A Friday afternoon at Cafe Arabia

Cafe Arabia is a homely cafe and restaurant that features art exhibitions, but it is more than that, being also a music venue and a cultural meeting place. It opened in December 2010. Very much in the style of Abu Dhabi’s sometimes seemingly sedate character, it is located in a two-story building in the green surroundings of Mushrif, in what actually still is the heart of Abu Dhabi. So, in some ways it feels like a world apart from what is going on on Saadiyat Island, or at twofour54 that is actually quite far away. The place echoes the still laid-back character of some aspects of Abu Dhabi’s gradually emerging cultural life. It is somewhat expat orientated, but many of these have a Middle-East background, with aspiring ideas for the arts and the media, and who come here for a lunch or coffee meeting . So expect to regularly meet some of the most active young initiators in Abu Dhabi’s cultural enterprises.

Cafe Arabia is run by proprietor Aida Mansour, a painter herself.


Cafe Arabia from the street side. Photo NeilvdL.

Sheikh Zayed in Andy Warhol style near the staircase to the first floor. Photo NeilvdL.


Written by: Neil Last modified: 16th Nov 2012
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