Promoting health and wellness in the workplace and community

In 2007, we officially launched the Dubai Holding Wellness Programme to develop organisation-wide wellness policies and initiatives, and encourage health and wellbeing in a variety of forms. From simple healthy eating campaigns to sponsorship and participation in national events and initiatives such as the Dubai Marathon, Dubai Holding SkyRun and Blood Donation Drive, to organised treks to Mount Kilimanjaro and Nepal, Dubai Holding actively encourages employees, their families and the wider community to reap the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.

Dubai Holding Skyrun

For Dubai Holding Skyrun 2022, now in its 17th edition, we are proud to have launched Dubai’s only official stairclimbing race and the world’s first ever Stairclimbing World Championships by the International Skyrunning Federation (ISF). 

A run up the 52 floors, 1334 steps, and 265 meters of the business tower of the iconic Jumeirah Emirates Towers, it is an accredited race supported by the Dubai Sports Council and for the second year, a key highlight of the Dubai Fitness Challenge.

Dubai Holding Skyrun 2022 witnessed the participation of nearly 250 runners, including 12 teams, 19 international elite runners and 81 female runners. A truly diverse group, participants represented 40 nationalities, with the youngest runner aged 16 and the oldest, 78. A new course record was set at the race by the fastest elite male runner, Soh Wai Ching, who completed the course in 6 minutes 52 seconds while the fastest female elite runner, Yuri Yoshizumi, finished in 8 minutes 14 seconds.

Proceeds from Dubai Holding Skyrun 2022 have been donated to Al Jalila Foundation’s Majlis Al Amal, the UAE’s first-of-its-kind community centre dedicated to the wellbeing of female cancer patients and survivors.

HERO Dubai Hatta 2021

As part of Dubai Holding’s ongoing contributions to employee and community health and wellbeing, Dubai Holding took on Title Sponsorship of HERO Dubai Hatta 2021, the only UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) mountain bike race in the Middle East which has featured athletes from more than 57 participating nationalities.

HERO Dubai Hatta provides Dubai Holding a platform to showcase the scenic mountain destination of Hatta and its dynamic offering to the world, strengthening Hatta’s position as one of the most popular outdoor sporting and recreation, and eco-tourism destinations in the region while further reinforcing Hatta’s mountain biking trail as a leading one among international riders and enthusiasts, and setting Dubai as a contender in this global sport.

This sponsorship marks one of the latest sporting activations at our dynamic and popular Hatta Resorts and Hatta Wadi Hub.

Partnership with DEKA

Dubai Holding has partnered with DEKA, a brand-new style of a fitness competition that made its debut outside of the United States for the first time and chose the United Arab Emirates as home for its overseas challenges. Proudly presented by Dubai Holding and from the creators of Spartan, DEKA is a decathlon of functional fitness that competitors with different fitness levels can participate in as the competition has been designed to be basic, simple and utilitarian.

Dubai Holding sponsored the four DEKA events taking place in the UAE – the three qualifying events (DEKA Strong, DEKA Mile and DEKA Fit) respectively as well as the DEKA Trifecta event where winners of the three challenges are awarded the DEKA Middle East Championship.

Our partnership with DEKA strengthens the Emirate’s strategy to attract global events and further amplifies the Group’s commitment to sustainable development that encourages the health and wellbeing of communities. DEKA events have taken place across some of our various business and retail destinations including Central Park Towers, DIFC; Al Seef; Dubai Design District and The Outlet Village.

Dubai Fitness Challenge

Dubai Holding has been a proud partner and supporter over the years of Dubai Fitness Challenge, a yearly month-long fitness and health programme for residents and visitors of Dubai. The government-led initiative was launched by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, to promote wellness and physical activity and encourage people to adopt healthier lifestyles.

The most recent edition of Dubai Fitness Challenge took place from 29 October until 27 November 2021. This fifth edition saw the sponsorship of and support to a record-breaking number of fitness activities and sporting events by Dubai Holding, including HERO Dubai, DEKA Strong, Tough Mudder, Wai Bih, Spartan Trail Race and DEKA Mile. To encourage further participation in the annual 30-day challenge, Dubai Holding also activated fitness activities across several of its retail destinations, business districts and residential communities across the emirate, including Hatta Wadi Hub, Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Boxpark Dubai, Dubai Design District (d3), Al Khawaneej Walk, Bluewaters, Al Seef, Dubai Media City, Dubai Studio City and Dubai Science Park.

Dubai Holding has contributed to Dubai Fitness Challenge since it launched in 2017 through more than 150 fitness activities organised across the Group to date – inspiring, motivating and encouraging its employees and every single individual in Dubai on their journey towards a much healthier lifestyle.

Dubai Marathon

We are one of the founding partners of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon - Dubai’s official marathon. We are proud to have supported it for 12 consecutive years and  played an integral role in its journey and growth to what it is today.

Our commitment to this globally renowned Marathon is demonstrated by the fact that we  fielded the largest corporate team every year since we started participating in 2008.

