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03 February, 2006

Spud vs Snow

"The curiosity over Mall of the Emirates is ending, they're all coming back here."

The happy words of an Ibn Spud restaurateur looking around his re-bustling premises. Poor Ibn Spud mall took a big drop in visitors when the Souq of the Snowslope opened. But the latter's tiny, cramped cafes, lack of restaurants, and generally cavernous, gloomy atmosphere are now being rejected as Dubaians flock back to the more colourful, spacious Battuta.

Mall of the Emirates has shockingly poor cafe facilities. Great outlets like Pauls - situated in a lovely indoor plaza in Mercato mall - are crammed into a tiny corner underneath an escalator in MoE. Despite its vast size MoE has just one modest Starbucks, where it is impossible to find a table. Ibn Spud boasts three.

In terms of shopping, MoE reigns supreme: it has myriad more shops, and a vast hypermarket. But people wanting a relaxing coffee, or food in pleasant surroundings - including al fresco - are far better advised to visit Ibn Spud.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well ...

After just walking couple of Ks to a shop that you intend to visit, you need a coffee!

Sadly, too few opportunities, except around the plastic slopes.

An Emarati friend, known connoiseur of the coffee shops, says "it does not feel right" I believe him. The man knows his coffee!

03 February, 2006 00:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it may be cramped SD but the shopping is way better at MOTE. Ibn B's simply an amusement park, and once you get past the cavernous halls, the selection of shops is abysmal.

03 February, 2006 00:39  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't have much money to serve the real purpose of any malls, but what I like about IB is that if you park your car at china court and take a quick walk to the other end and come back, you'll definitely burn some calories. To be fair, it's a nice air conditioned walking track for me.

MOE is supposed to be a bigger replica of City Centre but it looks like the architects and internal desingers never had enough time to make a mature design. It lacks identity and definitely needs more lighting inside.

Anyway, malls are major sources of entertainment here in Dubai(at least amongst cheap ones)and I respect all the mall-makers... I want more malls.. more and more

03 February, 2006 01:55  
Blogger the shadow said...

Does anyone else think that MOE will prove to be the saturation point for shopping malls in Dubai?
I've only been to MOE once, to ski, and when the Mall of Arabia opens I probably won't even bother to go at all.

03 February, 2006 03:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, Shadow, you'll go, you'll go: the infinite lure of malls will draw you in despite your best ideas. And once there? The shiny shiny lights, the goods the goods the goods, you'll never know what hit you.

03 February, 2006 05:01  
Blogger Minkey Chief said...

Why would anybody want one StarSucks, leave alone five?

03 February, 2006 07:51  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My 19yr old son returned here for a vacation at Christmas, having been away from Dubai for more than a year. He told me that his old High School hangout (Mercato) was deserted at night and all the Jumeirah teenagers had moved to MOE.

Personally I find MOE a more useful mall for day to day shopping, but I agree with anonymous that Ibn B is great for mall-walking. I have been told (never checked it out) that some people were jogging there during the summer.

Interesting how all the malls seem to develop their own particular clientele.

03 February, 2006 08:34  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was at MoE last night. It was heaving. Last time I drove all the way down to IT it was empty. IT is good if you're coming from AD but not from Dubai. It's just that bit too far.

03 February, 2006 08:59  
Blogger samuraisam said...

Both of them suck.
Until they begin distributing segway scooters to shoppers they will continue to do so.
Do I look like I want to drop a sweat "walking" in the "air conditioning" from one side of the mall to the other?

03 February, 2006 10:58  
Blogger trobriander said...

When it comes to Malls, I’ve developed this ‘natural selectiveness’ approach to it. For instance, there is a nice Japanese vegetable dish at the food corner – MoE, Coffee break at Madinat Jumeirah (I loath Starbucks and my favorite Cappuccino is at More Café); late-night window shopping at city center, and buying cloths at Bur Juman (less hectic) and when I feel like venturing far from it all I grocery shop at Géant (average goods) But I cannot ‘overstay’ at one Mall more than 30 minutes. Of course, I cannot do all of the aforementioned in one day

I live in the Bur Juman area (old Dubai! LOL) and I actually walk to do my errands.

03 February, 2006 14:38  
Blogger the shadow said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

03 February, 2006 16:20  
Blogger the shadow said...

Yes I suppose despite all our best efforts we are all sucked in day I will probably find myself shopping at Mall of the Expats for some unknown reason. *Sigh*

I like Ibn TT the best as it has everything I need and, since I have memorized the layout, I can choose the right parking lot in order to get in, get what I need and get out easily within 15 minutes instead of being trapped like a rat in a huge maze.

03 February, 2006 16:26  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i hate malls.

especially those stuck up gelled lebos at Zara.

