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Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoom House

Updated on 03.06.2018

Traditional houses restored in the historic district of Dubai, United Arab Emirates ©Odyfolio

The house of Dubai's current Sheikh's grand father is part of a set of renovated buildings along Dubai Creek. Dating back to the end of the 19th century, it is a fine example of Emirati architecture, which today houses permanent exhibitions dedicated to local history.

Architecture of the building

Perfectly restored after a conservation program started in 1986, the old house of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum is a typical example of architecture of a bourgeois house in Dubai in the late nineteenth century. Built in 1896, the century-old building once housed the Emir of Dubai, and so was able to serve as a seat of local government.

We can note the lack of protection and the relative proximity to the rest of the city, which reflects a time when the leaders of Dubai lived closer to the inhabitants of the city and shared their concerns.

Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum

Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum is the grandfather of Dubai's current leader Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He is known for being the one who drew the plans for modern Dubai, and created the big commercial port. He was born in 1912 and ruled from 1958 until his death on October 7, 1990.

Permanent exhibitions

In addition to the architecture of the building and the visit of the old living rooms, several permanent exhibitions retrace the heritage of the port of Dubai with plenty of vintage photos.

Another exhibition is devoted to marine life in the Gulf at the beginning of the last century, with particular reference to pearl culture.

The social life in Dubai in the 50's is also presented through photos and ancient objects.

The exhibition halls, which are fast moving, also present historical documents in Arabic, old pieces dating for some of the late eighteenth century, as well as old stamps.

Schedules and practical information for the visit

The entrance to Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum House is 3AED (1AED for children).

It is open every day from 8.30am to 8:30om, except on Fridays when the visit is only possible between 3pm and 9.30pm.

Hotels nearby

Access map

Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum's house is located on the west bank of Dubai Creek, and is accessible from the pedestrian walkway along the riverbank, towards the heritage village, in an area called Al Shindagha.

The site is easily accessible on foot from other historic Dubai attractions, or by car, with plenty of parking available on the main avenue's driveways (pay parking at the ticket machine, except Fridays and public holidays). For free parking, use the carrefour supermarket car park about 10 minutes walk away.

Location of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum House on the Creek of Old Dubai, United Arab Emirates ©OpenStreetMap contributors