Author Archives: andreadetto

About andreadetto

Living and working in the Middle East could be fascinating but sometimes also frustrating. Numerous stories and opinion about the most popular and trendy facts happening in Dubai without forgetting to describe what's new around us. Reviews, Smart Facts, Suggestions and considerations give daily life to this out-of-the-box blog

What a burger at Classic Burger Joint – Trade Center

Tired of the usual lunch break, together with some colleagues, we decided to escape the usual routine in Oud Metha and try something new. A colleague of mine proposed to drive to Trade Center area to Classic Burger Joint, “one of the best burger restaurant ever” he added trying to convince me.

I was told that the restaurant is incredibly popular in Lebanon, where the restaurant was firstly opened. Yes, you got it right, it isn’t the usual chain from the States by a pure Lebanese burger chain.  I was curious to understand more about this Lebanese burger tradition that was totally unknown to me, hence we jumped in the car and drove to Aspin Commercial Tower on Sheikh Zayed Road, Trade Center Area, Dubai.

Keep in mind that Trade Center is very busy and it can be challenging to find parking just in front of the restaurant. We were lucky and found parking quite close to the place.

The restaurant is quite small and the waitress very friendly. Loving cheese on all forms, I went for a Mozzarella Classic Burger that consisted in a classic burger to which a thick layer of fried mozzarella is added on top of the beef patty. The burger arrived after 10 minutes as promised by the waitress together with a lot of french fries and a small portion of  coleslaw.

Mozzarella Classic Burger

Loved my Mozzarella Classic at Classic Burger Joint

The burger was extremely good. The fried mozzarella was melted at perfection, the beef patty of good quality and great taste and the little sauce added very light and enjoyable.

The fries were alright, nothing special, even though the person I was sharing the lunch with told me that usually they are very tasty and much better than what we got.

The coleslaw portion was too tiny to feel the taste of it.

The meal is enough to satisfy a very hungry person, so refrain from ordering too many things together. Enjoy the amazing burger first and then you might decide to add something else. At least, this is my advise 🙂

UAE consider to build man-made mountain to increase rain fall

After the extraordinary success of the cloud seeding operations that saw a significant increment of the quantity of rain fell over the United Arab Emirates, it seems that the government is seriously considering the opportunity to build a man made mountain in a bit to improve rainfall.

The United Arab Emirates invested a significant amount of 558,000 USD in the 2015 alone within the Rain Enhancement Program initiative activated by the UAE Ministry of Presidential Affairs (MOPA) and run by the National Center of Meteorology & Seismology (NCMS). As reported by a local newspaper, the  Program provides grants to up to five innovative research and technology proposal over a three year period that are trying to find new ways to enhance rainfall in the Country.

“What we are looking at is basically evaluating the effects on weather through the type of mountain, how high it should be and how the slopes should be. We will have a report of the first phase this summer as an initial step”

Said  National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) scientist and lead researcher Roelof Bruintjes to ArabianBusiness.

He further clarified that the NCAR received funds to provide a detailed modelling study evaluating the effects of building a mountain on the weather.

For those not really specialized in climatology and how the rain process works, humid and warm air moving towards the mountains will be forced by them to raise. While raising the air temperature drops (almost 6.5 Celsius per km for humid air) causing the condensation of the humidity and the creation of rain drops.

In order to do so, the mountain shall intercept the predominant air currents forcing them to release their water content before passing through.

“Building a mountain is not a simple thing. We are still busy finalizing assimilation, so we are doing a spread of all kinds of heights, widths and locations as we simultaneously look at the local climatology. If the project is too expensive, logically the project won’t go through, but this gives them (the Government) an idea of what kind of alternatives there are for the long-term future” Bruintjes said.

“If it goes through, the second phase would be to go to an engineering company and decide whether it is possible or not.”

 We have no other option but to wait the preliminary results.

