July 2013 | issue 80
M A G A Z I N E V I S I T O R F I V E - S T A R l u x u r y T H E
ABU DHABI edition July 2013 | issue 80
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JULY 2013 / Issue 80 / abu Dhabi Edition
Pu bl isher Rob Nichol a s
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a dv ert isi ng A dv ert isi ng M a nager STEPHEN N I XON Hot el r e l at ionship m a nager Mi a C ache ro SENIOR SALES m a nager DA R RY L W I L L E Y Sa l es M a nager s m a dih a zou biri Sa nge eta Bu ta n i Speci a l proj ec ts Kir at Sa bh a rwa l
CIRCULATION & M AR K ETING c a rol mil a n Christ in e H a m a da
In t er nat iona l sa l es Blei SpA, Italy Via Carlo Cazzaniga, 19 – 20132 Milano Tel +39 02 722 511 / Email: firstname.lastname@example.org S’REGIE, France 46, Rue Sainte Anne 75002 Paris Tel +33 1 56 88 20 80 / Email: STOMA@sregie.com
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As a visitor and guest in Abu Dhabi, you are staying in a destination of distinction which I hope you will find so engaging and exciting that you return time and time again. We in Abu Dhabi believe our homeland is something of a welcome contradiction for travellers. It is a place where deep-rooted Arabian heritage is deftly woven into a rich destination tapestry which also boasts luxury accommodation and world-class, state-of-the-art leisure attractions. Abu Dhabi is blessed with a diverse landscape. We have 400 kilometres of pristine coastline, over 200 natural islands, vast tracts of serene desert, tranquil oasis towns and a vibrant, cosmopolitan capital city. I hope during your stay you are able to experience as much of this variety as possible. In many ways, Abu Dhabi is several destinations in one, from the rustic charm of Al Ain, the birthplace of the country’s founding father, Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and the breathtaking vastness of the Liwa Desert in Al Gharbia, with its mountainous dunes, to the energising pace and brightness of our capital city. We all share a desire to make you feel as welcome as possible and hope you leave with a positive, lasting impression of our homeland, traditions and people. In the pages of this magazine, you will get an overview of the emirate’s diverse offering. I am sure you will find something which truly excites and entertains you. I wish you a very relaxing, enjoyable and memorable stay in Abu Dhabi.
Mubarak Al Muhairi Director General Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority
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Concierge magazine is also available in Russian, Arabic and Mandarin languages. Please request a copy from the concierge desk in the hotel lobby.
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In focus Photography: Adham Sneeh Location: Mosques in Abu Dhabi and Dubai
The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is the UAE capital’s crowning glory. With the capacity to house more than 40,000 worshipers, this majestic structure is the third largest mosque in the world and features over 1,000 columns and 82 gold-tipped domes. Its vast prayer halls, magnificent columned walkways and echoing atriums are all wrought from the finest materials and elaborately adorned with exquisite designs. Find out more from our focus feature on UAE mosques on page 20 then more turn to page 22 to explore them in pictures.
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Contents JULY 2013 / Issue 80
Abu Dhabi’s top attractions and events
Discover 14/Followers of the faith
Every year more than 1.6 billion Muslims around the world observe a period of fasting and self-reflection for the holy month of Ramadan
The UAE’s mosques range from the spectacular and ornate to historic places of worship that date back centuries
22/Pillars of peace
Explore the beauty of the country’s mosques in this month’s photo essay
Experience 34/World under water
38/Full speed ahead
The need for speed is easily satisfied in Abu Dhabi where opportunities for fast-paced thrills abound
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SHEIKH ZAYED GRAND MOSQUE
Exotic species of fish, colourful plant life and mysterious ship wrecks await scuba divers in the waters around the UAE
Contents JULY 2013 / Issue 80
Shop 44/Fashion capital
With a host of new malls opening up around the city Abu Dhabi is well on its way to achieving major shopping-destination status
Travel through time with Jaeger-LeCoultre as the luxury timepiece brand celebrates 180 years in the business
Taste 58/Taste of tradition
Iftar feasts across the capital offer visitors an opportunity to discover the delights of local cuisine and immerse themselves in UAE culture. Concierge rounds up a selection of the best
Gem setting work JAEGER-LECOULTRE
65 The guide
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80/My life in Abu Dhabi
Rashad al Ghadban, public relations manager at Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi, discusses his life in the UAE capital
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E X PER I E NCE Bahraini Island
Something of a hidden gem, the beautiful Bahraini Island lies just 40 minutes off the coast of Abu Dhabi. Dock at the tiny harbour and pay AED100 to enjoy the pool and other facilities at Al Maha Resort, the only one on the island. Those who want to stay overnight can book one of the six luxurious villas which are decorated in traditional Arabian style. Contact: 02 6677777
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Iranian Souk For a truly traditional Arabian shopping experience spend an afternoon browsing the Iranian Souk on Al Meena Street. Ornate antiques, hand-painted ceramics and silver jewellery line the stalls here, alongside shisha pipes, miniature dhows, prayer beads and a host of other souvenirs to serve as reminders of Abu Dhabi. Situated on the quayside by Mina Port, this traditional souk offers visitors an opportunity to experience a taste of the region’s retail traditions as they unearth hidden gems in quaint stores piled high with wares from the Middle East and beyond. It’s also located close to a number of the capital’s other souks including the Carpet Souk on the corner of Mina Street and 14th Street, the Fish Market and the Fruit and Vegetable Market, all of which offer an opportunity to explore a simpler, albeit less glamorous side of the city. Where: Ask your concierge for more details on both the souk’s and the markets’ locations.
TA S T E Afternoon tea
After a busy day sightseeing, indulge in a selection of chocolates, cakes and pastries at afternoon tea in one of the capital’s luxury hotels. Try the mouthwatering spread at Le Café in Emirates Palace, where scones served with clotted cream and dainty sandwiches are piled high on elegant platters. Don’t forget to order the hotel’s signature cappuccino that comes complete with gold leaf dusting. At Al Fanar, the revolving restaurant at Le Royal Méridien, visitors can indulge in sweet and savoury delicacies as they admire 360-degree views of the city, while Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche (pictured) offers a sumptuous feast of French pastries at its ‘à la Française’ afternoon tea. For contact details please refer to the Guide section on page 74.
U N I T E D N AT I O N S O F C O M E D Y July 4 & 5 Maz Jobrani, Aron Kader (pictured), Mike Batayeh and Nemr Abou Nassar of the Qatarbased stand-up troupe, United Nations of Comedy will make their debut appearance before crowds at the du Forum in Abu Dhabi as part of the capital’s annual summer festival. Visit summerfestabudhabi.ae
YA S L I N K S L I O N S S E R I E S July 6 Embrace the sporting spirit of the season at this golf-andrugby-themed event. Begin with a shotgun tee-off at Yas Links followed by lunch at Hickory’s where the Lions game will be shown on the big screen. Visit yasisland.ae
b irt h of a museum Runs to July 20 See a preview of the collection that one day soon will adorn the walls of Louvre Abu Dhabi at this exhibition in Manarat al Saadiyat, where the works acquired for the museum to date are on display. Visit saadiyatculturaldistrict.ae
SUMMERFEST ABU DHABI Runs to August 17 Theatre productions, live music performances and comedy nights are part of the action-packed itinerary for Summerfest Abu Dhabi 2013. Drawing on the success of last year’s edition, which attracted more than 100,000 guests throughout July and August, the annual entertainment extravaganza has been expanded to cover a 57-day schedule this year. Visit summerfestabudhabi.ae
2 013 formula 1 eti h ad air ways a b u d h a b i g rand p ri x November 1 to 3 Tickets are already on sale for the hottest sporting event of the season. Book a seat in the stands or reserve a place in the prestigious Paddock Club to watch the world’s best drivers put their skills to the test on the famous Yas Marina Circuit. Visit saadiyatculturaldistrict.ae
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D I S C OV E R
Ask the concierge N ata s h a M a g h r a b l i a n , C o nc i e r g e at H yat t C a p i ta l G at e o f f e r s h e r a d v i c e o n w h at t o d o a n d s e e in Abu Dhabi
For a luxurious experience of the city, I often advise guests to hire our hotel limousine and be escorted around the main sights in style by our knowledgeable driver. The trip begins with a stop at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque where the complimentary walking tour offers visitors a fascinating insight into the local culture. This is followed by an hour at Souk Qaryat al Beri so you can browse local handicraft stores and luxury boutiques before going on to Manarat al Saadiyat, where an interactive exhibition depicts future plans for the island. After this, it’s on to Heritage Village, where visitors can explore the old Bedouin way of life at the reconstruction of a traditional desert camp there. For couples, I often advice those seeking a real ‘Arabian nights’ experience, to book at desert dune dinner at Qasr al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara – what could be more romantic or exclusive than being served a gourmet dinner by a personal butler with the sun setting over the dunes in the background. Visitors looking for actionadventure experiences, will find an abundance of options. Yas Marina Circuit is a must-see and offers a range of auto-related activities while water sports enthusiasts can go jet skiing in the waters surrounding Souk Qaryat al Beri and admire stunning views of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and the five-star hotels lining the beaches as they skim over the waves. In the evening, try the glamorous Ray’s Bar on the 62nd floor of Jumeirah at Etihad Towers for a pre-dinner cocktail and then head to 18° at Hyatt Capital Gate Hotel for dinner and tuck into delicious Eastern Mediterranean cuisine in the furthest leaning manmade tower on the planet.
Umm Al Quwain
Located less than 30 minutes’ drive from Sharjah, tiny Umm Al Quwain is a tranquil destination as yet unaffected by the frenetic pace of its city neighbours. One major draw of the area is Dreamland Aqua Park, a familyfriendly water park with more than 30 rides spread over 250,000 square metres of landscaped gardens. Those attracted to high altitudes can also try para-gliding or sky diving at the local flying club and for history buffs the Umm Al Quwain Museum in the old fort is well worth a visit. Nature enthusiasts will find plenty to admire in this scenic emirate, which is home to the UAE’s largest Socotra Cormorant community in addition to flamingos, herds of Arabian gazelle, green turtles and Blacktip reef sharks. A number of islands located just off the mainland peninsula are the best places to spot some of these creatures and are equally worth visiting for their natural beauty and peaceful, sandy beaches.
E X PER I E NCE
Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo A day trip to neighbouring Dubai, just an hour down the road, should definitely include a visit to the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo. Shoals of colourful fish, stingrays and different shark species are among the many exotic sea creatures on display in the vast tank where visitors can enter a deep sea world by walking through a tunnel that runs right under the transparent structure. Nearby is Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, The Dubai Fountain and, of course, the mall itself, the world’s largest shopping centre. Where: The Dubai Mall. When: Sun to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu to Sat 10am to midnight. Contact: 04 4485200
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D I S C OV E R Liwa Date Festival
Explore UAE tradition at the Liwa Date Festival taking place this month in Abu Dhabi’s western region. Now in its eighth edition, the festival was initially established to promote the country’s date industry and encourage local farmers with events such as the popular fruit beauty pageant. For visitors, this is the ideal way to gain an insight UAE history and culture and to stock up on souvenirs in the form of local handicrafts at the festival’s souk. Where: Liwa city, Al Gharbia. When: July 18 to 25. Visit: liwadatefestival.ae
TA S T E Turquoiz
Sip cocktails and feast your eyes on picture-perfect views at this trendy beach hangout on Saadiyat Island. Turquoiz beach restaurant and lounge is the perfect place to relax and watch the sun go down while enjoying light bites and seafood snacks from the new summer menu. Where: The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort. Contact: 02 4988008
SHOP Café Arabia
Part boutique, part community café and part art gallery, this hidden gem offers visitors a chance to combine shopping with local culture and cuisine. Browse an ecclectic collection of art, jewellery and ornaments on display or simply stop by for a bite to eat and admire the décor. Owner Aida Mansour clearly has a knack for creative interiors and an eye for interesting pieces. Her choice selection of clothes, accessories and other knick-knacks has made Café Arabia a popular haunt for local fashionistas in search of something unique, while the works on the walls, many of them by regional artists, have made it a favourite with the city’s art crowd. Everyone, meanwhile, comes for the food and as this is one of the few standalone cafés open during the day throughout Ramadan, it’s the perfect choice for visitors seeking a good spot for lunch in the capital. Where: Al Mushrif. When: 8am to 10.30pm. Contact: 02 6439699
Discover Creative space
Spearheading Abu Dhabiâ€™s growing grass-roots art community is the new Abu Dhabi Art Hub, a platform for emerging artists to showcase their talent and tap into the creative energy thatâ€™s building in the capital. The new space provides artists from all over the world with a place to work and interact in the city. When: Open Sat to Wed 9am to 8pm and Thu 9am to 2pm. Contact: 02 5515005
Followers of the faith The ninth and holiest month in the Islamic calendar, Ramadan is a time of peaceful reflection when communities come together Words by
Charlot t e Van de n Broucq ue
Every year over 1.6 billion Muslims around the world spend the 29 days of Ramadan focusing on reflection, spirituality and closeness to God through prayer, self-restraint and acts of charity. This is one of the most important dates in the Islamic calendar and provides followers of the faith with a chance to cleanse their souls and renew their relationships with God. A time for spirituality, family and community Ramadan unites Muslims and gives others the opportunity to learn about this fascinating culture and how it impacts peopleâ€™s lives in the UAE and around the world. Known as the holy month, Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and always starts two weeks earlier than the previous year. The exact date of the beginning of Ramadan is determined by the sighting of the new moon which is called the hilal. Not until this slight crescent has appeared in the sky will the start of the holy month be announced. The following morning at the first light of dawn fasting will commence. This year Ramadan is due to fall between July 9 and August 7 or as soon as the Moon Sighting Committee spots the hilal. At the end of the month when the hilal is once again observed the Eid al-Fitr festival of fast-breaking begins.
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ra ma d a n / dis cove r
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Nasif Kayed, general manager of the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU), explains the different elements of practising Islam, especially during the holy month. “Part of the faith is fasting. The idea is to teach discipline, perseverance and patience. It also makes you watch yourself very closely,” he says. During daylight hours between sunrise and sunset Muslims must abstain from all food, drink, smoking, intimacy with their spouse, gossiping and cursing. While outsiders might think this a daunting prospect, many followers look forward to the holy month each year. “The whole community does it together. It would be more difficult if you were the only one,” Kayed explains. “Of course there are some Muslims who don’t anticipate the arrival of Ramadan as eagerly, but those who dive into it are rewarded by enhanced spirituality. Many of us really look forward to it because it makes us feel great to practise being good.” That doesn’t mean to say it is an easy time for Muslims. “The first three days are ver y diff icult for almost ever yone. As the month goes on it gets better and better and by the time you’re used to it, it ends. You feel so purified that you could continue to live like it past the end of the month,” Kayed explains.
1 The Holy Qur’an (previous page) 2 Reading the Holy Qur’an 3 Traditional lantern 4 Oudh
Another major part of the holy month is zakat, one of the five pillars of Islam that requires Muslims to give to the poor and needy. All shopping malls will have charity stands where donations can be made 4
H o w t o r e s p e c t R a m a da n Refrain from eating, drinking and smoking in public through daylight hours during Ramadan, even inside cars. It is considered polite to cover shoulders and legs. The only live music played during Ramadan is traditional Arabic music. Dancing is not allowed. The working day in many offices will start later and end earlier. Iftar, the meal over which the daily fast is broken, is held around 7pm each evening depending on the time of year and when the sun sets.
