It’s rare to see a great city in the making these days, but Doha is one of those cities that we have had the fortune of watching constantly transform before our eyes. This is a city that oozes confidence and style, with its stunning and ever-changing skyline, its modern shopping malls and its traditional souqs. There is so much to see in Doha; visitors can wander the reinvented and fabulously atmospheric Souq Waqif, head out to Katara to explore, or wonder at the sheer beauty of the world-class Museum of Islamic Art and its exhibits. Everywhere they look, they’ll find Doha is slowly emerging as one of the top dynamic cities in the Gulf. Throw in the new Metro system in the making and the 2022 FIFA World Cup on the horizon, and it looks like things are only going to get better.
The 60-gate Hamad International Airport is the international airport of Doha, situated five miles southeast of the Doha city center. The airport serves cities all over the world, with direct flights from Chicago, Houston, New York, Montreal, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and others.
Chief among the capital's meeting venues is Qatar National Convention Centre. It has nine exhibition halls, two auditoriums, a 2,300-seat theater, 66 meeting rooms, and a 4,000-seat conference hall. Hotel venues in Doha are magnificent as well. Among the stars are the 371-room Sheraton Grand Doha Resort & Convention Hotel, which has 26 meeting rooms for up to 5,000 guests; the 579-room Marriott Marquis City Center Doha, which has 15 meeting rooms, including the Al Areen Grand Ballroom for up to 700 guests; the 340-room Grand Hyatt Doha, which has 13 meeting rooms and a 16,000-square-foot ballroom; the 225-room La Cigale, which has nine meeting rooms and two ballrooms; and the 375-room InterContinental Doha, which has six meeting rooms and the Al Wajba Ballroom for up to 800 guests.
For first-timers, visiting the Doha Corniche is a must. This seven-kilometer long waterfront promenade stretches for the entire length of Doha Bay. Traditional wooden dhows lining the Bay evoke echoes of Qatar’s great seafaring past. The promenade offers spectacular vistas of the city, from the dramatic high-rise towers of the central business district to the bold shapes of the Museum of Islamic Art. The Corniche provides a green, vehicle-free pedestrian space in the heart of the capital with cafes, restaurants, outdoor exercise facilities and a running track.
For visitors wanting to experience Doha's lively traditional markets, a stroll down the bustling alleys of Souq Waqif will provide them an authentic taste of the city’s traditional commerce, architecture, and culture. The maze of small shops offers a dazzling array of Middle Eastern merchandise from spices and seasonal delicacies such as fresh dates and nuts, to perfumes, ornate jewelry, clothing, handicrafts and a treasure trove of souvenir bargains. Visitors can also relax and soak up the vitality and atmosphere at one of its eclectic mix of great restaurants and cafes which offer traditional Qatari food as well as regional dishes and treats from Asia and North Africa.