I have been traveling a lot lately and Dubai International Airport seems to indefinably become a pit stop through the course of most of my journeys. Every time I stop by this airport, I discover something new. The fast pace moving airport has become a place to leisurely spend hours. During my latest trip I discovered the Concourse A, part of Terminal 3 at Dubai International. Recently opened (January 2, 2013), the Concourse A is an entertainment spot offering everything you may think off - shops, restaurants, lounges... Not a minute of boredom is felt. I had a stop-over of six hours - the hours passed by in a glance.
Some facts about the new Concourse 3, Terminal 3: This project is part of a multibillion dollar program to upgrade and extend Dubai International Airport, making it one of the world’s largest airports by 2025. The advanced Terminal 3 complex is reportedly the world’s first purpose-built A380 facility, with Concourse 3 alone built to accommodate 18 aircraft stands for exclusive use by Emirates and the Airbus A380 superjumbo. Go up to the fifth floor and spend some time in one of the biggest business lounges on earth, or enter the Marhaba Lounge facing the Heineken Lounge. Internet is free and open for all. It is super impressive. Seeing it up close and personal is another story. I walked around for 6 hours, discovered many things and enjoyed every minute of it...
Concourse A provides a welcome boost to capacity and service:
- The world’s only purpose built facility for the Airbus A380 (in operation), Concourse A also features the world’s first multi-level boarding for first and business class passengers directly from their respective lounges.
- It is 90m wide and 645m long, and has a total built-up area of 528,000m2 .
- The facility features 20 aircraft contact gates, all capable of accommodating the A380, in addition to 13 remote stands.
- It is a fully air-side structure and is connected to the two major public levels of Concourse B and Terminal 3 (T3) via an airport train, in addition to the vehicular and baggage handling system utility tunnels.
- Concourse A is partially underground comprising the airport train stations (both arriving and departing), and like Concourse B, the lower and upper levels are connected by means of very large elevators that act as the main feature in a central atrium.
- While the arrival and departure levels are similar to Concourse B, the first and business class levels are further split up and are located one above the other, below the hotel level, which also includes a health club and a business center.
- Dubai International Hotel has both four- and five star operations at Concourse A.
The Duty Free Shops:
- Sports Leisure
- The Car draw booth
- Perfume and Cosmetics
- The Supermarket
- Books, Luggage and Toys
- Travel Light
- A Chinese shop
- Gifts from Dubai
- Gold & Watches
- M&M Shop
- Le Clos, Finest Wines & Luxury Spirits
- Chivas Regal Shop
The Airport Restaurants:
- Moet & Chandon Lounge
- Starbucks coffee
- Jack's Bar and Grill
- Giraffe (Global food, Gourmet coffees, Healthy salads, stacked high burgers, cool cocktails, fresh smoothies, asian noodles)
- Paul French Bakery and Cafe
- Pulp Juice Bar
- ChoGao Asian Food
- Shake Shack Sandwiches
- Wafi Gourmet
- Heineken Lounge
- Costa Coffee