While malls remain open during the day, most food outlets will be closed until sunset. It is possible to eat in curtained-off venues and in hotels during the day, but the choice will be limited.
ra ma d a n / dis cove r
As the sun sets Muslims prepare to break the fast traditionally with dates and camel milk in a meal called iftar. “It’s a special time for everyone,” reveals Kayed. “You don’t normally eat 29 meals in one month where every day you sit down as a family, but during Ramadan you spend every night together.” As well as gatherings at home nearly every hotel in the city will serve luxurious iftar buffets incorporating authentic Middle Eastern cuisine like mezze, pickles, olives, roasted meats, tagines and juices. Later in the evening a second round of food is served in a meal called sohour. This is also the name for the last meal before sunrise and some eat it as an early breakfast before the first prayer.
5 The Holy Qur’an 6 & 7 Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding
Another major part of the holy month is zakat, one of the five pillars of Islam that requires Muslims to give to the poor and needy. Feeling hunger from fasting is a reminder of the suffering of others and the need to be charitable towards them. “In Ramadan charity counts in every way. You can feed, clothe, or give money. You give from what God has given you,” says Kayed. All shopping malls will have charity stands during the holy month where donations can be made. Visitors are also invited to join in the spirit of generosity either by donating or giving larger tips to their waiters or taxi drivers. A useful phrase to use around this time is ‘Ramadan kareem’ which means ‘happy Ramadan’ to those who are celebrating the holy month. Whether Ramadan or not Muslims will pray five times a day, but the prayers just before sunrise and just after sunset during the holy month take on extra significance as daylight fasting begins or ends. Performing ritual prayers five times a day is another pillar of Islam and is called salat. Many will read the Qur’an more frequently and intently during this time, memorising parts of the text and reciting the Muslim profession of faith, or shahada more often.
G e t i n v o lv e d Even if you do not follow the Islamic faith there are plenty of opportunities to learn about the holy month during Ramadan. The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) in Dubai is holding an iftar programme where everyone is invited to experience the breaking of the fast. The SMCCU’s ‘Open Doors, Open Minds’ policy means it’s the perfect time to ask questions about Ramadan, Islam or Middle Eastern culture. SMCCU continues tours around the Jumeirah Mosque during this time. Iftars will be held at most of the large hotels across the UAE. Experience some authentic Middle Eastern cuisine before enjoying a shisha in traditional tents. 7
Visit cultures.ae for more information on the SMCCU’s programmes.
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dis c o ver/ra ma da n
Ahead of prayer time worshippers perform wudu or ablution to cleanse faces, hands and feet before presenting themselves to God. “Ablution is the physical and mental preparation before you step into the conversation with your lord,” explains Kayed. “The prayer is identical every time. All over the world Muslims say the same words reflecting the same teaching principle: to be good and recognise blessings.” Ramadan and fasting ends with a threeday celebration called Eid al-Fitr. Kayed says: “After breakfast and prayer everyone dresses in new clothes and visits each other starting with calling on the oldest in the family and then visiting extended family. All three days are about visiting family and having fun together.” It’s also common, though not obligatory, for families to give gifts especially to children during this special time.
Personal perspectives UAE residents offer an insight into what Ramadan means to them.
8 Enjoying Arabic coffee at the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding 9 Prayer beads
Manal bin Ismail “I look forward to Ramadan every year. My family and friends do too. It’s a month for both learning and bringing people together when families gather for iftar every evening. There’s also a special spirit to the month. During the day friends and neighbours exchange dishes they have made especially for breaking the fast. During Ramadan I’ll wake up early and have sohour before the first prayer. Working hours are shorter during Ramadan and mine will change completely. I work at the Sheikh Mohammad Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) and we will be holding an iftar programme during the month where all people, whatever their beliefs, are encouraged to come along and share in the breaking of the fast. So I will work from just before sunset until after the meal is finished. Some people have another meal before going to bed too. Ramadan teaches you to be nice to others and to watch what you are doing and saying. You must also not listen to gossip. At the same time Ramadan teaches you to become honest with yourself. When I’m alone I know there’s no one watching me so I could eat or drink without anyone knowing, but this is a test and God is watching. After Ramadan I try to carry on the good habits I’ve been practising such as keeping my relationships good, saying sorry to my friends if I did something wrong and continuing to be around for family and friends.” Manal bin Ismail is a presenter at the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding. For more information visit cultures.ae
Ali Alsaloom “Ramadan is the most special time of the year to all Muslims around the world. I believe that fasting is a great opportunity to recharge and strengthen my faith in God, to purify my mind, my body and soul. Throughout the holy month I spend a lot of time praying, reading the Qur’an and attending rituals at the mosques. At the same time, I learn how to discipline myself, to improve my manners and to become more mature when dealing with others. I also consider how I can be more generous to others in every sense, from showing kindness to strangers to helping my family and friends solve problems in any way I can. Another reason I look forward to Ramadan is the opportunity it brings to do good deeds, the rewards of which are multiplied during this blessed month. When I fast, it teaches me how it feels not to have any food for several hours. I learn to empathise with poor and hungry people and am more thankful towards God who blessed us with food. The last 10 days of Ramadan are very special because this period includes the night that the Qur’an was revealed to Prophet Mohammed (Peace be upon him) called Laylat Al Qadr (the Night of Power). Because of this we like to spend more time in the mosques during this period. Ramadan ends with Eid al-Fitr, a wonderful and charming celebration when meals are shared with everyone in the community and children receive gifts. Ramadan is not only a celebration for Muslims but also a great opportunity for others to learn more about this faith and culture. I wish everyone a great holy month of Ramadan.” Ali Alsaloom is an author, cultural consultant, public speaker and self-appointed cultural ambassador. Visit alialsaloom.com for more information.
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The UAE’s mosques are beautiful palaces of worship that add an enchanting touch to the nation’s skyline Words by
Charlot t e Van de n Broucq ue
It is estimated that 80 percent of the UAE’s population are Muslim and as such over 1,400 mosques across the country provide places of worship for followers of the Islamic faith. In the cities mosques have been built so that wherever you are you should be able to hear the ambient call to prayer. As the melodic sound echoes across the emirates five times a day it summons the faithful and reminds others that this is the heart of Arabia. Varying in design and detail it’s possible to view a huge variety of architectural influences across many of the UAE’s mosques. Anatolian mosques feature Turkish influences with large central domes supported by grand pillars, Shi’ite mosques often have ornate blue tiling and the Iranian style includes a courtyard as well as extensive use of coloured geometric designs. Despite the differing building materials and styles, there are some things that all mosques have in common. They will have at least one minaret – a tall slim tower from the top of which the call to prayer is broadcast across the city. Worshippers will bow, kneel and lie prostrate in the prayer hall which is deliberately left uncluttered and without furniture so that many people can pray at the same time. As they do so they will face the mihrab which is located in an ornamental alcove in the wall of the mosque
1 Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi 2 Ceiling detail from Jumeirah Mosque, Dubai
In the cities mosques have been built so that wherever you are you should be able to hear the ambient call to prayer and marks the direction of Ka’aba, the ancient shrine at the centre of the Holy Mosque in Makkah. The UAE’s oldest mosque, Al Badiyah located on a hilltop in Fujairah shares similar traits. Estimated to have been constructed in 1446 from mud and stone, the 53-square-metre building is still used for daily prayers. Able to accommodate 50 to 70 people, its recent refurbishment ensures the mosque’s preservation for generations to come and has also attracted increasing numbers of visitors interested in seeing the ancient structure for themselves. The small Al Badiyah mosque stands in complete contrast to
the upcoming opening of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque Fujairah, which will be the second biggest mosque in the UAE after the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. It has been designed as a replica of the Suleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul, Turkey, with six minarets, a large open courtyard and an elaborate selection of domes. With a capacity for 28,000 worshippers the new mosque is due to be finished this summer but will exhibit a more understated look with far less elaborate and expensive finishes than its sister mosque in Abu Dhabi. In Dubai the landmark Jumeirah Mosque is unusual because non-Muslims
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are permitted to enter thanks to the ‘Open Doors, Open Minds’ policy and a tour run by the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU). General Manager Nasif Kayed explains the origins of the mosque’s architecture: “Egypt was the capital of the Islamic empire in the 1500s during the Fatimi era when mosques became quite famous for their interior and exterior domes. Jumeirah Mosque was built according to this style between 1977 and 1979 making it one of Dubai’s relatively older functioning
mosques,” he says. Even though it was the biggest mosque at the time it was located in a comparatively quiet area away from the busy Dubai Creek and the rest of the city has since grown up around it. “The detail of the architecture makes it really stand out,” says Kayed. “The intricate detail on the minarets and domes is amazing. We decided to start letting people enter because they wanted to see inside and that’s how the SMCCU actually started. We began running tours into the mosque and answering
FIND OUT MORE For information on Jumeirah Mosque tours call 04 3536666 or visit cultures.ae For more information on Al Farooq Omar Ibn Al Khattab Mosque call 04 3944448 or visit alfarooqcentre.com For more information on Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque tours call 02 4416444 or visit szgmc.ae
3 Tour of Jumeirah Mosque, Dubai 4 Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi 5 Al Farooq Omar Ibn Al Khattab Mosque interior
questions about the purpose of the building as well as how Islam is practised.” Tours are conducted every day apart from Friday at 10am and guests are required to dress modestly. Nearby in the Al Safa area of Dubai, the Al Farooq Omar Ibn Al Khattab Mosque is based on the Blue Mosque in Istanbul and features sapphire-hued highlights on the white marble exterior. Following SMCCU’s pioneering cultural tours around Jumeirah Mosque, the Al Farooq Mosque which was opened in 2011 also welcomes non-Muslims to raise awareness of Arabic culture. With beautiful hand-crafted decorations both inside and out a tour is recommended in order to fully appreciate the splendour of this relatively new mosque. Another mosque open to non-Muslims is the spectacular Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. It is the largest mosque in the UAE and the eighth largest in the world with a capacity for 41,000 worshippers at one time. Late president and founding father of the UAE, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan laid the cornerstone of this iconic landmark but died before its completion. His funeral was the mosque’s very first ceremony and the Sheikh was laid to rest in a garden on the grounds. The breathtaking white marble building boasts 82 domes, over 1,000 columns and the world’s largest knotted carpet. Goldplated chandeliers illuminate the intricately decorated interior. A spectacular sight, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is certainly a jewel in the crown of the UAE’s varied architecture.
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Pillars of peace From gleaming white minarets to elaborately adorned interiors, Concierge photographer Adham Sneeh presents a portrait of the UAE's majestic mosques
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The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi is the final resting place of the former UAE President. The late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan intended this magnificent house of worship to serve as a symbol of unity between people of different cultures and provide a source of understanding of the Islamic faith
The third largest mosque in the world, this impressive structure is wrought from the finest materials available sourced from across the globe. There are more than 1,000 columns at the mosque, many of them clad in marble and inlaid with mother of pearl while its 82 domes are tipped with gold.
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In preparation for prayer followers of Islam gather at the mosque for ablution where the hands, face and feet are washed in clean water to cleanse the body and mind.
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Pools running alongside the arched walkways reflect the mosque's spectacular columns. At night the stunning space is illuminated by a unique lightning system. Striking hues of blue and grey are projected onto the external walls and get brighter and darker according to the phase of the moon. Inside the main prayer hall hangs a spectacular 12-tonne chandelier adorned with Swarovski crystals. The pulpit or menbar, made from carved cedar wood, is where the imam sits to address worshippers in the main prayer hall.
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City mosques in Abu Dhabi provide an interesting architectural contrast against a modern urban backdrop. Five times a day the call to prayer sounds out across the city. The melodic chant is broadcast from mosque minarets summoning Muslims to gather for worship.
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Jumeirah Mosque in Dubai is one of the city's most beautiful sights. The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding run tours inside the impressive building where visitors can admire intricate patterns on walls and ceilings which also boast stunning examples of Islamic calligraphy.
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Based on the Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Al Farooq Omar Ibn Al Khattab Mosque in Dubai features 21 domes and 124 stained-glass windows. Distinctive design features inside include extraordinary examples of hand-painted Islamic art.
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Experience A walk on t he w ild side
The three beautiful white tigers are the star attraction in the predatorsâ€™ wing at Emirates Park Zoo. Other highlights include the UAEâ€™s first green anaconda, which lives alongside the sea lions, hippos, swans and many other exotic residents at this family-friendly destination. Where: Al Rahba City. How much: AED25 for adults and AED10 for children under six. Under twos enter free. Contact: 02 5633100
World under water Dive down into the depths of the Arabian Gulf to behold a scene of startling beauty and explore the eerie shipwrecks that lie scattered on the sea bed Words by
D I V I N G/ E XP E R IE NCE
Beneath the sparkling turquoise waters of the Arabian Gulf lies another world waiting to be explored and with summer temperatures soaring above ground there’s no better time to dive down and explore the cool, shadowy depths of the ocean. Discover the diverse aquatic life that thrives in these parts on a coral reef dive in Fujairah or face your fears by swimming with the sharks at Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo. For an adventure further afield, join a wreck dive and explore the sunken ships and aircraft that rest on the sea bed off the country’s shore. Old fishing dhows that once travelled between the UAE and India bringing in spices, fabrics and other goods and vast ocean-going liners are among the vessels that have met an end in the region’s shallower seas. One of the best known is MV Dara, off the coast of Dubai. The passenger liner famously sank on April 10, 1961, following an explosion believed to have been deliberately set off by rebels. The inevitably spooky nature of this wreck dive is intensified by the knowledge that 238 people died as the ship went down.
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There’s also MV Hannan which lies at 12 to 22 metres deep and is thought to have sunk while working the Abu Dhabi oil fields in 1986. Experienced divers can access the bridge and accommodation areas of the small coastal vessel, which rests on its port side. A good spot for treasure hunters, divers have stumbled across objects of value belonging to the unfortunate passengers aboard when the boat went down. The wreck is also known for its resident stingrays and eagle rays, in addition to other species of fish. MV Jasim and MV Ludwig were once used by the UAE armed forces for target practice and both now rest at the bottom of the sea at a depth of 27 metres. MV Jasim broke into three main sections and rests on its port side. Experienced divers can access the wreck through the bridge via a number of hatches and explore the engine room and accommodation cabins. There’s also an intact propeller in the stern here as well as an abundance of marine life such as hawksbill turtles, barracuda, snappers, puffer fish and rays. MV Ludwig, on the other hand, is almost intact despite evidence of an explosion that blew a huge hole in the bridge. Divers can explore the bridge section, the crew quarters and the engine room.
Johan Van De Poel
Another popular site is the resting place of an old cement barge that sank in 1971. The vessel went down when it ran into heavy weather en route to Dubai and currently sits upright at a depth of 12 metres. There’s plenty of scope for some fascinating underwater photography here. The framework of the bridge and cabin is still in place, as is the original cargo of cement bags. The remains of the engine can also be seen alongside a rich variety of fish that have made this their home, including snapper, bream, hammour, angelfish, batfish, sea slugs and butterfly fish.
