Most rooms of the Arabian Courtyard Hotel & Spa face the Dubai Creek, a saltwater brook ending at Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary. As we are near the creek, we have decided to write a little about its history, uses, crossing areas and interesting places.
Historically the creek divided Dubai into two main areas: Bur Dubai and Deira. It served as a minor port and then became very important for commercial purposes, so it was established as the only port in the city, therefore it was very important in the economic development of Dubai: the transport of pearls and fishing were the main activities.
The first bridge to join both districts was built in 1963 and its name is Al Maktoum, it was the first time people could cross from one place to the other without taking a boat ferry, although those going from Deira to Bur Dubai had to pay toll, whereas there were no tax for those travelling in the other direction. When the bridge was completely payed the toll was removed.
Other four crossings have been built, so there are a total of five different ways to go from one place to the other:
–Al Shindagha Tunnel: it is the busiest tunnel, due to its age authorities are planning to replace it with a new bridge.
–Floating Bridge: it was built to reduce traffic in Al Maktoum bridge although it is planned to be replaced by the Dubai Smile (12-line bridge expected in 2018).
–Al Garhoud: firstly opened in 1976, then reopened in 2008 as a new bridge and the old one was demolished. It is decorated with artwork similar to sand dunes during the day and waves at night.
–Business Bay: 13-line bridge (6 from Deira to Bur Dubai, and 7 from Bur Dubai to Deira), opened in 2007 is one of the most recent crossings of Dubai Creek.
Some significant buildings alongside the creek are Deira Twin Towers, Dubai Creek Tower, Dubai Creek Park, National Bank or Chamber of Commerce. Finally, the creek houses the Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club, which holds the only seaplane tour operator in Dubai. Apart from the different crossings, at the Arabian Courtyard Hotel & Spa we recommend to cross the creek via the old way, with the abras, a traditional wooden boat. We are sure guests will love the experience, so you can ask to our team at the reception desk or visit the hotel’s official website for further information and online maps.