Saudi Bin Ladin Group cuts 100,000 jobs

It has been recently filtered that the major Saudi Arabian construction company, Saudi Bin Ladin Group, has issued 77,000 final exit visas meaning it had terminated 77,000 foreign workers.

Rumors further says that the group is planning to lay off up to 17,000 Saudi nationals, bringing the total number of job cuts to almost 100,000, representing almost half of its workforce.

Contacted by a local newspaper the construction giant replied that “adjusting the size of our manpower is a normal routine especially whenever projects are completed or near completion. Most of the released jobs had initially been recruited for contracted projects with specific time frames and deliverables” as reported by news agency Reuters.

As a matter of fact, Binladin has been under pressure since September last year, when it was suspended from receiving new state contracts after one of its cranes collapsed into Mecca’s Grand Mosque during a dust storm, killing 107 people.

In addition, the company is suffering from low oil prices that have led to government spending cuts to curb a record budget deficit.

As reported by ArabianBusiness, rumors say that Saudi Binladin group owe local and international banks a total of about 30 billion USD.

Friday Breakfast at Provedore – Sunset Mall

The weekend is the right time to explore the city and to try new restaurants and visit new places. This weekend we wanted a place by the beach, with a nice veranda and possibly good food options.

The summer is coming and it means soon we will be forced to stay indoor enjoying the A/C season.

This time we opted for a breakfast at Providore, a restaurant located in the Sunset Mall in Jumeirah 3 that seemed very interesting.

Provedore

The home page of Provedore website inspired us.

At late breakfast time the mall was almost deserted, making it very easy to find parking and find a nice seating at the restaurant.

The restaurant at first sight looked like a shop, having a wide section dedicated to retail sales of top quality food and kitchenware. Displayed on the other side of the restaurant were many kinds of bread and other baked products.

Provedore Shop

Provedore Shop

The staff welcomed us with a smile and showed us a table on the nice veranda facing the beach and the sea. The restaurant offers also indoor seating for those who prefer an air-conditioned area. The veranda is surrounded by two wings of private apartments that have balconies facing the restaurant. During the good season it is not unusual to see people having breakfast in their own balconies, creating a very nice atmosphere.

Provedore Veranda

A part of Provedore’s nice veranda with sea view

We were quite hungry and ordered a main breakfast item each and shared a cheese platter. The food required quite some time to be ready, but it didn’t bothered us since we enjoyed the nice and relaxing atmosphere. The staff was very attentive and polite and were very well coordinated by a person that looked like and was acting like a manager or the owner of the place.

The scrambled eggs came with spinach salad, half roasted mushroom, 1 grilled cherry tomato and 1 grilled potato cut in half and a tiny roll of salmon. They used at least three eggs, hence the plate was enough to fill a normally hungry person. The healthy egg’s white omelette was nice in terms of quality of food by a bit boring in taste. The cheese platter was amazing. Nice cheese selection with good crackers and great presentation.

Provedore Scrambled Eggs

Scrambled Eggs at Provedore

Provedore Helthy Omelette

Healthy Option at Provedore

Provedore Cheese Platter

Provedore’s Cheese Platter

Get UAE work visa from home – coming soon

In a recent meeting, Mr. Saqr Ghobash Saeed Ghobash, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, revealed that soon foreign workers will be able to get their UAE working visa from their home country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization (MOHRE) have indeed started making necessary arrangements to enable workers to sign job offers back home and process their work visa and related entry visa at any Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation offshore service centers available in their country.

The new procedure will have several beneficial outcomes as explained by the Minister himself.

“Such cooperation and partnership between both ministries ensures a transparent contractual relation between employers and workers which prevents any attempt to replace any job offers upon the arrival of the worker to the UAE, especially since the first measures required to recruit workers from abroad shall be supervised by the UAE government through the Foreign Affairs and international cooperation Ministry,” Mr. Ghobash said as also reported by KhaleejTimes.