1 Free diving 2&4 Reef buoy wrecks off Sir Bani Yas Island 3 MV Hannan wreck
Most UAE wrecks can only be visited by certified open-water scuba divers and the sites vary in terms of depth and current strength, so personal skill and certification levels should be taken into account when choosing a trip
C o n ta c t s
Johan Van De Poel
Al Mahara Diving Center Contact: 02 6437377 or visit divemahara.com Al Boom Diving Contact: 04 3422993 or visit alboomdiving.com
FreedivingUAE. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit freedivinguae.como
Most UAE wrecks can be visited only by certified open-water scuba divers and the sites vary in terms of depth and current strength, so personal skill and certification levels should be taken into account when choosing a trip. A great site for divers of all experience levels is the area around the reef buoy just north of Ruwais, Abu Dhabi. Here, at an average depth of 11 metres, there are two sunken pilot boats, an overturned barge and three huge anchor blocks positioned almost like guard towers. The depth means there’s suitable light for photography and divers can spot barracuda, angelfish, sweetlips, hammour and hawksbill turtles swimming around the wreckage. Nearby is Sir Bani Yas Island, bestknown for its wildlife park and on-land conservation projects. It is also a great launch pad for a large number of wreck sites, many barely explored. Once considered an underwater junk yard, time has turned the area surrounding the island into a deep-rooted artificial reef teeming with marine life. Gasha Island Wreck
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is the shallowest, at between one and four metres deep. The small supply ship, which lies half in and half out of the water can be visited by snorkellers as well as divers. Not much is known about the ship’s sinking except that it ran aground during low tide 40 years ago. Marine life in this secluded spot includes angelfish, snappers and silver biddies and above the surface Socotra cormorants can be spotted sitting upright on the exposed decking. More experienced divers can also pay a visit to The Pearl, a 30-metre-long shipwreck situated a few kilometres from the coast, 12 metres under water. The vessel’s middle section is mostly collapsed but the captain’s cabin is still intact and divers can peer through the hull to view the inside of the ship. The Green Star Award-winning Al Mahara Diving Center organises trips to the wrecks off the coast of Abu Dhabi and Sir Bani Yas Island. According to Kathleen Russell, PADI course director at Al Mahara Diving Center, Abu Dhabi is ideal for diving enthusiasts as the water temperature is never too cold or too hot. “Exploring the underwater environment is always exciting as every dive brings new discoveries, even when
returning to the same site. There is always a plethora of marine life and plenty of coral and sponge growth on the wrecks, which makes a colourful underwater vista for photographers and videographers. We have professional PADI dive centres in Abu Dhabi and on Sir Bani Yas Island, where instructors take beginners on open-water dives or accompany advanced and experienced divers out to the hard coral areas and wrecks.” The nearby emirate of Fujairah is another key scuba diving destination in 5,6,7&8 Underwater in the UAE
Free diving offers an exhilarating way to explore the waters surrounding the capital without the encumbrance of scuba gear. Divers duck down, one breath at a time, to visit the ocean floor in a practice that has deep roots in the history of the region. The pearl divers of the 18 th and 19 th century, who were fundamental in bringing wealth to the region were free divers who foraged for pearls on the ocean floor with only a rope to pull themselves down. FreedivingUAE is the only company in the region that provides a professional education in free diving. Based in Abu Dhabi, instructors run AIDA courses every month as well as weekly pool sessions for both beginners and experienced free divers. As Nicolas Largueze, instructor, FreedivingUAE, explains: “What makes free diving stand out from other sports is the fact that, beyond requiring you to push your physical limits, it demands, above all, that you push your mental boundaries. It requires you to be at one with the sea and with yourself. It is a feeling that’s hard to convey if you don’t experience it yourself. Italian champion Umberto Pellizzari used to say ‘you scuba dive to look around, you free dive to look within yourself’.”
the UAE. Located about three hours’ drive from Abu Dhabi, the coastal waters contain several reefs dense with marine life plus two famous wrecks, Inchcape 1 and Inchcape 2. As these ships were artificially sunk, their attraction lies in the sea life that surrounds them. Inchcape 1 was sunk in 2001 and settled upright on the sea bed 30 metres down. Shoals of jack, yellow snapper, porcupinefish, scorpionfish and lionfish swim around the wreck all year round and occasionally barracuda and seahorse can be spotted. Although the current can be strong, this is worth visiting just to meet the pair of large honeycomb moray eels that have made the wreck their home. Inchcape 2 lies at 22 metres and is longer than Inchcape 1. Its location close to the Martini Wall reef means that sea life thrives here with scores of moray, mollusks, boxfish and crabs to see. This wreck is perfect for underwater photography as colourful corals have propagated the ship creating a stunning backdrop. Both Fujairah sites are suitable for advanced divers and those with special training. Dubai-based dive centre Al Boom Diving organises regular trips to these wrecks. As tech nolog y is developed, t he oppor tu nit y to explore marine life and discover new sites in the UAE grows. Expert divers are constantly coming across new wrecks in the seas surrounding the UA E capital, making the landscape below water as diverse as the ever-developing environment of the city above.
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Full speed ahead With a love of all things fast and furious, Abu Dhabi is a haven for those who like to test their own limits
E x t r e m e a ct i v i t i es / E XPE R IE NCE
Home to the worldâ€™s fastest roller coaster and one of the most exciting Formula 1 circuits on the planet, Abu Dhabi is a city where speed, adventure and excitement are celebrated. In one day, thrill-seekers could hit 320 kilometres per hour as a passenger in a modified F1 car on the main straight at Yas Marina Circuit before heading next door to Ferrari World Abu Dhabi for a front-seat ride on Formula Rossa, which reaches speeds of 240 kilometres per hour thanks to the same technology used to launch fighter jets from aircraft carriers. Read on for Conciergeâ€™s top selection of fast-paced activities in the capital.
Drag racing Think you’re fast? Why not put your skills to the test over the quarter-mile drag racing strip at Yas Marina Circuit? Get behind the wheel of the thunderous Chevrolet Camaro SS with its 400hp, 6.2-litre V8 engine and tear down the strip, reaching 100 kilometres per hour in just 4.6 seconds and breaking through the quarter-mile in 13.3 seconds. The Camaro has an automatic transmission, so there’s no need to perfect gear changes and you can even race your friends along the NRHA-certified drag-racing strip. Drivers will receive a technical briefing from the Yas Drag Racing Centre’s chief instructor, who will take you through the necessary training and safety procedures and drive the first test run to demonstrate. You will take the wheel for the second run, with the instructor in the passenger seat assessing your ability to drive solo. If you pass, you will be allowed to take the remainder of the runs without the instructor. Where: Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Island When: See website for availability How much: AED600. Booking is essential Contact: 800 YAS (927), 02 6599800 / Visit: yasmarinacircuit.ae
F1 two-seater There is nothing like extreme speed to get the heart racing so for the king of all adrenaline-charged experiences why not get strapped into the passenger seat of a modified Formula 1 car? Speeding around the stunning Yas Marina Circuit – home to this November’s Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – drivers can reach speeds of more than 300 kilometres per hour and experience the same G-forces felt by Formula 1 drivers during a race. The ride is not for the fainthearted, so only serious speed lovers need apply. Hit top speeds
as you roar down one of the longest straights of any Formula 1 circuit, then feel the force as the driver drops down to first gear for two sharp 90-degree turns. Pass under Yas Viceroy hotel, the only five-star property to be built over a Formula 1 race track. The circuit then snakes around the beautiful Yas Marina where luxury yachts are berthed. Where: Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Island When: See website for availability How much: AED11,500 for open-ended ticket Contact: 800 YAS (927) Visit: yasmarinacircuit.ae
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E x t r e m e a ct i v i t i es / E XPE R IE NCE
World’s fastest roller coaster Ever wondered how fast the world’s fastest roller coaster goes? Precisely 240 kilometres per hour. That’s fast enough to put an enormous smile on your face. The best news is that this high-speed attraction is right here in Abu Dhabi. Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is home to Formula Rossa – the F1-inspired roller coaster that has thrilled the likes of Ferrari drivers Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa as well as thousands of other speedsters since its November 2010 opening. Wearing safety goggles, passengers experience up to 4.8Gs as the coaster is launched using the same equipment that propels fighter planes off aircraft carriers. The two-kilometre track reaches heights of 52 metres affording unrivalled views of Yas Island for those brave enough to open their eyes. Formula Rossa may be the star attraction at this indoor theme park but there are 19 other Ferrari-themed rides catering to all ages. Why not try the F1 simulators and race your friends around Yas Marina Circuit? Where: Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Yas Island When: Tue to Sun 11am to 8pm How much: Over 1.3 metres tall AED235, under 1.3 metres AED195. Premium admission tickets available Contact: 02 4968001 / Visit: ferrariworldabudhabi.com
Formula Rossa is the the F1-inspired roller coaster that has thrilled the likes of Ferrari drivers Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa as well as thousands of other speedsters since its November 2010 opening Flight simulator It’s not every day that you get to take the controls of a Boeing 747-400, but in Abu Dhabi anything is possible. Mutahida Simulators at Al Forsan International Sports Resort offers visitors the chance to get a feel for flying a jumbo jet without leaving the ground. The simulator mirrors 747-400 cockpit specifications for authenticity and budding pilots can even set their own flight paths, choosing between any two airports and more than 200 destinations. The process is monitored and managed by 10 state-of-the-art computers. Those looking to perfect their flying skills have the option of practising only take-off and landings and can adjust the length of their flights to suit. Best of all, no experience is necessary and flights are suitable for those aged 12 and above. Where: Al Forsan International Sports Resort, Khalifa City When: Wed to Mon 10am to 7pm (5pm on Thu), Fri 2 to 7pm How much: From AED350 per hour Contact: 02 5568555 / Visit: mutahida.com
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Shop Salvatore Fer ragamo
Bold and bright, the Spring/Summer 2013 collection by Salvatore Ferragamo brings the summer wardrobe to life with a vivid colour palette that takes in every shade of the rainbow. This is pop art fashion at its very best with dynamic looks that make a strong statement this season. Where: Avenue at Etihad Towers. Contact: 02 6655481
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Fashion capital Abu Dhabi is evolving into a shopper’s paradise with new malls opening up across the city Words by
Charlot t e Van de n Broucq ue
Abu Dhabi is fast becoming the shopping destination of choice for discerning consumers in the UAE. Over the coming months a raft of new malls will open their doors, bringing hitherto unrepresented brands to the capital alongside a huge variety of designer and high-street stores. Avenue at Etihad Towers, the capital’s first dedicated luxury mall, unveiled its exclusive collection of designer stores last year, bringing with it a number of debut brands to the UAE capital. Before long it will be joined by: Deerfields Townsquare Shopping Centre, offering a family-friendly retail experience; The Galleria at Sowwah Square, with its attractive mix of luxury to mid-market international brands; and The Mall at The World Trade Centre, which is set right in the heart of Abu Dhabi by the Corniche. Elsewhere, visitors can take a stroll around Boutik Sun & Sky shopping centre, which offers a wealth of opportunity for shoppers alongside numerous dining options. There’s also the upcoming Yas Mall, which will provide 296,000 square metres of retail space on the capital’s entertainment hub, Yas Island and The Collection on Saadiyat, the first retail complex on the new Saadiyat Island, where the capital’s cultural district is being created. To help you navigate the wealth of retail venues in Abu Dhabi, Concierge has created a guide to the capital’s newest shopping destinations.
L UX URY MA L L S / S HOP
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Avenue at Etihad Towers The ultimate in luxurious, intimate shopping experiences Avenue at Etihad Towers opened its doors in 2012, much to the joy of fashion-conscious shoppers in the capital. At just under 14,000 square metres, it may not boast the huge dimensions of many other malls in the emirate, but it does lay claim to exclusive status as the only dedicated luxury shopping venue in Abu Dhabi. “Avenue at Etihad Towers is the first of its kind in the UAE capital – a standalone luxury shopping destination in the heart of Abu Dhabi that caters to the tastes of both ladies and gentlemen, bringing luxury brands to the discerning shopper in an exclusive environment,” says Richard Foulds, head of property management at Etihad Towers. Tom Ford, Hermès, Givenchy, Chloé, Salvatore Ferragamo and Giuseppe Zanotti as well as luxury watch brands Breguet, A. Lange & Söhne and Roger Dubuis are among the high-end brands that have chosen Avenue at Etihad Towers for their debut appearances in Abu Dhabi. Shoppers can also take advantage of the mall’s connection to the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers hotel, which boasts a broad range of fine-dining and leisure facilities.
1 Avenue at Etihad Towers (previous page) 2 Avenue at Etihad Towers 3 Chloé, S/S ’13 4 Versace, S/S ’13 5 Louis Vuitton, S/S ’13 6 Yas Mall
Where: Ras Al Akhdar, Corniche, Abu Dhabi When: Open Sat to Thu 10am to 11pm, Fri 3 to 11pm Contact: 02 6133337 / Visit: avenueatetihadtowers.com 4
“Avenue at Etihad Towers is the first of its kind in the UAE capital – a standalone luxury shopping destination in the heart of Abu Dhabi that caters to the tastes of both ladies and gentlemen, bringing luxury brands to the discerning shopper in an exclusive environment” Yas Mall Providing Abu Dhabi with its very own mega-mall, the new Yas Island shopping complex will feature 700 stores spread over an incredible 235,000 square metres of prime Yas Island real estate. Connections to some of the entertainment hub’s world-famous attractions, including Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Yas Marina Circuit and Yas Waterworld will add to the appeal of the new mall when it opens in 2014. Inside, shoppers will find more entertainment with a 14-screen Grand Cinema and a wide variety of food and beverage outlets. A central plaza will feature fountains, greenery and a glass roof, creating a sense of space and light. “Yas Mall has been designed as a series of neighbourhoods to create a sense of pedestrian scale, combined with the look, feel and detail of the world’s most exciting shopping streets and civic spaces,” says Jonathan Brown, retail development manager of Aldar Properties. 6
Where: Yas Island / Visit: aldar.com
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The Galleria at Sowwah Square Due to open next month The Galleria at Sowwah Square is located within a dynamic new urban development that combines world-class hotels including Rosewood Abu Dhabi and Four Seasons Abu Dhabi with other facilities such as world-class medical care in the nearby Cleveland Clinic. “The Galleria runs alongside a stunning waterfront promenade and is set to become Abu Dhabi’s leading luxury retail destination to shop, dine and unwind,” says Kenneth A Himmel, co-managing partner of developer Gulf Related. With 145 outlets spread over 33,000 square metres, the precinct will boast an exciting list of luxury to midmarket international and speciality retailers including over 25 dining options. Many of the restaurants and cafés are located along the impressive waterfront,which will become a social and dining hub in the capital. Where: Al Maryah Island / Visit: sowwahsquare.ae
7 Bulgari, S/S ’13 8 The Galleria at Sowwah Square 9 The Mall at World Trade Centre 10 Missoni, S/S ’13 11 DKNY Spring ‘13
The Mall at World Trade Centre Located in the heart of Abu Dhabi on the site of the old Central Market, The Mall at World Trade Centre is part of the revival of this historic district. For 30 years, this was the retail hub of the city and thousands of traders would gather here to exchange goods during the initial boom period in the 1970s. Now the site is home to the World Trade Centre Abu Dhabi, The Souk, The Residences, The Courtyard Marriott and, of course, The Mall. In a UAE and worldwide first, the anchor tenant will be upmarket department store, House of Fraser. The British brand’s only outlet outside the UK and Ireland will feature a broad range of luxury goods, from designer fashion and jewellery to high-end accessories and cosmetics. Where: Airport Road at Khalifa Street
When: Open Sun to Thu 10am to 10pm, Fri to Sat 10am to 11pm Contact: 02 8107814 / Visit: aldar.com
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Deerfields Townsquare Shopping Centre Conceived with the community in mind Deerfields Townsquare Shopping Centre has been designed to provide a bustling environment that combines shopping with entertainment and dining. A market study conducted prior to the mall’s construction provided planners with a community ‘wish list’ with regard to the shopping experience and retail mix that the new mall would offer. The result is a family destination boasting over 180 retail stores and a broad range of entertainment options, including cinemas and a huge fun zone for children in addition to numerous casual dining options and a food court. The mall will also be home to the capital’s first Sino World – the high-end Asian department store. Located on the motorway between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Deerfields Townsquare is easily accessible and offers 3,000 parking spots for visitors. Over 400,000 cars will pass the mall every week and much of the expected 12.5 million foot fall for the first year will stem from passers-by as well as residents and visitors to Abu Dhabi. In the cooler months, shoppers can enjoy the outdoor seating options on the
garden level, where various food outlets offer al fresco dining. The grand launch is set for the end of the year but phase one of the development is already up and running with more to be unveiled during the summer months. Where: Al Bahia on the E10 motorway When: Open Sun to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu to Sat 10am to midnight Contact: 02 5645501 / Visit: deerfieldstownsquare.com
What sets Boutik apart from other retail options in the market is the variety of offerings within the brand, including an inspired selection of cafés and restaurants, a dedicated area for exclusive lifestyle events, and a host of amenities and shopping spaces
Boutik Sun & Sky Part of the Sun & Sky Towers development on Shams Abu Dhabi, Boutik Sun & Sky shopping centre opened its doors in July 2012, bringing the first community retail centre to Reem Island. The destination offers over 50 shopping outlets and numerous dining venues to the 45,000 residents of Shams as well as the wider Abu Dhabi district. “What sets Boutik apart from other retail options in the market is the variety of offerings within the brand, including an inspired selection of cafés and restaurants, a dedicated area for exclusive lifestyle events and a host of amenities and shopping spaces that have been specifically designed around its community’s needs,” says Gurjit Singh, CEO of Sorouh Real Estate, adding that “it provides convenient, customer-friendly places that matter to the communities they serve”. Where: Sun & Sky Towers, Shams Abu Dhabi, Al Reem Island When: Open Sun to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu 10am to 11pm Contact: 02 6747850
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The Collection, The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort A small yet exclusive collection of outlets and restaurants await those visiting the St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort located in one of Abu Dhabi’s most desirable addresses. The new venue, which is adjacent to the hotel will bring a touch of European flavour to the island’s attractions, says Angus Woodhead, director of retail development at Tourism Development & Investment Company, explaining that the design resembles “a courtyard featuring architecture inspired by old-world Mediterranean villages with terraces, courtyards and piazzas”. In a Middle Eastern first, Los Angeles-based Japanese restaurant Koi joins a throng of sophisticated tenants opening up here, including dining concept Caramel (which is making its first appearance in the capital) and trendy Beirut night spot, People by Crystal. Opening in stages throughout the summer, The Collection is located conveniently close to a host of attractions that are securing Saadiyat Island’s reputation as a luxury leisure hot spot, including the region’s first championship beachfront golf course, Saadiyat Beach Golf Club and the first ever Monte-Carlo Beach Club outside Monaco, Monte-Carlo Beach Club, Saadiyat. Where: Saadiyat Island Abu Dhabi When: Opening hours: 10am to 10pm Visit: the collection.ae
Eastern Mangroves Promenade Located next to the luxurious Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara, the souq-style avenue runs alongside the sea and boasts a picture-perfect setting for those who want to combine shopping with sightseeing. “Eastern Mangroves Promenade offers breathtaking views of the lush green mangroves that thrive here while an impressive Abu Dhabi skyline panoramically frames the background,” says Angus Woodhead, director of retail development at Tourism Development & Investment Company. It will be joined by seven restaurants, which are opening up in a purpose-designed space next to the columned walkway, including Boa Steakhouse and popular seafood eatery Flooka. Where: Eastern Mangroves Promenade, Sheikh Zayed Street, Abu Dhabi When: 10am to 10pm Visit: easternmangrovespromenade.ae
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New beginnings This year marks a major milestone for Jaeger-LeCoultre as the legendary Swiss watchmaker celebrates its 180th anniversary
The year is 1833 and a gifted artisan toils in a small Swiss workshop dedicating each day to mastering the art of fine timepiece design. Entirely self-taught, the discipline and vision of this talented craftsman sees him forge ahead in the world of watchmaking to create a company that is truly ahead of its time. Antoine LeCoultre learnt metallurgy in his familyâ€™s forge and, with his father, invented new alloys and vibrating blades in music boxes, all the while edging closer to what he called his original plan â€“ gathering the skills to make a complete watch movement. A gifted inventor, he created the Millionometer in 1844, the first instrument able to measure the micron, one-millionth of a metre or one-thousandth of a millimetre. In 1847, his pivoting winding device was the first system for winding the watch and setting its time without the use of a key. LeCoultreâ€™s drive and ambition earned a succession of firsts in the field followed by hundreds of global patents for the company he set up.
