Dubai Frame, Marina, and Burj Al Arab

Dubai Frame, Marina, and Burj Al Arab

Today was another very busy day, but it was great! It started out with an early morning taxi ride over to the Dubai Frame. I didn’t realize that 9am was when it opened, but it worked out great, I got to be the first person inside. There was a small museum at the bottom about the structure, then a glass elevator 45 floors up to the top of the frame. I was greeted by people working there every 10 feet, and they couldn’t have been friendlier. When I stepped out of the elevator, the woman pointed me toward the corridor and said something about smart glass. I didn’t really know what she was talking about, so I kind of thought it would show my footprints as I walked on it or something. Well, it turns out that this smart glass goes clear about a second after you step on it. That was absolutely not something I expected, but it was very cool. Looking straight down 45 floors is a cool experience that I’ve never had before, that I can remember.

After checking out the view on both sides, one of the new city, and the other the old city, I headed down in the elevator. I had to call an Uber to come get me and bring me back to the hotel, and I chilled for a few minutes before heading out again. I walked over to the metro and took it much further today to get down to the Dubai Marina Mall (DMCC metro stop). I walked around the mall for a bit, which is much less impressive than the Dubai Mall, but the marina is beautiful. It’s surrounded by skyscraper hotels and offices, and full of crazy expensive yachts.

I grabbed lunch at a burger joint in the mall and walked around the marina until 2:45pm. I then found Xclusive Yachts, which is the company I had booked a tour with, and waited for it to start. They took eight of us into a little speed boat and we went out for a ride in the marina. We had to go really slowly through the marina (4 knots), but then once we passed the not-yet-completed Dubai Eye, he really opened it up. We went around the Jumeirah Palm island, stopped at the Atlantis to take some pictures, and then continued on to the Burj Al Arab. We got some pictures there, and it was cool to see the view from the water, especially of the Skyview Bar that I went to for a drink a little later on.

The boat ride was great, but being out in that heat for an hour and a half was exhausting. The breeze on the water was nice, but still, 42* is 42*. I was pretty happy to get off the boat when it was done and head back to the metro. I only took it a few stops to the north and got off at the Mall of the Emirates stop. This is yet another mall that was on the list of places to see in Dubai. I would say the trademark thing in this mall is the ski slope, which is pretty crazy. I remember thinking that a mall was pretty cool if it had a water fountain or something like that in it. This has a freakin ski slope!

I grabbed some Chinese food in the food court at the mall, got changed into my nicer clothes in a bathroom, and then went down to the street to get a taxi over to Burj Al Arab. This is a private hotel so you’re not allowed on the premises unless you have a reservation there. I had purchased a two-drink voucher to enjoy at the Skyview Bar, and I got the earliest time slot of 7pm. The hotel is the only self-proclaimed seven-star hotel in the world, and it is pretty impressive. As expected, the customer service from everyone you meet is exemplary, and the design of the lobby alone is breathtaking. The escalators going up in the lobby are flanked by massive fish tanks, and there is a big water fountain in between the escalators. Very cool.

I made it up to the Skyview Bar on the 27th floor, and it was pretty swanky, but I was a little disappointed with the view. I was only allowed to go up at 7pm, but the sun had already set about an hour before, so it was dark outside. This means that inside the bar all you can see is a reflection of what’s going on inside the bar, so most of the time it’s hard to tell you’re even on the 27th floor. I was brought a lovely drinks menu that I could choose two drinks from, and they brought some olives and nuts that were on a tray in the shape of the hotel.

I got my first drink (Kopparberg Cider) and just enjoyed people watching. The amount of money that people have that are staying in this hotel is just insane. The rooms are between $2,000 and $40,000 per night. I just can’t imagine any room is every worth that much money.

The drink was good, as expected, but I felt a headache coming on pretty strong at this point, and it was really ruining my experience. They also moved me to a different table twice because they tried to move people closer to the window with a view as other people left, so all that hassle probably didn’t help. I asked one of the waiters if they had something I could take for the headache, which they were able to get for me after about a half-hour. They had to check with their paramedic staff before they were allowed to give anything like that out, but by the time I got it I was already having my second drink (The Colony), and felt like I probably just needed to get some rest to feel better. I had the paracetamol, enjoyed the experience of being up there for a few more minutes, and then headed out.

I got a taxi back to my hotel, and I figured out at this point that normal taxis are actually cheaper than Uber. I never would have guessed that, but I’m glad I know now! It took about 20 minutes to get back to my hotel and it cost about £12, which reasonable. By the time I got back, I could feel my headache starting to subside, but I am going to go straight to bed to make sure I’m feeling good tomorrow morning. I have a big day in Abu Dhabi coming up and I want to be fresh!

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