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About Me

About Me
CrystalPhuong.net is a Personal Style & Travel Blog based in Singapore, written by Crystal Phuong. The blog was nominated FOUR times in Top 10 Best Fashion Blogs in the annual Singapore Blog Award from 2012- 2015, voted as one of the Best Lifestyle Blogs in Singapore in 2013 by Hotelclub.com, and Best Travel Blogs in 2016 by Foodpanda.com. Crystal hopes to connect and inspire young women to lead a healthy and happy life. Be confident, be positive, and be kind.


Day 3 of my Dubai adventure is finally here, everyone!

Sorry for taking so long. I accidentally deleted the blog post which was about to be published without saving it and so I had to re-write everything from the beginning. Thank you so much for patiently waiting! I can't believe that some of you even chased me for this blog entry. 

If you haven't read my "Dear Dubai" blog post, I suggest you should read that one first before moving onto this entry. :)

After the first 2 days, Dubai and I started getting to know "each other" better and becoming closer: no more assumption, doubt, fear and hesitation. If on day 1 and 2, I completely relied on my friend to decide where to go, what to do, then on day 3, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. 

First, I wanted to visit Dubai beaches as I heard so much about how beautiful the beaches are. My friend took me to Jumeirah Beach Residence (aka JBR) where he used to live 3 years go. Jumeirah Beach Residence is a 1.7 kilometres (1.1 mi) long, 2 square kilometres (0.77 sq mi) gross floor area waterfront community located against the Persian Gulf in Dubai Marina in DubaiUnited Arab Emirates. It is the largest single phase residential development in the world and contains 40 towers (35 are residential and 5 are hotels). 

White sands, blue sky, turquoise water, this is my ideal place that I visualize myself to be when I retire (the sooner, the better of course). Besides the picturesque scenery, JBR is one of the few public beaches that opens daily in Dubai. This is the reason why JBR is listed as one of the must-visit places for tourists. 

Looking at the beautiful beach like this, all I wanted to do was to relax and to enjoyed my sun-tanning. Unfortunately, I didn't bring my bikini with me due to my fear of the inappropriate dressing in public. I thought people couldn't wear bikini in Dubai, they should wear modest swimwear or something. But look at the woman behind me? She was walking around in her bikini like nobody's business! That's how silly I was! The truth is we can still wear bikini at the pool or on the beach but we must cover our body whenever we walk around public areas i.e restaurants, hotel, etc...

Initially, I wanted to go for morning walk on the beach but the plan was failed miserably due to the ridiculously hot sun, we walked around The Walk instead. This is a bursting waterfront promenade in the heart of JBR and is by far the most well-known and most recent developed area in Dubai surrounded by many beautiful hotels and restaurants.  It's such a vibrant, fun and happening place to hangout. 

Only after visiting the JBR, I understood why my friend didn't want to leave Dubai for Singapore when he first relocated to the little red dot. It's hard to leave such a beautiful paradise like this. 

Leaving the beach, we went to visit Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo and spent my entire day shopping at The Dubai Mall, the largest shopping mall in the world. 

My jaw dropped when I first looked at this gigantic fish tank despite seeing many photos of it on the internet before. The Dubai Aquarium is one of the largest tanks in the world at 51m x 20m x 11m that features one of the world's largest viewing panel at 32.8m wide and 8.3m high. With more than 33,000 living animals including over 400 sharks and rays, Dubai Aquarium does make the Dubai citizens proud. 

Visitors could also walk through the 270-degree acrylic tunnel to have up-close experience with some of the most fascinating underwater animals on the planet. Those animals that I thought I could only see them on TV were swimming happily and peacefully right in front of my eyes. It was a whole new level of experience.  

Though the tunnel walk was very short but it's worth every penny (Yes, you have to pay to enter). It's a once-in-a-life-time experience that  I didn't want to miss so that I could proudly say "I've been there" after all. 

As if the Dubai Mall, Dubai Aquarium, Shoppings were not good enough to entertain me, my friend took me to the most famous place in Downtown Dubai: Dubai Fountain where we would be watching the light and water show at night. He saved the best for last! 