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LeCoultre’s small workshop in the village of Le Sentier in the Vallée de Joux grew so fast it became known locally as the Grande Maison. In 1888, seven years after Antoine’s death, records show LeCoultre’s son Elie carrying on his father’s pioneering work with around 500 watchmakers and technicians at the maison. Typically, at this time, watch manufacture had been dispersed among hundreds of artisans spread across different areas, but Antoine and Elie had brought the entire process under a single roof. The result was an extraordinary pool of watchmaking
talent working together for the first time. The development of this Grande Maison brought with it incredible results. From the 1890s onwards, what became the Jaeger-LeCoultre Manufacture began producing a series of Grandes Complications. These were extremely intricate timepieces that were to become the hallmark of this dynamic company. Comprising three major horological complications, the manufacture successfully produced a perpetual calendar mechanism to display the date, a chronograph boasting both timekeeping and stopwatch capabilities and an ingenious minute repeater to audibly chime each minute. In 1903, an interesting challenge presented itself. Paris-based Edmond Jaeger charged Swiss manufacturers with the task of producing the ultra-thin watch movements he had invented. Antoine’s grandson, Jacques-David LeCoultre, responded and, in doing so, a world-famous partnership with Edmond Jaeger was born. The pair collaborated on one of the first collections of ultra-thin watches that included the thinnest watch in the world. Building on the decades of success that followed, the Jaeger-LeCoultre brand was formed in 1937. Over the past 180 years, Jaeger-LeCoultre has created and produced over 1,200 different calibres and filed more than 400 patents. Legendary watches have
1 Enamelling work (previous page) 2 Atmos Clock 1928 3 Jérôme Lambert 4 Jaeger-LeCoultre boutique in Paris
Legendary watches have made their mark on watchmaking history including the Reverso, Memovox and Atmos clock, while the Calibre 101 in 1929 remains the world’s smallest mechanical watch movement
made their mark on watchmaking history including the Reverso, Duoplan, Memovox and Atmos clock, while the Calibre 101 in 1929 remains the world’s smallest mechanical watch movement. “One of the defining characteristics of Jaeger-LeCoultre is the manufacture, a concept that Antoine LeCoultre created,” says Jaeger-LeCoultre CEO Jérôme Lambert. “The brand keeps its core integrity by maintaining the number of patents it records and the number of movements it develops. All that production is still under one roof at the Vallée de Joux in Switzerland. In the Master Grande Tradition Gyrotourbillon 3, which is part of the jubilee collection, there are more than 3,900 operations on the watch itself, which shows the level of craftsmanship and we started work on it four years ago.” “Another defining characteristic of Jaeger-LeCoultre is inventiveness,” continues Lambert. “This is linked to the fact that our founder was an inventor himself and we have a mix of different craftsmanship
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styles under one roof, which definitely creates something different. When you take the time to discover the details of the watches, the quality of the decoration and the craftsmanship inside, you definitely enjoy them more,” says Lambert. The firm has created the special jubilee collection as a tribute to the founder. “We wanted a sense of our founder within the watch, in tribute to Antoine, bridging the traditional and the contemporary,” says Lambert. “Through Antoine LeCoultre’s first concept of manufacture, we have created a business model and a way of organising fine watchmaking that is still the master of the craft in Switzerland today. This original idea has allowed us to really develop fine timepiece design while being resilient through all that has happened down the decades,” he adds. Looking to the future of the iconic brand, Lambert, who joined the firm in 1997, says: “We want to continue to respond to the needs of fine watchmaking around the world and it is also very important for us to continue to create a real proximity with the community in which we are developing our brand. “We will be back as partners at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival this year which is very important to us as we want to be more and more present in the world of cinema, connecting with communities.”
These days, an expert team of 1,800 people works within the manufacture in Switzerland where the rooftops have multiplied to become a sprawling complex. Here, artisans hone their craft following in the footsteps of Antoine LeCoultre himself. The innovations continue and, since 2000, the manufacture has created 75 new calibres, including grandes complications, tourbillons, minute repeaters, chronographs and perpetual calendars. From complicated models to high-jewellery creations, LeCoultre’s extraordinary legacy ensures the company he founded not only prospered for well over a century, but continues to lead the way in international haute horology.
5 Gyrotourbillon 3 Jubilee 6 Enamelling 7 Edmond Jaeger 8 Antoine LeCoultre
Duoplan Created in 1925, this watch responded to the fashion of the time for extremely small wrist watches. Its genius was that the timepiece retained reliability often lost in the miniature models of the day. Duoplan’s movement was built on two levels to improve functionality. The watch was also one of the first gem-set steel watches ever made, making it an extremely desirable piece.
Presented in 1928, the first prototype of the Atmos clock caused a considerable stir among the world’s media as it appeared to achieve perpetual motion. It was the skill of Jaeger-LeCoultre watchmakers that successfully turned this invention from prototype to clock. The Atmos draws its energy from the smallest changes in temperature. A one-degree fluctuation is enough to drive it for two days and it consumes 60 million times less energy than a 15-watt electric light bulb. Its stunning design means is as impressive today as it was 85 years ago.
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Hommage à Antoine LeCoultre Collection In tribute to the brilliance of its founder, this selection features a collection of three watches. The Master Grande Tradition Gyrotourbillon 3 Jubilee boasts a flying tourbillon which is a special type of construction that removes the bridge allowing an unobstructed view of the spinning tourbillon mechanism. Meanwhile, the aluminium carriage of the Gyrotourbillon has undergone a surface treatment that enhances its ability to reflect light. The Master Grande Tradition Tourbillon Cylindrique à Quantième Perpétuel Jubilee has a new automatic winding mechanical movement, Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 985.
9 Jaeger-LeCoultre archives 10 Millionometer 11 Gem setting work 12 Art Deco design, Joaillerie 1011938
This sees the tourbillon equipped with a cylindrical balance-spring. A new extrawhite platinum case draws inspiration from the classic pocket watch style. An array of design details reflect the same theme with hour markers, a traditional minute circle and a silver-toned grained dial finish. Finally, the Master Ultra Thin Jubilee is the thinnest mechanical manual winding watch in the world. At just 4.05 millimetres thick, it sets a new record. Its ultra-thin case, in extra-white platinum, measures just 39 millimetres in diameter. In a nod to the 180 th anniversary of the manufacture, the date 1833 is placed beneath the logo as a special commemorative touch.
The Master Ultra Thin Jubilee is the thinnest mechanical manual winding watch in the world. At just 4.05 millimetres thick, it sets a new record. Its ultra-thin case measures just 39 millimetres in diameter
Calibre 101 Timeline
In 1929, Calibre 101 set a new record as the world’s smallest mechanical watch movement. At 14 millimetres long, 4.8 millimetres wide and 3.4 millimetres thick, Calibre 101 still holds the record as the smallest mechanical watch movement ever made. Once assembled and hand-finished, its 74 initial constituent parts weigh barely one gram.
Reverso A key date in Jaeger-LeCoultre history is 1931 which marked the birth of the Reverso watch. During a trip to India a distributor of JaegerLeCoultre watches was challenged by polo enthusiasts to create a watch capable of withstanding hard knocks sustained during the game. The idea was taken to Jacques-David LeCoultre and this heralded the birth of the Reverso. The name, inspired by the Latin phrase ‘I turn around’, gives a hint to its ingenious design. In one quick motion, the wearer can swivel the case in its carrier to protect the watch glass. The Reverso was an instant success.
1730 LeCoultre forge is established 1833 Founding of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Manufacture by Antoine LeCoultre 1844 Invention of the Millionometer 1847 Invention of the pivoting winding mechanism
1858 Elie LeCoultre helps his father Antoine 1866 A new building:
LeCoultre becomes the first manufacture in the Vallée de Joux 1890 The first grande complication models 1903 Jacques-David LeCoultre meets Edmond Jaeger 1937 Official birth of the Jaeger-LeCoultre brand 2007 Opening of the Heritage Gallery 2013 Jaeger-LeCoultre celebrates its 180 th anniversary
Memovox With a name literally meaning ‘voice of memory’, this practical yet stylish watch came with an alarm to help the owner keep track of daily life, such as key appointments or timetables. In 1956, the Memovox line was enhanced by a world-first model, driven by the Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 815 and combining the alarm function with automatic winding. Three years later, this calibre equipped the Memovox Deep Sea, which was the first diver’s automatic alarm watch.
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Taste Flavours of t he Far East
The black cod at newly opened Li Jiang adds fresh meaning to the term ‘melt in your mouth’. Honey-glazed skin gives way to the wonderfully soft and succulent fish beneath, offset by a crispy salad and juicy asparagus spears. It’s no surprise that this dish is already proving to be one of the most sought-after on the menu at this new gastronomic hot spot. Where: Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal. Contact: 02 8188888
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Taste of tradition By day, Ramadan is a time of abstinence, but when the sun sets and the iftar canon sounds, restaurants across the capital throw open their doors to feasts of Arabian cuisine and culture
As the last hour of daylight fades away, restaurants across Abu Dhabi go into overdrive. With shorter working hours and daily fasting Ramadan is a period of comparative calm for most but to the capitalâ€™s chefs, it is one of the busiest times of year. Every day they prepare a vast iftar feast, complete with all the local favourites, from Arabic mezze and salads to platter after platter of grilled meats, fish and vegetables and, of course, at least one table piled high with rich Arabian desserts. For visitors, this is one of the most enlightening times to visit the UAE capital, when cuisine and culture come together in a vivid tapestry of local life and offer a taste of Emirati values, traditions and, of course, food. Known as the holy month, Ramadan ushers in a change of routine every year for Abu Dhabi residents as Muslims observe the fifth pillar of Islam by fasting from dawn until dusk. Non-Muslims, while not expected to fast, are required to refrain from eating and drinking (as well as chewing gum and smoking) in public places, though some join in the spirit of the season by fasting for part or all of Ramadan. Those who do so will find the evening iftar feast, when Muslims break their fast, all the more rewarding, both in terms of tapping into the local culture and filling an empty stomach with delicious Arabian fare. With countless restaurants across the capital offering a fast-breaking feast throughout Ramadan, diners are spoilt for choice so Concierge has rounded up a selection of our favourite iftars over the following pages.
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I FT A R/ T A S T E
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Get into the spirit of Ramadan at this lively restaurant where a wide selection of seasonal specialities are complemented by live cooking stations offering international and Arabian fare. Where: Centro Capital Centre How much: AED75 per person / Contact: 02 4096666
Rosewater The captivating setting overlooking the beach and swimming pool makes Rosewater one of the most atmospheric venues to dine after sunset. A sumptuous Arabian feast with mixed grills, fresh seafood and fragrant Ramadan juices completes the picture. Where: Jumeirah at Etihad Towers How much: AED185 per person / Contact: 02 8115555
Layali Al Baraka
Contact: 02 8115555
inspired by cuisines around the world are also available to tempt the palate. The ouzi here is to die for and the dessert station, which is loaded with a cosmopolitan array of sweet treats from mango trifles and mini cheese cakes to Halawet al Jibn (A Lebanese dessert based on sweetened cheese) and trays of sticky Baklava (Arabic sweets made of pastry, honey and nuts) is not to be missed.
