Let the fun begin: Global Village opens its doors
Photos by Juidin Bernarrd
Dubai - Grand Opening of 21st Season of Global Village
Published: Tue 1 Nov 2016, 6:51 PM
Last updated: Tue 1 Nov 2016, 9:02 PM
One of the most awaited annual cultural and shopping festivals, Global Village opened its doors for the public at 4pm sharp on Tuesday, November 1, with busy ticket counters and full-to-the-brim parking lots within a few hours of the opening.
The multicultural family destination began on a hilarious and entertaining note with its very first Colombian Circus show. Street entertainers kept the crowd busy with their funny acts while kids could be seen laughing and giggling around.
With the theme of "A New World Everyday," Global Village attracted thousands of people on its first day. Cultural Gate, a new addition to the show, presents the beautiful Emirati architecture and food stalls.
This year, most pavilions received a makeover with changes to their entrances. The American pavilion grabbed many a people's fancy with a huge cowboy model at its entrance. Last year, Spain had a boat-shaped entrance but this time, it was changed to highlight the traditional Spanish architecture.
Africa remained one of the visitors' favourite countries like every year, and fetched people in good number on the opening day itself.
Jitendra Bhabera, a tourist in Dubai, arrived last week with his family for a city trip and Global Village fell in his kitty as a surprise. The family was seen enjoying at the different pavilions. His son Kunal liked the African and American pavilion the most. He says he bought a few antique pieces from there as well.
Daroshaam Shehzad, a Dubai resident, came with her father and younger sister. She told Khaleej Times while watching the circus: "I have been coming here for the past few years, and I think every time, it surprises us with something exciting and new. Apart from shopping this year, I am definitely looking forward to cultural shows, including the celebrity performances".
Another family came from neighbouring Abu Dhabi to get a taste of the popular festival at the Global Village. Karim Boualem said: "I am here with my wife and kids, it's a good start today and we are enjoying the relaxed outing".
The Turkish food stall was a hit on day one with its special fresh Turkish potato and Turkish dessert Kunefe. Maduri Biyani, a tourist from Mumbai India, said: "It's a great experience for me, I love trying food from different parts of the world and I must say this place is just amazing. I have just tried Turkish potato and I am going to try many more things here tonight. It is just the start".
Guclu Sakar, manager at the Turkish stall, confirmed that every year they get a good response. He said: "Turkish potato is in demand more, people like it as we serve hot and fresh".
The new pavilions including The Far East, Algeria, Eastern Europe and return of Jordan got a warm welcome but Tunisia was missed by many, of course. The lively shows, cheerful characters on the streets and flavours from all over the world engaged kids and adults.
Shezana Hamidan, originally from Sri Lanka, is new to Dubai and came along with her friends to explore the Global Village for the first time. She said: "I have heard a lot about it and thought of coming here today with my friends. I like the stalls here so I am going to return often - every 15 days at least."
To mark the grand opening of the 21st edition of Global Village, special fireworks were arranged at 9pm, with colourful lights and sound charming everyone out there.
Ahmad Hussain Bin Essa, CEO of Global Village said: "Throughout the season, we will continue to provide our guests with large scale entertainment shows and events that will enrich their cultural experience, a value which Global Village was built upon."