After living in Bombay for two and a half years I moved to Dubai in early 2006. I had visited Dubai a couple of times while living in Bombay and it was nice because it was a quick two and a half hour flight. It was a good place to go for a weekend getaway. Plus, you can't eat beef in India so how else was I going to have a steak? I suppose that is normal for most people, flying to another country for a steak.
Dubai was nice to go to because it was so clean and pristine compared to the filth and poverty of Bombay. Of course, Bombay has culture and character, Dubai does not. On the other hand, Dubai has an indoor ski slope. (not that I care, I don't ski)
You don't see beggars in Dubai but the beggars in India are persistent as hell. In any other country I have visited, if a beggar approaches you and you tell them "no," they leave you alone. In India those dudes don't leave. If you are in a cab and stopped at a red light they just stand there staring at you. Don't make the mistake of giving one person some money because you will get swarmed by others.
There was one thing I noticed Bombay and Dubai had in common; they are both cities where you wouldn't just stroll along the sidewalks. I mean, they both have sidewalks but it isn't like taking a walk in New York or a city in Europe. Bombay's sidewalks were soo crowded, a simple stroll would quickly turn into a struggle to just walk in a straight line. To give you an idea what it was like, picture this: Have you ever seen a video of all those sperms trying to fertilize the egg? Well, there you go.
Dubai is kind of funny because it is a cool place to visit but living there wasn't soo cool. It is really just shopping malls, hotels and sand. There really isn't much else to do. I would take Bombay over Dubai any day.