Where: Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara
Feast on traditional Arabian fare prepared to perfection at this lavish iftar spread, where a selection of equally tasty dishes
How much: AED175 for adults and AED100 for
Embrace the spirit of the season in this festive setting where a lavish Arabian spread, complete with live cooking stations is accompanied by traditional entertainment, including a live oud player. Where: Jumeirah at Etihad Towers How much: AED185 per person
1 Selections, InterContinental Abu Dhabi (previous page) 2&3 C-taste, Centro Capital Centre 4, 5 & 6 Layali Al Baraka, Jumeirah at Etihad Towers
children under 12 years of age Contact: 02 6561000
Five-star cuisine is supplied by Mezlai, the Emirati restaurant at Emirates Palace and executive chef, Sandro Gamba has paid special attention to sourcing as many local ingredients as possible to enhance the authenticity of the dishes 6
I FT A R/ T A S T E
Traditional Arabian hospitality is firmly rooted in the sharing of food with friends and welcoming guests to the table as diners at the Khaymetna Ramadan tent discover. Friendly staff, tasty local fare and traditional entertainment make this a great choice for those who want to combine Emirati culture and cuisine. Where: Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana How much: AED185 per person / Contact: 02 6570187
Emirates Palace A Ramadan feast to remember will be laid on every night at Emirates Palace where the largest custom-build pavilion in the UAE has been erected in honour of the occasion. Inside the palatial pavilion is seating for 1,200 diners, including four private majlises and a separate lounge area. Five-star cuisine is supplied by Mezlai, the hotelâ€™s Emirati restaurant and executive chef, Sandro Gamba has paid special attention to sourcing as many local ingredients as possible to enhance the authenticity of the dishes. Where: Emirates Palace How much: AED249 per person / Contact: 02 6907999
Corniche All Day Dining The sheer volume of food at this indulgent iftar is more than matched by the quality of the dishes on offer. The combination of French and Arabian fare takes the highlights of both cuisines to create a truly indulgent feast that will fill diners up for the whole next day whether they are fasting or not. After the meal, head over to the Layali El Corniche Ramadan tent to lounge on
comfortable majlis cushions, smoke shisha and sip refreshing mint tea to the sounds of live oud music. Where: Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche How much: AED165 per person / Contact: 02 8137777
Flavours Pile your plate high with succulent grilled meats, spiced vegetables, creamy Arabic dips and much, much more at this generous spread where tables groan under the weight of mouth-watering dishes featuring local and international cuisines. Afterwards, relax and digest at Bravo Spanish Tapas Restaurant which will be transformed into a Sohour tent for Ramadan, complete with snacks, beverages, traditional games, Arabic television shows and shisha. Where: Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort. How much: AED180 per person / Contact: 02 6773333
7 & 8 Mezlai, Emirates Palace 9 & 10 Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche
Olea A Mediterranean-inspired buffet offers diners a slightly different take on traditional iftar cuisine at Olea, combining the sun-drenched flavours of the Italian coastline with the best Arabian fare. Where: The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort How much: AED185 per person / Contact: 02 4988008
Ayla Restaurant This all-you-can-eat buffet is packed with Arabic culinary delights, including a dessert station featuring a wide selection of tasty Baklava (Arabic sweets) and traditional Ramadan juices. Where: Ayla Hotel, Al Ain / How much: AED95 per person, children under six eat for free / Contact: 03 7610111
T A ST E/IFTA R
The Yas Viceroy’s award-winning Arabic restaurant has teamed up with Yas Marina Circuit to provide a corporate iftar opportunity for groups of up to 600 guests. Diners can indulge in a feast of Arabian cuisine prepared by the restaurant’s chefs and served overlooking the race track at the stylish Luna Lounge. Alternatively, dine in an air-conditioned tent on the restaurant’s terrace, where music from the live oud player and readings from Arabian Nights set the scene for a traditional Middle Eastern feast. Where: Yas Viceroy / How much: AED175 per person Contact: 02 6560733
Le Jardin Arabian specialities will be served every night for iftar throughout the Holy Month and guests can continue the evening after dinner with shisha and a wide selection of digestion-aiding herbal teas at the poolside Pergola Café, where an à la carte suhoor menu is also available.
Diners can indulge in a feast of Arabian cuisine served overlooking the race track at the stylish Luna Lounge 11 & 12 Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche 13 & 14 Selections, InterContinental Abu Dhabi
Where: Mercure Centre Hotel How much: AED95 per person / Contact: 02 6333555
Selections Assymetri A special rate of AED99 per person is available for group iftar bookings of 40 guests or more making this the ideal place to host business and private functions throughout the Holy Month. Smaller parties and couples can also take advantage of a lavish daily iftar buffet at the restaurant, which looks out over the Yas Links golf course.
One to satisfy all tastes, the iftar at Selections features cuisines from around the world alongside favourites from the Arabian table, including grilled meats and hearty soups. Later on, diners can move on to the suhour tent and take part in the nightly quizzes and raffles or simply lean back on the cushions and digest while enjoying views of the marina.
Where: Radisson Blu Hotel, Abu Dhabi Yas Island.
Where: InterContinental Abu Dhabi
How much: AED145 per person / Contact: 02 5013114
How much: AED175 per person / Contact: 02 6666888
F l av o u r o f A r a b i a
The pièce de résistance at iftar is the ouzi, a mouth-watering dish featuring a whole roasted lamb served on a bed of fragrant rice, enriched with spices, herbs and nuts. A local speciality, this timehonoured dish was traditionally cooked for several hours in a charcoal-filled pit dug out of the desert. Today, the magic is recreated in huge, modern combination ovens and each master chef has his or her particular way of getting the best flavours out of the meat. One trade secret holds that a combination of highgrade black pepper and cinnamon rubbed into the lamb is the key to a perfect ouzi, while some chefs swear by a mixture of dried lemon, powdered spices and sea salt applied from the inside out with lashings of butter to moisten the meat.
Your five-star concierge is now available online at www.conciergeabudhabi.com
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What s on at Manarat Al Saadiyat Visit Manarat Al Saadiyat, at the heart of the Saadiyat Cultural District, Abu Dhabi, to discover art and educational exhibitions, art talks, music and theatrical performances, Artscape interactive events and hands-on workshops for all ages.
July Programme Exhibitions
Birth of a Museum until 20 July Eco Future The Saadiyat Story
1 July 17:30 Louvre Abu Dhabi: Talking Art Series Family Workshop
8 July 13:00 Birth of a Museum Family Workshop: An Artful Afternoon Tea
2 July 17:30 Louvre Abu Dhabi: Talking Art Series Family Workshop
10 July 11:00 Birth of a Museum Childrenâ€™s Workshop: Creatures Great and Small
3 July 17:00 Birth of a Museum Adult Workshop: Artistic Sketching Techniques
10 July 11:00 Birth of a Museum Teen Workshop: Photographing Art
6 July 14:00 Eco Future Workshop: Handmade Eco Paper
20 July 11:00 Birth of a Museum Teen Workshop: Artistic Sketching Techniques
6 July 14:00 Birth of a Museum Adult Workshop: Moving Forms
20 July 11:00 Birth of a Museum Adult Workshop: Metal Etching
Manarat Al Saadiyat is open daily 09:00 to 20:00 and entry is free. Some activities and exhibitions incur an entrance fee. Workshops and talks require prior registration, call +971 2 657 5800, email email@example.com, or visit saadiyatculturaldistrict.ae to register. Opening hours will change during Ramadan, programme is subject to change, visit saadiyatculturaldistrict.ae or call +971 2 657 5800 for information. @SaadiyatCD
Saadiyat Cultural District
6/17/13 4:42 PM
The guide discover / experience / shop / taste
art galleries / museums and cultural sites tours / family activities / adventure golf / sports / malls / souks hotel outlets and promotions
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Proud of its culture and history, Abu Dhabi has focused efforts on preserving its identity through galleries and museums
QIBAB ART GALLERY
EMIRATES NATIONAL AUTO MUSEUM
Timings: Daily 10am to 1pm and
A diverse collection of more than 200 classic vehicles owned by Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Hamad bin Hamdan Al Nahyan.
Specialises in Iraqi art, but also shows work from international, regional and local artists. Villa 3, Street 15 in Al Zaab area. 5 to 8pm
SALWA ZEIDAN GALLERY
Abu Dhabi CULTURAL FOUNDATION
Hosts photography and art exhibitions throughout the year, as well as concerts and screenings of international films.
Timings: Sun to Thu 8am to 3pm, Fri 5 to 8pm, Sat 9am to noon and 5 to 8pm FOLKLORE GALLERY
Offers art, craft and gift items from the Arab world along with prints and paintings inspired by the UAE landscape. Zayed the First Street, Khalidiyah.
Timings: Sat to Thu 9am to 10pm GHAF ART GALLERY
Aims to be the main address for international and Middle Eastern contemporary and emerging artists. Villa 256, Khaleej Al Arabi Street, Khalidiyah.
The gallery shows original art from locally based artists. Hemisphere also organises exhibitions and events. Located next to the Russian Embassy.
Timings: Sat to Thu 9.30am
to 12.45pm and 3 to 9pm
Timings: Sun to Thu 10am to 7pm. To set up a private viewing contact: 02 6669656
Timings: Sat to Thu 9am to 5pm, Fri 3.30 to 9pm Guide price: Free
AL QATTARA ARTS CENTER
Housed in a historic fort in Al Ain’s Al Qattara Oasis, this centre specialises in local and Arab art as well as UAE heritage and culture.
Timings: Sat to Thu 9am to 8pm
Museums and cultural sites
MANARAT AL SAADIYAT
02 6575800, saadiyat.ae
This visitor centre on Saadiyat Island houses international exhibitions with four galleries, a theatre, events' space and Fanr restaurant.
Timings: Daily 10am to 8pm
Al Ain AL JAHILI FORT
One of the largest forts in the UAE, Al Jahili Fort was built by Sheikh Zayed the First between 1891 and 1898 and used as a royal summer residence.
Timings: Sat to Thu 10am to 9pm
Timings: Daily 9am to 6pm (closed for lunch) Guide price: AED50
This tourist site on the Breakwater near Marina Mall is a recreation of Bedouin life with a museum of original artefacts and photographs and a small souk for souvenirs.
Ghaf is the oldest art gallery in the capital and features work by artists in Abu Dhabi and around the world. Khaleej Al Arabi Street, Khalidiyah.
HEMISPHERE DESIGN STUDIO & GALLERY
02 6676999, 050 8293952, enam.ae
Abu Dhabi AL HOSN PALACE (WHITE FORT)
Built in 1793, Al Hosn Palace was the official home of the rulers of Abu Dhabi. It is currently under renovation.
Timings: Daily 9am to 5pm, Fri 3 to 5pm. Closed Mondays Guide price: Free AL AIN NATIONAL MUSEUM
This museum illustrates the UAE's distant past as well as recent history through archaeological and ethnographical sections.
Timings: Sat to Thu 8.30am to 7.30pm, Fri 3 to 7.30pm. Closed Mondays Guide price: AED3 adults, AED1 children under 10 years SHEIKH ZAYED PALACE MUSEUM
1. Camel trekking in the desert 2. Al Ain Oasis 3. Corniche Skyline from Heritage Village 4&5. Manarat Al Saadiyat
Originally a palace for the Al Nahyan family, it is now a museum that chronicles the lifestyle of the ruling family.
Timings: Sat to Thu 8.30am to 7.30pm, Fri 3 to 7pm. Closed Mondays Guide price: Free
HISTORIC BUILDINGS Sightseers are spoilt for choice as Abu Dhabi is peppered with historic landmarks. Make sure you pay a visit to Qasr Al Hosn Fort, constructed in the 18th century and symbolising the development of the emirate and its rulers. Al Jahili Fort in Al Ain is also well worth a visit. It houses a permanent exhibition devoted to the explorer and traveller Mubarak bin London (Wilfred Thesiger) who crossed the Empty Quarter twice in the 1940s, as well as a temporary exhibition space, a shop and a café.
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Al Gharbia CHRISTIAN MONASTERY
Explore the remains of a Christian monastery which is believed to have been founded in the late 6th century CE on Sir Bani Yas Island. The guided tour takes one hour.
Timings: Daily at 7, 9 and 11am, 2 and 4pm Guide price: AED250
T HE GUI D E / Dis cove r
SHEIKH ZAYED GRAND MOSQUE
800 555 or szgmc.ae
One of the largest mosques in the world, this place of worship is open to non-Muslims.
Timings: Open 9am to 10pm (except Friday mornings). See boxout at right for free tour times Guide price: Free
FALCON AVIATION SERVICES
For a completely different view of Abu Dhabi, board a helicopter and see the city's major landmarks from above.
Al Dhafra’s dhows can take up to 60 people. Sail to nearby islands or simply along the Corniche.
Timings: Boarding 8.30pm, cruise from 9 to 11pm Guide price: AED180 per hour for large dhows, AED150 per hour for small dhow, private hire starting at AED600 per hour
Guide price: AED1,250 per
person for a 30-minute city tour
HILTONIA BEACH CLUB
AL MASAOOD TRAVEL
Take a sightseeing cruise along the Corniche, around Abu Dhabi island or enjoy a dinner cruise.
Explore Abu Dhabi’s rich Arabic culture and modern architecture on this fivehour city tour that takes in all the major sites.
Guide price: Sightseeing cruise along Corniche from AED250 for half an hour (five people or less). Cruise around Abu Dhabi AED750 for two hours(five people or less). Dinner cruise AED300
Guide price: From AED150 for adults and AED100 for children ARABIAN ADVENTURES
Take in the Grand Mosque, Cultural Foundation, souks, Corniche and Heritage Village before driving past the presidential palace area and Emirates Palace.
Timings: Monday and
Wednesday mornings Guide price: Adults AED160, children AED80 BIG BUS COMPANY
See Abu Dhabi's major attractions on an open-top double-decker bus at your own pace, hopping on and off where you like. Commentary is available in eight languages.
Timings: 9am to 5pm. Ticket valid 24 hours Guide price: Adults AED200, children AED100, family (two adults, two children) AED500 Emirates Adventures
Experience Abu Dhabi's unique culture by visiting Heritage Village, the dates market, Gold Centre and Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque on the half-day city tour.
Timings: Daily 9am to 1pm Guide price: AED180,
children AED120 NET TOURS
Visit Al Hosn Palace, haggle over carpets, admire the Corniche and skyline, learn about local culture at Heritage Village and visit the Grand Mosque.
Timings: Daily 9am to 1.30pm Guide price: Adults
AED150, children AED100
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Al Ain National Museum The oldest museum in the UAE, Al Ain National Museum has displays dating from the Stone Age to the country’s preoil era with photography exhibits as well as jewellery, tools, pottery and other artefacts. Cultural Foundation Located in the grounds of the Old Fort, the Cultural Foundation hosts year-round exhibitions of painting, sculpture, photography, pottery and Arabic calligraphy. Heritage Village A must-see destination for traditional Emirati handicrafts, the Heritage Village features reconstructions of Bedouin tents, old fishing villages and traditional markets. Sheikh Zayed Palace Museum Built in 1937, the palace of the late Sheikh Zayed was converted to a museum and opened in 2001. Visitors won’t find a large collection of photographs or exhibits because Sheikh Zayed wanted the royal palace and residence to be a true reflection of his country’s culture prior to the discovery of oil.
050 8009495 or seacruiser.ae
Cruise along the Abu Dhabi Corniche before stopping for diving, snorkelling, fishing and other water activities.
Guide price: Adults AED120, children AED75 SHERATON ABU DHABI
History in the making The earliest known habitation in this part of the world dates back as far as 5500 BCE. However, it was in 1971, when Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi's ruler from 1966 to 2004, and Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai from 1958 to 1990, set the wheels in motion with their neighbouring sheikhdoms, Sharjah, Umm Al Quwain, Fujairah and Ajman (Ras Al Khaimah joined in 1972) to form an alliance. Prior to this, the seven emirates had lived in relative harmony, united through a protectorate treaty with Great Britain, which earned them the name the Trucial States. It was a successful partnership, but in 1968 the United Kingdom ended the treaty. In order to maintain security, Sheikh Zayed and Sheikh Rashid reached out to their neighbours and in 1971 they signed an agreement, which signified the creation of the United Arab Emirates.
