What Are The Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Dubai
Dubai is a unique world-city that is changing and growing at a frenetic pace. Carved out of the desert on the back of vast hydrocarbon wealth, Dubai offers a unique experience of futuristic opulence and globalist cosmopolitanism. The city’s location on the Arabian Gulf set the foundation for its future success. The city was born out of three seaborne industries:
- The dhow trade
- And pearl farming
Little of its traditional legacy is readily apparent today, but if you know where to look, a bit of old Emirati charm can add a bit of magic to your visit. Indeed, you can find pretty much anything you’re looking for in Dubai if you know where to look. As the city grows it offers more, but without entirely losing what came before.
Each neighborhood in Dubai offers a unique experience, so knowing where to stay can make all the difference to your trip. Here is our list of the best neighborhoods to stay in during your trip to Dubai.
What to look for in a Dubai neighborhood:
- Iconic architecture
- World-beating shopping opportunities
- Gourmet dining options featuring Michelin-starred chefs
- Luxury accommodation
In Downtown Dubai, you will find some of the city’s main attractions, like the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, and the Dubai Mall, the single most visited tourist site or shopping venue in the world. More visitors come to Dubai Mall every year than to New York City on the whole.
If you want to stay in the Burj Khalifa, you have the option of the Armani Hotel, where every detail has been vetted by the renowned fashion designer himself. The Gevora Hotel, the world’s tallest, is also located in Downtown Dubai. Other attractions include the Dubai Underwater Zoo and Aquarium, the Dubai Fountain, Souk Al Bahar, and an ice rink.
A few years ago, the Dubai Canal opened, offering a beautiful waterfront environment that stretches through Business Bay from The Dubai Creek to the Gulf of Arabia. This is another luxury neighborhood in Dubai, offering some exclusive and opulent office space, hotels, and dining options. Many of the developments here have been designed by leading architects on the global scene.
As the name suggests, Old Dubai is the original heart of the city. Closely hugging the Dubai Creek, the neighborhood preserves some of the pre-modern charms of the megapolis. Old Dubai includes Bur Dubai, where many of the most precious architectural relics are located.
This is a perfect place to get a taste of the traditional Emirati atmosphere and cuisine. Various hidden gems of local restaurants are hidden throughout the neighborhood. Moroccan and Lebanese dining options also abound in this area. Take a traditional boat ride on the creek and get a feel for times long past.
The Palm Jumeirah
The Palm Jumeirah is the world’s largest artificial island. It juts out into the Gulf of Arabia in the form of a palm tree. At the apex is the iconic, 1500-room Atlantis The Palm Resort. The iconic resort is a great place for an epic Dubai selfie, or to take advantage of its long list of services and amenities.
Otherwise, the trunk of the Palm Jumeirah is known as the Golden Mile for a reason, the Atlantis is far from the only top-flight accommodation option available on the island. Take a load off at the Palm Jumeirah’s spas and beach resorts.
Top hotels on the Palm Jumeirah:
- Atlantis The Palm
- The Fairmont
- The Waldorf Astoria
Photo: Christoph Schulz
Other great neighborhoods to stay in Dubai:
- Al Quoz
- Dubai Design District
- Jumeirah Beach
- Dubai Marina