Dubai, UAE - May 19, 2010 - Bedroom in a villa in Al Barari development. (Nicole Hill)
The new US$5 million mortgage could put you in the lap of luxury in Dubai's Al Barari development.

Self-made millionaires 'are buying their own piece of tranquillity'

DUBAI // The lawns surrounding the winding, leafy driveway are a deep green, with streams of water criss-crossing though them. At the end of the drive is a two-storey villa with a waterfall next to its wooden front door. "There are water features running throughout the development," says Jessica Watson, senior marketing executive at the developer Al Barari.

This villa, on the market for Dh27million, would be well within reach of anyone taking out Standard Chartered's new mortgage. "In total, there are more than 14km of filtered lakes, streams and cascades [in the development]," says Ms Watson. "It is a piece of tranquillity away from the hustle and bustle of the city." Inside the front door, a short hall runs past the kitchen to the left before it reaches an open area that has two sitting rooms. The dining room has a table big enough for a banquet. The ground floor master bedroom ensuite bathroom alone is bigger than most studio apartments. So, too, is that bedroom's private garden, complete with a plunge pool.

Both sitting rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows looking out on to the garden and swimming pool. "The windows were designed to be like this. It is a really nice view with all the trees and plants." At the top of the marble and granite stairs is the first of seven bedrooms, each with sofas, coffee tables, a television set and - naturally - an en-suite bathroom. "We designed each master bedroom with a theme in mind to show what you can do with the rooms," says Ms Watson. "Actually all the rooms are master bedrooms"

The maid's room is tucked away in a corner of the villa. "It actually has the largest private terrace in the villa and the maid's room itself is quite big. They have their own kitchen and general living quarters. Next door, if you want to unwind, there's a massage room." The guest room has its own entrance, allowing visitors to "come and go without disturbing anybody or going through the main part of the house".

A king-size bed faces the window, with a view over the Nad al Sheba Royal Wildlife reserve. Below the ground floor are two sky-lit basements. One is an additional bedroom and the second is a playroom, but they could equally be a gym, or even a cinema. "There are so many options for these," says Ms Watson. "We have just put a bedroom in here to show what you can do with it but some people have already gone ahead and built their own cinema."

Finishing it off is a triple garage designed to be long enough for a Rolls-Royce and high enough to fit a Range Rover. "A lot of our buyers own their own businesses and are self-made millionaires," says Ms Watson. "We have sold 70 per cent of the villas. They are buying their own piece of tranquillity."


Occupation: Specialised chief medical laboratory technologist

Age: 78

Favourite destination: Always Al Ain “Dar Al Zain”

Hobbies: his work  - “ the thing which I am most passionate for and which occupied all my time in the morning and evening from 1963 to 2019”

Other hobbies: football

Favorite football club: Al Ain Sports Club


Fines for littering

In Dubai:

Dh200 for littering or spitting in the Dubai Metro

Dh500 for throwing cigarette butts or chewing gum on the floor, or littering from a vehicle. 
Dh1,000 for littering on a beach, spitting in public places, throwing a cigarette butt from a vehicle

In Sharjah and other emirates
Dh500 for littering - including cigarette butts and chewing gum - in public places and beaches in Sharjah
Dh2,000 for littering in Sharjah deserts
Dh500 for littering from a vehicle in Ras Al Khaimah
Dh1,000 for littering from a car in Abu Dhabi
Dh1,000 to Dh100,000 for dumping waste in residential or public areas in Al Ain
Dh10,000 for littering at Ajman's beaches 


Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates

Herc's Adventures

Developer: Big Ape Productions
Publisher: LucasArts
Console: PlayStation 1 & 5, Sega Saturn
Rating: 4/5


Company: Eco Way
Started: December 2023
Founder: Ivan Kroshnyi
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: Electric vehicles
Investors: Bootstrapped with undisclosed funding. Looking to raise funds from outside

Is it worth it? We put cheesecake frap to the test.

The verdict from the nutritionists is damning. But does a cheesecake frappuccino taste good enough to merit the indulgence?

My advice is to only go there if you have unusually sweet tooth. I like my puddings, but this was a bit much even for me. The first hit is a winner, but it's downhill, slowly, from there. Each sip is a little less satisfying than the last, and maybe it was just all that sugar, but it isn't long before the rush is replaced by a creeping remorse. And half of the thing is still left.

The caramel version is far superior to the blueberry, too. If someone put a full caramel cheesecake through a liquidiser and scooped out the contents, it would probably taste something like this. Blueberry, on the other hand, has more of an artificial taste. It's like someone has tried to invent this drink in a lab, and while early results were promising, they're still in the testing phase. It isn't terrible, but something isn't quite right either.

So if you want an experience, go for a small, and opt for the caramel. But if you want a cheesecake, it's probably more satisfying, and not quite as unhealthy, to just order the real thing.




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