Notes by Nectar

Your destiny lies in your own hands

Dubai 2015: Week 48

I was a bit of a recluse this week. I had one of my most relaxing weeks ever. I was home all day on Sunday.

I had a session with Pete on Monday morning and a piano lesson that afternoon. After my piano lesson, I had a facial at Dermalogica at the Dubai Mall. I’d run out of Entertainer vouchers but they offer 25% off on Mondays – so I always try and book on a Monday! I went home after that and carried on with some work.

My parents left for Tenerife early on Tuesday morning, at about 4am – and I didn’t leave the house until Friday afternoon, apart from to go to the gym. Tuesday and Wednesday were wet and grey, and I felt quite cosy at home.

Seriously though – I would wake up, go to the gym, come home, shower and get back into fresh pajamas. It was amazing. I’d either work or read in bed. The flat was so quiet. I even stayed in on Thursday night!

The weather has definitely cooled down a lot, which means there are clouds almost every day, which means there are amazing sunsets almost every evening.

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On Friday, some friends and I went over to another friend’s place on the Palm. We got there at around 4.30 pm and the four of us sat outside, sipping chilled champagne. There was a beautiful sunset.

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Another couple joined us later on and we ordered some Lebanese food for dinner and then toasted marshmallows on the open fire. It was actually a bit chilly once the sun had gone down. Just before midnight, I thought it was time to go home – my two other friends had left earlier as they had work the next day, and the other couple were leaving too. I booked an Uber, which was 20 minutes away. About 10 minutes later, I checked my Uber app to see where the car was, only to find that the driver had cancelled the journey and that there was now a price surge of 2.8x. The cheek! I didn’t rebook – we decided to have another drink instead. A few minutes later, the Uber driver called me to say he was outside. He asked me if I’d cancelled the journey – I said I hadn’t, and that he had. Anyway, I told him I’d managed to get a lift and didn’t need the car. So my friend and I had another drink and then we thought it would be a good idea to do some karaoke! It was 2.30am by the time I left his place – we were having such a laugh, singing along to old 80s songs.

On Saturday I went to the New Orleans Jazz Brunch at Imperium at the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray. I’d been to their regular Friday brunch in February 2013, and had been wanting to go back. We had a lovely table outside – and we ordered some drinks to start with. The food was more or less the same as the Friday brunch – although the last time we were there they had fresh lobster and fresh salmon on the outside grill, this time they had fresh prawns. The spread inside consisted of everything: a seafood table, salads, beef Wellington, roast lamb, oysters, mussels, a pork section, scrambled eggs with truffles, cheeses and a huge variety of dessert. The food was fresh and tasty – although the beef Wellington was chewy and a bit disappointing. I skipped dessert and had a variety of cheese instead. I have to say that even though the choice of food is fantastic and the ambiance is lovely, the service is a real letdown. And I remembered that from last time too. But that seems to be a problem in most places in Dubai – first-world prices and third-world service. We had two Entertainer vouchers for brunch, so we each ended up paying AED260. Not bad for all you can eat and drink!

I think the hotel itself is stunning and every time I’ve been there I’m so tempted to check in for a week!

The chandelier in the lobby of the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

The chandelier in the lobby of the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

It was 6pm by the time I got home as we hit traffic on the way back. I got into my pajamas and chilled for the rest of the evening. Perfect.

I love my life.

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Dubai 2013: Week 6

Well, half a week, really, as I got back from London on Wednesday morning and spent most of the day either sleeping or unpacking.

On Thursday night my Mum and I went to see Zakir Hussain in concert at the World Trade Centre.

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I’ve seen him in concert many times, the last time was in November 2011 in London. What I love about him is that he always performs with different musicians. For this Nirvana 2013 concert he was performing with Bela Fleck (banjo), Edgar Meyer (upright bass), U Srinivas (mandolin) and Rakesh Chaurasia (flute; and he’s the nephew of Hariprasad Chaurasia). Much of the music they played was created by the musicians in the days just before the concert – because they don’t usually play together! They played a fusion of classical Indian music, jazz and rock. They were brilliant (you can read a good review of the evening here). They played for about 2 hours without a break. Suck on that, Enrique!

On Friday some friends and I had booked brunch at Imperium at the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray Hotel. The hotel is fabulous!

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That’s not a great photo, but the entrance is beautiful.

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Even the chandeliers in the lobby are amazing!

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We were there a little early so we walked around for a while before going to the restaurant.

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It was a beautiful day to be outside and our table was in a shaded outdoor area. It was an all-inclusive brunch, so we got a glass of Prosecco on arrival and we had the option of wine or a selection of cocktails for the rest of brunch. We went with the Chablis. It cannot compare to the brunch at Al Qasr (I don’t think anything can!), but there was an impressive variety of food on offer – lots of sushi, salads, some roast meats, fresh grilled lobster, and even a pork section (which was empty). Considering there was so much to eat I actually managed to stay away from carbs the entire meal (apart from a bite of chocolate dessert at the end – which really wasn’t worth it). We stayed till 4pm and then headed back home.

The trouble with afternoon drinking (for me) is that I usually want to carry on into the night – but this particular day I couldn’t find anyone who wanted to go out! I ended up sitting at home and doing some work in the end (I did have lots of catch up on after my trip to London).

I was home all of Saturday, working.

I love my life.

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