The views offered from 360 bar are second to none in Dubai Image Credit: GN Archive

When referring to the affluent, older side of Dubai, it doesn't get more prestigious than areas closest to Jumeirah Beach such as Umm Suqeim. Rows of charming white-washed villas, converted boutiques, clinics and schools line the main streets, all giving the impression of exclusivity. There is hardly any construction in Umm Suqeim, as the area has come up organically over the years.

There's always a steady flow of traffic through this area, though it can move quickly during the weekend and outside of rush hour. It's also conveniently located less than a 10-minute drive from Mall of the Emirates. Buses are frequent from Business Bay Metro Station and Mall of the Emirates Metro Station.

Composed of mostly villa compounds, smaller homes and apartments in Umm Suqeim are few. Rent is high and so is the demand, especially for families sending kids to the popular private schools nearby. Only the wealthiest Dubai residents can afford to live here and, with hotels, beaches and tourist spots just minutes away, it's no wonder the area continues to stand out as one of the finest in the city.

Where it's located

Umm Suqeim comprises three areas on the west side of the city: Umm Suqeim 1, Umm Suqeim 2 and Umm Suqeim 3. To the south, it is bordered by Al Sufouh, and to the north by Safa and Jumeirah.

Rent

As of June 1 2015, the average rent for a two bedroom apartment on the Dubai Government rent calculator was Dh90,000 to Dh100,000. The average rent for a two bedroom villa was Dh120,000 to Dh145,000.

Good for

It’s and area good for grand, custom-built homes with character and private backyardsand aprestigious "area code" recognized for high status residents. It also offers good access to major tourist attractions like hotels, parks and beaches. The are is favoured for its convenience for families, with plenty of schools nearby.

Bad for

It’s not so good if you’re trying to stick to a budget, as rent and most surrounding spots are upscale in price.Homes are generally older and don't have the structure of new developments. Apartments and smaller housing options are hard to come by for single people and couplesand traffic, can seem endless when at its worst, especially on Al Wasl Road.

Transport

Metro Noor Bank Metro Station and Mall of the Emirates Metro Station Bus Umm Suqeim 1 - Business Bay Metro Station - F18- Jumeirah 2 and 3; Umm Suqeim 2 and 3: Mall of the Emirates Metro Station - F28 - Umm Suqeim 2 and 3 Taxi Cabs passing through these blocks tend to be full, and you could find yourself waiting up to an hour for a vacant one.

Traffic and Parking

Local rush hour traffic is due to commuters making their way to Shaikh Zayed Road (E11) via major intersections. Once familiar with inside streets you can take twists and turns to avoid often bumper-to-bumper congestion.

5 to try in Umm Suqeim

360 Based at, or rather off shore of, theJumeirah Beach Hotel, electronic dance music fans who want a breezy, unpretentious (though pricey) night should head here.
It’s mainly outdoors so in the summer months humidity can play havoc with one’s hairdo. It’s well-suited for cooler evenings. Timings Sunday to Wednesday 5pm to 2am; Thursday to Saturday 5pm to 3am Phone 04 432 3232 Website 360 Bar

Bu'Qtair Previously dubbed a hidden gem, this low-key beachside barbeque seafood spot is affordable to all. Fish is prepared in an Indian style and is best enjoyed on the outdoor seating deck overlooking the Arabian Gulf. Timings 6.30pm to 11.30pm daily Phone 055 705 2130 Website Bu'Qtair

Wild Wadi
 An amusement park filled with water rides for friends and family, Wild Wadi has long been one of Dubai’s most acclaimed tourist attractions. Located on the coast and overlooked by the iconic Burj Al Arab, it’s hard to not enjoy Dubai here. Timings Saturday to Thursday 10am to 7pm; Friday 10am to 10pm Phone 04 348 4444 Website Wild Wadi

Dubai Offshore Sailing Club The Dubai Offshore Sailing Club began operating in 1974, when the area that is now Umm Suqeim little more than just desert. It is now the home sailing in Dubai and is a must-visit for anyone looking to hit the waves. The sailing school is ideal for kids wishing to learn from the best in Dubai. Timings 9am to 10pm daily Phone 04 394 1669 Website DOSC

Kite Surf Beach Although it might take some hunting to find this stretch of sand (unless you use our magnificent map above), it is worth the effort for the sunsets. Kite surfing is big in the UAE and the open waters on this stretch are ideal for experienced kiters to get their fix. Timings Daylight hours