Good morning dear friends!
I’m on a business trip in Abu Dhabi As you know, Abu Dhabi and Dubai
became very popular during the last years due to luxury, excesses and the wonderful buildings,
which are included among the most incredible of the world! but If you think that I stop at these stereotypes…
Ha ha ha You got it all wrong my friends! So, let’s go to explore this place! Theme song! Don’t we have a theme song?
Why!? Ah we’ve never had it before! Ok…
Let’s do it without it! Now it’s time for a short geography lesson,
Abu Dhabi and Dubai are 2 Emirates What is an Emirate?
An Emirate is a region governed by an emir (or sheikh) Besides Abu Dhabi and Dubai, there are 5 other Emirates.
All of them form The United Arab Emirates Like in the U.S., where 52 states form
The United States of America Abu Dhabi is the biggest and main Emirate and
the main reason to be here is to go to visit Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Bad news!
Why am I here in my hotel room? Instead of being at the Grand Mosque? Because by the entrance
the guards confiscated my microphone… so, I’ve to tell you something in retrospect It was wonderful! Built in Italian white marble which is maniacally cleaned every day
from the sand coming from the desert to keep it shining Anyway, this mosque holds many records The biggest mosaic tile The mosque itself
is the largest in the world which can be visited The main dome is the biggest findable in a mosque The central lamp holder is the biggest in the world And at the end, the flagship is the carpet It’s the biggest in the world, handmade, as big as a football pitch and composed of something like 2 billions of nodes! The interesting thing is that
the carpet was made in Iran and once the carpet was made the problem was to transport it here Until the harbor everything was fine but from the port to the mosque,
they had to cut it in 6 parts since it was impossible
to transport it in one piece When walking on that carpet I could feel that it was uneven.
This made me think that it was caused by the junction points But actually not! The purpose was to guide blind people to have
the correct position aligned to the others during prayer And the reason why they paid all this attention to blind people was because before the oil was discovered,
the economy of Abu Dhabi was based on the sale of pearls and to find them, they were used to dive every day without any eye protection, up to 100 times per day! That’s why the majority of old people in Abu Dhabi
are blind or have bad eyesight. My personal opinion is that, this is the only “building” built in the last 100 years which can be considered a Monument If you take all the “architectural marvel”
built in the modern age, they can’t be compared to Florence’s Cathedral, a Gothic Cathedral
and all these kind of buildings built many centuries ago Instead, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque yes!
This can be compared to those And in 500 years it will be considered
as one of the “wonders of the world” “Chapeau” to the Sheikh! But now it’s time to see what else this city has to offer!
Especially on Yas Island! First of all Abu Dhabi is not a city on a human scale,
things are far away from each other! public transport doesn’t exist here… The only solution is to take a taxi Bye bye!
Thank you! Now I’m in the heart of Yas Island. Here we’ve the Ferrari World, and there we’ve the Yas Mall
which is the main mall in Abu Dhabi This is the entrance of Ferrari World,
of course the biggest theme park in the world… there are also some buttons, that when pushed they reproduce sounds of a real Ferrari What a sound! What a sound! This is the Yas Mall instead. It’s considered as a really important shopping mall here,
but actually it’s nothing special This place is like a labyrinth, with a lot of corridors and thousands of stores of different brands
of clothes, perfumes etc. also including lingerie of a certain level Because you have to know that Arab women…
Under the burka… are very hot! But now I’m married An interesting thing is that people
freak out when they see me “vlogging” because on my camera there is a microphone installed
and they think that it’s a professional camera and if something looks professional,
they don’t allow you to use it They told me;
take as many video as you want, but do it with your phone! I’ve to be more careful from now on! From the Yas Mall it’s possible to directly access the Ferrari World Unfortunately I can’t enter for 2 reasons: First of all because the ticket costs 70€!
What a hell! and then I don’t have enough time…
It would take around 3 – 4 hours and I rather go visit downtown but I got a map of the park,
so I can explain what is inside The main attraction is the “Formula Rossa”,
which is the fastest roller coaster in the world! It reaches 240 km/h in 5 seconds! I can hear people screaming from here So cool! There is also the highest roller coaster in the world And then it’s possible to have several “drive experiences” like to test the F1’s drive simulator or driving an actual F1 car at the attached “Yas Marina Circuit” Where the F1 Gran Prix of Abu Dhabi is held every year Then it’s also possible to drive a go-kart Let’s say that everything is about driving! An interesting thing is that around this complex… There is nothing else!