In 2011, we introduced the UAE National Prize Category as a dedicated platform on which to recognize Emirati sporting accomplishments. It covers the top three male and female UAE National winners in the 10km, 42km and wheelchair categories. Since then, this initiative has been embracing many UAE talents and raising awareness of health and wellness within the Emirati community leading to a positive impact- especially on the younger generation.

In 2020, we have launched ‘#MyCity_My Race’ campaign to continue championing UAE National participation by calling for male and female Emiratis with all fitness levels to take the pride and join the city’s signature fitness event along with the country’s professional athletes and elite runners.

This year’s edition witnessed the highest number of Emirati participants since the introduction of the prize category. It also confirmed 325% increase over the past 9 years. The campaign has inspired 30% more Emiratis to take part across all categories versus 2019. The most significant increase was in the 10km by an impressive 61% compared with last year.

Recharge Fitness Programme

Recharge is a fitness programme to encourage our employees to adopt healthier lifestyles. The programme, which complements our existing portfolio of fitness and wellness programmes, aligns with the wider vision of Dubai to create a happy and prosperous society.

‘Recharge’ is designed to be an inclusive, digital and tech-oriented programme, incorporating gamification elements which make it both interesting and engaging for participants. Over 3,000 employees have participated in four wellness challenges as part of the programme.

The programme, overseen by a dedicated committee, also supports employees in meeting their wellness goals by providing a series of comprehensive health awareness workshops and wellness seminars that are especially designed with the help of data collected during the challenges. These are focused on a range of pertinent topics including nutrition, fitness activities, weight loss, and intervention programs to help with smoking cessation, stress reduction and sleeping patterns. 

Dubai Holding Burj Al Arab Swim

Dubai Holding is proud to present Dubai’s most scenic swimming event ‘Dubai Holding Burj Al Arab Swim’! Set against a magnificent backdrop, this race is the only chance to swim around the iconic Burj Al Arab Jumeirah.

A fun-filled community event with emphasis on health and fitness, the Dubai Holding Burj Al Arab Swim is one of the most popular fundraising events in the Emirates since the first swim in 2002.

All funds raised are donated to Al Jalila Foundation Obesity Research Fund to support obesity research and work towards awareness, education and treatment of obesity in the UAE. Nearly 700 participants of all abilities participate in 1600 meters or 800 meters swim organised by Wild Wadi in partnership with Jumeirah Group.

Al Salam Cycling Tournament

The Al Salam Cycling Tournament is one of Dubai’s premier cycling events. The tournament is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and sponsored by Meraas and Dubai Holding. The 2018 race was the largest of its kind, with participants from the wider GCC region taking part, and a total of AED 3 million awarded to race winners.

The tournament consists of 3 races, welcoming the participation of 200 competitors in total, who tackled a route stretching 124 kilometers.

The first race was held on December 20 2018, and was dedicated to the UAE Nationals category. The total number of racers added up to 60 contestants who competed as either individuals or groups. The second race was held on January 17, 2019 and dedicated to elite athletes and cycling professionals, including UAE nationals, expatriates and residents from other GCC countries. The race was comprised of 10 contestants from the first race, 15 from the UAE National Team, 15 qualifying expatriates and 10 from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman combined – a total of 80 competitors in the race.

The third race was held on February 7, 2019 and was dedicated to the UAE amateur cyclists. Dubai Holding’s support for the Al Salam Cycling Tournament is in line with the organization’s commitment to enhance the community’s lifestyle and encourage residents to live a healthy and active lifestyle.

XYoga Dubai festival

As part of our ongoing partnership with the UAE-based action sports brand XDubai, for the fourth year in a row Dubai Holding has been the presenting partner of the 2020 edition of the popular XYoga Dubai festival. The emirate’s largest yoga festival took place on 21-22 February 2020 at the ever-popular Kite Beach in Dubai.

Set against the iconic Burj Al Arab Jumeirah Hotel, XYoga Dubai attracted over 20,000 yogis over two full days of classes and workshops, which are designed for yogis of all ages, fitness goals and abilities. The festival featured more than 60 diversified yoga sessions led by internationally acclaimed yogis. XYoga 2020 was inaugurated by Bollywood film actress and model Esha Gupta.

Globe Soccer Awards

Dubai Holding was the title sponsor of the 10th edition of the Globe Soccer Awards, one of the most highly anticipated international football events. Held at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai on January 3, 2019, the show welcomed many of the world’s greatest stars, including Cristiano Ronaldo. Over 200 members of the international football community, including players, managers, agents and executives, gathered to celebrate outstanding performances in football.

Hosting this marquee event in the international annual sports calendar allowed us to showcase our Emirate’s fantastic hospitability and venues to a global audience, whilst enabling us to engage with the wider community. We are proud to have partnered with Globe Soccer Awards, and welcomed many of the football world’s biggest stars to Dubai.