Timings: On demand Guide price: Corniche cruise AED 200 for 30 minutes. Sunset cruise AED200
Discover the heritage heart of the emirate with a full-day tour of Al Ain. Learn the history of the region at the city's museums, see how Al Ain earned its reputation as the 'garden city' and go shopping for camels at the Camel Market.
Take a safari into Al Gharbia and the Rub Al Khali, see the Liwa Oasis and enjoy lunch at a local guest house.
See the city from the water along the Corniche on a private boat for up to six people.
Al Ain AL MASAOOD TRAVEL
Visit Al Ain’s attractions, including oases, souks, the Al Ain Museum, camel market, palaces and archaeological sites.
Guide price: From AED250 for adults and AED180 for children ARABIAN ADVENTURES
Head to the ‘garden city’ stopping at museums, oases and the camel market before venturing to Jebel Hafeet.
Timings: Tours on Tuesdays Guide price: Adults AED225, children AED115
Timings: Saturday to Thursday (except Monday) 8.30am to 6pm Guide price: AED380 including lunch. Minimum of four people NET TOURS
See ancient Arabic manuscripts and royal treasures, camel market, forts, dates and Jebel Hafeet.
Timings: 8am to 5pm Guide price: Adults AED245 children AED200
Al Gharbia ARABIAN ADVENTURES
RAMADAN Opening hours at many attractions across Abu Dhabi change for the duration of the Holy Month. It is advisable to call ahead
Visit the edge of the Rub Al Khali (also known as the Empty Quarter), stopping in Liwa to see Bedouin camps and enjoy lunch. Then visit an old fort before the journey back.
Timings: On request Guide price: On request
Timings: Daily 8.30am to 6pm Guide price: AED550 including lunch. Minimum of four people NET TOURS
02 6794656 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Enjoy a thrilling 4x4 bash over the sand dunes and visit the Rub Al Khali, the world’s largest sand desert, before lunch at a local hotel.
Timings: 8am to 6pm Guide price: Adults
AED290 children AED235
Know the law Consumption of alcohol must be within licensed restaurants, pubs, clubs or private venues. Do not consume alcohol if driving. Dancing is only allowed in the privacy of your hotel room or at licensed clubs. Avoid addressing Muslim women in public or taking photographs without their permission. Offensive language, spitting and hand gestures must be avoided. Married couples may hold hands in public, but not kiss or hug.
With a vast desert, spectacular coastline and world-class sporting facilities, Abu Dhabi is made for action and adventure
Murjan Splash Park
This mini water park at Khalifa Park is ideal for youngsters with seven water-based activities. Chill out on the 257-metre lazy river or battle it out in a water balloon fight.
Timings: Sat to Sun 2 to 6pm
Amusements CHILDREN’S VILLAGE
This village at the Armed Forces Officers’ Club & Hotel has a Jungle Garden play area for the under-eights, electronic games and a bowling centre.
Timings: Sat to Wed 9am to 8pm, Thu and Fri 9am to 10pm Guide price: Varies. Bowling AED15 per game FERRARI WORLD ABU DHABI
02 4968001 or ferrariworldabudhabi.com
Ride roller coasters at top speed, race in an F1 simulator around a virtual Yas Marina Circuit and be propelled 62 metres into the air. Then feast on fine Italian cuisine before stopping in the world's largest Ferrari store.
02 5839200 or 50 6147007
Branches at Khalidiya Mall, Al Raha Mall, Mazyad Mall and Mushrif Mall with a modest ice rink, bowling alley and soft play area.
Timings: Sat to Sun 9am to midnight, Fri 1pm to midnight. Guide price: AED36 for ice rink, AED15 for bowling WANASA LAND
Wanasa Land at Al Wahda Mall boasts Strike Zone, a six-lane bowling alley and soft play area.
Timings: Sun to Thu 10am to
midnight, Fri to Sat 10am to 1am. Guide price: AED40 for Strike Zone, AED35 for play area, AED15 for bowling
ABU DHABI FALCON HOSPITAL
Hi-tech amusement centre in Marina Mall with an impressive line-up of rides, including a roller coaster, bumper cars and an area for under fives.
Timings: Sun to Thu
10am to 10pm, Fri and Sat 10am to midnight. Guide price: Varies by ride. Rollercoaster AED10 per ride.
02 5755155 or 050 6660739
Get up close to the national bird of the UAE and see it in full flight. Educational and informative tours are available in a number of languages.
Timings: Sun to Thu 10am
to 2pm. All tours must be booked in advance. Guide price: AED220 for adults and AED80 for children with a meal, or AED170 for adults and AED60 for children without a meal
NOUKHADA ADVENTURE COMPANY
Fun World at Al Muhairy Centre caters to youngsters up to eight years old with soft play areas, bumper cars and a bouncy castle.
Take the two-and-a-half-hour Twitcher's Tour, paddling past the mangroves and see a variety of birds, including herons.
050 7218928 or noukhada.ae
Timings: Sun to Thu 10am to 1.30pm, 4 to 10pm; Fri 3.30 to 11pm; Sat 10am to 10pm Guide price: From AED3.50 for arcade games, AED10 for bouncy castle and AED15 for soft play area
Timings: Check website for details Guide price: AED200
ARMED FORCES OFFICERS’ CLUB
Kidoos at Abu Dhabi Mall offers arcade games, a climbing wall and a play area for younger children.
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am
to 10pm, Thu 10am to 11pm, Fri 2 to 11pm Guide price: AED17 for climbing wall, AED35 weekdays, AED 45 weekends for play area
Timings: Daily 9am to 1am Guide price: AED12 per game
Guide price: AED235 for visitors over 1.3m tall, AED195 for visitors below 1.3m. Premium tickets available 02 6815527
A state-of-the-art centre at Zayed Sports City with 40 international-standard lanes.
and 7 to 11pm. Ladies' day on Tuesdays is from 10am to 7pm. Guide price: AED40 for guests above 75cm tall and free for guests under 75cm
Timings: Tue to Sun
11am to 8pm
KHALIFA INTERNATIONAL BOWLING CENTRE
Bowling 02 4415900
This huge sports complex is an active family's paradise. Test your aim at the bowling centre which has four alleys.
Timings: Daily 10am to 10pm Guide price: Members and guests AED10 per game including shoe hire. Non-members AED15 per game
Call the UAE Camel Race Association for directions to the camel race track.
Timings: Fri and Sat 7 to 9am and 2.30 to 4pm Guide price: Free
Cruising & sailing
1. Ferrari World Abu Dhabi 2. Rayana Spa, Hyatt Capital Gate 3. Mountain biking, Sir Bani Yas Island 4. Stand-up paddle boarding, the mangroves 5. Desert safari, Abu Dhabi
ABU DHABI CHARTERS
Take a three-hour cruise and experience sunset over the Arabian Gulf.
Guide price: From AED750 per person ARABIAN DIVERS & SPORTFISHING CHARTERS
Charter a boat for cruises along the Corniche, around Abu Dhabi island or to visit the outlying desert islands.
Guide price: Call for details ART MARINE
04 3388955 or email@example.com Take a cruise along Abu Dhabi's coastline and explore the islands, or charter a yacht for a fishing adventure.
Guide price: From AED750 per hour capt. tony's
The Yas Island-based boat tour company offers a range of cruises around the Abu Dhabi waters which can be tailored to suit guest preferences. Other aquatic activites include a stand-up paddle boarding island-hopping tour.
Guide price: Call for details HILTONIA BEACH CLUB
Charter the 31-foot, twin-engine Barracuda and enjoy sightseeing along the Corniche, island trips and snorkelling. Timings: 8am to 8pm.Guide price:Weekdays AED150, weekends AED185. NOUKHADA ADVENTURE COMPANY
02 6503600 or noukhada.ae
Learn to sail or just enjoy the sailing experience on Hobie 18 and Hobie 16 catamarans.
Guide price: Three-hour island tour AED250 for adults and AED200 for children.
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T HE GUI D E / e xpe r ie nce
SHERATON ABU DHABI
Enjoy a sunset cruise along the Corniche to Emirates Palace, watching dolphins at play.
Guide price: AED50 per person for one hour
ARABIAN DIVERS & SPORTFISHING CHARTERS
PADI dive resort with equipment sales/services, private instruction and daily dive charters.
Guide price: Call for details
THE VILLAGE CLUB
OCEAN DIVE CENTRE
Take a relaxing one-hour cruise along the Corniche or a four-hour cruise to nearby Bahraini Island.
Full range of courses available from open water to assistant instructor. Located at Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi.
HILTONIA BEACH CLUB
Charter a 31-foot, twinengine boat for a fishing trip for up to six people.
Guide price: AED750 including equipment, soft drinks and water NOUKHADA ADVENTURE COMPA
02 6503600 or noukhada.ae
Paddle out into the Arabian Sea and enjoy four hours of fishing. Noukhada promotes ‘catch and release’.
Guide price: Coastline cruise
Guide price: Call for details
THE YELLOW BOATS
Get the adrenaline pumping on an ultimate thrill ride, or take a more relaxed cruise and enjoy the scenery at a leisurely pace.
Individual hotels without marinas can also arrange fishing trips on request
Guide price: From AED150 for
ARABIAN DIVERS & SPORTFISHING CHARTERS
Enjoy fishing off the coast of Abu Dhabi or venture out to the deep sea to try your luck.
Big game sport-fishing adventures. Twin diesel sports-fishing boats, tournament tackle and IGFA-certified captains.
Guide price: Four-hour angler cruise costs AED400, six-hour deep-sea fishing cruise costs AED650
AED180, island cruise AED300
800 4044 or theyellowboats.com
adults, AED100 for children or AED450 for a family of four
Desert safari AL MASAOOD TRAVEL
Go deep into the Arabian Desert, driving over the towering dunes, before heading to a camp for camel riding, belly dancing, shisha and a barbecue.
Timings: Daily 4 to 9.30pm Guide price: Adults AED300, children AED240 ARABIAN ADVENTURES
Guide price: Call for details BEACH ROTANA ABU DHABI
Hotel boat available for charter for fishing trips or sea cruises. Equipment, bait and beverages are included in the price.
Guide price: AED750 for three hours, AED1,300 for six hours
Flying FALCON AVIATION SERVICES
Charter a helicopter for business or pleasure and see the capital from a whole new perspective in air-conditioned comfort.
Guide price: AED1,250 per
person for 30-minute city tour
02 6731111 or 050 5409041
Part of the British Club, offers BSAC-certified courses as well as dive trips to Abu Dhabi and the East Coast.
Guide price: Call for details
ANIMAL ANTICS Arabian horses Visitors can watch these hardy creatures in action at the Abu Dhabi Equestrian Centre on Sundays during horse racing season or go horse riding at the Sir Bani Yas Stables (pictured). Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital Learn about this cherished bird and its importance to the people of the UAE at the largest falcon hospital in the country. Al Ain Wildlife Park Board the zoo train and embark on an Arabian safari, spotting animals such as oryx, gazelles and camels. There’s also African and Asian wildlife, two rare white lions and a big-cat house. Arabian Wildlife Park Sir Bani Yas island is home to a diverse range of animals, which can be seen on a guided safari or early morning kayak.
Offers a full range of PADI courses as well as diving trips and watersports.
Camel races A popular pastime in the Arabian Gulf is camel racing. Events are held at weekends at Al Wathba and Al Maqam camel race tracks.
Guide price: Call for details
Green fees: National Course,
18 holes Sun to Thu AED525, Fri and Sat AED675. Twilight rate weekends AED350, weekdays from 2.30pm AED275. Night golf AED275. Includes golf cart and unlimited use of practice facilities
to Thu AED140, Fri and Sat AED190. AED60 for club hire and AED50 for buggy hire
AL MAHARA DIVING CENTRE
02 6437377 or divemahara.com
Championship course providing a tough, but fair, challenge with a nine-hole putting green, floodlit driving range and golf institute. Also offers night golf on the floodlit course.
Brown fees: 18 holes Sun
Go dune bashing in a 4x4 across the sand dunes as the sun sets, ride camels at a Bedouin camp and then enjoy an Arabic barbecue dinner.
Hot air ballooning
Sun to Thu AED145, Fri and Sat AED195. Rates for 18 holes on request. Includes golf cart, water and towel
Sand course near Abu Dhabi International Airport that provides free transit visas and complimentary transport for those passing through.
02 6794658 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Timings: Private lessons 6 to 10am, group lessons 4.30 to 8pm Guide price: Group lessons AED300, 20-minute pony riding AED50
Green fees: Nine holes
AL GHAZAL GOLF CLUB
The Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club offers a riding club and show jumping arena with a stable of 100 horses. There are also horse races held on Sunday evenings during the racing season.
02 4459600 (Nine holes, 6,350 yards, par 70)
ABU DHABI GOLF CLUB
SAADIYAT BEACH GOLF CLUB
02 5578000 or sbgolfclub.ae (18 holes, 7,784 yards, par 72) Designed by golfing legend Gary Player, this beachfront course offers spectacular views of the Gulf waters and golfers may even spot dolphins.
Green fees: Sun to Wed
AED525, twilight rate (after 2pm) AED275. Thu to Sat AED675, twilight rate AED350. Includes use of golf cart, water and practice facilities YAS LINKS
02 8107777 (18 holes, 7,450 yards, par 72) The region's first links-style golf course with views of the coast from every hole.
Green fees: Sun to Thu
AED550, twilight rate (after 3pm) AED450. Fri and Sat AED850, twilight rate AED650
Racing season is November to March. For more information visit adec-web.com
02 5588990 National Course (27 holes, 7,334 yards, par 72)
ABU DHABI EQUESTRIAN CLUB
AED350 for one hour
02 5758040 (18 holes, 6,450 yards, par 71)
AED315, children AED290
ABU DHABI SUB AQUA CLUB
to 2pm and 3 to 7pm, Fri 2 to 7pm. Closed Tue
Guide price: From
Set in the middle of a racecourse, the club has a golf academy and floodlit driving range and offers night golf with tee-off until 8.30pm.
Timings: Sat to Thu 10am
THE VILLAGE CLUB
Timings: Daily Guide price: Adults
Slip into the pilot's seat of a life-size Boeing 747-400 simulator and take flight.
ABU DHABI CITY GOLF CLUB
including fishing equipment. AED50 for each additional hour
Take a four-wheel drive journey over the rolling dunes of the desert, visit camel camps, watch the stunning Arabian sunset and enjoy a traditional barbecue feast.
desert safari, adults AED275, children AED200. Morning safari, adults AED140
Guide price: AED400,
Timings: 4.30 to 9.30pm Guide price: Half-day
Mutahida Flight Simulator
BALLOON ADVENTURES EMIRATES
Abu Dhabi is home to over 200 islands – here’s a few that are easily accessible to visitors. One of the largest natural islands in the emirate, Sir Bani Yas Island is located 240 kilometres from the mainland. A major attraction is the Arabian Wildlife Park, which takes up almost half the island and is home to more than 10,000 free-roaming animals. Ask your hotel concierge for advice on getting a boat across. Inhabited for over 7,000 years and once one of the Gulf's most important pearl-diving centres, Delma Island continues to maintain strong links to its maritime heritage. It also boasts some of the region’s earliest evidence of date-palm cultivation along with Mesopotamian pottery and finely flaked stone tools. Delma Island can be visited by ferry from Jebel Dhanna. Easily reached from Bateen Marina, Al Futaisi Island spreads across an area of around 50 sq km, most of which remains untouched, creating a very effective wildlife sanctuary. Discover the island by bike or take a mini-bus tour to see Gazelles running free, Ospreys nesting on outbreaks of rocks and to observe shy spiny tailed lizards called Dhubs.
Marvel at the changing colours of the desert landscape at sunrise from above the dunes with a peaceful hot air balloon ride.
