Expat Interview: Natural Beauty in a Concrete Desert | ExpatWoman.com

Expat Interview: Natural Beauty in a Concrete Desert

We spoke with Amruta, an expat living in Dubai who follows an eco-friendly lifestyle

Posted on

21 February 2016

Last updated on 18 October 2017
Expat Interview: Natural Beauty in a Concrete Desert

We can imagine as a sustainability professional living in Dubai that it can be quite difficult to maintain certain eco-friendly values. Nonetheless, it seems Amruta Kshemkalyani has it all figured out and is sharing it with everyone! 

A bit about me/us:

I am a mechanical engineer and a sustainability professional. Mother of a three year old, around whom my life revolves. I am writing a blog since 7 years named ‘Green Living in Dubai’, and it is the oldest sustainability blog in UAE. I am an outdoor person, like to travel, try different adventures. Dancing and painting are my hobbies apart from writing. 

How long have you lived there?

10 years. 

Why did you move?

I moved to Dubai after my wedding. 

Why I/ we like living here:

This is the place where I started my career so I have a special bond with Dubai. I have seen Dubai shaping up, witnessed all iconic projects rising in Dubai like Burj Khalifa, Palm, Marina, metro etc.

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Accommodation options:

Most people in Dubai prefer living in high rise towers, but not us. I like apartment in small size building in community with landscaped area and facilities for children like playground, swimming pool etc and with ample parking. 

What do you enjoy doing with your time?

I like to meet new people, Dubai is a cultural melting pot so you get to meet people from different countries and it’s fun to share views and ideas. I like to explore new places and spots in Dubai not only restaurants but parks, activity centers, play areas. 

What top tips do you have for anyone considering a move?

It’s a great place and you can afford to do so many luxurious things, which you can’t do easily back home. But please don’t get carried away with Dubai’s highlife, stay rooted. It’s especially very important if you have kids. 

What do you wish you’d known before you moved?  

I kind of knew all necessary things before moving as my husband and his family are staying here since quiet long time. 

What’s the best thing about being an expat?

You feel free. You can move anywhere if you wish to. You certainly don’t feel you are stuck in your hometown all your life. I have come across a few people who feel that way and right then I realized this perk of being an expat.

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How do you keep a little bit of home with you as an expat?

I love to a keep few interior pieces from my childhood with sentimental value at my home in Dubai. Like artwork or photos with loved ones or gifts given by loved ones. Culturally it’s not very different in Dubai than India, as a big number of residents hail from India. We jokingly call Dubai the ‘Better India’. 

Anything else you’d like to share with us about your expat experience?

Like any expat living in this place, I started loving this place and it feels like a second home. But the best part of living in the UAE is that I learned how to look for natural beauty in a place where most of the city is developed, a concrete jungle, and the rest of it is just a desert.

But if you experience closely and with open eyes there is so much beauty around us. Natural habitats in dessert, birds, dessert itself, seasons, ever changing sea, beaches, mangroves, wadies, khors and what not. I was always a nature lover but this place made me avid nature learner. This helped me in my career as a sustainability professional and developed passion for sustainability awareness through my blog ‘Green Living in Dubai’.