Spartan Hatta Race

The second edition of the highly-anticipated XDubai Spartan Race kicked-off on November 2018. The competition pushes ‘Spartans’ to tackle a challenging terrain comprising obstacles, barbed wires and rope ladders – among others – across Hatta’s beautiful landscape. The three races, Spartan Sprint, Spartan Super and Spartan Kids, vary in distance and difficulty to accommodate participants of all fitness levels and age groups. Organised by Spartan Arabia and Dubai Sports Council (DSC), and sponsored by XDubai and Dubai Holding, the race took place on November 16, 2018 at the majestic Hatta Mountain Bike Trail Centre in Dubai.

XDubai Spartan Race is the second event to be hosted under the partnership between Dubai Holding and XDubai. This wellness-focused collaboration was created to encourage people from across the UAE to lead a healthier and happier lifestyle, extending the scope and influence of Dubai Holding’s award-winning Wellness Programme. Dubai Holding is also proud to be the recipient of ‘The Largest Contingent’ title for the 2017 edition of XDubai Spartan Race.

XDubai – Dubai Holding Partnership

Through a series of initiatives, campaigns, and high-profile events over the past 10 years, the Dubai Holding Wellness Programme has encouraged staff, their families, and the wider community to reap the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.

Dubai Holding has taken the next step in that journey, by partnering with XDubai – the city’s leading action sports organiser.

This exciting new partnership gives residents and visitors of all ages and fitness levels a chance to stay active, and make their mark in Dubai’s ever-growing sports and fitness culture.

To find out more, we invite you to enjoy #MakeYourMark – a new short film celebrating this partnership, and giving the city a glimpse of what they can expect from Dubai Holding and XDubai!

Dubai Holding Heroes

Dubai Holding Heroes supports employees in their personal endeavour of physically challenging expeditions. Every six months, 10 employees from across the Group are selected through a panel to undertake their expedition of choice.

The Programme encourages adventures such as climbing mountains, arctic expeditions, international marathons etc. Dubai Holding Heroes provides employee with an opportunity to fulfil their dreams outside the corporate environment.

The programme began in November 2016 with an expedition to Mt. Kilimanjaro Tanzania in aid of Al Jalila Foundation to mark the 45th UAE National Day.

Sandstorm Marmoum powered by Dubai Holding

Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Dubai Holding hosts Sandstorm, the UAE’s largest obstacle race in the heart of the Al Qudra Lakes, within Dubai’s Al Marmoum Conservation Reserve Dubai.

Sandstorm Marmoum 2017 saw more than 2800 racers take part, ranging from amateur enthusiasts to elite athletes, led by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai.
Two versions of the course featured more than 30 and 40 unique and challenging obstacles for the 5km and 10km races respectively, and spread over four terrains – rock, sand, water and mud.

Racers climbed, crawled, ran, and slid across a variety of obstacles designed by an award-winning race director. The obstacles featured in the challenge included Big Red, Monkey Business and Sandstorm Drop, three of the largest obstacles seen in a UAE race.

Global Corporate Challenge

From 2011 - 2014, Dubai Holding employees have taken part in The Global Corporate Challenge, a leading global corporate health initiative aimed at creating a positive health culture in the workplace. The programme encourages participants to take 10,000 steps per day on a virtual walking journey around the world over 100 days. Friendly competition from over 45,000 fellow teams from around the globe keep participants motivated in completing the challenge.

In 2014, 917 Dubai Holding employees from the corporate office and portfolio companies took part in the challenge for the fifth consecutive time. Together, Dubai Holding team recorded a total distance of 709,517km, which equates to walking around the world 17.7 times and burning nearly 45 million calories.

Mount Kilimanjaro Expeditions

Dubai Holding employees have undertaken grueling expeditions to Mount Kilimanjaro a number of times over the past few years. As the world’s highest free-standing mountain at 5,895m above sea level, the trek represents a real challenge for the mind and body. Nearly 25,000 people attempt to climb Kilimanjaro every year and The Kilimanjaro National Park estimates that only 41% of trekkers actually reach the Uhuru summit.

In July 2009, Dubai Holding’s Chief Executive Officer, Ahmad Bin Byat, led the first expedition team including Chief Executives from our portfolio companies in support of Dubai Cares, a charitable organisation which strives to improve children’s education in developing countries.

In January 2013, the second expedition consisted of ten senior management members from across portfolio companies, including TECOM GROUP, Jumeirah Group and Dubai Properties Group. This expedition was in support of Manzil, a non-profit centre catering to individuals with mental challenges from 4 to 30 years of age.

Dubai Holding Women's Run

Since 2011, Dubai Holding supported the Dubai Women’s Run, Dubai’s first road race dedicated to women. In 2013, Dubai Holding introduced the UAE National Category to recognise the fastest Emirati women in the race, and awarded cash prizes to the top three runners in each of the 5K and 10K races. Additionally, Dubai Holding awards cash prizes to the ten fastest runners in both races as part of our sponsorship of the event.

The UAE National category was created as part of Dubai Holding’s Corporate Wellness Programme, and is a natural progression from its support of the UAE National Category at the Dubai Marathon each year.

In 2014, Dubai Holding announced title sponsorship of Dubai Women’s Run. Following this sponsorship, the race was renamed to Dubai Holding Women’s Run. This sponsorship is reflective of our commitment to empowering women through sports.