About Alserkal AvenueAlserkal Avenue is one of the best places to explore and experience the lively art landscape of Dubai. It was founded by Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal, an Emirati businessman in 2008 with a viewpoint to bring together people from all over the world together and let them bond over art and culture.
It goes beyond just exhibiting the artworks. Artists can promote their work amongst larger audiences from around the world. The Avenue also has design studios that provide services like production and framing of artworks.
The Avenue is located in a quirky & interesting revamped huge warehouse building in the Al Quoz district. It houses ‘Concrete’, an adaptable venue that transforms into an inspirational space for art & fashion events, pop-up concerts, museum-grade exhibitions, and performing arts events.
It is broadly divided into 12 Art Galleries (1X1 Gallery, Carbon 12, Elmarsa Gallery), 7 Community Spaces (Limah, Techarc, LMTD), 14 Original Concepts (Ame Studio, Chalk, Gulf Photo Plus), 6 kitschy cafes (Appetite, Mirzam Chocolate Makers, Nightjar), 5 Performing Arts + Entertainment spaces (Cinema Akil, Sima Performing Arts, The Fridge), 8 Retail Spaces (Nostalgia Classic Cars, The Good Life, The Jewel Teller), and 2 Warehouse Takeovers (Fashion Exclusive UAE, Tamashee). The space also houses some art-based non-profits like Ishara Art Foundation, Jean-Paul Najar Foundation and Jean-Paul Najar Foundation.
Regional and International visitors are privy to eclectic experiences like Pop-up exhibition by Arjowiggins, While We Wait by Elias and Yousef Anastas, Adapt to Survive: Notes from the Future, The Shortest Distance Between us, etc. It also holds events like Dubai Art Week, Majlis Talks, etc. each year.
Alserkal Avenue regularly conducts free road trips that take people across the UAE to the latest art events, performances, screenings, and other cultural initiatives.
How to Reach Alserkal AvenueAlserkal Avenue is located around 22.5 kilometres (25 minutes depending on the traffic) from Dubai International Airport. The fastest way to reach is via Sheikh Zayed Road/ E11. Once you cross the airport Road/ D89 and the Al Khail Road/ D 68, you will need to turn right into the 17thStreet.
Best Time to Visit Alserkal AvenueBest time to visit Alserkal Avenue is between November to March. This is when the heat and humidity are at their lowest. Also, during the winter night-time, Art Nights are held at the Avenue, which should not be missed. This is a time when street food vendors, artists, musicians, and art educators come together in a festive ambience and lit up outdoors.
What Not to Miss at Alserkal AvenueHere are some of the best places to visit near Alserkal Avenue:
1. HintHunt: HintHunt is an exciting theme-based gaming zone. It offers an array of mind-boggling games requiring logical thinking and quick manoeuvring like Merry Mystery, Submarine Torpedo, Zen Room, etc. It houses 8 escape Rooms that can accommodate 4-6 people at a time. Visit HintHunt at Times Square Centre, First Floor, Shop F13, Sheikh Zayed Road.
2. Cartoon Art Gallery: Catch some of the best cartoon and animation based exhibitions, screenings, and discussions at the Cartoon Art Gallery. It features works like cartoon strips, books, art installations, and caricatures by illustrators and animators from around the world. The gallery, located at Al Quoz 4b St., Dubai, is especially loved by children.
3. Antique Museum: More a bazaar than a museum, this is the go-to place if you want to pick up souvenirs. Choose from thousands of beautiful artefacts like Arabic style lamps, coffee sets, utensils, jewellery, textiles, incense sticks, attars made by the local artisans. You can also interact freely with the local artists while here. The Antique Museum is located at Manara Street, Al Quroz Industrial Area 1, Dubai.
4. Chillout Lounge: What’s a better way to escape the Dubai heat than spending time in an ice lounge. People love to visit this lounge to see the iced walls, sculptures, chandeliers, seating, and illuminated portraits. Don’t miss to try the delicious mocktails, hot coffees and continental food. The Chillout Lounge is located at Times Square Center, 4b St., Ground Level, Dubai.
5. Times Square Centre: This is a unique shopping centre that serves more like a full-fledged destination for food, hangouts, and shopping. It houses international boutique brands that you will only find in Dubai like Sharaf DG, which is a huge electronics and computer goods market, Toys R Us, Malaak, Palooza, etc. It is located at Sheikh Zayed Road, 3.4thInterchange, Dubai.
