The building itself is a simple but attractive two-storey affair arranged around a sandy courtyard and topped by a solitary wind tower; the lower floor is particularly fine, with unusual, richly carved cusped arches surrounding the courtyard, while the rear wall is decorated with a sequence of Koranic inscriptions set into recessed panels. The upper storey is plainer, although one of the rooms still preserves some of the old-fashioned wooden desks used by former pupils. Touchscreens and displays cover the history of the school, along with an interesting ten-minute film containing interviews with former students, plus some intriguing old footage of the school in its heyday showing neatly robed pupils lined up for inspection in the courtyard. The modest exhibits include old photos and the inevitable mannequins, including three tiny pupils being instructed by a rather irritable-looking teacher brandishing a wooden cane. A photograph in the same room shows Dubai’s present ruler, Sheikh Mohammed, as a young boy in 1954, sitting with his father, Sheikh Rashid, the pair of them hunched over a book about petroleum – a touching snapshot of the two men most responsible for Dubai’s spectacular transformation over the past five decades.