No houses, no stores, no offices… Nothing!
These are just huge buildings placed in the desert! There is a waterpark… But it’s about 2km by walk!
The nightclub area of Yas Marina it’s about 3km instead… I understand that you have a lot of space…
But come on guys! You’ve to be more practical I’ll show you the best skyscrapers located in downtown now!
But, it will take me at least 40 minutes by car to go there… Let’s hurry now!
Next destination: Etihad Towers! Just behind me you can see the Etihad towers!
The skyscraper symbols of Abu Dhabi which are around 300m high, almost one third of the Burj Khalifa of Dubai!
Just to make you understand how huge it will look! Instead, in front of me there is the Emirates Palace,
the most luxurious hotel in the world I’d like to go inside to take some pictures and to show it to you guys!
But they didn’t let me in… Why?
Of course not for my obvious and inadequate social status but because I’m wearing shorts..
And like in the mosque I couldn’t go inside That’s such a pity!
Because there was the atm to take out gold bars inside… I mean…
Don’t you want to take out a gold bar instead of cash!? Nowadays, to pay by cash is out-of-date… With a gold bar would be cooler instead! This is the interior of one of the Etihad tower,
As you can see it’s very sober and humble! I’m going up to the last floor now,
to have a nice view over the city The interior finish is really poor, it’s not fancy…
They must have had some budget issue Something really weird, is that around these buildings there is nothing!
Although I’m in Downtown If you are looking for a bar or a restaurant…
You can’t find it here I can walk for hours without meeting anyone… It feels so weird!
Abu Dhabi is not built on a human scale at all It’s designed to move around by car,
covering long distance every time you drive Because there is a “night life” area…
But it’s 23km far away from here! In addition to be the richest city and capital of the UAE,
Abu Dhabi it’s also the city of the records They have
the biggest mosque, the biggest carpet… the chandelier, the biggest theme park… the fastest roller coaster, the most luxurious hotel etc. And, I personally want to add,
the most dispersed city of the world! Because it’s unacceptable to walk for 4km without finding any place where I could buy a bottle of water However, Abu Dhabi is not as popular as famous as Dubai.
Obviously it holds many records as well… So, let’s go to discover which ones! the easiest way to reach Dubai from Abu Dhabi
is to take the bus from the central station because the ticket only costs 25 Dhiram,
which is about 5€/6€, in less than 2 hours, it takes you in to the capital of CRAZINESS AND LUXURY! Ata first sight Dubai looks even more chaotic than Abu Dhabi but, a good thing is that Dubai has a Metro line,
which make my journeys easier That’s the railway of the metro Since it’s a overground it looks like a highway,
but it isn’t The metro line is really well organized, idiot-proof
and easy to understand it’s also automated.
The trains stop exactly in front of these doors and I’m sorry to say that…
But it’s exactly like the metro in my town! Turin! if Dubai wouldn’t have had 2 lines,
but only 1 like in Turin… They would have been the same!
Let me say that Turin is a “Little Dubai” somehow It’s the first time in my life I see the metro
being divided by classes here we have the gold class cabins
and over there the ones for “poor people” As you can see the station is very modern,
but I prefer the stations in Moscow I assume you have already seen my video about it!
Right? 🙂 My destination is the hearth of the modern Dubai, the Burj Khalifa,
which is the highest building in the world Damn… I just screwed up!
There are different wagons for women and men… And I got on the women one… and they yelled at me… Ladies and gentlemen! The Burj Khalifa! The highest building in the world! It’s like the “Pirellone” or “Mole Antoneliana” for people who lives in Milan and in Turin It’s really impressive!
And since nothing else it’s built around it, it stands out even more! Obviously, under the highest building in the world… …The biggest “fountains show” in the world take place! It would have been too easy to make it small and normal… Starting from 6pm until 11pm every 30 minutes
there is a show with a different song A funny thing about the Burj Khalifa
is that since it’s very high unless you don’t have…
haha …a wide-angle lens like me! It’s impossible to take a full picture using
a phone camera or a standard camera All the people around here are posing weirdly to take a picture where both top of the building and their faces fit in a picture Records have positive and negative sides…
But this is too high… Too high! In all this time… I didn’t mention the Dubai Mall yet, which is… …Try to guess? Exactly! The biggest mall in the world! You guys are starting to think like a rich Sheikh! Now it’s late and I can’t stop here,
also because it will take me 1 hour to find my way out I’ll be back here tomorrow!
