Pooja Iyer Mukherjee
The City of the Future
Dubai refuses to stop. Whether it's for work or play, the world has their eyes on this sandy sunny pinnacle of glamor.
The Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards handed over the crown to Dubai for the second consecutive year as the Numero Uno global destination 2023.
Post pandemic the middle east saw the largest relative surge to global tourist footfall to its pre pandemic numbers and Dubai is responsible for these numbers.
In the words of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,
The exceptional growth in the inflow of visitors reflects Dubai’s continued rise as one of the world’s most connected cities and its determination to lead the world in hospitality infrastructure and service levels. The high growth shows the world that we never rest on our achievements and constantly work to raise our benchmarks. I am confident that Dubai will be an even greater catalyst for the growth of global tourism and travel connectivity in the years ahead
The numbers show that for the visitors from the world’s stronghold markets , Dubai is a preferred choice for a safe city that has something for all. 2022 saw that Western Europe and GCC contributed to 21 percent of Dubai’s tourists; South Asia contributed to 17 percent and MENA a significant 12 percent. The Americas sent 7 percent , North Asia, Africa and Australasia contributed to 2 percent.
Why does the world choose to visit and revisit Dubai amidst a myriad of exotic destinations spread across the world ?
The Hospitality Industry is a major contributor to the Emirates’ global popularity, where the average occupancy post pandemic was 73 percent in 2022 one of the highest post Covid numbers in the world.
Celebrity Infused and How
The scintillating global campaigns that Dubai manages to spin out in collaboration with global entertainment and sport celebrities, is beyond captivating. The celebrity infused marketing is a major pull to people to flock to this city of dreams.” Dubai Presents” movie styled jazzy campaigns shot against the backdrop of the city’s most iconic locations saw the likes of global icons like Jessica Alba and Zac Effron. This campaign also managed to slip in some hidden treasures with the most popular destinations wrapped up in a series of short films.
Another star in the marketing canvas was “Where the world celebrates” a campaign that featured the French football star Karim Benzema. This campaign cashed in on the football craze by timing the launch around the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
Events , Events and Events
Dubai enhances her position further by hosting some of the most sought after global events across sectors and tastes. One of the most humongous ones is the Dubai Expo , spanning over six months, which in 2022 attracted over 24 million visits across the world.
In addition to the Expo, Dubai hosts the biggest work and play events like the Gulfood, the World Government Summit, Binance Blockchain Week, Gitex Global Dubai, the International Boat Show and the Arabian Travel Market. Adding further to the list were the iconic festivals like the Dubai Food Festival, Shopping Festival, Dubai Summer Surprises, Dubai Fitness Challenge.
The list doesn’t stop here. Taking into account the impact of the pandemic, in 2022, Dubai announced the first Dubai esports Festival, the largest international esports tournament to be held in the region.
This is just a part of the pie.
To the Sports’ Fans
To welcome the sporting legends and fans, the city hosts an extensive set of global sports tournaments. Some from the 2022 lineup were the Dubai World Cup horse race, the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship, Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby7s, the Dubai Desert Classic golf tournament and the DP World Tour championship.
As if this wasn't enough to satiate the sports buffs, Dubai walked an extra hundred miles to make the city the best place to be to experience the FIFA World Cup 2022 to the hilt. Chosen as one of the six cities of the world to host the FIFA Fan Festival Dubai reigned as the internal destination of the football fraternity.
The Culinary Delight
What is fun without great food?
The city’s multicultural culinary scene with an astronomical figure of over 13000 restaurants, cafes , homegrown eateries, gourmet institutions catering to the taste buds of the world, makes Dubai a global favorite for the tourists. The Michelin Guide 2022, featured a total of 69 restaurants, including 14 Bib Gourmand winners.The entry of the prestigious food critique brand Gault&Millau adding the crowning glory.
Cannot Forget the Environment
Alongside luxury , is sustainability enmeshed in the tourism strategy of Dubai. 2022 saw the launch of the “Dubai Can” an innovative sustainability initiative aimed at making Dubai a safe place to work, visit and be.
The Dubai Sustainable Tourism initiative (DST) delivered to the city’s clean energy targets United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030, as well as the UAE’s Net Zero 2050 strategy. 2023 has been declared as the UAE’s Year of Sustainability with Expo City Dubai hosting COP28, the UN Climate Change conference cementing the city’s goal to address the vital environmental issues of the world.
What’s New to See
For those who can’t get enough of the city, some new exciting destinations have been added to the repertoire.
These include the Museum of the Future, Dubai’s new iconic landmark that offers a peek into the future, the Expo City, the dynamic legacy of Expo 2020, an innovative human vision of the future and the Atlantis Royal, a mega resort located on Palm Jumeirah.
Zero Hassle Visits
The hassle free entry pathways for those who want to visit or work , including the 60 day tourist visa available from 2022, Five-Year Multi-Entry Visa for employees of multinationals , along with the Golden Visa, Virtual Working and Retire in Dubai programmes, make the place easy to visit and revisit .
Whether you want to sunbathe on the beach, or unwind in a luxurious resort, enjoy a cruise or visit the most glamorous locales, Dubai has something for all, wrapped in a safe and welcoming environment.