12/19/09

DUBAI - Radisson Dubai Dhow Dinner Cruise

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A fantastic way to wind down in Dubai is to take a Dhow Dinner Cruise on the Dubai Creek during sunset hours. From one of these boats, you will get a different perspective of the city while you enjoy the stunning views of the Dubai skyline, the historic Dubai Heritage Village and the Old Souks.

For our cruise, we chose The Al Mansuour Dhow (a traditional wood boat) owned by the Radisson SAS Dubai Hotel. We each payed $55.oo dollars for two hours of enchanting local music, ocean breezes, gorgeous city views and delicious international and Middle Eastern food.

The boat was very easy to find. It was docked right in front of the Hotel Radisson SAS Dubai, on the shores of the Dubai Creek. The service was attentive and friendly and the boat, spacious and comfortable, with two decks for public use - one opened, upper deck and one lower, closed and air conditioned deck.

Our boat boarded at 8pm and departed at 8:30pm and floated towards the Arabian Gulf for about two hours.

If you want more information about this dinner cruise, please check the enclosed link. In it, you will find the cruise reservation page in case you wish to make a reservation in advance. Radisson SAS Dubai Cruise - Dubai Dhow Cruise - Tours and Excursions in Dubai, United Arab Emirates - Also offers Hotel Reservation

Enjoy your evening cruise and if you go, let us know what you think.

Do you have any favorite places in Dubai?

DUBAI - � The Dubai Fountains at The Dubai Mall

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When in Dubai, do as the locals and head for the mall. Which mall? why the biggest mall in the world of course, The Dubai Mall!

So where is this Dubai Mall? Right next to the tallest building in the world, the Burj Dubai in the Burj Dubai Complex of Dubai. So why go there and not to any other mall in Dubai? Because of all the amazing attractions available in this mall. It has the world's largest Gold Souk, The Dubai Aquarium, an Olympic sized, indoor Ice-Rink, 22 Cineplex movie screens a SEGA REPUBLIC indoor theme park with over 150 amusement games, 160 food and beverage options and 1200 shops!! phew!

And that's not all! The centerpiece attraction of the Burj-Dubai Complex is the Dubai Fountain Water Show. One of the world largest fountains in the world (what a surprise), 25% larger than the Bellagio Fountains at Las Vegas.

So really, how big is this mall? try the size of 50 soccer fields and it attracts more than 750,000 visitors every week. ouch!

FYI - Malls in Dubai are popular "all day" destinations, because they offer a refuge for families from the extreme desert heat.

For more up-to-date information about the Dubai Mall and it's activities - shark feeding hours, movie times, Dubai Fountain schedules, etc. - please visit the enclosed link and enjoy your visit! Entertainment � The Dubai Mall

Do you have any favorite places in Dubai?

12/18/09

DUBAI - Great Book about Life in Dubai in the 1950's

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If you're planning to visit Dubai anytime soon, you may want to read this book, "The Sand Fish" by the Emirati writer, Maha Gargash. Her book describes the lifestyle of a young Bedouin woman who lived in the Dubai desert in the 1950's.

My friend Milena who currently resides in Dubai, just read the book and recommends it, specially if you're interested in understanding the local Emirati history and culture.

To preview the book click on the enclosed link by Amazon and enjoy the book!

Amazon.com: The Sand Fish: A Novel from Dubai (9780061744679): Maha Gargash: Books

12/15/09

BUENOS AIRES - El Obrero Restaurant

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After reading in a New York Times restaurant review that El Obrero (The Worker) Restaurant in the La Boca district of Buenos Aires, had "some of the best food in Buenos Aires", I decided it was time to grab a friend and visit the place - El Obrero - Reviews and Ratings of Restaurants in Buenos Aires - New York Times Travel

After checking with the hotel's concierge, my friend Mark Firnhaber (iadsw) and I, decided to go to El Obrero for lunch. We were warned by the concierge not to walk around that "shady area" of La Boca and to make sure to take a taxi there and back. Too bad, we had to scrap our plan to walk after lunch, to the touristy Caminito Area of La Boca, just 15 blocks away.

In case you didn't know, El Obrero belongs to the Bodegon category of restaurants in Buenos Aires. Neighborhood cafes or Social Clubs where the food served is abundant, cheap, non trendy, home made and of Italian or Spanish origins. El Obrero is owned by two Spanish brothers, so the food in this establishment, has a Spanish twist.

Bodegones started in Buenos Aires as "bodegas" or small neighborhood markets. Once they began to sell prepared foods to their customers, they expanded to include seating areas to accommodate their growing needs.

Getting back to El Obrero, the restaurant will not impress you from the outside. It actually looks ragged and run down, a bit suspect. Don't turn around and leave in your taxi. Just go inside because the interior, I promise, is a different world. The place is lively, warm and inviting, filled with soccer memorabilia and crowded with a mix of regulars and curious tourists like us. It's also very clean and the servers are friendly and eager to please.

El Obrero specializes in "parrilla" - grilled food and Spanish dishes. On the recommendation of a local who claimed to eat there every day, we ordered a Spanish Omelet made with potatoes and spicy salami as an appetizer plus a salad and a steak to share.

The Spanish Omelet was delicious, the salad fresh and large enough for two, and the steak huge, but not a great cut. We both agreed we had better meat in other Buenos Aires restaurants.

However, although the meat we received was a disappointment, we loved the neighborhood atmosphere of the place and the friendly service and price!!! Our meal was less than $12 dollars each with drinks and bread included.

El Obrero is a must visit to experience the "old Buenos Aires". Go for lunch with a friend and take a taxi like we did and enjoy a real "working man's" or Obrero's lunch.

ps- bring cash, no credit cards accepted

El Obrero
Restaurant Parrilla
by the Castro Brothers (Marcelino & Francisco)
Agustin R. Caffarena 64
Republica de La Boca
Buenos Aires, Argentina
(closed on Sundays)
4362-9912

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