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I am an Arts&Life editor in Abu Dhabi who was a columnist, blogger and trends writer in Canada before I picked up and moved to the UAE in April 2008. I am still here!!! 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

POUTINE! POUTINE! POUTINE! Where to eat it in Abu Dhabi and Dubai

In honour of Canada Day Friday, I resolved once and for all to find and add up all the places in the UAE serving this most fattening and comforting of dishes. It turns out there are 12. Please tell me what I've missed. It's a bit weird writing about something you know so much about. I'm not sure it works, but I tried.


Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Meet Dubai's newest mascot, Mr Burj

Courtesy Emaar Properties.


























Emaar properties has introduced a new mascot for visitors to the Burj Khalifa and not surprisingly, he wears a big-old smile and giant squishy Burj on his head.

From the press release:

A replica of Burj Khalifa, Mr. Burj is effortlessly flexible and wears a heartwarming smile at all times. It is born from the wish of Omar, a fictional Arab boy, to have his toy come to life. Pronto! Mr. Burj arrives and takes him on some leisurely, adventurous, entertaining and educational experiences.



Canada Day in the UAE: The last supper at Maple Leaf Diner in Dubai

I am super sad about this. Apparently the Maple Leaf Diner in Jumeirah is already closed and July 1 will be the last chance to visit the location in JLT. Opened by brothers Ahmed and Moutaz Al Ghussein, Maple Leaf offered yummy smoked meat sandwiches, hand-made cheese curds and lots of Canadian memorabilia.

You have three days to visit.




Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Laughter Factory joke from a Canadian that can be repeated


'We set fire to Fort McMurray to drive up oil prices - hope you appreciate it." - the brilliant Vancouver-based comic Pete Johansson

This weekend's lineup in Dubai is brilliant, I caught the show in Abu Dhabi last night. Go. www.thelaughterfactory.com

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Monday, May 9, 2016

Fairmont The Palm, Dubai gets a Canadian executive chef

Alain Gobeil, new executive chef at Fairmont The Palm, Dubai.
 I've only ever eaten a pizza poolside at Fairmont The Palm, Dubai, but it was delicious, and I've always meant to go back and have the lobster burger at Seagrill on 25° Restaurant and Lounge.

Maybe I'll hurry that plan along now that a fellow Canuck has been named executive chef. Alain Gobeil has had a pretty cool - not to mention international - two-decade career, working on three continents.

He graduated from the  Institut de Tourisme et d’Hôtellerie du Quebec, with stints at the Fairmont Château Laurier, Ottawa, and Fairmont Queen Elizabeth, Montréal. Moving back and forth between Canada and the UAE, he worked on opening teams for the the company's two previous properties in the UAE: Fairmont Dubai and Fairmont Bab Al Bahr, with stints at The Address Downtown Dubai and The Address Dubai Mall in recent years.

Early on he trained under the famed French Roux brothers - Albert and Michel - during his time at their two Michelin-star Le Gavroche restaurant in London. He worked out in British Columbia at the Fairmont Château Whistler and at the Four Seasons Resort Whistler, as well at the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman and Four Seasons Sharm El Sheikh.

Gobeil now oversees six outlets as part of the new gig, as well as the hotel's plans to launch some new F&B, according to general manager Mark Sawkins.