My Dubai Diary: 3 January 2016 | Study Abroad in Dubai, UAE

My Dubai Diary: 3 January 2016

Jan 3, 2016   //   by cblinter   //   Student Blog  //  No Comments

Raining since early in the morning and it continues, as the group bus hits the roadway to Dubai’s neighbouring Emirate, Abu Dhabi. Just like in the first day in Dubai, weather like this is rare.

Our destination in Abu Dhabi is Masdar. It is an innovative city that is being built, by continuously applying new technologies and adopting practices of the world to make the living more self-sustainable. We enter the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology by personal rapid transport (PRT), an automated system that operates on the ground level, while above it – we find the institute buildings and city streets with wind towers and even water-drainage system that is apparently put to use today. We have a tour through the streets, then we see the library and wander around a little while. The Masdar Institute of Science and Technology is offering graduate-level studies related to environment and alternative energy, as well as provides its students good living conditions, scholarships and, of course, research facilities.

Next is Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Before entering, ladies have to cover their hair and everyone has to be appropriately dressed. A sign near the entrance says that one should not be loud, take photos, bring food, smoke, use a phone or even fall asleep there, though later we are encouraged to take as many pictures as we want to and all the visitors do… We try to gather as a group for a while but in the end, only some follow the guide and we end up searching for one another afterwards. In the Mosque, there is the largest handmade carpet, there is marble and crystals from all over the world, a giant chandelier that weighs approx.. 12 tons. Again, it’s one of the largest in the whole world.

Our last visit is Emirates Palace. There, we first see a presentation about Kempinski and it’s origins, about Emirates Palace itself and that on the eighth floor there are six Rulers’ Suites that are not a part of the hotel and, as the building is structured, it’s possible to go straight to the rooms from a special entrance, without the need to interact with the regular guests. We are offered soft drinks and appetizers, consisting of fruits, caviar buns etc. After a chance to tour the hotel, we are meeting with the General Manager.  Emirates Palace has only luxurious rooms, catergories including Coral, Pearl and Diamond – depending on the size and view of the suite and, as it has a large ballroom, 114 domes and each floor, from one end to the other is said to be 1km to go… No wonder it has been marketed as having 7 stars. Kempinski, as we are told, is not a chain in it’s vision : it’s a collection of individuals.

We leave the place only at noon. In Abu Dhabi, the streets are well-lighted, with palm trees and colourful flowers on sides, as well as the mosques here are shining green. For a moment, we come across three full buses with workers, apparently picked up after a long working day…

Days are flying fast and tomorrow we’ll have our last visits – to the DIFC. It’s a pleasure to have seen and learned so much already.

Audentis iuvat fortuna

Anna Elsa

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