Camp in luxury facilities between desert and mountains rocky: a hundred kilometers of skyscrapers and the frenzy of Dubai, the new fashion in the emirate is to practice the “glamping”, camping ecolo-chic and glamorous.
A Hatta, near the border with the sultanate of oman, Mohammed al-Kaabi, 27 years old, enjoys with her friends a sunset in the tranquility of the desert.
Mr Kaabi was from a long line of Emirati people, whose centuries-old history is intimately tied to the desert.
Today, it is part of those, increasingly numerous, who are attracted by stays of relaxation in the desert, but with all the comforts of modern life.
“This place is far from cities and skyscrapers,” remarked Mr. Kaabi, dressed in the long traditional dress white, called a Thoub.
“The tradition of the camping is very popular in the united arab Emirates, but when we want to bring the family, this gets a little complicated,” he adds. “Here, the security is ensured”.
The Emirati have a habit of camping during the winter months when the searing heat of the summer has dissipated. Tourists and expatriates are opting more and more for the tranquility of the desert, far from the bustle of the cities.
Betting on tourism in addition to the real estate and services, Dubai offers an endless choice to its visitors and to its residents, hotels, luxury “glamping”, (glamour + camping), a fashion in vogue in many tourist destinations in the world.
– Camp fire and a private bathroom –
The emirate is broken at tourism. It has welcomed in 2018, a record number of 15,92 million visitors, many of whom have been attracted by its shopping centres, its luxury hotels and sandy beaches. And it builds on 20 million visitors by 2020, when it will host the universal Exhibition.
With his dam and his desert mountain, the site of Hatta offers an ideal setting for the new tourist offer “glamping”. Near the dam, the tourists have the choice between trailers, caravans or chalets to five-star with all the comfort one can dream.
Sitting in front of a caravan, Jamil Fahmi, a Saudi located in Dubai, is the ideal choice of “glamping”.
“It’s fun, we can make a camp fire, hanging out with friends and (…) sleep in a room with a bed and a private bath”. “It’s great to eat around a camp fire (…) and withdraw when it wants to in her room”, he said.
The site of Hatta airport opened its doors in October. It offers comfortable rooms from 400 dirhams a night (about $ 105).
– Five-star –
In 2018, Dubai has faced a slowdown in the housing market, the supply exceeding the demand, while the price of oil, which represents only approximately 6% of the revenues of the emirate, declined. But tourism, a major pillar of the local economy, has held up rather well, even if the growth in the number of visitors has slowed down.
Hatta is not the unique site of the “glamping” of the emirate. Other complexes are designed around courses of yoga, from the observation of the stars or of water sports such as kayaking.
For Jay, a British 37-year-old who has lived in Dubai for ten years, “glamping” is a new experience.
It is said to be already come to Hatta for kayaking and have known the thrill by trying out the zip line site, with exceptional length of 350 metres.
“You can enjoy the outdoors and nature, make a barbecue and then enjoy a good shower…”
“This is not a five-star hotel, but a campground five stars.”