Fujairah Collage

Fujairah Collage
Some distinctive landmarks in Fujairah

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

McDonald’s, Thai Express and Subway Coming to Fujairah

Fast Food Fujairah
Many people thought globalization would never reach Fujairah but a Fast Food corner is developing at the beginning of the Port Road and going in the direction of the Fujairah Port and Khor Fakkan.

Behind the Al Kasil EPPCO Service Station there is a Subway, a Thai Express, a building that is unassigned and then taking pride of place with some Golden Arches out the front is a Drive-Through McDonald’s.

Coming Soon
These restaurants have been under construction for months and some think the delay has been due to Fujairah’s electricity shortage. The sign on the Maccas window has been saying it is ‘Coming Soon’ but the Fujairah restaurant still hasn’t been put onto the McDonald’s Arabia Restaurant Locator.

Public Pressure?
Back in 2007 a Facebook Group was established with the name, ‘If This Group Reaches 2,000, They’ll Open MCDONALDS in Fujairah!!’ The creator of the group wrote this description of the Facebook Page:

“it is the time that McDONALDS should open in fujairah.. BECAUSE WE REALLY NEEEED IT !!! we really love it ! and we go to dubai just to eat it !!! JOIN SO WE CAN HAVE McDONALDS IN FUJAIRAH :D !”

Desperate for McDonald’s
At the time of writing this group has 534 members or potential customers, hardly enough to warrant the establishment of a thriving fast food restaurant but perhaps Rafic Fakih, the Managing Director of Emirates Fast Food Co and the owner and operator of McDonald’s in the UAE, has read their hungry comments and taken pity on them.

Here is a sample of the Comments posted:
* I’ve been waiting & waiting...........
* Do we even have 2,000 people in Fujairah?
* Hey, I just moved to Fujairah..what do u guys do around here?!
* Last times I wanted to eat McDonald, had to drive to RAK... It's so sad!!
* We really need McDonalds people!! Especially that amazing ice-cream they make, lovely burgers and french fries .... im overwhelmed :-[
* to be able to eat Mc. Arabia and drink Coke Float every single day when i get back to Fujairah would be just perfect...
* i doubt it that mcdonalds will ever open up in fujairah !! but i'm desperate...

Other McDonald’s Restaurants?
On this Facebook site are also posted rumours that a McDonald’s might be opening at the new Al Safeer Mall and on the Fujairah Corniche (between the Marine Club and the Evening Tourist Souq).

It would be a pity to think that the advent of these Fast Food outlets is the thing that marks Fujairah’s coming of age but possibly this fast food frenzy is further recognition of the city’s development and sustained population growth.

At What Cost?
Fans of Fast Food restaurants will argue that choice is good and Fujairah residents and tourists will have a greater selection of food to taste.

The advertising power of these international Fast Food chains is illustrated by the number of Lionel Messi billboards standing in Fujairah at present where the Argentinean and Baca champ is standing with his bucket of KFC. In addition there have been McDonald’s advertising posters around Fujairah for months, a long time before Fujairah has even a McDonald’s restaurant.

Still Not Convinced of the Advertizing Power? Watch This

The negative side of all of this is that some traditional snack bars will not be able to compete and sadly will have to close. It would be a great pity if in the hungering for a Big Mac we will not be able to order in Fujairah a shwarma, a falafel and other types of Middle Eastern street food.

See some photos at this link of Fujairah’s Fast Food Corner on Port Road.

Geoff Pound

Connect with Geoff Pound on Facebook, Twitter or at geoffpound(at)gmail.com

Image: McDonald’s first restaurant in Fujairah.

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