5 March 2015

Not what you expected

Dubai's Shopping Malls - Part 1: The Wafi Mall

Perhaps not the most obvious start to a series of posts about our Dubai trip but there again it was the first place we visited and it's worth sharing with you. Why? Well perhaps it's the architecture? It's ambience? The fact that it contained shops I have no interest in visiting and neither the money to spend in them? Or that it was virtually empty!? Whatever the reason I just felt the need and actually from a photographic viewpoint it gave us some interesting compositions. Hope you agree?

The mall is based on an Egyptian theme, inside and out. Think Venus Fort in Tokyo if you have been there. That place is based on Venice! Don't ask me why it just is. It's not how fake it is that surprises you, what actually does is just how quiet it is. There really was hardly anyone there. Shop assistants were standing around waiting for trade. They actually looked grateful for anyone who walked into their store. I'm sure if you were "up" on your fashion brands then the place would be worth a visit but for someone like me, who isn't then it's purpose is really non existent. To be honest I found it a little sad, although it is a bit tacky you can see why they thought it might attract people. It's just a shame so few actually go to it. Well that's the way it looked to me anyway. I was told by a cafe worker that most people head for the Dubai Mall (that's coming next and will be my first guest post). 

That got me thinking about the development going on in Dubai, which far outweighs the growth I've seen in other developing cities like Shanghai for instance. Must be more cranes per 100m than any other country? Anyway back to my thought! That question was "Are they developing too much? New malls, retail parks, apartments etc..Now if this mall is struggling (maybe it isn't?) then how are the others going to survive? In England it would have shut down by now. So lets support our themed malls. If you visit Dubai at least give it a look, even for an hour or so and help out a shopping mall, go on walk like an Egyptian!  

If you've been there then please let me know what you think. Sketches in Travel will be doing a number of Dubai posts in the coming weeks. Thanks for your support as always.


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