Sheikh Zayed Road

Welcome to Sheikh Zayed Road.

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What’s the area like?
There’s an email that occasionally does the rounds showing two photographs. One is Sheikh Zayed Road 20 years ago. It shows an innocuous looking road in the desert. The next one is from a couple of years ago. Futuristic skyscrapers line an eight-lane highway and the photo crackles with activity. The contrast between the two pictures sums up the phenomenal pace of change in Dubai, and to live on Sheikh Zayed Road is to be at the heart of it.

Amenities
This is a futuristic strip where everyone lives in tower blocks 40 storeys up in the air. Down on the ground, there is a multitude of cafés, banks, and convenience stores. The many hotels have all the facilities you’d expect, including some of the most vibrant bars and restaurants in the city.

Best for
Single people and young couples.

Pros
It doesn’t get any more central than Sheikh Zayed Road, meaning it’s relatively easy to get a taxi (compared to other locations in Dubai), you never have to travel far for either cheap or five-star dining, and all taxi drivers know where it is (well, almost all).

Cons
It’s a eight-lane motorway. Although most of the new shiny (expensive) skyscrapers are built to kerb the rumble of constant traffic echoing around your home, some older, lower ones aren’t. You also never escape the city’s constant hurrah and nothing gets in the way of the 24-hour Metro construction.

On the radar
New towers shoot up everyday – if there’s a space beside your apartment block, don’t expect it to last long and definitely ask about it with the leasing or real estate agent.

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