Guide price: AED995 for adults, AED850 for 5- to 12-year-olds
Ice skating ABU DHABI ICE RINK
Located at Zayed Sports City, the rink can accommodate up to 400 skaters. Ice skating and hockey lessons are available.
Timings: 9am to 10pm daily. Thu ladies only Guide price: AED25 per hour. MARINA MALL ICE RINK
02 681 5806
This ice-skating rink at the heart of the mall is ideal for ice skaters of all skill levels. Lessons are available.
Timings: Sat to Thu 10am to 10pm, Fri 11am to 11pm Guide price: AED40 for one hour. Includes skate hire, socks and protective pads
Island trips AL FUTAISI GOLF & COUNTRY CLUB
Futaisi island has 40 chalets and two villas, as well as other facilities such as a swimming pool, cycling, nature walks and horse riding.
Guide price: Day trips from 9.30am to 6pm cost AED250 per person HILTONIA BEACH CLUB
Up to six people can spend the day relaxing at Bahraini and Futaisi islands with pick-ups, drop-offs, drinks and umbrellas included.
Guide price: AED830
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THE CORNICHE Hire a bicycle or buggy and pedal along the wide open paths. Visit the family beach and spend the day on a sunlounger, or enjoy a coffee or meal at one of the cafés and restaurants.
Timings: 7am to 10pm Guide price: Entry to family beach AED10, sunlounger AED25, buggy hire AED20 for 30 minutes, bicycle hire AED20 per hour
AL FORSAN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS RESORT
02 5568555 or alforsan.com
Learn how to water ski, kneeboard and wake board, or perfect your technique on the obstacle course in a safe, confined environment.
Timings: Weekdays 3 to 10pm,
weekends 10.30am to 10pm Guide price: AED125 for one hour or AED280 for a full day
Race track tour Wildlife parks ABU DHABI'S GRAND WEEKEND The 2013 Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix rolls into the capital from November 1 to 3, bringing 50,000 motor sport fans, the world's best race car drivers and a swathe of celebrities all ready to party the weekend away in style. The high-octane event, one of the biggest and most glamorous on the city's sporting calendar, is held each year at Yas Marina Circuit, a 5.55-kilometre track that winds around a stunning marina and through the five-star Yas Viceroy hotel. Tickets sell out and hotel rooms are booked well in advance so it is wise to book early to avoid disappointment. For more information, see yasmarinacircuit.ae
YAS MARINA CIRCUIT
ABU DHABI WILDLIFE CENTRE
Visit the pits, team garages and race control with a photo stop at the podium.
See cheetahs, tigers, leopards and other endangered species at this rescue and rehabilitation centre on the outskirts of the city.
800 YAS (927) or yasmarinacircuit.ae
Timings: Tue to Sat 10am and 2pm Guide price: AED120
Shooting CARACAL SHOOTING CLUB
02 4416404 NOUKHADA ADVENTURE COMPANY
050 7218928 or noukhada.ae
Paddle to nearby islands on this three-hour trip, stopping off to enjoy the quiet life and take photos at areas only accessible by boat.
Guide price: Two-hour
eco tour AED220, 1.5-hour mangrove tour AED150, threehour island tour AED250
Karting AL FORSAN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS RESORT
02 5568555 or alforsan.com
Experience motorsport on a smaller scale racing around a circuit in karts for cadets, senior racers and advanced racers. Arrive and drive sessions are available.
Timings: Daily 3 to 11pm Guide price: From
AED120 for 15 minutes
YAS MARINA CIRCUIT
800 YAS (927) or yasmarinacircuit.ae
This new go-karting centre has 40 karts for both adults and children.
Timings: Tue to Sun 3 to 11pm Guide price: Adults
AED120, children under 13 AED100 for 10 minutes
Kayaking NOUKHADA ADVENTURE COMPANY
050 7218928 or noukhada.ae
Venture into the mangroves on this one-and-a-halfhour kayak tour that is suitable for all levels.
Guide price: AED450 per person
Motor sports DRAG RACING
800 YAS (927) or yasmarinacircuit.ae
Hit 250kmh in five seconds in a drag car driven by a world champion at the Yas Drag Racing Centre, or race your friends in the Chevrolet Camaro SS
Timings: See website for availability Guide price: Three-seat dragster passenger experience from AED500. Formula Yas 3000 experience AED1,200. Off-road buggies AED200 adults and AED150 children. FORMULA ONE
800 YAS (927) or yasmarinacircuit.ae
Experience the thrill of Formula One, screeching around Yas Marina Circuit at top speed as a passenger in an F1 two-seater. Alternatively, get behind the wheel of the Formula Yas 3000.
Timings: See website for availability Guide price: AED11,500. Formula Yas 3000 experience AED1,200 OFF-ROAD BUGGIES
02 5568555 or alforsan.com
Race buggies around the circuit with machines for all levels of experience.
Timings: Daily 3 to 11pm Guide price: From AED200 for
YAS Racing School
800 YAS (927) or yasmarinacircuit.ae
Drive race cars and sports cars or take a hot lap with a professional driver.
Timings: See website for availability Guide price: AED950 to drive, AED350 for hot lap with a driver. Private tuition starts at AED1,500
Mountain biking NOUKHADA ADVENTURE COMPANY
02 6503600 or noukhada.ae
Take an all-terrain bike ride into the desert. See camels feeding, people riding horses, an Arabian sunset and a star-filled sky.
Guide price: AED250 per person
Paintball AL FORSAN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS RESORT
02 5568555 or alforsan.com
Stage a shootout in the wild west or a Pacific warzone with special effects and air-conditioning.
Timings: Weekdays 3 to 10pm, weekends 10.30am to 10pm Guide price: From AED120 for 200 balls ARMED FORCES OFFICERS’ CLUB & HOTEL
Test your commando skills, take aim and let off a bit of steam.
Timings: 1 to 10pm Guide price: AED 150 per person per game including gear and 100 balls
Parks & gardens SHEIKH KHALIFA PARK Situated in Al Matar near Al Bateen Airport, the park features gardens that reflect Arabic and Islamic architecture with lakes, fountains and canals.
Timings: 10am to 11pm Guide price: AED1
Choose from a variety of pistols and rifles then take aim at the 25m target shooting range. Located at the Armed Forces Officers' Club & Hotel, there is also a 10m simulation shooting range, retail outlet and a coffee shop.
Timings: Sat to Thu noon to 10pm, Fri 2 to 10pm Guide price: 22lr AED180 and 9mm AED205. AL FORSAN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS RESORT
02 5568555 or alforsan.com
050 6144024 or email@example.com
Timings: Sat to Wed 9am to 5pm Guide price: One-hour guided tour AED45 for adults, AED35 for children under 12 years Emirates PARK Zoo
02 5633100 or kidsparkuae.com
Meet, touch and help feed a variety of creatures including camels, emus, raccoons, boa constrictor and the park's newest attractions, five fur seals, which can be seen during daily shows.
Timings: Sun to Wed 9.30am to 8pm; Thu to Sat and public holidays 9.30am to 9pm Guide price: AED20 for adults, AED15 for children, AED60 family ticket (two adults and three children). Extra AED5 for the Ocean Park
Catering for all skill levels, this expansive sports resort offers Olympic disciplines and sporting clays along with handgun and rifle ranges.
Timings: Weekdays 3 to 10pm, weekends 10.30am to 10pm Guide price: From AED150
SPACE WALK INDOOR SKYDIVING
AL MAQAM CAMEL RACE TRACK
Experience the thrill of a free fall without the fear of jumping from a plane at this wind tunnel located at the Abu Dhabi Country Club.
Get up early in the winter months for a unique and authentic Emirati cultural experience.
Guide price: Introductory ticket AED180, family package AED720
Hotels can organise watersports on request, while some have their own facilities.
BAWADI MALL ENTERTAINMENT
Jetskiing AED180 for 30 minutes Wake boarding AED150 for 20 minutes Water skiing AED75 for 20 minutes Wind surfing from AED160 per hour
Abu Dhabi is a haven for the adventurous with world-class attractions for thrill seekers… Al Forsan International Sports Resort Try paintball, shooting, horse riding, go karting, wakeboarding and skiing at this international sports facility in Khalifa City. Then create some dust as you race your friends on the dune buggies. Ferrari World Abu Dhabi Ride the world’s fastest rollercoaster, hitting speeds of 240kmh, then test your driving skills in a Formula One simulator before being shot 62 metres through the distinctive red roof of the planet’s only Ferrari-themed amusement park. Wadi Adventure With three worldclass courses, Wadi Adventure in Al Ain is the Middle East’s only manmade whitewater rafting, kayaking and surfing facility. Take a lesson from the professionals or hone your skills in a controlled environment Yas Marina Circuit Hold on for the ride of your life as you speed around Yas Marina Circuit as a passenger in a modified Formula One car, or test your nerve behind the wheel of an Aston Martin. Why not try drag racing your family and friends? Yas Marina Circuit is not for the faint-hearted.
Timings: Fri to Sat 7 to 9am approximately Guide price: Free of charge
Water sports Guide price:
Spanning 10,000 square metres, this family entertainment centre includes a 12-lane bowling alley and Fun Ski Village.
Timings: SUN to Wed 10am to midnight, Thu and Fri 10am to 1am. Guide price: Call for details
LISTINGS_EXPERIENCE_AUH JUL13.indd 70
HILI FUN CITY & ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK
A family-friendly destination with landscaped gardens and a fun park, with nine new rides. There are cafés and restaurants as well. The adjacent archaeological park dates to the third millennium BCE and makes an interesting day out.
Timings: Mon to Thu 4 to 10pm , Fri 10am to 10pm, Sat noon to midnight. Wed ladies only. Closed Sunday Guide price: Mon and Tue AED35, Wed to Sat AED40, including rides
Golf AL AIN EQUESTRIAN, SHOOTING & GOLF CLUB
(18 holes, 6,584 yards, par 71) Enjoy a round of golf and test out the newly opened back nine holes with lighting and 42-bay driving range, or get some tips from the professionals at the golf academy.
Green fees: Nine holes AED215 on weekdays, or AED245 on weekend; 18 holes AED300 on weekdays or AED390 on weekends. Includes use of driving range and golf cart. Ninehole academy course AED100 AL AIN GOLF CLUB
(Nine holes, Par 3) Sand course with a clubhouse and practice putting green. Clubs can be hired.
Green fees: Nine holes AED50 HILTON AL AIN GOLF CLUB
(Nine holes, par 3) Golf resort with facilities including a health club, two swimming pools and four floodlit tennis courts.
Green fees: Nine holes AED23
Hot air ballooning BALLOON ADVENTURES EMIRATES
Take to the skies in a hot air balloon and marvel at the changing colours of the desert landscape at sunrise.
Guide price: AED950 for adults, AED800 for 5- to 12-year-olds
Ice skating AL AIN ICE RINK, HILI FUN CITY
Enjoy an ice skating session with family and friends at this Olympic-size ice rink, which also offers ladiesand children-only days. It is located next door to Hili Fun City amusement park.
Timings: Mon to Thu 4 to 10pm, Fri 10am to 10pm, Sat noon to 10pm Guide price: Sun to Tue AED35, Wed to Sat AED35
AL AIN MALL ICE RINK
The ice rink hosts regular skating sessions, monthly family ice shows and hockey tournaments.
Timings: Sat to Wed
10am to 10pm, Thu and Fri 10am to midnight Guide price: AED25 for 1.5 hours BAWADI MALL SKATING RINK
This artificial skating rink is suitable for metal blade and roller shoes. There is also a 12-lane bowling alley nearby.
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am to
10pm, Thu 10am to midnight, Fri noon to midnight Guide price: AED25 for two hours, includes skate hire
Karting AL AIN RACEWAY
State-of-the-art floodlit facility suitable for drivers aged eight years and upwards. Offers 'arrive and drive' sessions for individuals and small groups.
Timings: Mon to Wed 2.30 to 10pm, Thu and Fri 2.30 to 11pm, Sat 10.30am to 6pm. Closed Sunday Guide price: AED150 for 15 minutes, AED250 for 30 minutes, AED400 for one hour
Parks & gardens GREEN MUBAZZARAH HOT SPRINGS At the foot of Jebel Hafeet, Green Mubazzarah is a park of rolling grassy hills with streams, hot springs and waterfalls. It is a popular location for weekend picnics.
Guide price: Free
Shooting AL AIN EQUESTRIAN, SHOOTING & GOLF CLUB
Try your hand at skeet and trap shooting as well as range shooting from 10 to 50 metres with rifles and pistols.
Timings: Mon to Sat 2 to 10pm Guide price: From
AED90 for 50 rounds
QASR AL SARAB DESERT RESORT
Go kayaking, white water rafting and surfing or test your skills on the adventure course.
Timings: Sun, Tue, Wed noon to 11pm; Thu noon to midnight; Fri 9am to midnight; Sat 9am to 11pm Guide price: Entry adults AED100, children under 1.2m AED50. Surf pool, kayaking and whitewater rafting AED100
DANAT JEBEL DHANNA RESORT
A desert-themed zoo with animals from the local area and African savannahs.
Timings: Sat to Thu 10am
to 7pm; Fri 10am to 8pm Guide price: Adults AED15, children AED5, free for children under three years
Sir Bani Yas Stables
Enjoy a two-hour horse ride along sandy beaches or take a lesson to improve your skills and confidence. Wildlife rides will be introduced soon.
Guide price: AED250 for two-hour Royal Bay Ride, lessons from AED200
Kayaking Camel trekking QASR AL SARAB DESERT RESORT
Explore the Rub Al Khali, trekking through vast sand valleys.
Timings: 6am and 8am (40
minutes), 4.45pm (25 minutes), 5.45pm (50 minutes) Guide price: AED135 for 40 minutes, AED60 for 25 minutes, AED195 for 50 minutes DANAT JEBEL DHANNA RESORT
Experience the beauty of the UAE desert in true Bedouin style - aboard a camel.
Guide price: Ask at reception for details
Cruising & sailing DESERT ISLANDS RESORT & SPA
Enjoy a relaxing sunset cruise around Sir Bani Yas Island, spotting dolphins and dugongs.
Guide price: Sunset cruise AED250
Snorkelling DESERT ISLANDS RESORT & SPA
Explore the rich underwater world near Sir Bani Yas Island on a snorkelling tour.
Guide price: AED200
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Timings: Dunes 6am, 8.30am, 5.45pm. Flat sand 10.30am, 3.30pm Guide price: AED175
AL AIN Zoo
Polish your snow plough technique on the artificial ski slope or slide downhill on a big rubber ring.
Timings: Sun to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu 10am to midnight, Fri 2pm to midnight, Sat 10am to midnight Guide price: Skiing AED60 for two hours, includes equipment
Explore the desert by four-wheel drive, either through the sand dunes or along a flat track.
Experience the thrills of dube0bashing while exploring the desert in a 4x4 Guide price: Ask at reception for details
BAWADI MALL SKI VILLAGE
DESERT ISLANDS RESORT & SPA
Explore the quiet waters of Sir Bani Yas Island and discover rare birds, fish and wild gazelle.
Guide price: AED60
Mountain biking DESERT ISLANDS RESORT & SPA
Explore the rugged landscape of Sir Bani Yas Island with two trails suitable for all levels.
Guide price: AED60 QASR AL SARAB DESERT RESORT
Start the day with an energising cycle across the desert while the sun rises from behind the dunes.
Timings: 6am Guide price: AED60
Experience Ramadan Spirit @ Mercure Abu Dhabi while enjoying the irresistible Iftar offer @ Le Jardin Restaurant @AED.95 NET including FREE Shisha @ La Pergola Sport’ Cafe/Terrace Pay for 5 and the 6th Free and enter the weekly draw (children policy apllies)
ARABIAN WILDLIFE PARK
Taking up much of Sir Bani Yas Island, this nature reserve is home to free-roaming cheetahs, Arabian oryx, gazelles, giraffes and much more.