03 February, 2006 16:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


03 February, 2006 19:55  
Blogger Jenny Foreigner said...

Ibn Battuta has a second hand bookshop. 'Nuff said.

03 February, 2006 21:35  
Blogger trobriander said...

(gelled lebos at Zara.)


03 February, 2006 21:51  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

nothing beats deira citycentre.

minus the traffic.

nothing beats deira citycentre.

03 February, 2006 22:52  
Blogger One Nine Seven One said...

Ibn B's mall is alot better for sure. They have a Woolworths.. and no mall is complete without a Woolworths.

What does MOE's have? A Ski slope.
A freakin Ski Slop! How many times have I needed a Ski Slope in the past 5 months?

03 February, 2006 22:57  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

we must not forget that these malls target their customers.. for example wafi is known for the posh high spenders. mulla plaza, the first mall in dubai is for the lower class. city center is a tourist attraction therefor the shops that open up there know the budgets of their clients.. ibn is closer to city center where as MOE is an upsized city center ..

03 February, 2006 23:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can sum up the Dubai shopping situation this way: same stores, different malls. How many Mangos and Zaras do you really need in Dubai? How about bringing in something new?

04 February, 2006 10:19  
Blogger Unknown said...

I totally agree with anon's comment @ 10:19!!!

04 February, 2006 11:06  
Blogger MJ said...

Ibn Battutta is a place to walk around, drink coffee and watch people or read. They have a magrudy!

I didn't go to Ibn Battuta last few weeks, did they open Godiva?

MOTE is the place to go 'shopping', because I can find almost everything I want there, the sad thing is whenever I go there I can't figure out where I spent my money! oh yeah, and they have good food choices. :D

04 February, 2006 15:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

any comments on this?

04 February, 2006 15:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why drop any more money in this town than you really have to? The only real draw that Dubai Malls have is that purchases ARE TAX FREE. I have come across second rate merchadise here being sold at first quality prices, and it's everywhere. Save your pennies or pesos or whatever you have and shop when you go home. Think about helping your homeland's economy instead of Dubai's. You are further lining already very deep pockets.

04 February, 2006 16:04  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am weary...

of everything that surrounds me..

of what my life is turning out to be...

of what I am losing as I give up my dreams for practical rationale decisions...

someone's gotta pay the bills...kill the dream, sacrifrice it...

seems like more and more only the rich can "afford" to dream...

I feel lost. Lost because I know my dream is gone.

I had so much a child I grew up thinking I could do the best I can...

then, the world showed me its viscious ways and showed me my foolishness...

I have just awaken form my i am, there is only stark, gray reality...sometime highlighted by joy but mostly just days on end of working to live, living to work and a balance between the two...

04 February, 2006 17:46  
Blogger secretdubai said...

I didn't go to Ibn Battuta last few weeks, did they open Godiva?

Hmm. I have this vague sad memory that it isn't opening at all. I hope I'm wrong.

04 February, 2006 18:02  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the worst thing about MoE is the permanent, pungent haze of second hand cigarette smole that permeates its atmosphere. Went for the first and last time last week. The place just reeks ! Too bad - nice ski slope...

04 February, 2006 19:36  
Blogger secretdubai said...

Yes - that is very true. Surprising, since the ceilings are so high, but it really is a fug of fag-reek in there.

Expect humankind to have established a colony on the sun before Dubai Municipality manage to ban it in public places though. It's arguably the most shameful third world phenomenon in this otherwise fairly developed country.

04 February, 2006 20:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bur Juman is a little ahead - at least they make an attempt (much appreciated) to keep smelly smokers away from the civilised crowd. But public smokers tend to be such a dumb, inconsiderate crowd, that probably a mean looking anti-smoking guard armed with a cat o' nines would be required for enforcement.

05 February, 2006 11:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I think now that Dubai is expanding...its a good idea to have a shopping center that has most goods under one roof to cut down on traffic.
The thing I dont get though is why make it HUGE...its just too painful..there is one prayer room in IB clearly the person who built it didn't have that in mind (I dont what that reflects)..

I agree...smoking should be banned, I hate the smell, and ofcourse the s/e...but SD you dont have to be so harsh about your cooments.."Expect humankind to have established a colony on the sun before Dubai Municipality manage to ban it in public places though"...cause for a relatively new country...we are doing REALLY well...but as usual its easy to find faults.
And yes, every mall has its clients,
Wafi seems to attract the rich and those who have nice cars...
Burjuman is for middleclass families.
Mercato for the gay and trans.
MOE teenagers and teeangers fans.
IB I could not figure out yet...

11 February, 2006 02:14  
Blogger sabria7 said...

So many coffee shops in Dubai. Has anyone been to Cafe Supreme at MOE?

20 February, 2006 01:52  

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