I thought Dubai fountain was just as big as many other fountains that I've seen before in Taiwan, Malaysia, or even in Singapore, but I was so wrong. The Dubai Fountain is the world's largest choreographed fountain system set on the 30-acre manmade Burj Khalifa Lake, at the center of the Downtown Dubai

I was wondering if Dubai had anything to be ranked second at all? Everything they have/ make/ do seem to be the largest, the biggest, the tallest in the world. While walking around Downtown Dubai, I kept asking myself "Why didn't I visit this city much sooner?". 

Right here where I found the meaning of PERFECTION: A modern lifestyle, architectures and beautiful nature combined. The blue sky, turquoise clear water and sparkling tall buildings under the bright golden sunshine. A mesmerizing view like this could totally sweep me off my feet, help me to forget about stress  and only focus on being happy. Life is too short to be worried about, we need to enjoy it as much as we can! 

Just like a kid, I was so eager to discover what's there on the other side of the lake after being so overwhelmed by Downtown Dubai. We walked all the way to Souk Al Bahar - a charming Arabesque mall on The Old Town Island ideally located near the iconic developments of Downtown Dubai that brings the traditional touch to the urban living.

Souk Al- Bahar view from the outside to the inside, it offered the exclusive view of Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Fountain that no other place could. We had our lunch at one of the restaurants in Souk Al- Bahar. 

Scallop for appetizer and king prawn as main course. 

The lunch was already so good but this view I had right here made it taste even better. Look!

 Magnificent Burj Khalifa view from Souk Al Bahar. How could I not fall in love with Dubai? 

On the other side of The Dubai Mall, there was a huge playground area for locals and expatriates to hang out. Everything was so clean, clear and well-maintained. 

The further I walked, the more beautiful thing I saw. Somehow I ended up walking to this The Palace Hotel and I got my mind lost there for a minute, again. 

 I loved the harmonious blend of rich Middle Eastern heritage and contemporary Dubai at every corner in this hotel. It's a beautiful resort at the heart of traditional Arabian village, faced with a striking symbol of modernity. When standing at the places like this, there was nothing else I wanted to do besides taking photos. #bloggerproblem

 Not willing to leave The Palace Hotel just yet but I had to go back to The Dubai Fountain to catch the first light and water show which was about to start in 30 minutes time. 

 Sunset watching while waiting for something magical began
Shortly, this was what happened!

Dubai bid me a farewell with the most amazing and mind-blowing water show that I've ever seen. I knew and heard about Dubai Fountain before but I didn't expect it to be so wonderful like this. On the 30-acre Burj Khalifa lake, the water was shot as high as 500 ft up in the air and moved gracefully to the music. The beam of light shining upward from the fountain can be seen from over 20 miles away, and will even be visible from space making it the brightest spot in the Middle East, and quite possibly in the entire world. That explained why Dubai Fountain is considered as the World's largest fountain dance.  

I was acting like a kid who was brought to wonderland for the first time and saw so many incredible things. While watching, I couldn't stop taking photos as I was afraid that If I didn't press the shutter speed fast enough, I would not able to capture the beauty of a one-of-a-kind water show.

Believe it or not, that water show even went into my dream that night and I kept watching the video I recorded again and again while I was on the way to airport in the next morning. 

Thank you so much Dubai for being so wonderful! You have been so nice to me from the day I arrived to the day I left. Even when I was up in the air, you never stopped showing me how beautiful you were. Leaving you was really hard. 

Brought some clouds from Dubai back to Singapore . Every time I travel, I always take photos of the clouds because that was my ultimate dream when I was small.  My family was so poor that we could never afford to buy any air ticket to go anywhere, I always wished one day I could sit on the airplane and see the clouds for real. Amazingly enough, after 20 years, I'm now living my childhood dream and I've learned that: Dreams do come true as long as we never give up. 

Hope you liked my Dubai diary and thank you so much for reading! 
Crystal Phuong
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