Things to Do in Alserkal Avenue
1. Explore Art: This is the perfect place for art connoisseurs who like to explore modern and contemporary artworks, installations, and graffiti. You will find works of established as well as new emerging artists from Europe, North Africa, South Asia, and the Middle East.
2. Shop for Antique Furniture: Pick up kitschy and one of a kind furniture, furnishings, and antiques from the newly opened The Odd Piece. These pieces have been created and restored by the famous Saudi artist Arwa Hafiz.
3. See Watches like Never Before: See the best timepieces on display by Swiss Watch company MB&F at M.A.D Gallery. Not only this, but it also houses quirky installations made from different parts of a watch.
4. Learn to Paint: There is no better place than Alserkal Avenue to learn a spot of painting and art creation yourself. You can participate in do-it-yourself painting classes and art workshops at The Jam Jar. Visit the Wisdom Warehouse, which is a creative hub for children to learn, explore, and create art.
5. Visit Gulf Photo Plus: It is the only dedicated centre for photography in Dubai. Not only can you see thought-provoking work from around the world, but can also take photography lessons from the in-house experts.
6. Test your fitness levels: Test your endurance while on a visit to Alserkal Avenue. Crank, the luxury fitness and wellness space, has professional and inspiring trainers who will challenge you to try high interval training and teach you dynamic stretching techniques. You will especially love the state-of-the-art lighting and fast-paced music.
7. Taste Delicious Food: The Avenue is a haven for food connoisseurs with its amazing range of cafes. Indulge in fresh juices, organic sodas, and teas at the eco-café Appetite. Taste some real bean to bar chocolates at Mirzam Chocolate Makers. Have a delicious Chai experience with its huge variety of teas and street foods at the Project Chaiwala.
Other Essential Information About Alserkal Avenue-Location: Street 8, Al Quoz 1, Dubai.
-Timings: Sunday till Thursday: 10:00 am until 7:00 pm. Alserkal Avenue is closed on Friday.
-Price (for locals and foreigners): The entry is free to Alserkal Avenue for locals as well as foreigners
Cafes in Alserkal Avenue
1. Nightjar: This is a boutique coffee shop specialising in Arabic coffee as well as delicious brews from Rwanda, Colombia, and Burundi. It serves a huge range of salads, sides, soft brewed hot and cold blended coffees, and non-alcoholic ginger beers and mocktails. Located in Warehouse 62, it also doubles up as an event room, training facility, and even a party place.
2. Mirzam Chocolate Makers: Mirzam specialises in creating real bean to bar chocolates. Either pick up a few slabs of these decadent chocolates or indulge in their huge range of lattes, affogato, and orange flavoured cold drip coffee. Don’t miss their chocolate-based drinks like Moroccan Mint Milkshake and Iced Hot Chocolate. It is located in Warehouse 70.
3. Wild & The Moon: Serving some of the best organic food in the area, Wild & The Moon is a pretty popular café in the Avenue. Its foods and juices are organic, cold-pressed, plant-based and gluten-free. Try the Earth Bowl, Soba Noodles, Chia Puddings, and Matcha Bar while here. It is located in Warehouse 77.
4. Project Chaiwala: The place serves tea brews along with the most popular street foods from around the world. Don’t miss to try Chais like Karak, Masala, Zafrani, and Suleimani. Other popular options are cold raw Matcha and Turmeric Latte. It is located within Cinema Akil at Warehouse 68.
5. Techarc: This quaintly charming café serves a huge range of teas, frozen blends, mojitos, cold coffees, hot coffees, fruit-based smoothies, pastries, and frozen bowls. Don’t miss the Flat White, Iced Rose Latte, Iced Spanish Latte, and Toffee Cream Latte. It is located in Warehouse 25.
6. Appetite: The Shop: Located in the A4 Space, this eco-friendly café is popular for its organic juices, sodas, pure in house blends of coffees and organic teas. This café serves a huge range of salads, breakfast pots that include chia seed puddings & healthy rolls, sumptuous chocolate and banana cookies, and even Protein Power Pots.
Tips for Visiting Alserkal Avenue
- Alserkal Avenue will mainly appeal to people who are interested in arts- performing & visual, culture, and meeting artists from around the world.
- Before you plan to attend an exhibition or event, make sure to check its exact timings and if you need to book your presence in advance.
- Please check with the warehouse curator before clicking pictures of the artworks.
- Adhere to the rules and regulations of timings and plan your visit accordingly.
- Every warehouse and gallery has different opening and closing timings and days. Make sure to check that before you visit the Avenue.
- The timings during Ramadan change. Make sure to confirm beforehand to avoid any inconvenience.