Stay tuned! I know…
I promised that I would have gone back to Dubai Mall… but it would have been a pity to spend time inside a mall
with such nice weather! So, I came to the beautiful area of
Dubai Marina As I just said, Dubai Marina is beautiful!
It has a wonderful walk-path along the sea where a lot of yachts are moored, and there are a lot of restaurants and nice buildings It’s also possible to get an ice cream, but…
In this heat it melts in no time! *Laughing*
and since I’m holding the camera with the other hand,
I look like a child eating ice cream But now, I want to talk about the “drama” that every photographer has to face here in the UAE The “drama” is…
Those people wearing a yellow jacket behind me! They are private guards, not policemen…
And if they see someone with a camera which looks professional They stop him… Because they don’t want people
to take pictures which can be sold, and so on… This is so annoying!
They told me to take pictures with my phone instead of my camera For them the problem is not about taking pictures… But it is about if you take nice pictures! They are crazy! Last night I even got stopped by one of those guards who asked me for
my name, number and email to report me to the police… So…
Now, here in the UAE, there is an infringement report charged to “STAIFÁN TAOSSO” form Spain with a random phone number! Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!!
They’ll never catch me! Nearby there are the artificial islands of “Palm Islands”
and this could be a perfect opportunity to take some pictures using my drone… But can you imagine what will happen!?
They’ll freak out… So, I’ll take the meeeetro instead!
(How cold is it in here!?) And I want to go to one of the most iconic places for taking landscape photos of Dubai which is: the terrace of the Shangri-la Hotel After a long metro ride I got to the Shangri-la Hotel,
but obviously to go on the terrace of a luxury hotel I need a permit… which, by some incredible miracle… I got for tomorrow! And now I got time to come back at Dubai Mall as I promised you guys!
But… I’m not going to show you this right now! Because now it’s time to go over the top!
At the highest point of the planet after Everest… The Burj Khalifa! The first elevator route is done after 125 floors in less than 1 minute
and now the other 20 floors are expecting me And of course they confiscated my microphone again…
They’re such a pain in the ass! Now I’m at the 148th floor and I can’t go higher although there are another 300m to reach the top… Almost like the height
of an Etihad Tower… This is still the highest observatory in the world! It’s such a pity that these protection glasses will ruin my photos…
And this gap is a bit to small to place my lens in but I’ll try anyway, since the glass is clean *laughing*
otherwise I’d have asked them to refund me, or to send someone up to clean the glass! The view from here remind me of when I used to play “Sim City”!
Do you remember this game? Where you would build your own metropolis? So, since I’m back on the ground…
It’s finally time to explore the Dubai Mall! Let’s start from the map placed by the entrance which looks like a “console of an enterprise” every single row you’re seeing is a store… There are more than 1200!
But this is written in Arabic, I’ve to find the one in english If you want to know how to find your way
to a specific store in this huge place you can use these screens, where by selecting the category of the store
you’re looking for, it shows you a list of stores included in that category and once you’ve found the store, it shows you the way to get there! I don’t want to go into detail about brands…
Because they have a store for any brand you can imagine! They also have Eataly…
Which means that even here I can find the same pizza I find in Turin… The stores are divided on 4 floors with a lot of halls, corridors,
junctions and so on… It’s really easy to get lost in here there is also an internal taxi service! And what’s really impressive are the reference points,
particularly the aquarium! They’re crazy!
They’ve a huge aquarium with sharks, manta rays and many other rare fishes! This bothers me! Because they could have done many other things
without the need to involve animals… *metaphor with the Italian movie “Fantozzi”* By paying a ticket it’s also possible to go
to visit the aquarium through a submarine tunnel *sarcastically*
I guess it’s also possible to became food for sharks! very fascinating is the model of the new
skyscraper which will be built in Dubai it will be called Dubai Creek Tower, it’s already under construction
and it will be even higher than Burj Khalifa! But it won’t be the highest tower in the world since in Saudi Arabia
they’re already building an even higher one! Which will be the highest tower in the world! So… I don’t understand this obsession with the highest building… If Freud would be here… What would he say?
