The Blantons Do Dubai – Part 2

A week with our family truly flew by – by the time their Saturday departure rolled around, it felt as if the Blantons had just arrived! I planned for their time here for so long, and it all went past in a blink of an eye (always a good thing, I think!) 🙂

So in the states, we don’t really celebrate/recognize Boxing Day; however, it was a holiday on the calendar growing up in Canada (although after learning the origins of the day, it would be dishonest to say that we Simpsons actually “celebrated” this holiday!) Back to THIS Boxing Day: it definitely was far superior to most if I do say so myself. While the Blanton men hit the Atlantis water park in the morning, we Blanton ladies had a nice breakfast al fresco at one of my favorite spots: Baker & Spice. It was my first time trying the Marina Walk location, and while smaller than the Souk Al Bahar location, it was just as fresh and delicious!

via BakerandSpiceME.com (the fresh fruit centerpieces are TDF)

Following our respective mornings, we all regrouped for our desert safari trip. The itinerary included ATV rides amongst the dunes, dune-bashing, a sunset in the desert, with the evening ending at a camp with a traditional dinner, belly dancing, henna, and the like. A bit touristy? Sure. But still always worth the visit, I’d say! This time around, I booked with Desert Safari Tours, and was uber impressed with the company. The shots below are worth a thousand words! (Prepare for photo overload, folks…)

The original four

The original four

Todd & Curry

Todd & Curry

Barr & I

Barr & I

Barr & Todd

Barr & Todd

One of the dancers - he was incredible - reminded me of a whirling dervish!

One of the dancers – he was incredible – reminded me of a whirling dervish!

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Friday, we decided to show the family a Dubai favorite: brunch! I wouldnt say that this is a “traditional” Emirati gathering, but tourism is slowly making it so 🙂 All the better for us expats and tourists! Barr and I havent indulged in many Friday brunches here, but let me tell ya, the Al Qasr brunch was 100% worth it! Gut busting, but worth it 😉 All you can eat and drink (more champagne please!) for five hours…it was just as glorious as it sounds.

I wish I had taken a picture of the macaron tree sooner! Let it be known that I probably ate 75% of these treats

I wish I had taken a picture of the macaron tree sooner! Let it be known that I probably ate 75% of these treats

Assorted bruschetta

Assorted bruschetta

Holiday sugar cookies

Holiday sugar cookies

Sangria for all!

Sangria for all!

And then to cap off a great week, we Blantons headed to Abu Dhabi! In my view, no trip to Abu Dhabi (for first timers, anyway) is complete without seeing the Grand Mosque – it was awe inspiring as usual:

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The Grand Mosque is probably one of my favorite pieces of architecture - the shapes, colors, and overall thought that went into the interior and exterior design is incredible

The Grand Mosque is probably one of my favorite pieces of architecture – the shapes, colors, and overall thought that went into the interior and exterior design is incredible

And for a festive ending to the Abu Dhabi trip, we headed to the carpet market – and yes, it was well worth it: each couple left with a new rug (all thanks to Barr’s exceptional bargaining skills!)

The Iranian salesman was not amused with our bargaining

The Iranian salesman was not amused with our bargaining

Truly, it was such a memorable week, made all the better when my mother in law left us with the question: “where should we go next year?” 🙂 Oh the possibilities! Until next time…

4 responses to “The Blantons Do Dubai – Part 2

  1. I haven’t been to Abu Dhabi’s Grand Mosque but seen a lot of incredible photos of it. (putting it in my to-do list) :p

  2. i happened upon your blog by a google search. my hubby and i are hoping he snags this job with a wondeful company and is sent over to Dubai (as mentioned during one of his interviews). we have 2 kids – a teenage male and a pre-teen girl. I think the experience would be wondeful! you all are a great looking couple. i can’t wait to read/see more pics of beautiful Dubai.

    Olivia

    • Hi Olivia, Best of luck with the job! I hope it all turns out well – and in the meantime, enjoy the blog 🙂 Happy New Year!