Luxury Meets Lethargy—Welcome To The Emirates
July 7, 2014, Dubai, United Arab Emirates: The United Arab Emirates offers every kind of luxury. But doing business here is not without its challenges.
Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,
Here in Dubai, you can find whatever fits your idea of luxury.
When hunger strikes, you could pop into Bloomsbury's to order the world's most expensive cupcake (US$1,100). Or come face to face with the sharks over a plate of poached oysters at the underwater restaurant in the Burj Al Arab (renowned as the world's most luxury hotel).
The Talise Ottoman Spa offers the world's most luxurious facial—involving a 24-karat gold mask. And, if you need a Lamborghini, you can rent one for US$700 a day.
Want to get anything done here in the United Arab Emirates—especially something involving paperwork? Well, that's a different story...
Since leaving Ireland three years ago, I've been teaching at a number of elementary schools, first in Abu Dhabi and now Dubai. My favorite brush with local administration was in pursuit of police clearance in Abu Dhabi last year.
I needed the clearance to apply for a new teaching job and was relieved to find there's a desk at the Marina Mall where they deal specifically with this process. This, I thought, would save me from hours of polite queuing in a police station, watching local after local jump ahead. (Emiratis are truly skilled in the art of queue skipping.)
I approached the policeman at the desk and enquired about a clearance certificate.
"No, I don't know," came the response, "check the information desk."
I followed his pointing finger and turned 180 degrees to a desk about a meter behind me—the mall information desk.