What do they want to compensate by building these things? Another absurd thing is… The ice-skating rink and hockey arena!
In a country where the lowest temperature during the year is about 30°C I just got to know that something even more absurd
is at the “Mall of the Emirates” Where I’ll go tomorrow!
But… Only if I’ll find my way out from here, because I got lost… Here we go! I found the exit! Although for a moment I thought that “metro” was a brand of something *sarcastically*
Thank god they’re Muslims and they don’t celebrate Christmas…
Otherwise can you imagine how crowded this place would be in that period!? Today I’m at the “Mall of the Emirates” Which is a huge shopping mall!
But, compared to the “Dubai Mall” it is nothing special… Do you remember what I said about having an ice-skating rink into the mall?
Well… Here they’ve done something much worse! This is insane!
They built a “ski park” inside the mall! which is constantly kept at -4°C,
machines produce artificial snow and… …They also have penguins in there! As you can see everyone wears the same snowsuit, because who came here bringing one? Although it’s possible to ski here!
The ski lift is over there! And here we’ve the store where you can buy
the typical clothes to spend holiday in the Arab peninsula! Ah ah!
This is driving me crazy! From winter to the summer in no time! And now I’m in front of the symbol of Dubai, the “Burj al-Arab” Which means: the tower of the Arabs It’s a sail-shaped hotel, and it’s considered as the symbol of Dubai because it’s one of the most luxurious hotels in the world! Officially it has 5 stars but they claim 7 stars themselves! I’ve read that some of the suites are 800 square meters divided on 2 floors! practically like (big) apartments! And it can costs up to 9.000$ per night… I’d like to take a picture during the sunset, but now it’s too early but during the sunset I’ll be at another luxurious hotel!
The Shangri-la Hotel [Italian pun]
Which is over there! [Italian pun]
Here we are! At the Shangri-la! My journey in the UAE is almost over,
because tomorrow morning I’ll take a bus to Muscat, Oman where my “photographic travel” will start! So, I want to end this on a really high note! Looking at the sunset
from the terrace with the most exclusive view over Dubai! where, by some incredible miracle I got the permit to go!
The Level 42 of the Shangri-la Hotel! Although it is not simple to come up here due to the advanced authorisation needed, which is also not easy to get It’s completely worth it!
Because in my opinion this is the best view over Dubai This is a perfect place to end this video, but before that…conclusions! But before I do that… I want to bust the myth! because everyone connect the richness
of Abu Dhabi and Dubai to the oil and gas But this is false! Otherwise many other countries would be
in the same situation of the UAE… But they’re not! Because 20 years ago, they thought about an economy which could be sustained also without oil and gas In fact, nowadays the economy of the UAE
is based on finance and tourism and if you think about it… That’s crazy! Because you’ve to book
an hotel to go in a place where the main attractions are… …The other hotels! Because there is nothing else except for
what has been built during the last 20 years And this brings us to the painful side… I agree that Abu Dhabi and Dubai are 2 amazing cities
with a lot of special effects, where you can take incredible pictures, with unique buildings and many records!
But… at the end of the day, these are “empty” places… Because there is nothing that can truly touch you… Furthermore for a tourist it’s absolutely impossible to experience the local culture… Which is a really interesting culture!
Because the UAE have a story before the “oil era”… But this is inaccessible for a tourist, because everything is “hidden” behind the richness, the luxury and the system they built to stay in the future When in the end of the day you’re back at the hotel, you realize that you’ve seen many new things, but nothing have really touched you… And the maximum human contact you can experience
during one day is during a payment or a credit card swipe So, for those of you who love to travel getting in touch with
the local culture like me, this is unacceptable and unlikable… Because this corresponds to the world trend of
“occidentalization and consumerism” Dubai and Abu Dhabi are the paradigm of this trend…
And if this scares you, don’t come here because you’ll just be disappointed But if you’re interested in satisfying your eyes taking nice pictures
and seeing unique things in the world… This is the perfect place to come and visit!
Because you’ll really see incredible things But if you’re looking for an experience that will touch your heart,
or if you want to get in touch with the authentic Arabic culture that when you go home, makes you feel nostalgic… You’ve to go more south, more specifically to Oman! Despite being very close to the UAE…
It’s a completely different world! But we’ll talk about it in my next video! Ciao!
Subtitles by: Christian Spezia
IG: cspezia Subtitles by: Christian Spezia