Michelle was born in London and lived in the UK for 32 wonderful years before deciding that she wanted to travel more and moved to Brussels. She met some fabulous people, explored Europe and stuffed her face with frites, but three years later it was time to move on and since last year, she’s called Dubai home.
If she’s not out and about, you’ll normally find her in the kitchen, trying out new vegetarian dishes and/or opening a bottle of wine.
She had been writing about food, travel and culture over on Very Hungry Explorer since 2009.
Summer in Dubai; never before have three simple words made me want to live inside my refrigerator.
I’d been told that the best way to deal with a Dubai Summer is just to stay indoors and chill out watching Netflix, which is not to be confused with ‘Netflix and Chill’ ;-) but I don’t agree.
Last year was my first summer in Dubai and with so many residents returning ‘home’ and less tourists arriving, I found it really interesting seeing Dubai change pace so dramatically.
There was something really quite lovely about heading outside and picking up a taxi within 60 seconds any time of the day, no traffic jams on the SZR, and going out for dinner on a Thursday evening without a reservation and actually getting a table somewhere decent. Dubai without so many people is the best side of Dubai.
Yes, it’s too hot to be out in nature, but here are some fantastic options for getting out of the apartment without going anywhere near a mall.
Power Up The Palm
Take the monorail up the palm to Atlantis. You can enjoy the stunning views while basking in all that air conditioning. Get there just in time for lunch and pay Gordon Ramsay's Bread Street Kitchen a visit. Once your belly is full, pop into the Lost Chambers Aquarium, which doesn't get as much attention as its cousin in the Dubai Mall, but is still full of incredible sea life. I find the Lobster Tunnel particularly eerie. When you're ready to head back, the Monorail will be waiting to whisk you back to the other side.
Art at Design
D3, or Dubai Design District is finally starting to come into its own. Hosting the incredibly popular Dubai Photography Festival earlier this year certainly put it on the map for some people. But whether you've visited before or not, it's definitely worth heading back over.
'Out of Four' showcases a range of work from both established and aspiring artists split across the atriums of d3's core buildings (4, 5, 6 and 7). Once your eyes are satisfied, it will be time for lunch. Craft Cafe (over in Building 10) has an excellent menu which includes some great healthy options and cake.
Although the Miracle Garden has now closed for Summer, the Butterfly Garden is still going strong. Plus, it's a balmy 24 degrees inside those greenhouses. Thousands of butterflies are ready to have their picture taken, land on you, or if you prefer, just bees greatly admired from afar. This is a wonderful way to spend an hour or so and it will get you out of the apartment.
Yes, quite literally. Locked inside a room, you’ll need to work with your team mates to solves the clues and unlock that door. OK, it’s not quite getting out and about, but it’s great fun, tests your brain and it’s a really good way to bond with friends, family or even colleagues. Games start for as few as two players, so you don’t even need to be feeling particularly sociable to go. There are a lot of companies offering these games now; Escape Quest and Hint Hunt are the most popular.
A Hard Day’s Night
If you’re looking for something different to do in the evening as well, ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ is a new series of independent and foreign films from around the world being shown each Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at Cinema Akil on Alserkal Avenue.
Let us know how you’re coping with the Summer and, if this is your first time - don’t panic! It really will be easier next year!