| Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Sheikh Zayed Road for kids

SZR residents talk to TimeOut Kids about their neighbourhood

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© ITP Images

You live in a hotel. How cool is that?
It’s very cool. We love it, although technically, we’re not exactly in the hotel. The residences are a section all on their own.

Why did you move here?
Eight years ago, when I first moved to Dubai, I was looking for an apartment and the property agent showed me the residences as an option. Before I saw it, I was like, ‘a hotel apartment? That’s strange.’ But as soon as I saw it, I fell in love with it. A little while later, I met my husband and we got married – and he moved into my one-bedroom place. When I got pregnant with Aliyah, we then moved into our current apartment in the same block which has three bedrooms.

What are the benefits?
There are so many. We have all the facilities we could wish for – a gym, health club, spa, restaurants etc just a trip in the elevator away. We’re also on Sheikh Zayed Road, so we’re very centrally placed. We live on the 16th floor, which means we have spectacular views – and we have a lovely park just five minutes walk away too. One of the great things about living in a hotel is the service. If anything is broken, or we just need a new light bulb somewhere, the maintenance staff are on the case literally five minutes after you’ve made the phone call. It’s fantastic.

What are your neighbours like?
Lovely, which is another reason why I want to stay here. We all moved in when the building was first completed, and the vast majority of us have stayed on. We were all at a similar stage in life, and we mostly started having babies around the same time too. As a result, there’s always someone around to chat to, and lots of playdate potential. The building management is so considerate. They even built us a playroom for the children to accommodate our growing broods. How fab is that?

Do you ever order room service at silly o’clock in the morning?
Yes! We certainly do! Admittedly, it’s usually when we’ve stepped off a flight and got home at 4am jet lagged and absolutely starving. It’s wonderful to be able to order a full cooked breakfast in a situation like that. We don’t do it all the time though. It’s definitely a treat.

Going on holiday must be strange for you, because you come back to a hotel.
That’s so true. We usually go to Europe for the summer, which is lovely – but you certainly don’t have the support. I do enjoy doing everything myself for that period of time, but I have to admit to heaving a sigh of relief when we get back to Dubai after a few weeks. It’s always so good to be home again.

So, you’re planning to stay where you are?
I would love to – but my husband is keen on us moving into a villa because he’d like to experience having a garden, and I think it would be nice for the children. However, I am acutely aware of how good we’ve got it, so I’m putting that off for as long as I can!

Essentials

Eating
Shangri La 04 343 8888
Teatro 04 343 8000
Okku 04 501 8777

Play
Jumeirah Beach
Satwa Park
Safa Park

Clinics
Dubai London Clinic 04 344 6664

Shopping
Mercato
Dubai Mall
Village Mall

By Time Out Dubai Kids staff
Time Out Dubai,

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