A lively and compact area of old Dubai, Al Satwa is full of life
One of the oldest parts of Dubai is located between Jumeirah and Bur Dubai and is called Al Satwa.
This busy neighbourhood embodies all the rustle and bustle of an older version of Dubai and is regarded to be an important landmark to the country.
Al Satwa is a small and compact area, and is found at the end of 2nd December Street near Bur Dubai, and the area is perfectly situated with contrasting views of older buildings overlooking the great Burj Khalifa.
The neighbourhood is home to low-rise buildings and smaller villas, and is full of expats that fill the area with a lively atmosphere; from street life, to busy roadside eateries, colourful fabric stores and more... Your eyes will never find a plain corner in Al Satwa.
Here's our complete guide to what life is like in Al Satwa:
Public transport in Al Satwa
- Dubai World Trade Centre is the nearest Dubai Metro station
- Other stations nearby include Emirates Towers and Financial Centre Dubai Metro stations
- RTA national taxis regularly service the area, and easy to flag from the street
- As an older part of Dubai, it's well-known by private taxi companies like Careem and Uber
- Al Satwa Bus Station located next to Al Satwa park
Commute times by car from Al Satwa
Located between Bur Dubai and Jumeirah 1, you can reach the following from Al Satwa:
- to Jebel Ali: 35 minutes
- to Dubai Marina: 20 minutes
- to The Dubai Mall: 11 minutes
- to Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC): 10 minutes
- to Dubai International Airport: 14 minutes
Amenities and facilities in Al Satwa
For residents who are living in or new in Al Satwa, the following public amenities and facilities are on offer in the neighbourhood:
- Lots of tea-houses to meet with friends at
- Lots of Southeast Asian cuisine options to try
- Coffee shops, cafes and restaurants
- Lots of fabric stores and tailors
- Amenity stores for men and women
- Several bike, tailor and electronic shops
As mentioned above, Al Satwa is a bustling community filled with amenities that serve the residents in the area. Mostly known as the go-to place if you need anything fixing, you'll find Al Satwa's streets lined with small companies, local vendors and stores that offer electrical goods, tailoring, groceries and of course - the many tea-houses, cafes and dining options available in the area.
In terms of schools in Al Satwa, there's GEMS Wellington Primary School, Anita School and Salma Al Ansaria Elementary School. For nurseries, we have a dedicated guide to Dubai's nurseries that you can browse to find the nearest one to you.
For health clinics and dentists in Al Satwa, you can find the nearest one to you by using our directory, here.
What's life like in Al Satwa?
- A busy, compact neighbourhood
- A popular area to live with Southeast Asian expatriates
- Always busy with life, noise and traffic
If you’ve ever wanted to experience an older yet authentic version of Dubai, the Al Satwa neighbourhood is an area you should consider visiting or moving to.
With the location’s constant appearance in photo journalism, movies and documentaries – this area is a celebrity and serves as an important landmark to all nationals and expats in the UAE.
The area once housed the newly arrived expats and till this day, it still houses a majority of the UAE’s expatriate population from Southeast Asia.
With lots of hidden gems, authentic cuisines, tea houses, fabric stores and more…Your every need is met in this busy neighbourhood, with varying options available for everything you do need.
For those seeking green space, Al Satwa is home to 3 dedicated parks; Al Satwa park 1, a larger Al Satwa park 3 and Al Khazzan park - the latter is closest to City Walk, which is just a walk across the road for residents living closest to that end of the community.
Al Satwa by day
It’s not unusual to see that this area is a walking-friendly community in Dubai…With limited parking spots and lots of public transport options, expats living in Al Satwa choose to use their legs for transportation.
And with a strategic location, you can reach various locations around Dubai from Al Satwa, just make sure you factor in some traffic time in your schedule.
During the day, Al Satwa is abazaar-type neighbourhood that sees expats from all nationalities and ages walking around the streets – from running errands, to enjoying a snack or even sipping on local drinks, there are loads of options for you to munch on, shop on and even be entertained by.
You find also find that lots of expats come to this location for amenities that they would not find elsewhere in the city as the area has the city’s best tailors, fabric stores, amenity stores and authentic cuisines.
Al Satwa by night
If there’s one thing you need to know about Al Satwa at night is that this neighbourhood never goes to sleep – the lights are always shining, the roads are busy and the streets are always talking, especially at night.
With residents returning home after long days at work, the area quickly fills up with life, attitude and people as they call their day a night. You’ll often see people strolling, or sitting in public benches, or window shopping as they make their way home to get a goodnight’s sleep.
And for those who like to stay up during the nighttime, you’ll manage to find a couple of coffee shops, tea-houses or restaurants that are open till the break of dawn to suppress your boredom, hunger or thirst in the area.
Who lives in Al Satwa?
- Low to mid-income expats
- Expats who don't mind roommates
- Expats who don't mind noise
For those who are considering this area to live in, it’s important to note that it is considered to be a loud neighbourhood of Dubai.
Al Satwa acts as an affordable location to live in for those who are in search for lots of amenities for the lower amount of money they are paying in comparison to other residential neighbourhoods in Jumeirah.
You’ll find lots of different expats from Asia and Southeast Asia living harmoniously in this small area of Dubai, but each will present their own flavor and spice to this busy community.
You’ll be able to learn about different cultures, as they are all located in one area – and even get to savour their food and take part in their traditions and customs.
Simply put: Al Satwa is an international area in an already international city.
Properties for rent and sale in Al Satwa
Average rental prices in Al Satwa are as follows:
- Studio apartment: AED 50,000
- 1 bedroom apartment: AED 65,000
- 2 bedroom apartments: AED 78,000
- 3 bedroom apartments: AED 100,000
- 2 bedroom villa: AED 83,000
- 3 bedroom villa: AED 140,000
Average sales prices for properties in Al Satwa are as follows:
- Mostly land plots are for sale in Al Satwa
What are properties like in Al Satwa?
Al Satwa is regarded to be one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Dubai…With that being said, this area has a lot of well manufactured buildings that are older in age.
With options of low-rise residential buildings, or traditional small villas, Al Satwa is in the best location to live in if you want to be nearby Jumeirah.
However, all residential options are very affordable with convenient access to busy areas around the city – Dubai International Airport and Deira, Downtown Dubai, City Walk etc…
Due to the limited space in the area, most residential buildings are close to one another, so if you’re searching for skyscrapers, privacy or quiet…Then Al Satwa may not be the area for you.
What are noise levels like in Al Satwa?
Al Satwa is a busy and loud area with lots of big personalities…Therefore, you should expect lots of rustle and bustle to accompany this.
People are always out and about in the area; walking, driving, biking or just sitting, you’ll find that every corner has an area occupied by residents chatting or engaging in some sort of activity.
But due to the smaller confinements of this neighbourhood, it’s often overridden with traffic, which brings along honking and car noises.
During the day, the area might be a shyer but the personality makes up for the quietness during the nighttime.
Residents living here should expect:
- Lots of traffic noise
- Lots of residential noise
- Lots of construction noise
- Some fireworks from neighbouring Downtown Dubai
- People chatting and being active on the streets