He added: “The fulfillment of the initial contractual agreements within such service centers, according to the newly launched decrees which began earlier this year, has a beneficial outcome on the employers as well, especially since informing the workers about their job offers and its annexes then ensuring getting a signature on the job offer to complete the transaction, falls under the direct responsibility of the employer.”

The Ministry is going to open visa issuing centers abroad according to a plan based on three phases as follows.

UAE work visa phases

The number of overseas offices will be increased from time to time and the start of the third phase is expected to be at end-2016 beginning 2017.

The local newspaper further reports the words of Ahmed Saeed Al Dhahiri, Assistant Undersecretary for Consular Affairs at the Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Ministry who said:

“Such centers has a major milestone effect, it will reduce fraud or identity theft cases by verifying the attendee via the passport, in addition to reducing the spread of infectious diseases into the UAE, avoid deportation and medical quarantine costs post the medical examinations which could be done at these centers, also prevent the arrival of foreigners that had already been sentenced to deportation and finally confirm the identity of the person arriving to the UAE through a clear high-quality facial image and an eye-scan done at the center”.

For the other Countries not mentioned in the article, the visa system remains unaltered.

Dubai Metro: 50 Million trips in Q1 2016

Dubai Metro Rail Network

Dubai Rail System – Photo from discover-dubai.ae

Dubai Metro is confirmed to be the favorite way of transportation for many Dubai residents and visitors. Indeed a staggering 50 Million trips were achieved during the first quarter of the year.

Not that the number is going to cause shock or surprise to those that daily use the public transportation to commute, since the impression that the metro raiders were constantly increasing in numbers was evident.

The trains are busy at any given time, with the situation sometimes turning uncomfortable at rush hours when the trains going towards Rashidiya, hence passing through the populous Deira and close to Sharja border, are literally packed with people.

Statistics recently released by RTA (Road and Transport Authority) and published by 7days, a local daily, reveal that during the first quarter of this year the Dubai Metro served almost 50 million trips (31.8 million on the Red Line and 18.1 million the Green Line) while Dubai Tram reported slightly more than 1.3 million trips.

Mr. Abdul Mohsen Ibrahim Younes, CEO of Rail Agency of the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA), said:

“The metro and tram are shaping into prime mobility means within the Emirate, thanks to their smooth, enjoyable and safe transit experience offered to various commercial and residential communities across Dubai.”

The most popular station in the mentioned period was Al Rigga with a total of 2,065,201 passenger followed by Union Station, which served 1,972,811 commuters, slightly ahead of Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall Station that was used by 1,972,261 people. On the Green Line , instead, Al Fahidi Station was top with 2,050,237 passengers, followed by Baniyas Station which was visited by 1,649,229 commuters and the third was the Stadium Station that was used by 1,469,831 people.

To know more about Dubai Transportation system, visit www.rta.ae.

Breaking news: UFO in Dubai!

A woman residing in Dubai claims to have seen a UFO (unidentified flying object) flying over Burj Khalifa while collecting something through what appears to be a light beam.

She was driving on Al Khail Road when she took a photo of the well known Burj Khalifa just to release few seconds later that she was able to frame the at the moment ongoing extra terrestrial activity.

“I’m sure it’s a UFO. If you look at the shape of the object and the beam that’s shooting down, you can tell it’s a spaceship. They probably have visited us before many times but they have the ability to be visible or become invisible when they wish” she told at 7DAYS, a local daily.

UFO in Dubai

“aliens were looking to study the human race” the witness said to 7DAYS journalist.

 Even though the witness is sure to have proved what NASA has been trying to cover for decades, Mr. Hasan Ahmad Al Hariri, CEO of the Dubai Astronomy Group, said that a lighting glitch probably occurred because of a lamppost and the speed of the car as the picture was taken.

Hariri said: “It’s very obvious that the appearance of the light near the Burj Khalifa appeared because of a light pole and the fast speed the car was moving at.”

Who is right? The scientist or the witness?