Art galleries, independent boutiques, hipster cafes, and community events – there’s plenty of cultures to discover in this industrial neighborhood with heart.
At first glance, the industrial area of Al Quoz seems like an unlikely tourist destination, with rows of warehouses and factories. However, beneath the surface, Al Quoz has flourished into one of Dubai’s most vibrant art and cultural hubs, with some warehouses reborn into art galleries, boutique photography studios, and performance spaces.
All the creative energy packed into this space means that if there’s a current trend, you’ll probably find it somewhere in Al Quoz. Homegrown artisanal chocolate makers, sustainable gift stores, trampoline parks, and coffee roasters have all popped up recently in refurbished spaces. And naturally, there are more than a few cafés serving inventive eats in edgy spaces (a favorite is Tom & Serg or Nightjar in Alserkal Avenue).
At the heart of this creative neighborhood is Alserkal Avenue, where a series of purpose-built warehouses are home to some of Dubai’s top contemporary art galleries. It’s here that you can discover the region’s most exciting established and emerging artists. See an independent film screening, take a painting class, or even join the fashionable crowd at one of the many launch parties and late-night pop-up events.
There are more community vibes at The Courtyard, where some of the city’s entrepreneurs have set up shop. Built-in the 1990s, it’s a striking venue – two unassuming gates face the main road, while a courtyard in between connects 10 buildings with different designs that reflect the architecture of the Gulf.
It’s a project of love for founder and architect Dariush Zandi. Inside, there’s quirky gift stores, boutiques selling handmade souvenirs, thriving art galleries, and even a small theatre promoting up-and-coming talent.
Getting there: If using the Dubai Metro, alight at Noor Bank station and take a taxi.