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Dubai Expat Interview – Chris Brown

chris-brownThis week’s Into-yous features British expat Chris Brown

Tell us a little about yourself:
I have recently opened my own football business after working for 2 of the largest and most well known youth football academies during the time I have been here in Dubai.

I like to think of myself as enthusiastic, likeable, honest and good fun and I’m excited about building It’s Just FOOTBALL into a household name in the region.

When did you move to Dubai and what brought you here:
I moved here with my girlfriend (who is now my wife) in 2004 after some travelling and finishing playing football through injury back in England as we were seeking a new adventure and had had enough of living in the UK.

Have you been an expat elsewhere and if so, where?
I have done some seasonal work in Australia, Greece and the French Alps

The best advice you were given to prepare you for life in Dubai:
I dont remember being given any advice other than being told to enjoy myself….which I definitely have!

What surprised you most about Dubai?
How a city can constantly changes its own destiny on what seems like a daily basis. Dubai and the UAE’S leaders seem to have no limits to what they can achieve and I am continually surprised by the next outrageous project that is announced.

What area do you live in?
Jumeirah Beach Residence for the past 3 years but have lived in Satwa, Umm Sequim and also close to the Greens Community since living in Dubai

If money were no object, where would you most like to live in Dubai?
Probably Emirates Hills or possibly a penthouse in Downtown

Your favourite Arabic word or phrase you have learned so far:
Shukran Habibi

Your least favourite word or phrase you have adopted since moving to Dubai:
UK….It was my pet hate when I first came out here as every British expat said something along the lines of ”back in the UK” or ”In the UK” and I use to think that I have never said the UK when I talk about home as its not specific to where I’m from which is England or Milton Keynes…now I always catch myself saying the same thing which is utter laziness on my behalf and also very annoying!

What has been your best experience in Dubai to date?
I honestly couldn’t pick one out as there have been so many fantastic nights out, meals, brunches, parties, concerts and sporting events which I think makes the place such a brilliant city to live in

Where do you hope to spend your next holiday?
I love the States and we have been to different City’s over there for the past 4 years although we always make sure we visit Vegas which I can’t get enough of although I wouldnt mind a relaxing holiday later in the year to the Maldives (maybe after Vegas though!)

Who is the person you most miss when you are in Dubai?
Couldn’t say one person but my family back home especially my parents as I think its the biggest sacrifice you can make when living abroad as you miss spending a lot of quality time with your loved ones missing out on family get togethers and parties which you’ll never get to share in the memories when they are talked about.

What is your favourite restaurant in Dubai?
There’s so many great ones to choose from but my favourite latest restaurants I’ve been to are STAY at the One & Only on the Palm and Table 9 by Nick & Scott…..the food and service at both was top drawer.

What grocery item do you most miss from your home country?
I really miss decent sandwiches that you can buy from petrol stations and places like Marks and Spencer’s…simple snacks like this are awful out here and not easy to find

When friends and family visit you in Dubai where will you absolutely take them?
A beach club or restaurant at the newest hotel in town, as you are spoilt for choice and its always nice to take them somewhere you maybe haven’t been yourself as visiting the Burj Al Arab for afternoon tea can get quite tedious after the 5th time you have been…..which makes me sound like a real expat snob!!


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