Shopping plays a big role in everyday life in this part of the world. The malls are gathering places, especially during the hotter summer months when they offer an oasis of cool in the sweltering city – somewhere to walk, shop, eat and be entertained.

But it doesn’t end there – the city’s shopping highlights include traditional souks and markets, boutiques, a plethora of designer names and a growing number of uniquely original independent stores. One thing that makes shopping here so appealing is the variety; there is very little that is not available and for most items there is enough choice to fit any budget, from the fake designer goods in Markaziya East (between Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Street and Sheikh Zayed Second Street) to the shops in the malls that sell the real thing. You can offload Dhs.30,000 on a state-of-the-art watch, or pick one up for Dhs.10 in a supermarket or souk.

You can spend thousands on a designer outfit from one of the top names in fashion, or buy a length of fabric and have a tailor make you up your very own creation for next to nothing. You can buy a treasured Arabian antique from days gone by, or a super-modern home entertainment system.

Ultimately, the UAE is a shopper’s heaven, and you won’t struggle to part with your money.

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