5 MINUTES WITH: Liam Paisley, Restaurant General Manager at City Social

Liam Paisley Restaurant Manager

An avid sportsperson and charming Restaurant General Manager at City Social, come spend 5 minutes with Liam Paisley

Since moving to Dubai in 2008, Liam Paisley has worked his way through the best restaurants in town before establishing himself as the Restaurant General Manager at City Social.

A golfer, tennis and cricket lover among other things, come spend 5 minutes with him!


Tell us a little bit of yourself


I am originally from Northampton, England and moved to London when I was 18 years old to work in a bar in Covent Garden, as my father owned a few bars in the area. After a few years honing my mixology skills, I ventured to Europe for some seasonal work, bartending in Greece, Spain, Italy, Austria and France.

I then took some time to travel around the world, covering Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand and South America, before moving to Canada to enjoy some downtime snowboarding and mountain biking. I’m quite active in my spare time, I love to play golf, tennis and cricket but I also enjoy relaxing with a good book!


How and when did you move here, and what inspired the move?


I moved to Dubai in September 2008, where I took the role of Bar Supervisor in Zuma, DIFC.  A friend of mine had just visited Dubai and said how incredible the city was to live and work. At the time of my move, Dubai was a city full of opportunity and was growing at a rapid pace – it wasn’t a chance I was going to miss out on.


How has living in Dubai shaped your sense of belonging and community?


To be completely honest, I was a little dubious ahead of the move, as many people had the perception of Dubai being this ‘bubble’, where everything was very surface level and ultimately lacked culture.

Fast forward 16 years and it couldn’t be further from the truth – Dubai and the UAE is a place of cultural integration, where I’ve made lifelong friends and have had pivotal moments in both my personal and work life. This is now my home and I feel a huge sense of belonging to this ever-growing multi-cultural community.


Can you tell us about a particular person in Dubai who has had a significant impact on your life and why?


It might sound a little cliché but His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He is a true visionary and someone that gets the impossible done.


What is your favourite thing about the emirate and why?


Being a keen golfer, can I say the range of golf courses available? Ha! There’s also something so calming about being by the beach and Dubai has so many clean public beaches for everyone to enjoy.


A myth about Dubai that you would like to bust


The narrative about Dubai being fake. It’s a city with endless possibilities and the sky really is the limit. I feel very privileged to live in a clean, safe and ever-growing city.


Could you share a memorable moment when you felt the genuine warmth and hospitality of the Dubai community in your own life?


A few years ago, I had a car accident where my dog was in the car with me. It was the height of summer and the accident affected the air conditioning. One very kind local gentleman stopped and offered for us to wait in his car, where my dog could be kept cool and drink water. I was so grateful.


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Image credit Liam Paisley

Caroline D’Almeida

A little bit of India, a little more of the UAE, and a lot of shawarma perhaps best captures Caroline’s anatomy. An avid believer in value for money, her hobbies include putting the ‘elite lifestyle’ to the test. And finding cheaper dupes for it all. A Sharjah girl new to the capital, she hopes to discover the pulse of the emirate.