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Dubai Expat Interview – Shafaq Husnain

This week’s Into-yous features Pakistani expat Shafaq Husnain.

Tell us a little about yourself
Hi, I am a house wife and a mother of a four month old baby. I have done my ACCA and I am planning to work in the future. Currently, I love just being at home and with my baby.

When did you move to Dubai and what brought you here?
I arrived in Dubai in March last year after my wedding. My husband works here and that’s what brought me here.

Have you been an expat elsewhere and if so, where?
Yes, I was born in Kuwait and my family lived there before 1990’s war. I was very young and I really do not remember it. So, to me Dubai is my first experience of being an expat.

The best advice you were given to prepare you for life in Dubai
Dubai has its own world going on, with almost every nationality living with their customs and traditions. Meet new people and explore this whole new world!

What surprised you most about Dubai?
The progress in construction amazes me. Back in the 1990’s Sheikh Zayed Road was not so built up. Now, you see beautiful skyscrapers everywhere, which is incredible. Secondly, the road and traffic maintenance are just amazing. If there are traffic issues in a certain area, I see work begins magically and the road and traffic is smooth again in a few weeks or months.

What area do you live in?
I live in Al Barsha, right opposite to Mall of the Emirates Gate no. 1. I love my chosen area. Everything I need is right there. I love shopping! I am on Cloud 9!

If money were no object, where would you most like to live in Dubai?
I would like to buy my own Villa in Palm Jumeirah.

Your favourite Arabic word or phrase you have learned so far
They say “akhi” to call a brother and I love the way they say “aiwaaaa” for a yes.

Your least favourite word or phrase you have adopted since moving to Dubai
Nothing so far.

What has been your best experience in Dubai to date?
Everyday is a new and unique experience. From being on a Dhow Cruise or going jet skiing, to amazing aqua parks and lush dine outs, Dubai has been surprising me almost everyday so far.

Where do you hope to spend your next holiday?
I wanted to visit Malaysia or Thailand before coming to Dubai. I will in the future. After that I would love to visit Turkey.

Who is the person you most miss when you are in Dubai?
My mother is the person I miss the most. I would love her to visit so I can show her this whole new world.

What is your favourite restaurant in Dubai?
Oh I have a list! I love almost all of the restaurants at The Walk, Jumeirah Beach Residence. I love the taste of sea in the air while having the dinner outside. I love the restaurants in Mall of the Emirates. Pakistani restaurants I like are LalQila, BBQ Tonight and Rythmn n Bites. I am a big food lover.

What grocery item do you most miss from your home country?
You can get anything and everything here in Dubai, its just that you need to know the right place to look. I find everything here I could get in my country.

When friends and family visit you in Dubai where will you absolutely take them?
It depends on who is coming, Mom or siblings? I would consider a Dhow Cruise, Desert Safari, Aqua Parks, Ski Dubai, Jet Skiing, Sea Diving, Land Marks of Dubai, Museum and of course the Malls of Dubai. So many choices to enjoy and explore!
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The team at Expat Echo Dubai would like to feature you in our Into-yous section

Please complete our 5 minute interview and submit your answers along with a profile picture (in JPEG format).

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