Dubai by Soha

Discover the urban masterpiece that is Dubai

Dubai is a city that defies the boundaries of imagination. Its skyline is adorned with architectural marvels that defy gravity and pierce the heavens. With palace-like shopping malls, picturesque landscapes, and the presence of a melting pot of cultures, it is an urban destination that appeals to one and all.

This week, KHAMSA harks back to our roots with a detailed Dubai travel guide by Soha Taha (@sohamt on Instagram). A designer, style guru, and image consultant, Soha is one of the most recognizable influencers in the region. Born in Al Ain, UAE, Soha is adept at looking out for premium tailoring and fancy accessories. Her Soha MT Collection is a vivid catalogue of trendy and fashionable products, offering fashion enthusiasts the perfect dose of effortless and modest chic.

Dubai is a place where the extraordinary is merely the norm. Soha loves to address its vibrant mix of innovation and heritage, the combination making it pull at every heart string. Through her guide, KHAMSA explores this incredibly-popular destination and sees what it has to offer travellers and locals alike.

Top must visit food spots?

For breakfast and a really good croissant, visit Bageri Form, Sarabeth’s, and Bistro des Arts.

Source: Bageri Form
Source: Bageri Form

For cute, aesthetic cafés I would say Orijins and Heaf.

Located on the street level of the Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC), Orijins is a sleek coffee shop designed by Dubai-based interior design firm VSHD. It is inspired by nature’s breathtaking imperfections, thereby offering its own take on beauty.

Situated in Muhaisnah, Heaf is an exquisite café that offers a phenomenal ambience. Its architecture and aesthetic are sights to behold.

For lunch and dinner, there are many options. I am into Chinese, so I would say New Shanghai, Shanghai ME, and P. F. Chang’s.

There is also Logma for the best Emirati cuisine.

The best dessert spot has to go to Cipriani Dolci.

Best places for sundowners?

My favourite for sundowners would be Shimmers On The Beach at Jumeirah Mina Al Salam.

Best rooftop?

I’d say CÉ LA VI, and TOMO for rooftop views and apparently a really good sushi, although I don’t eat sushi, but my friends do.

Source: CE LA VIE

Best places for shopping?

Dubai Mall for literally everything you need or The Outlet Village for your favourite brands at discounted prices.

The Outlet Village is a shopping hub that offers hot deals on iconic fashion brands. Located next to Dubai Parks and Resorts, finding said brands becomes a convenient affair. Luxury labels like Automobili Lamborghini and Ralph Lauren are some names that customers can purchase from.

Must-visit cultural spots?

Al Seef is beautiful. You can also visit the Coffee Museum in Al Fahidi, Dubai Museum, the Dubai Creek, and Bastakiya.

Al Fahidi, a heritage hub in Dubai, is home to the famous Coffee Museum. It is an upscale and premium location that takes the very best traits from international coffee culture and blends them into a cozy and oriental setting.

Best boutique hotels to stay in?

Source: Jumeirah Al Naseem

In Dubai, The One&Only Royal Mirage and Jumeirah Al Naseem are great hotels.

But my absolute favourite is Bab Al Shams. Located opposite Endurance City at Al Qudra Road, 45 minutes from Downtown and 60 minutes from the airport, it is a luxury desert resort with a prominent focus on Arabian allure. With delightful culinary treats, lavish accommodation, and great activities on offer, it is the perfect hotel for your Dubai trip.

Underrated places?

Al Barari. It’s a paradise and it’s so green and fresh, you can’t not fall in love with it. Also, the farm at Al Barari for the best food and a beautiful view.

The Iranian Mosque – it really has the most beautiful architecture!

The Wafi light and sound show – it’s beautiful and reminds me of my home country. (please add pictures here for this)

What should you avoid?

Going out at 5 pm to 7 pm, because the traffic is just so overwhelming. 

Must-pack items?

It’s so hot in Dubai, so I recommend wearing sunblock and light makeup, and a little highlighter for the girlies who love makeup. Pack light clothes, mostly linen or cotton. Add a pair of sunglasses and a hat as well.

Any tips and tricks to tackle the city?

Mornings are the best time to hang out. The city is not crowded and very chilled. If you’re coming from another country, September to March is the best time to enjoy Dubai’s weather.

There are so many things to enjoy for free like Kite Beach, watching the Dubai Mall’s fountain show, Wafi Center’s night show, or just a walk by the beach.