Family life on The Palm

Shauna Ramskill describes life for families on The Palm Jumeirah

Interview, Community

Shauna Ramskill lives on the Palm with her husband David and their daughter Olivia, nine months.

How long have you been in Dubai?
We have been living in Dubai for nearly five years now. We previously lived in Abu Dhabi for one year, so six years overall in the UAE.

What’s the best thing about bringing up your daughter in Dubai?
I think it’s nice for her to be able to wake up to sunshine every morning; I come from a country (Ireland) that has a distinct lack of warm weather! I do miss the nice fresh air though (but only now and again). The most important thing about bringing up my daughter in Dubai, is the abundance of activities we can do outdoors, additionally the expat community comes together nicely for sharing ideas and experiences. Dubai makes you want to integrate with other families, not necessarily something I would have done back home in Ireland, however I believe this will benefit my daughter.

How long have you lived on the Palm?
We moved to the Palm Jumeirah when we first arrived in Dubai, five years ago.

Why did you choose this neighbourhood?
We took the opportunity to live on the Palm Jumeirah when the rental market made it affordable, plus there aren’t many people in the world that can say they lived on the largest man-made island shaped as a palm, that can be seen from space!

Did you have your daughter in Dubai? If yes, where and how was the experience?
Yes we did. We chose the City hospital which was excellent, most importantly we were very fortunate to choose a very good doctor and our daughter Olivia arrived at eight months with no complications.

Have you found it easy to meet other mums here?
Dubai has got some very good mummy and baby groups, both Olivia and I have been very lucky to meet a great bunch of mummies and babies at these classes, who we now meet on a weekly basis.

What family friendly facilities are nearby?
Our apartment backs on to Ittihad Park, so in the mornings I take my dog Coco and Olivia for a nice walk in the sunshine. We also live very close to Riva Beach Club which is nice to take Olivia swimming at the weekends.

Are you planning to stay put on the Palm?
Although we do enjoy living on the Palm our apartment is not big enough, so we may consider moving to a Villa early next year. Whoever thought someone so small would take up so much space!

What do you do in your free time away from your daughter?
If and when I get a chance I try to spend some alone time with my husband whether it’s going for a nice meal or going to the cinema.

How do you juggle running your own business and being a new mum?
It’s been challenging, but the success has been around being efficient with what is now precious time and ensuring my weeks are well planned so I know exactly what needs to be achieved for Vita Liberata.

What’s the hardest part?
The hardest part is being able to give them both 100%, as clearly there aren’t enough hours in the day, therefore prioritising the most important values towards motherhood and business becomes essential.

Please list your favourite

Mother-child activity in Dubai:
We have just completed a 10 week swimming lessons which we will start again in September. It’s been amazing to watch Olivia grow and become more confident in the water.

Family hang outs in Dubai:
At the weekends we like to go for a nice breakfast and in the afternoon spend some time at the beach or go for a family walk somewhere.

I like to work out and have recently taken up kick boxing. I hope to do my third half marathon by the end of this year. I am also a bit of a shopaholic so if you see me out and about its likely in Dubai Mall or Mall of Emirates.

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