Being a freeloader as I am, when I got a chance to fly to Doha for a job interview there, although I wasn’t really keen to get back to my job as a flight attendant, I decided to pack my back and fly as although I had been to Doha for a transit once, I didn’t have time to explore the city as I couldn’t get out of the airport.
So when the national airline (go figure!) sent me the invitation for an experienced cabin crew interview, I didn’t even think twice. I thought that I could at least get around the city for a few hours even though I failed to get into the next step in the recruitment process.
And that’s what happened. I failed the arm reach test as always, and when some of the candidates looked a bit disappointed when they didn’t get the golden ticket to the next stage, I was one of the few who could leave the room with a smile. I mean, I wish I could have like 2-3 days in Doha so I could explore more, but 24 hours is all I had! 🙁
Lucky for me, I met this Filipino girl called Stacy who’s currently flying with FlyNas and as we spoke, we decided to go out before we got back to bed as we both had our flight in midnight. A flight ticket back to Jakarta for me, and to Riyadh for her.
We asked around people at the hotel to find out what place we could visit to spend a couple of hours in Doha, and one of the bellboys suggested us to visit Villaggio Mall. So we went there.
If only we had more time to explore, I wish I could explore the city more because apparently there are a lot of parks in Doha that are worth to visit and also family-friendly!
If anything, I’m not really into malls. First, I’m not a shopaholic and the second thing is that I’m broke. With two things combined, it’s fair to say that mall is simply not for me.
And like most of malls in the Middle East, this one is a mall full with luxurious vendors like Givenchy or Armani. Stacy who has been to Macao before, she told me that the design quite reminds her of Macao. I had never been to Macao by the time I went there, but now that I have been to Macao, then let me tell you this: despite the similarity, I think Villaggio Mall is better than The Venetian in Macao.
As my friend who has been to Las Vegas also mistook the picture as The Venetian in Vegas, for this I can’t compare since I’ve never been to Vegas. 😉
- Villaggio Mall is a fair place to spend a few hours just to stroll around. You could also take a roll with gondola around the mall.
- The interior design is remarkable. The artificial sky is amazing!
- A lot of vendors available.
- There’s also a freaking cinema!
- There is also a booth to buy souvenirs from Qatar. I bought some postcards for only QAR 1 per piece.
- I love how they put cute chairs around the mall as not only the mall itself is huge, but also we could really use a seat after walking for quite awhile.
- Lots of instagrammable spots!
- I could be considered as broke, so there’s not so much I could do or buy around the mall.
The highlight of my visit that time in Villaggio was when we passed the Hallmark shop. As I could really emotional at times, I enjoyed my time to see the creative greeting cards there and I ended up buying one for my friend (with benefits lol) Max, as we were planning our trip to Yangon two weeks later.
I suppose, if you have time to explore Doha for a bit, even if you only had less than 24 hours in the city as we did, Villaggio could be your best option.
Not only because of the interior design that could be mesmerizing for some naked eyes, especially for those who know nothing about architecture or arts like I do. But also because to get to Villaggio you could also pass some development in Doha, especially those related to their plan to host the World Cup in 2022.
Any place you’d recommend for a short transit in Doha? Comment below, and cheerio! 🙂