Something felt odd as I browsed the stalls of brightly colored fabrics and ornate Arabic knickknacks in Souq Waqif, the most popular tourist attraction in Qatar. The walls were the expected mud brick, the roofs were a mixture of wood and bamboo. All of the vendors were wearing the traditional long white “thobes,’’ and merchandise arrived at the stalls in old-fashioned wheelbarrows. Yet something was off, almost Disney-like, in this spotless souq, compared with the barely contained chaos of other traditional markets in the Middle East.

An old photo in the main plaza solved the mystery: This is Souq Waqif, version 2.0. In 2004, Qatar’s capital city of Doha demolished the 130-year-old market and built an exact replica in its place, cleaner, brighter, and with less soul.

Doha, too, is hurtling toward a future that is cleaner, brighter, and better packaged, both for the Western tourist and, the country hopes, a World Cup. On Dec. 2, FIFA (Fédération International de Football, Association), soccer’s ruling body, will name the hosts of the 2018 and 2022 competitions. Qatar is vying with Australia, South Korea, Japan, and the United States for the 2022 spot. The bid puts Doha in the spotlight as the city grows from a traditional pearl-harvesting village to a luxury metropolis.

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