There’s nothing like discovering the best of your city through the eyes of the people who live there. Our Little Black Book series will share a little inspo from those in the know.
Andrea Bailey is a travel-loving mum of 3 girls who’s called Dubai home for the last 15 years. Andrea has been a travel writer and photographer for the last 10 years, hosts her own radio show on DubaiEye (called ‘Travel Mum’, tune in every Monday at 2.30pm!) and is a regular contributor to the Sassy Mama Dubai travel features (her latest tips on where to travel over the Eid holidays have got us itching to book a trip pronto). Follow her travel adventures (and mis-adventures) on Beyondavisit.com and on Instagram too! From star-gazing in Sharjah to the best coffee in Karama, this is Andrea’s little black book.
We love our Friday mornings to start with the church, followed by a lunch of the best biryani we can get our hands on. The evenings are usually about a trip to the beach or to the parks, somewhere outdoors when the weather is good.
Most beautiful spot in/around the city
Dubai Canal (read here what Kaya, our Editor has to say about it) is a current favourite. When the canal walk is lit up in the evenings, it looks absolutely stunning. With our love for photography, we find this is one of the best places in Dubai to take great pictures!
Something on your bucket list you haven’t got round to doing yet
Being TravelMum, it’s got to be about the travel and the list is ever so long…but I would have to say Machu Picchu in Peru, Yellowstone National Park (among others) in the USA and the polar bears of Svalbard are all on my list!!
Closer to home – We haven’t taken our children off-road and into the wadis around the UAE such as Wadi Wurayah, the UAE’s first officially protected mountain area and home to 20 species of mammals (including what is believed to be the last Arabian leopard in the UAE).
Best cup of coffee
Love, love, love Grub Shack for their amazing food, with a theme of Bombay to Goa. It’s great Indian coastal cuisine with a twist, thanks to the inspiration of its owner, Mario Mascarenhas.
We also love Kiza, a themed restaurant in the Financial District that serves food from the African continent accompanied by amazing music!
I love that the UAE has so much soul in its old historic spaces like the Naif Souk, Mina Bazaar and the Spice Souk. We especially love the Heritage Village along the Creek where you can tuck into authentic Arabic food and watch the dhows putter along in the water.
If you need a party outfit you’ll go
If there’s time to get an outfit made then I would head to Rebekah’s Bespoke Tailoring and let Anna and Rebekah work their magic every time!
Where do you go to get fit and get pampered?
With 3 kids, a home, a travel and photography business, travel writing, events hosting and a radio show to manage, finding the time to get pampered can be a challenge. But when I do, it’s Chi the Spa at Shangri La Dubai for me.
Read more: New in Beauty: Nail Trends for Summer
Best thing you’ve done in the UAE till date
Gone star gazing at Mleiha Astronomical Centre in Sharjah. Choose a new moon night and you will be able to see more stars and planets in our galaxy!
Also, I do have to add Orbi, Mirdiff City Centre as a brilliant indoor venue that’s a BBC Earth program aimed at educating children and adults about the earth’s fragile ecosystems. Interactive and engaging, this one’s a winner!
Dubai summed up in 3 words
Dynamic, Innovative and Pioneering!!