kilometres south of Dubai, with a picturesque view of the majestic HajarMountains, the rural town of Hatta will give you a fascinating glimpse into the UAE’shistorical past. Origins of this village can be traced back 2000-3000 years. Now a touristhotspot with deluxe hospitality venues like the Hatta Fort Hotel, this is a getaway nestledin the mountains for visitors and residents of the UAEHatta Fort Hotel is an award winning property, providing chalet – style comfort and hospitality for over three decades.As the nation celebrates 40 years of success, Hatta Fort Hotel has reiterated its hallmark as a refined leisure,relaxation and comfort destination.
57Sustainable and vibrantTourism in the Islamic world has grown in leaps andbounds thanks to multilateral cooperation betweenprivate hotels and government authorities as seenincreasingly in the UAE Dubai Municipality has investedan estimated USD4.8 million in greening projectsin Hatta to create new possibilities of vibrant andsustainable growth in an increasingly competitiveindustry which, as we see, is raising economies out ofthe global downturn.Hatta Fort Hotel has left no stone unturned to offerluring business, holiday and tour packages to guestsfrom Arab and Islamic countries. Boasting a collectionof 50 deluxe villas, suites and rooms; a varied choiceof entertainment options such as tennis, mini golf andarchery; and breathtaking mountain scenery views, thehotel’s popularity is unmatched due its advantageouslocation and closeness to Emirati roots.A place that nurturesAccording to beloved General Manager Sergio Magnaldi,“As a Dubai and UAE getaway destination for so manyyears, there are many expatriate and UAE nationalfamilies whose children have enjoyed playing in the hotelgrounds. We also have groups of friends stopping overfor lunch after camping in the surrounding areas.”After the rave reviews post refurbishing in 2007, thehotel celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2011 and theinflux of occupants only continues to soar. Apart fromthe varied entertainment options, the hotel also offerstemperature-regulated swimming pools, a clubhouse anda beauty centre.One of the hotel’s main assets is, of course, its staff.From the front door on arrival, to room service, foodand beverage staff and even the entertainers, all are tobe congratulated for providing efficient and courteousservice with a genuine interest in providing the perfect‘Hatta Experience’.Tel +971 4 email@example.comHatta Fort Hotel has the Gazebo Pool and the unique rock pool with a thrilling waterfall. Both pools are temperature controlled and offerfabulous views of the surrounding Hajar Mountains.Deluxe villas, suites and rooms with breathtaking mountain sceneryviews, the hotel’s award winning service is unmatched due itsadvantageous location and Emirati influences in hospitality.Guaranteed excellenceIt is no surprise that Hatta Fort Hotel was awarded aCertificate of Excellence in 2011 by TripAdvisor, theworld’s most trusted travel advice website. This award,reserved for establishments who constantly excel incustomer service, has proven that Hatta Fort Hotelmaintains impeccable hospitality standards.David Thomson, Regional General Manager of JebelAli International Hotels, added, “Hatta Fort Hotel hasalways exceeded customer expectations. Our guests’experiences are of the utmost importance and to receivethis honour based on their feedback is a real measure ofexceptional loyalty to our brand.”The little ones will find plenty to do at the Hatta Fort Hotel. From minigolf, seasonal swimming lessons and a host of fun-filled activitiessuch as face painting, crayon drawing and sand painting on holidaysand special occasions.
58Hotels&ResortsA mere 5-minute drive from the Dubai World Trade Centre andDubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, two ofthe city’s premier business hubs, this modish hotel is located inthe heart of the city within the residential and corporate hub ofJumeirah on Dubai’s Al Mina Road. The property is near some keyaccess points including Sheikh Zayed Road, Jumeirah Beach andPort Rashid.Luxurious journeyRamada Jumeirah is Dubai’s premier deluxe hotel, a perfect destination that has givenitself completely to the pleasures of impeccable hospitality. Offering maximum comfortand refinement of a genuine kind, complemented by unique dining and leisure facilities,this four-star hotel caters to business travellers and discerning holidaymakers who aredrawn to its strategic location.Ramada Jumeirah has mastered the art of exceeding your expectations from a four-star hotel. With its strategic location, the hotel is now a favourite of businessmenand travellers alike.Savour the exotic flavours of world famous cuisines and experience authentic dining in a vibrant, energetic and stylish setting.