DUBAI: From Ibiza to the Amalfi Coast, Marrakech to Mykonos, luxury publisher Assouline is known for a collection of globe-trotting titles. For the latest addition to its Travel Series, the publisher is putting the spotlight on Dubai.
Titled “Dubai Wonder,” the new 296-page coffee table book was authored by Dubai-based arts consultant and editor Myrna Ayad, the brain behind Assouline’s retrospective on the late UAE ruler, “Sheikh Zayed: An Eternal Legacy,” which came out last year.
While it was the arts consultant who initially pitched the idea to the luxury publisher, for her latest book, Ayad shares that it was Assouline that reached out to her.
“After publishing my first book with Assouline, the house asked if I’d like to author a book on Dubai as part of its iconic Travel Series,” shared Ayad to Arab News.
An avid collector of Assouline books and a Dubai resident for four decades, Ayad did not have to think twice before agreeing to take on the project.
Taking readers on an immersive journey through the UAE’s bustling metropolis, the book delves into the beauty, diversity and rich culture of Dubai through a collection of images and text that show the city has plenty more to offer beyond the world’s largest shopping mall and tallest skyscraper.
“Dubai is a tourism destination, that’s for sure; however, I wanted to portray that it is also a cultural hotspot, a city that is home for so many, and a city that constantly gives,” says Ayad.
Assouline describes Dubai as “one of the most important metropolises in the Middle East.”
Indeed, it is hard to imagine that only 50 years ago, the futuristic city was but a humble desert oasis that relied on pearl diving, fishing and trade.
With “Dubai Wonders,” the author hopes to also capture the side of Dubai that you will not typically see in a 90-second tourism advert.
“Because I have lived in Dubai for 40 years, it is important for me to show audiences the city’s urban evolution. Part of that means showing another side to Dubai, a side which is perhaps not seen as much, but forms the city’s identity,” says Ayad. “Some of those places include the Khor Dubai, which I feel is the very pulse of the city; the ever so charming Jumeirah district; the wondrous Deira Fish Market, the timeless Gold Souk and historical Al-Shindagha.”
On a more contemporary level, spots like AlSerkal Avenue, Jumeirah Road and the Expo 2020 Dubai are also highlighted throughout the book.
Additionally, the opus features insight from international figures like English footballer David Beckham and Iraqi beauty mogul Huda Kattan who describes Dubai as “an incredible place that she is grateful to call home.”