Dubai: Cafe pops up in the middle of desert lakes, Sheikh Mohammed among first visitors

The waterfront cafe is situated by Al Marmoom Lakes


Waad Barakat

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KT Photos: Neeraj Murali
KT Photos: Neeraj Murali

Published: Tue 9 Jan 2024, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Tue 9 Jan 2024, 3:28 PM

A new waterfront café in Dubai offers incredible views of Dubai’s Al Marmoom Lakes, while dishing out some tasty treats and coffee. Called ‘Limited’, the project is a collaboration between three ventures — Bound Burgers, Sillage, and Stuffed Buns.

What’s more, you can go looking for a signature from none other the UAE Vice-President, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who visited the lakeside café recently and autographed a painting there.

The owners of the small businesses that came together under Limited's umbrella had a vision for a change in scenery. Instead of being situated in the bustling city or the desert like many other cafes, they sought a more natural and awe-inspiring location. Al Marmoom, with its picturesque lakes, seemed like the perfect spot.

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The view was nothing short of extraordinary, with the colours of the sunset painting the sky in hues of brown, pink, and orange. Limited opened its doors at 4 o'clock in the afternoon when the weather cooled down, providing visitors with an ideal time to enjoy the mesmerizing spectacle.

The project aimed to offer visitors a delightful experience, starting with the perfect hotdog bun from Stuffed Buns, followed by a sweet treat from Sillage, and finally, a cup of coffee — all while enjoying the breathtaking view of Al Marmoom Lakes.

From homemade goods to full-fledged endeavour

The idea for the project initially was to create a winter-themed venture — a 'winter pop up'. The three companies behind it came together, combining their expertise in preparing sweets, coffee, and salty bites. What began as a small-scale operation — selling homemade goods and fulfilling catering contracts with coffee shops — gradually evolved into a full-fledged endeavour.

Meeting challenges

However, the journey to bring Limited to life was not without its challenges. The founders faced the daunting task of meeting the project's tight timeline. Despite the time constraints, they were determined to maintain the utmost quality while accommodating the increasing number of visitors each day. The support from friends and family was invaluable, but it was the visit of Dubai's Ruler that truly elevated Limited's success.

One of the owners shared the story of how they chose Al Marmoom as the project's location. They had been informed that it was a place close to Sheikh Mohammed’s heart and that he frequently visited the area. The anticipation of his visit grew, and shortly after the opening, they received the news that the Sheikh would grace Limited with his presence. It was an honour beyond words, and the visit from such a respected figure brought immense publicity and heightened people's perception of the place.

“We were honoured and it was a very beautiful thing for the project. His visit to the place is the greatest success of the project,” they told Khaleej Times.

A family effort

Limited is a family effort, with everyone pitching in to make the venture a success. Initially they all worked together, but as time went on, they established a rotation system to ensure that someone was always present to oversee operations and ensure everything ran smoothly.

Elevating Limited project's success

The impact of the Dubai royal's visit was profound. It created a tremendous buzz around Limited, drawing more visitors and solidifying its reputation. The Dubai Creative Unit, which supports innovative projects in Dubai, played a crucial role in Limited's journey. They provided the land and sent influencers to promote the opening, ensuring that the project reached a wide audience.

Sheikh Mohammed's inspiration

A distinctive feature of Limited is the presence of quotes from poems by Sheikh Mohammed. These quotes adorn the walls, serving as a testament to the Sheikh's support and inspiration. One of them even bore the Sheikh's own signature, adding an extra touch of prestige and significance to the place.

With the overwhelming success of Limited, the founders aspire to expand the brand to multiple locations. They have ambitious plans for the future and are working diligently to turn them into reality. Dubai Creative Unit, with its commitment to promoting creative and authentic spaces, continues to support projects like Limited, providing opportunities for young entrepreneurs to showcase their businesses in unique locations.


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