I've got two favourite restaurants in Dubai: La Petite Maison in the Dubai International Financial Centre is the posh one.
For a lunchtime or evening's schmoozing of contacts, nothing beats La Petite.
Its blend of informal haute cuisine sets the perfect atmosphere for a bit of relationship-building and source-pampering.
But when I just want a good night out, pleasure rather than business, I head to the Moscow Hotel in Deira, between the crowds on the pavement, up the stairs past the painting of the 17th-century Kremlin, and through the swing doors of the Bolshoi restaurant.
It's a different world, or rather the whole world, seen through the prism of Russian history of the past century or so.
On a Thursday or Friday, the Bolshoi is especially exciting. You can spot the former Communists, still with the Stalin moustache; the "new" Russians, splashing out on expensive caviar and extravagant drinks; the central Asians, determined to have a good time on the dance floor, as well as a fair selection of Arabs and Europeans, or often a group of US servicemen on leave.
It really is le tout Dubai.
It's a family scene as well, with tables of a dozen people all different ages, from grandparents downwards. I was there a couple of nights ago with my wife (born in what was then Soviet Azerbaijan) and her teenaged son.
Other parts of the hotel are not so family friendly, I should advise, but the Bolshoi is different.
We sat next to a family of Kazakhs with two children aged about 4 and 6, and they loved the Bolshoi floor show.
If you can imagine a mix of the Folies Bergere, the Eurovision Song Contest, and the court of Louis XIV of France, you're close. If you add some Russian folk music, such as the spectacular Katyusha, you're on the spot. Harasho.
The really great thing about it is that many fathers take their daughters to a night out there, and this is where business comes in.
On another table, a father and daughter were having dinner, and they were the first on the dance floor when the band struck up. They were both wearing blue suede shoes.
Now those three words - blue suede shoes - have special resonance for me, but it was my wife Naza who noticed and remarked on them. When they sat down, we struck up conversation. He was a twin for Tony Soprano, she had a vague Hellenic resemblance to Celine Dion.
Costas and Evgenia were from Cyprus originally, but left the island when Greece joined the EU in 1981.
Cyprus didn't join for another 23 years and neighbouring Turkey, which seems to stand alone as an economic success story in the region these days, is yet to join.
"We thought it would be the best thing for us to be Europeans, we had money then and Athens was booming. We bought a hotel, I could look after her properly," said Costas. Evgenia was gooey eyed.
It all went wrong in 2009 when the Americans, most of Greek descent who had been good patrons, stopped coming. Last year, they left a stack of debts and went back to Cyprus, where they both had family and could live more cheaply.
They came to Dubai to get away from the debts, and to learn from the emirate's experience in hotel management. They have a little place in Bur Dubai, and come to the Bolshoi to meet Russian business contacts.
We talked for a while about the hard times that had fallen on the world since 2008, and agreed it was better to be in Dubai than either Greece, England, Ireland, or anywhere in the EU.
Costas had the final word: "You know, we should have all joined Turkey."
As a former employee of News International, I've savoured every word of the hacking scandal. So all those freezing, violent nights on the picket line in 1985 were not in vain.
But one story sticks out. In other times, News of the World journalists were just as muck-raking, but more subtle, as this following exchange shows:
NotW hack, in suit and tie on doorstep of female "target": "Good morning, I'm from the News of the World."
Female target: "Can you prove it?"
NotW hack: "Prove it, madam? But I've just admitted to it."