Dubai millionaire living life of luxury gives it all up to travel in campervan
AJMAN // Self-made millionaire Mazzi Dumato was living the high life in Dubai, but he decided to give it all up and travel the world in a campervan.
The Brazilian of Syrian origin was feeling trapped by his fortune – penthouse, supercars and the trappings of wealth – so he gave much of his money to set up centres to help poor people in Brazil.
“It was meaningless wealth and what was most important was my life, which I barely had a grip on,” said Mr Dumato, 38.
“So I chose adventure and to learn more about what was happening outside the bubble that I was living in, and decided that I wanted to go out in the world and make a difference.”
He gave his main business, Cactimedia, to his younger brother Michael. They closed his other two businesses and he left Dubai.
Mr Dumato later bought properties in Brazil that he turned into centres for the poor.
“Our first is a healing centre, with a full-time doctor, in the city of Florianopolis. The second one is a house where we provide free accommodation and food to people from the leukaemia hospital in Curitiba,” he said.
An alternative treatment centre for cancer in Urubici, Brazil – the largest of the three centres – will be opened at the end of the year.
Mr Dumato was 23 when he founded Cactimedia, which specialises in web design and online marketing.
But he became rich only after he started a property company with a partner when he was 27.
In Dubai, Mr Dumato lived in a penthouse apartment in Jumeirah Beach Residence and spent most of his time at the beach rather than the office. He owned a Maserati, a Ferrari and a few houses in The Meadows and in Dubai’s old quarters.
Since changing direction in life, Mr Dumato acquired rental properties to generate income exclusively for his centres in Brazil. He also started two businesses that fund the centre with half of their earnings.
Mr Dumato, who left Dubai eight years ago, has been travelling between Brazil, Ecuador and Peru. He recently moved to Peru and started Spice of My People, a business that sells crystals, natural medicine, organic clothes, tea and spices from various parts of the world.
The entrepreneur hopes to inspire others to help people in need through ways such as contributing to his centres.
“Every challenge that you overcome is your chance to evolve,” he said. “Life is not difficult, what is difficult is staying happy. Be present and don’t worry about the future. You can do something about your life today, not tomorrow.”
Updated: March 4, 2017 04:00 AM