On a typical Friday, my husband going horse riding at the stables just past Bab al Shams, and I take the kids swimming. Then it’s usually a nice BBQ in the garden with friends, a movie in the evening or playing board games – we love Monopoly and my son Jad is quite an expert! I’ve got kids so I no longer know what sleep-ins are.
I’m originally from the UK but Dubai has been my home since 1999. I love it here. This is where I met my husband Manar, got married, had my children Jad and Lana, and started our own business, Appetite.
Since we live in Mirdif, my favourite mall in the UAE is City Centre Mirdif. It’s like second home. I hang out there a lot on weekends. Besides that, as owning a business is a 24/7 job and it feels like I’m always working, for some R & R I love a good massage. I hit up Amara Spa at the Park Hyatt Dubai hotel.
GO FOR GLOW
I love Clarins for skincare. It gives me that rested, radiant look all week long. For perfume, I’m quite fickle but currently it’s YSL’s Supreme Bouquet for evenings – so floral and feminine.
NOTES TO SELF
Little random notes from my children that they leave by my bed or laptop are my most prized possession. They always fill me with happiness.
I’m waiting for the new Bridget Jones movie – not sure I should admit that! My all-time favourite is Breakfast at Tiffany’s with the gorgeous Audrey Hepburn. But it’s cooking shows that I can watch all day. I love it when a chef goes to a country and explores the cuisine from all angles. Anthony Bourdain is brilliant, and we love to watch Chef’s Table – a fantastic insight into the world and minds of different chefs.
HOP TO THE HAMPTONS
The ideal weekend getaway for me would be in New York with my hubby. I’d go to a jazz club, eat soup dumplings at Shanghai Joe’s and walk around Central Park and Fifth Avenue. Then we’d spend some time in Long Island – I’ve always wanted to go to the Hamptons and explore the kind of gorgeous deli shops you see on the American cooking show Barefoot Contessa. I’d love to spend a day in host Ina Garten’s beautiful big kitchen.
WALK THE WALK
Exercise is an important and necessary part of my life. I have a back disc problem, so walking is my main workout. The treadmill keeps me consistent with speed. I’m inspired to get back into tennis after playing a bit over the summer in Spain.
STAY HUNGRY, STAY HAPPY
Dealing with food on a daily basis hasn’t put me off cooking. I love it. But as I don’t always have the time, I make big pots of soup, chilli, bolognese etc. on the weekends and freeze them to make the working week easier. My brother-in-law recently taught me to make paella, so I’ll be trying that soon!