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Downtown Dubai

The area.

Downtown is one of the best places in Dubai to live, you just have to be able to afford it. Everything is on your doorstep, from the world’s largest shopping, leisure and entertainment destination, The Dubai Mall, to the tallest skyscraper, Burj Khalifa, plus a plethora of restaurants along Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, the iconic Dubai Fountains and many five-star hotels and spas. Dubai Mall is a premier shopping destination, not just in Dubai but for surrounding countries too. You’ll find every brand under one roof, from designer labels to high street fashion, a dedicated shoe district, and a host of tourist attractions. These include an Olympic-sized indoor ice-skating rink, the world’s largest suspended aquarium, KidZania fun zone, and access to At The Top, the 124th floor of Burj Khalifa where you can marvel at the city sprawling below. Outside, you’ll find the Dubai Fountain putting on a spectacular water show throughout the evening, set in the middle of the 30-acre Burj Khalifa lake. A footbridge leads you across the water to Souk Al Bahar, where there are lakeside restaurants and a number of artisanal shops selling regional goods, including dates, paintings, jewellery and traditional Persian rugs. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Boulevard encircles Downtown’s main attractions, and its illuminated tree-lined streets offer many more cafés and restaurants for al fresco dining. Off this, the six- tower complex of Emaar Square and twin towers of Boulevard Plaza provide Downtown with first-class commercial and business venues.

Getting around.

Drivers need to be careful of rush hour between 6pm and 7pm, especially around Emaar Square and around Dubai Mall when people flock to the mall after work to shop and dine. The Metro line is very flexible and convenient and a footbridge easily connects passengers to Dubai Mall. There’s also a new Dubai Trolley, a miniature tram system circling the boulevard, which is due to open soon.

Look forward to.

The Dubai Opera District, which opened in 2017, is the centre of arts and culture for the city with a wide variety of live performances and art exhibitions. Providing a completely new concept to Dubai’s entertainment and social scene, the district offers opera, orchestra, theatre, concerts, films, performance art, live comedy and live children’s shows. Adding to these are a retail plaza, restaurants, a waterfront promenade, parks and luxury hotels.

Bring best for.

Due to high rents, many executives and high-position professionals live in Downtown. There are some young families but the area mainly caters to couples and singles.

Your living options.

There are different distinct and exclusive residential complexes in this district. The master developer, Emaar, designed Old Town and Old Town Island to be architecturally unique and reflect traditional Arabic architecture. In Old Town, the buildings are no more than seven storeys high and residents have access to a communal swimming pool and Souk Al Manzil, where there are clothes shops, cafés and a Spinneys supermarket. Opposite this complex, Old Town Island is exactly that – an island in the middle of the city. Each apartment, regardless of the floor, has its own private access and garden, and the surrounding area is very green and tropical making it nice to walk around. Residents at this exclusive address enjoy full facilities, including a large gymnasium and sauna, which means that rental prices are slightly higher here than Old Town. While there are a few villas in Downtown, situated at pool level within South Ridge and The Residences, high towers tend to dominate the skyline. Prestigious developments include the triple-tower complexes of Burj Views and The Lofts, the nine high-rise towers of The Residences, the recently launched two towers of Boulevard Crescent, the six-storey complex of South Ridge, and serviced residences in Emaar’s premier hotels The Address Downtown Dubai and The Address Dubai Mall. Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard is home to a number of well- located towers, including Claren, Boulevard Central, Standpoint, 29 BLVD, 8 Boulevard Walk, Burj Vista and Vida Residences Downtown. Add to this the sought-after suites in the world- famous skyscraper, Burj Khalifa – aka the ‘vertical city’. This comprises of the first-class Armani Residences on levels nine to 16 and Burj Khalifa Residences on levels 19 to 108. Not to be confused with Burj Khalifa Residences, The Residences is a notable complex and commands the highest rent because of demand for its excellent views of the popular Dubai Fountains and good facilities. Tenants have full use of tennis and squash courts, swimming pools and gyms, plus lots of restaurants, shops, pharmacies and salons nearby. You’ll find the largest floor plans here, with a one-bed averaging 1,100 sq. ft. The Address Hotel Downtown is very well known and is a go-to destination for business lunches and dinner. A small footbridge conveniently connects it to Dubai Mall. The majority of apartments on offer range from studios to three bedrooms, with the occasional four-bed available.

Meet the neighbours.

Eighteen months ago, George Foster moved from California to Dubai for his job, as design team manager at Ethan Allen. While his family still reside in the US, he’s happy to call his one- bedroom apartment in The Residences his home in the UAE.

"I chose The Residences so when my children come to stay they can see Burj Khalifa and watch the Dubai Fountains from the balcony. They really love it. I didn’t know how well the location was when I picked the place, as it was July and the restaurants had packed up their outdoor seating and not many people were walking around because of the heat. Then it got to the end of the year and I was like, “where are you guys all coming from?”, and the place really came to life. I definitely made the right move – it’s close to Dubai Mall where I work, the kitchen is well designed, which is very important for me, and there’s an amazing lobby – I love inviting people over and letting the lobby say, “this is where I live”. It’s a very exclusive area, and if you can live here you should."

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