Business Travel to Cairo: Around the corner from the Cairo Sheraton



Description:

If you are in Cairo on business, chances are you are staying either Downtown (such as in the Cairo Sheraton) or on Zamalek. This Business Travel to Cairo guide is designed for the business traveller who will have minimal time to explore the sights of Cairo, but still wants to soak up a bit of culture and history, without heading too far afield. Business Travel to Cairo covers some of the sights, restaurants and watering-holes in the important districts of Downtown and Zamalek. Who knows, you may even get a chance to visit the Pyramids! The Business Travel to Cairo guide is relevant to all business travellers, whether it is your first or hundredth time in Cairo. Where applicable, we’ve pointed out changes you could make to the itinerary if you are already a Cairo Jedi.

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Author: Nicholas Rowlands


Day 1 - Cairo


As soon as you get any free time Downtown, head to the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square. This is the best way to get a feel for the magnificent history of ancient Egypt. It’s possible to hire a guide whilst there. The exhibits are not well laid out or labeled, so if you are on your own it’s difficult to tell the significance of what you are looking at.

After this, have a browse around Downtown, an area humming with commerce and street life. If you have time, pause for a drink in either Groppi café or Café Riche, for a taste of what Cairo was like back in the good old days.

For dinner, the Greek Club is cheap and cheerful, with an elegant dining room for the winter, and a lively, breezy courtyard for the summer months. Afterwards, Horeya bar is a short walk away if you fancy slumming it with an interesting mix of expats, locals and tourists.

For something a little more classy, or if you have a dinner meeting, try eating at Taboula restaurant in nearby Garden City.

And if you want a quieter bar Downtown, try the Windsor Hotel for a touch of old school but run down class, or pick a bar in any of the expensive hotels in the Downtown area.

NOTE - An alternative to the Egyptian Museum, if you’ve been there before, is to check out the Townhouse and Mashrabia contemporary art galleries.


2

Townhouse Gallery

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expert pick

Location:

Hussein El Me'mar Basha Street
(Off Mahmoud Basyouni Street)
11728 Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2576 8086


3

Mashrabia Gallery

Location:

8 Champollion Street
(Off Tahrir Square)
11728 Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 2 578 4494


4

Cafe Riche

Location:

17 Shar'a Talaat Harb Street
11111 Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: 20 2 392 9793


5

Groppi's

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Location:

Midan Talaat Harb
Cairo, Egypt


6

Greek Club (The)

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expert pick

Location:

21 Mahmoud Bassyouni Street
Midan Talat Harb
11111 Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2575 0822


7

Horeya

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expert pick

Location:

Midan el-Falaki
Bab el-Louk
Cairo, Egypt


8

Barrel Lounge and Bar at the Windsor Hotel

Location:

19 Alfi Street
Windsor Hotel
11111 Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: 20 2 591 5810
fax: 20 2 592 1621


9

Taboula

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expert pick

Location:

1 Latin American Street
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2792 5261
fax: +20 (0)2 3762 3534


Day 2 - Cairo


Today when you get a free hour or so, hop a cab over to the island of Zamalek. More properly known as Gezira (Zamalek being its northern half only), this is a rich and green neighbourhood of embassies, galleries, restaurants and boutique shopping.

At the southern tip of the island is the ultra-modern Cairo Opera House. It’s worth popping in to check out the Museum of Modern Islamic Art, which is housed within the Opera House grounds. Whilst there, you could see if anything is happening in the evening that you fancy.

After, head up the nearby Cairo Tower for some cool panoramic views over the city. If time permits, explore the area around 26th July Street, towards the north of the island. There are lots of craft shops where you can pick up some good quality souvenirs for your loved ones back home. Egypt Fair Trade, on Yehia Ibrahim street, is particularly recommended.

If you fancy more culture, al-Sawy Culture Wheel is at the west end of 26th July Street: they always have lots of exhibitions, as well as different types of music in the evening. They even have a no-smoking café (in fact, the whole complex is no-smoking) with free Wi-Fi.

For dinner and drinks, either try hip bistro La Bodega or – for something a little more traditional – the classy Egyptian cuisine of Aboul Sid. This is a good place to try a Shisha pipe, should you wish. Both restaurants are on 26th July Street.

NOTE – If you’ve already been to the Modern Art Museum, you could investigate the sculptures of the Mahmoud Mukhtar Museum.


1

Zamalek

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Location:

Northern tip of Gezira island
Cairo, Egypt


2

Cairo Opera House Performances

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expert pick

Location:

El Borg Gezira
(Next to Kasr el-Nil Bridge)
Cairo,

Contact:

tel: 20 2 737 0601
fax: 20 2 737 0599


3

Mahmoud Mukhtar Museum

Location:

Al-Tahrir Street
Dokki
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 2 735 2519


4

Cairo Tower

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expert pick

Location:

Next to Al-Ahli Sporting Club
Cairo, Egypt


5

Al-Sawy Cultural Centre

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Location:

26 July St.
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 27366178


6

La Bodega

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expert pick

Location:

157 26th of July Street
Balmoral Hotel
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: 20 2 735 6761 / 20 2 735 0543


7

Abou el Sid

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Location:

157, 26th of July Street, just down from Diwan book store
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2735 9640 / +20 (0)10 100 8500
fax: +20 (0)2 3748 8109


Day 3 - Cairo


Coming to Cairo and not seeing the Pyramids is like, well, coming to Cairo and not seeing the Pyramids! A crying shame, to say the least. If at all possible, try to wangle the opportunity to get out there.

If pushed, an hour is enough time to check out the Pyramids and the Sphinx. With more time, you can visit the Solar Boat Museum, and perhaps even go inside a pyramid. The problem, of course, is getting there. Cairo traffic is very unpredictable, and the journey can take anything from 20 minutes to over an hour. Either way, a morning or afternoon would be sufficient.

A good food option out that way is Andrea, which offers al fresco dining as well as beer, wine, and decent grills. If you are in a real hurry, pick up a falafel or shawerma sandwich to go from the Felfela around the corner from the Pyramids.

In the evening, treat yourself by heading somewhere nice to relax after a hectic few days. Both Tamarai and Sangria are decent spots on the cornice north of the Ramses Hilton. Sangria is outdoors and a bit more relaxed, whereas Tamarai is more of a super-posh club/lounge - though it does have fantastic food.

And if you're totally beat, or your business partners are taking you out to dinner, then maybe you'll find time to curl up in the hotel and sup a beer or two in the Sherlock Holmes Pub.

NOTE – if you’ve already been to the Pyramids, see if you can find the time to check out the Saqqara necropolis instead, and see where it all began!


1

Giza Plateau

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Location:

Sh. Al Ahram Road
Old town of Giza, 5 miles into the desert
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 385 0259


2

Step Pyramid of Saqqara

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expert pick

Location:

North Saqqara
(32 kilometres south of Cairo)
12561 Cairo, Egypt


3

Andrea

Location:

59-60 Marioutiya Canal, Kerdasa Rd, Harem
Shara Kerdessa, al-Haram
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 3383 1133
fax: +20 (0)2 3385 4441


4

Felfela

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expert pick

Location:

Talaat Harb Street
11111 Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2392 2833


5

Sangria

Location:

Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: 02/25796511


6

Tamarai

Location:

2005 C Cornish El Nil, Cairo Towers, North Building
, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2461 9910, +20 (0)12 456 6666


7

Sherlock Holmes Pub

Location:

Ramses Hilton Hotel, 1115 Corniche el-Nil St
(Ramses Hilton Hotel)
Cairo, Egypt

Contact:

tel: +20 (0)2 2577 7444


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