This waterfront museum is part of the Al Shindagha Museum restoration project and is the former home of a Dubai sheikha who loved all things perfume. The old building has been restored and interactive exhibits detail all things scent, smells and fragrance. There’s also a gift store stocked with wonderful-smelling and unique Emirati fragrances, but be warned: they don’t come cheap. Keep your entry ticket and you’ll get free access to the nearby Dubai Creek House.
The former home of the late Sheikha Sheikha bint Saeed bin Maktoum now houses a stunning collection of artefacts highlighting the tradition of perfuming in the region.
You don’t have to look far to find evidence of the UAE’s love of perfume: the aromas of oud waft through the hallways of all our local malls and marketplaces, while modern high-end boutiques sell exclusive scents, including the most expensive in the world. Now, you can also head over to the recently opened Perfume House, at Al Shindagha Museum, to discover the foundations of this nation’s fondness for fragrance.
The centre is among the first at the museum, where a total of 23 cultural houses are set to open on the banks of Dubai Creek, on the side of Bur Dubai. This one is the former home of Sheikha Sheikha bint Saeed bin Maktoum, who was an avid perfumer and had many artefacts as part of her personal collection. It is located near the Historical Documents Centre.
Look through the photo gallery above to see more of the Perfume House.
For the most part, the museum’s collection is made up of pieces Sheikha Sheikha had in her house, including her perfume applicator and a 28-kilogram piece of oud, a raw scent ingredient, which she donated to the museum just weeks before she died, in 2017. Other artefacts have been sourced from notable Emirati families, as well as sites such as Saruq Al Hadid, an archaeological spot in Dubai.