Dubai is known for its gleaming air-conditioned hotels, its scorching weather, international occupants and its fine dining. But if those aren’t enough of a draw to this oasis of wealth in the desert, you might want to consider the ample opportunities to indulge in a spot of retail therapy. With more designer boutiques than the French Riviera, housed in the likes of the 440,000 square foot Dubai Mall, it’s no wonder shoppers flit to this fashion mecca year-round. So what are the high points of a shopping holiday in this opulent Emirati state?
The Mall of the Emirates
This elegant building constructed of glass, sky, light and steel houses so much more than the constellation of twinkling shop facades might first reveal. Sure, there are over 560 outlets, from bookstores to fashion boutiques, but the true draw of the Mall of the Emirates, like so many Dubai shopping malls, is that you can potentially have a different day out every time you visit. There’s Magic Planet, a wonderland for kids boasting a 4D cinema, amusement rides and racing simulators. For those seeking pursuits of a more highbrow nature, there is DUCTAC, Dubai’s Community Theatre and Art Centre. And then there’s Ski Dubai, a giant, indoor ski resort with challenging slopes, the snow bullet zip line, and even a skydiving simulator!
Home of the Dubai Shopping Festival and the world’s largest mall, this 1200 shop attraction has a famous, giant glass aquarium as its centrepiece. Outside are the iconic dancing fountains, but within the mall is a range of activities awaiting those seeking the sort of memories that can’t be carried home in a shopping bag. There’s KidZania and the Sega Experience for kids, a cinema for all the family to enjoy, an ice rink and a flight simulator that puts you in the pilot’s seat of an Emirates aircraft, for a truly uplifting experience.
Deira City Centre
As well as the usual roster of designer outlets, restaurants and leisure opportunities, Deira is a great place to shop for traditional Emirati clothing, perfumes and textiles. It’s open until midnight on Thursdays and Fridays, so if you feel like a bit of nocturnal bargain hunting, there’s ample opportunity to find something special. Leave the little ones to run riot in the arcade or score a few strikes in the bowling alley while you ogle elegant goods in the likes of Armani, Balmain and Karen Millen.
If you’re looking to hit the shops in Dubai there are no shortage of options, so get you fanciest walking shoes on and check out the best this city has to offer.