Behind the scenes of Telegram, we are opening a Durov office in Dubai

20 December 2023 6 minutes Author: Cyber Witcher

Pavel Durov’s Dubai office

The article explores the use of GEOINT (geospatial intelligence) in an attempt to locate the office of Pavel Durov, an entrepreneur and founder of social networks such as VKontakte and the popular cross site. Telegram messenger platform, in Dubai. The article discusses Durov’s business and personal life, his decision to move from Russia, and the various locations of his business operations, including Dubai. In this article, you will find analysis and research aimed at determining the location of the office of Pavel Durov, the founder of social networks, in Dubai.

Pavlo Durov is an entrepreneur, programmer and one of the founders of the Vkontakte social network and the very popular Telegram cross-platform messenger. Pavlo leads a secret lifestyle and does not advertise his personal life, only occasionally posting outrageous photos with a bare torso on Instagram. The rule of secrecy also applies to his business, in particular to the Telegram project. After the well-known conflict with the FSB in 2014, Pavlo decided to leave Russia. Since then, the messenger team has been based around the world. For example, in Berlin, London and Singapore, but since 2017 Pavlo and his team have been living and working in Dubai. After moving to Dubai, Pavlo said in an interview with Bloomberg that his new office is on the 23rd floor of one of the high-rise buildings in Dubai Media City (DMC), a free economic zone in the capital of the emirate. However, there are reasons to believe that this is not his only office in Dubai.

Let’s start

On the YouTube platform, there is a video published on February 18, 2022 by Evgeny Chernyak, a businessman and author of the “Big Money” channel. In that clip, Yevhen met with entrepreneur Mykola Udyansky in one of the entrepreneur’s offices in Dubai. Mykola’s businesses are mainly built on the topic of cryptocurrencies.

Shot from an interview by Yevhen Chernyak with Mykola Udyanskyi

Once the conversation was about investing in Pavel Durov’s crypto project, namely The Open Network (TON).

  • Mykola: I want to meet our neighbor in a few days.

  • Eugene: Plus two floors. You have fools there, from Telegram.

  • Mykola: Yes, yes!

  • ― Mykola and Yevhen (YouTube: 24:45 – 24:55)

From this passage, we can conclude that Durov’s office is in the same building as Mykola’s office, where the interview was filmed, two floors above. Now our task is to find the location of this object.

At this point, we can get a lot of information about the location of this building by looking at the panoramic window.

View from the office of Mykola Udyanskyi

If you look closely at the views outside the window, the land of an unusual shape strongly resembles the shape of the Palm Jumeirah island, which is located in Dubai.

Palm Jumeirah Island

There is reason to believe that we are looking at the left side of the island, because we can see certain parts of the island that are not on the right side of the island.

Let’s look at these two photos

Colored lines mark the places that most closely correspond to satellite images taken from Google Maps.

View from Mykola’s office window and the left side of Palm Jumeirah island

Moreover, there is another video on YouTube with the participation of Mykola. The clip was published on September 21, 2021, on Anton Dyachenko’s channel.

Shot from an interview by Anton Dyachenko with Mykola Udyanskyi

It is safe to assume that this interview was filmed in the same place where Even Chernyak’s video was filmed. This can be seen from the fact that the view from the window is the same, the vase with flowers in the left corner of the office is the same, the table and sofa in the office are the same.

In addition, the Ain Dubai Ferris wheel on Bluewaters Island is visible from this angle. And judging from the perspective, it can be assumed that the building is located almost to the right of the Dubai Marina area.

“Ain Dubai” and “Dubai Marina”

Now let’s pay attention again to that frame from Yevhen Chernyak’s video. There we can see another hint that will help in finding the desired object.


View from Mykola’s window

Here in the background we can see another building located near our object. Now our task is to find this house based on its appearance and the angle at which it stands.

Comparing the outlines of the building on Google Maps, you can find objects visible through the panoramic window of Mykola Udyanskyi’s office (the first photo above, possible objects are marked with red circles). This can then be confirmed using Google Street View (second photo above).

In the photo below, three buildings are marked in different colors

Al Habtoor company facilities

These properties belong to Al Habtoor, a company that has grown with the UAE from a small engineering company in 1970 and now specializes in hospitality, automotive, leasing, real estate, education and publishing, and is one of the largest and most prestigious in the region. It became one of the largest and most respected conglomerates in the region.

Two modern 25-storey buildings used as hotels, known as Habtoor Grand Resort, are marked in green and yellow; building (Al Habtoor Business Tower), a 40-story modern office center, marked in red; as well as a building (Al Habtoor Business Tower).

In general, judging by the position of the building marked in yellow, this particular building is visible from the office of Mykola Udyanskyi. This means that the offices of Mykola Udyanskyi and Pavel Durov are located in Al Habtoor Business Tower (see below).

Al Habtoor Business Tower (foreground) and Al Habtoor Grand Resort (background left side)


The supposed building in which Mykola and Pavel’s office is located is located at coordinates 25.085 400 914 071 517, 55.14 165 548 905 524. Moreover, from the view from Udyansky’s office, you can see that the office is approximately on the same level as the roof of the second Grand Resort. From which we can assume that the offices of Durov and Udyanskyi are located approximately between the 20th and 30th floors.

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