This imposing building distinguished
by its four elegant wind-towers, stands along the
famous Creek of Bur Dubai. It was built in 1896 and
was the residence of the Ruler. It takes its name
from Shaikh Saeed Al Maktoum, who resided there until
his death in 1958.
situated at the mouth of Dubai's lifeline, the Creek,
this carefully restored museum now lies close to
the Bur Dubai side of the Shindagha Tunnel and next
to the Heritage and Diving Village.
Shaikh Saeed House
is built in the traditional manner of the Gulf Coast,
from coral covered in lime and plaster. The house
has a large courtyard in the style of residences
of the olden days. It is partly single, and partly
two-storied, comprising a large number of rooms,
verandas and bath rooms, divided into independent
There are two entrances
to the building. The main entrance is from the Creek
side, through a security yard, from where is the
entrance to the main majlis and guest rooms. The
yard leads also to the main courtyard, around which
are distributed five separate family units, each
of which consists of a veranda, majlis and rooms.
The second entrance is on the rear side of the building,
and was probably reserved for family members.
appointed a specialized Consultant to carry out
a thorough survey of the building and its deterioration,
and then plan its restoration. The work was commenced
in 1984, and completed two years later using traditional
building materials and techniques, and where necessary,
strengthening the structure with modern materials.
Infinite care was
taken in the restoration of the architectural elements
of the building. The restoration is remarkable for
its carved teak wood doors and windows, architraves
and wooden lattice screens, and the balustrades
of railings. The pierced gypsum ventilating screens
have floral and geometric designs, and are set into
the thick walls.
The House is now
converted into a Museum of Historical Photographs
and Documents of the Emirate of Dubai and illuminated
at night with flood-lights; it stands as a reminder
of Dubai's rich architectural heritage and culture.