| Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Meet the neighbours

We get to know Bean Machine founders Duaa and Paul

How long have you been in Dubai?
Duaa: I was raised here. With the exception of a few years in different places, I’ve spent my whole life in Dubai.
Paul: I came to Dubai in 2006, so I’ve been here seven years.

What’s the best thing about bringing up your kid in Dubai?
We love having access to excellent private education. Our daughter’s nursery is amazing!

How long have you lived in Business Bay?
We’re new in the neighborhood! We’ve been here just two months. We lived in Dubai Silicon Oasis before that, and loved it there, too.

Why did you choose this neighbourhood?
It was an easy decision because it’s the same location as our coffee shop, Bean Machine. It’s also a great location right next to Dubai Mall, and within 15 minutes of most destinations.
What family friendly facilities are nearby?
Executive Towers have very nice child-friendly pools and outdoor areas. The towers are also about to open a public park and two play areas for children. We host Moms and Tots coffee meet-ups at Bean Machine, and the kids love making friends and playing with the toys available at the shop.

Did you have your daughter in Dubai? If yes, where and how was the experience?

Yes, we did. It was a wonderful experience, right from the beginning thanks to having a wonderful doctor. We were privileged to have our baby at the American Hospital, which really feels like a luxury hotel! The medical team was great, the rooms were comfortable and clean, and the food great.

Where does Leila go to school and why did you send them there?
Leila goes to the Kensington Nursery in Dubai Silicon Oasis. It was the closest nursery to us, almost literally at our doorstep (before we moved to Business Bay). The facilities are great, the teachers are sweet and friendly, the kids’ meals are prepared and served on site, and our daughter has a really lovely time there.

Is it difficult juggling family life and your own business?
Yes, it’s extremely challenging. Leila is two and a half, and she’s at an age where she’s very active, and demands constant attention. We are very hands-on with our business, and we end up bringing her along to work which can be tricky but we work around it as best as we can. We try to take turns to each do something different with her every day.

Tell us a little bit about Bean Machine

Bean Machine is a gourmet coffee shop and bakery located in Bay Avenue Mall in Business Bay. It’s our own concept, born out of frustration with big chain coffee and food. We buy locally roasted coffee beans to guarantee freshness, use only fresh milk, and serve our coffee in traditional sizes (i.e. 8oz latte). We bake everything from scratch using European and American ingredients, and make the sandwiches on site using fresh, wholesome ingredients. We also have an overall approach of limiting fat, sugar, and salt in all our food.

Please list your favourite:

Mother-child activity:
I enjoy taking my daughter out shopping, then stopping to share a delicious authentic Italian pizza, thoroughly relishing the mess and all. I’m a horse enthusiast, and I love taking her to see the horses. At the end of the day, we bond over a little story time before she drifts off to sleep.

Families hang outs:
Dubai Mall is a popular one with us, as we can do the aquarium or the fountains, then head to one of the big toy stores to let Leila have a little run-around. When the weather is good, we try to fit in lots of outdoor time, be it in a park or at the beach.

Duaa: I like riding, training, and competing horses in dressage. Reading, writing, and baking are also much-loved hobbies.
Paul: Golf, reading and watching football are some of my favourite pastimes.

Time Out Dubai,

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