Visitor guide in Qatar
Qatar is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and has the highest per capita income thanks to its large energy reserves. Within a few decades Qatar has developed into a regional economic powerhouse and a world leader in gas-to-liquid production (GTL). Qatar is also diversifying its economy emphasizing development in industry, education, health, sport and tourism.
An exciting business community
Investment laws allow up to 100% foreign investment in agricultural, industrial, leisure, tourism, health and educational projects. With many multinational organisations based in Doha, Qatar has become an exciting and diverse multicultural and international community. Major projects include Doha's new airport scheduled for completion in 2015 and Lusail City - the host of 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Language & religion
Arabic is the official language but English is widely spoken and understood. Islam is the official religion of the country and Sharia is the principal source of legislation.
Eating and drinking
In Doha you will find European, Asian and Western restaurants, as well as excellent Middle Eastern cuisine like Lebanese and Persian. Bars are limited to large International hotels, as alcohol is forbidden in public areas.
Take time to explore Doha, where modern architecture sits side by side with traditional Arabic souks (bazaars) and hundreds of mosques, the largest of which is the Grande Mosque. Popular sports include water sports like jet-skiing, safari tours in the desert.
Aspire Park is an eighty-eight hectare oasis located within the Aspire Zone precinct. It includes running tracks, large open green spaces, an internal lake, restaurants and cafés which makes it a perfect rendezvous to combine sports and leisure.
Shopping in Doha
Shoppers will find famous brands at malls like Villaggio, Hyatt Plaza, City Center and Landmark. The Torch Doha guests have private access through an air-conditioned walkway to Villaggio mall. Enjoy shopping in Doha with your stay at The Torch.
Set within Aspire Zone, Villaggio Shopping Mall has set the benchmark for retail shopping in Qatar. A unique concept of Venetian shopping experience complete with gondolas and balcony interior settings, the mall offers the best in entertainment and International retail brands, including themed retail areas, cinemas, an ice rink and a fashionable line of restaurants for a perfect gastronomic experience.
The Torch Doha is connected to Villaggio Mall through an air-conditioned walkway for most convenient access for guests.
Do not miss a visit to an authentic souk (bazaar) like Doha's Souq Waqif (The Standing Souk). Please bear in mind that during the hot summer months many businesses close for a "siesta" from 12pm - 4pm.
Saturday through Thursday 8:30 am to 12:30 pm and 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm, with malls open 10:00 am to 10:00 pm. On Fridays, some shops remain closed all day and others open at 4:00 pm. Most malls and supermarkets offer extended Friday shopping.
GMT +3 hours
The local currency is the Qatari Riyal (QAR).
Sunday through Thursday 7:30 am to 12:00 noon and 3:30 pm to 7:30 pm. Government offices are open Sunday through Thursday 6:00 am to 2:00 pm.
Doha enjoys sunshine almost every day of the year. Summer (May to September) when temperatures can reach up to 45ºC (104ºF). Winter is cooler with occasional rainfall. Spring and autumn months are warm and pleasant.