I decided to put few pennies to this discussion as a resident of UAE since few years. Although i do not live in DUBAI but some 130km south in Al Ain at the border with Oman.
This culture is very interesting, different and full of contradictions in compare to western culture.
My post could be very long on explaining even part of it.
First of all I do not know if your host told about rules regarding taking photographs of local women and not only local ( as other nationalities including European and Asian wears Abaya)
I understand that when someone is traveling somewhere he/she wants to have some fantastic memories ( read pics) from vacation and here you are free to take many of them. There is few things to see in UAE. As for photographing people especially women you should be cautious , even when you take photos of the shoes
(as they might shout on you, spit on you curse you, call police etc.) if you take pics against their will. From my experience this actions can come from older women as young ones they run around very often with 2-3 smartphones taking pics of each other.
Next time when you visit Middle East just ask some expat about the rules when it comes to taking pics
As for Oman people there are very open to tourist and even whole families posing to photographs. It happened to me
So if you cannot stand UAE's mentality, Oman is the best choice for future photographic travel
On other hand you have bunch of photographic contest around the country with great prizes that aim to preserve their culture and no one is banning anyone just because he took photo of a local woman unless she did not agree to be on a photograph.
Below is link to big photography contest in UAEhttp://www.ephotoc.net/