Guide price: Nature and wildlife drive AED100, nature walk AED60
Mercure Centre Hotel Abu Dhabi, Tel: (971) 2 6 333 555, Fax: (971) 2 63 43 633 email: firstname.lastname@example.org/ email@example.com
From haute couture to traditional souvenirs, Abu Dhabi is a shopping haven with spacious malls and atmospheric souks
Abu Dhabi's biggest mall has 480 shops, including speciality retail stores, restaurants and entertainment options.
Abu Dhabi’s newest mall with more than 200 outlets stocking fashion, accessories, jewellery, cosmetics, beauty and electronics, as well as dining and entertainment facilities.
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu and Fri 10am to midnight HAMDAN CENTRE
Timings: Sun to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu to Sat 10am to 11pm
Houses fashion, sports equipment, jewellery and souvenirs at reasonable prices in addition to a cinema complex.
ABU DHABI MALL
Al Ain AL AIN MALL
Abu Dhabi Mall is one of the main attractions on the shopping scene with over 220 retail outlets, plus entertainment options.
Timings: Daily 10am to 1.30pm and 5 to 10.30pm
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu 10am to 11pm, Fri 3.30 to 11pm
Spread over three levels with distinctive Islamic architecture, this mall has everything from fashion to furnishings.
Timings: Sun to Thu 10am to 10pm, Fri to Sat 10am to 11pm
Timings: Sun to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu to Sat 10am to 11pm
AL RAHA MALL
Close to Abu Dhabi International Airport and Yas Island, this mall has an array of fashion outlets plus a cinema and food court.
MADINAT ZAYED SHOPPING CENTRE & GOLD CENTRE
Timings: Sat to Thu 10am to 11pm, Fri 2 to 11pm
The 400 outlets sell just about everything, while the adjacent Gold Centre is the ideal place to browse for gold, diamond and pearl jewellery.
AL WAHDA MALL
02 4437000, 02 4437070
With over 150 shops covering three floors, Al Wahda Mall houses fashion, jewellery and beauty stores as well as entertainment and restaurants. 10pm, Thu to Sat 10am to 11pm Avenue at etihad towers
1. Avenue at Etihad Towers 2. Spice Souk 3. Alesayi Textiles, Marina Mall 4. The Souk at World Trade Centre 5. Gold Souk
AL JIMI MALL More than 110 shops to choose from offering a wide variety of products from fashion and jewellery to health and beauty.
Timings: Sat to Thu 10am to 10pm, Fri 2 to 10pm BAWADI MALL
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am to 11pm, Thu and Fri 10am to midnight
A retail haven with a waterfront setting, Marina Mall has over 300 stores, a 100-metre-high viewing platform and an ice skating rink.
This newly opened exclusive boulevard is home to almost 40 luxury shops, showcasing designer labels and high-end brands, spread across two levels.
Offers over 100,000 square metres of retail and entertainment space spread over three floors, with cinemas, an ice skating rink and a bowling alley.
Al Ain’s newest and largest mall offers an indoor ski slope, cinema, bowling alley, skating rink, family entertainment centre and almost 400 shops.
Timings: Sat to Fri 9am
to 11pm. Gold Centre Sat to Thu 9am to 2pm and 4 to 11pm, Fri 4 to 11pm
Timings: Sun to Wed 10am to
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu and Fri 10am to 11pm
Timings: Call for store timings
Shop for traditional souvenirs, spices, jewellery, perfumes, sunglasses and electronics at this modern souk.
Timings: Sun to Thu 10am to 10pm, Fri and Sat 10am to 11pm
NAVIGATE THE SOUKS Abu Dhabi’s souks offer an authentic shopping experience. With everything from spices to textiles and gold, they are a haven for hidden treasures. Put your bargaining skills to the test, as prices of most items can be reduced by up to 75 percent – except for gold which is sold by weight and the price is more or less fixed. .
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THE SOUK AT QARYAT AL BERI
Located next to the Shangri-La hotel is this classy, Arabian-themed souk with Venetian canals and a variety of shops and restaurants.
Timings: Sat to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu 10am to 11pm, Fri 3 to 10pm
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Superb restaurants and glamorous cocktail bars make Abu Dhabi a stylish and sophisticated choice for fine food and drink
Hotel outlets & promotions
Al Maha Arjaan
Al Markaziyah City Café offers Mexican on Mondays, pasta on Tuesdays and Indian on Wednesdays for AED95. An à la carte menu with salad, soup, main and dessert is available on Thursdays and Saturdays for AED75 and Sunday features a seafood buffet for AED130. City Café – International
Aloft Abu Dhabi
An International buffet will be available in Dine restaurant every day after sunset for AED110 per person throughout Ramadan. Dine – International Mai Café – International Relax@12 – International WXYZ Bar - Bar
Al Raha Beach Hotel
Al Raha Beach Live cooking stations, freshly baked bread and traditional Ramadan dishes are available at Sevilla Restaurant for AED175 per person. After dinner, head over to the hotel's new Arabian dining restaurant, Al Wanasah where guests can recline on comfortable chairs and sample a variety of shisha flavours in a lounge-style setting. Al Manzil – International Azur Restaurant – Mediterranean Black Pearl – Piano bar Enigma – Nightclub Sevilla Restaurant – International Wanasah – Arabic
Al Rawda Arjaan Abu Dhabi
Choose Continental cuisine from the à la carte menu at Al Dar or the international buffet for speciality dishes. Enjoy, light snacks, coffee and cakes at Moka Café. Al Dar – International Moka Café – International
Armed Forces Officers’ Club & Hotel
Head to Taverna for lively barbecue buffet nights every Wednesday with two house beverages included for AED120. Al Bathna – International Kennedy – European Taverna – Tex-Mex
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Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi
Tourist Club Area Feast on authentic Arabian fare at Essence where iftar will be served every night throughout the holy month for AED190 per person. Bay View – Beach restaurant Benihana – American/Japanese Brauhaus – German Essence – International Finz – Seafood Indigo – Indian Prego’s – Italian Rodeo Grill – American steakhouse Trader Vic’s – French Polynesian
Centro CAPITAL CENTRE
Contemporary cuisine is served throughout the day at C.Taste while drinks and light bites are available from C.Mondo. C.Mondo – Lounge bar C.Taste – International buffet
Centro Yas Island
C.Taste has introduced theme evenings for AED89. Enjoy roasts on Mondays, burgers on Tuesdays, pasta on Wednesdays and barbecue on Thursdays for AED99 per person. C.Deli – Deli C.Mondo – Lounge bar C.Taste – International buffet
Cristal Hotel Abu Dhabi
Madinat Zayed An iftar buffet priced at AED125 per person will be served at Gems Restaurant throughout Ramadan. A percentage of the proceeds from every diner will be donated to local charity, Operation Smile. Gems Restaurant – International
Cristal Salam Hotel
Tourist Club Area Drop in at Vertical bar on Wednesdays for Spanish Night with tasty tapas for AED99 per person and entertainment by Spanish guitarist, Vincente Allende. 2.35 – International & Middle Eastern Vertical – Wine bar
Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi
Al Markaziyah Enjoy Thai specialities prepared by Chef Sonthaya at Cho Gao, which opens for lunch at midday throughout Ramadan. Tune into the major summer sports matches at Heroes, open every day from 7pm and showing the Tour de France until July 21 and the Ashes from the 18th to the 22nd. Cho Gao – Asian Heroes Bar – Sports bar Level Lounge – Rooftop bar Spaccanapoli – Italian The Garden – International Vincent’s – Cocktail bar
Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi Yas Island
Enjoy all you can eat mussels for AED160 per person at Stills every Monday. Barouk – Lebanese Jing Asia – Asian buffet Stills Bar & Brasserie – European bar and restaurant
DUSIT THANI ABU DHABI
Urban Kitchen is a contemporary Arabian eaterie with live cooking stations and a buffet set-up while Benjarong specialises in the hotel's signature Thai cuisine. Urban Kitchen – Arabic Benjarong – Thai Dusit Gourmet – Lounge The Capital Grill – Steakhouse Breeze – Bar
1. 18°, Hyatt Capital Gate 2. Turquoiz, The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort 3. Hoi Ann, Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat al Beri 4. Al Fanar, Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi
Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa
Eastern Mangroves Sample the finest Arabian fare at Ingredients this month and make sure to save space for the lavish dessert station which includes delectable sweets from across the region. Adults can help themselves to the iftar buffet for AED175 and children under 12 get in for AED100. Ingredients – All-day international Pachaylen – Thai restaurant Impressions – Rooftop lounge
Ras Al Akhdar Award-winning Italian restaurant, Mezzaluna has introduced a new business lunch every week day from midday to 3pm for AED175 per person. At sunset, head over to the hotel's grand iftar pavilion, the largest in the UAE, for a veritable feast of Arabian cuisine.
Breeze Lounge – Spanish bar Cascades – International Diwan L’Auberge – Lebanese Etoiles – European restaurant and nightclub Hakkasan – Chinese Havana Club – Wine and cigar lounge Las Brisas – International Le Café & Caviar Bar – Caviar bar Le Vendôme – International buffet Mezlai – Emirati Mezzaluna – Italian Sayad – Seafood
Fairmont Bab Al Bahr
Bain Al Jessrain Cedar Lounge serves delicious Arabian fare. Cedar Lounge – Lebanese Chameleon – Champagne bar CuiScene – International buffet Frankie’s – Italian Marco Pierre White Steakhouse & Grill – Steakhouse Frankie's Italian Restaurant & Bar – Italian The Chocolate Gallery
T HE GUI D E / T A S T E
Grand Millennium Al Wahda
Celebrate Ramadan with authentic Arabian dishes, shisha and snacks at Haritna tent. Porters is featuring a new summer menu, including award-winning speciality dishes and refreshing light bites. Al Wahda allday dining restaurant will offer a 30 percent discount on food this month.
Hala Arjaan by Rotana
Tourist Club Area
Ras Al Akdar Contemporary seafood restaurant, The Beach has a choice of indoor or al fresco dining overlooking the pool or beach.
Hilton Abu Dhabi
Horizon – International buffet The Beach – Seafood Sunset Bar – Beach restaurant
Chef Guiseppe Mosti has put together a delicious daily organic menu at Italian finedining restaurant, Bocca, a theme continued over the road at the hotel's popular Portuguese eatery, Vasco's.
Watch the sun set over the terrace and soak up the Arabian atmosphere at 18° where executive sous chef Ivan Musoni has prepared authentic specialities from the Arabic kitchen alongside signature Eastern Mediterranean dishes inspired by the cuisines of Lebanon, Syria and Turkey. Highlights include the lamb ouzi, shoukaf (lamb fillet cubes with onion), kabab orfaly (beef and vegetable skewers), Lebanese loubia bil lahmeh (green beans in tomato sauce) and Moroccan tagine chicken with apricots 18° – Eastern Mediterranean Lounge – Tea lounge and bar Profiterole – Pastries Privé – Bar
InterContinental Abu Dhabi
Guests will be entertained by well-known Arabian singers in the suhour tent throughout Ramadan. Belgian Café – Belgian bar and restaurant Boccaccio – Italian Chamas Churrascaria & Bar – Brazilian restaurant and bar Piano Lounge – Piano bar Selections – International Fishmarket – Seafood The Yacht Club – Asian restaurant and bar
Situated up on the 63rd floor, Quest serves delicious panAsian fare in a vibrant environment accompanied by a stunning panorama. An equally impressive view can be gained on the 74th floor where Observation Deck serves the highest high tea in Abu Dhabi.
The Gallery – International
Ras Al Akhdar
Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana
The Gallery all-day dining restaurant offers international flavours served with flair.
HYATT CAPITAL GATE
Li Beirut – Lebanese Nahaam – International Observation Deck – High tea Quest – Asian fusion Ray’s Bar – Bar Rosewater - International Scott’s – Seafood Tori No Su – Japanese Bice – Italian
Al Wahda – International buffet Porto Bello – Italian Porters – Pub Reflexions – Nightclub
Arabic Cafe – Arabic Bocca – Italian Cinnabar – Nightclub Escape Restaurant – Beachfront restaurant Hemingway’s – American bar and restaurant Jazz Bar & Dining – Jazz bar La Terrazza – Mediterranean Mawal – Lebanese Royal Orchid – Asian Toki – Japanese Vasco’s – International
Jumeirah At Etihad Towers
Le Méridien Abu Dhabi
Tourist Club Area Sample authentic Arabian cuisine for AED99 per person at the Le Brasserie iftar where an air-conditioned Ramadan tent has been set up beside the pool.
Hummous: Well known and loved even beyond the Middle East, this Arabic dip or spread is made from cooked, mashed chickpeas blended with ground sesame seeds, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic. Moutabel: A delicious and spicy smoked aubergine dip that is popular in Syria, Lebanon and Palestine. Fattoush: This Levantine salad is made from toasted or fried pieces of pita bread and mixed with lettuce, cucumber, onion and other vegetables. Sambusek: Small, triangular pastry pies filled with cheese, meat or spinach. Ouzi: This popular baked lamb and spiced rice dish is a favourite during Ramadan, the Islamic holy month. Umm Ali: Similar to bread and butter pudding served in the west, this favourite Arabic dessert contains milk, pastry and nuts, and is a staple dish in many buffets.
Al Birkeh – Lebanese Captain’s Arms – English pub Chi Chi’s – Tex-Mex G-Club – Nightclub La Brasserie – International Le Bistrot – French/sustainable NRG Sports Bar – Sports bar Opus Bar – Bar Pappagallo – Italian Talay – Thai Wakataua Terrace – Polynesian outdoor lounge
Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi
Al Markaziyah With a capacity for more than 1,000 diners, Layali Al Hilmiya is one of the largest tents in the capital and an excellent choice for visitors who want to experience the ethos and atmosphere of typical Arabian dining. Suhour will be served in the tent while iftar is available at Amalfi for AED145 per person. Al Fanar – European Amalfi – Italian Illusions – Nightclub P.J. O’Reilly’s – Irish pub Imago - Bar and restaurant Sax Restaurant Club – International restaurant and bar The Piano Lounge – Cocktail lounge
Mercure Centre Hotel
Al Markaziyah Couscous fans can book a table at Le Beaujolais on Thursdays this month, where the chef will be serving a series of tasty dishes based around the grain. Le Beaujolais – Bistro Le Jardin – International buffet Le Privé – French Mood Indigo – Lounge bar Pergola – Sports bar China Restaurant – chinese
DINE BY CUISINE ARABIC Wanasah – Al Raha Beach Hotel Barouk – Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi Yas Island Diwan L’Auberge – Emirates Palace Hakkasan – Emirates Palace Mezlai – Emirates Palace Arabic Café – Hilton Abu Dhabi Mawal – Hilton Abu Dhabi Li Beirut – Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Al Birkeh – Le Méridien Abu Dhabi Marakesh – Millenium Hotel Abu Dhabi Pearls & Caviar – Shangri-La Hotel Qaryat Al Beri Shang Palace – Shangri-La Hotel Qaryat Al Beri Al Hawara – The Royal Hotel Abu Dhabi ArganaVert – The Royal Hotel Abu Dhabi Agadir – The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa Atayeb - Yas Viceroy Hotel Min Zaman – Al Ain Rotana Hotel Makani Café – Hilton Al Ain Eden Rock – Mercure Grand Hotel Jebel Hafeet Al Waha – Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara
ASIAN Benihana – Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi Cho Gao – Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi Jing Asia - Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi Yas Island Pachaylen - Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa Royal Orchid – Hilton Abu Dhabi Toki - Hilton Abu Dhabi The Yacht Club Intercontinental Abu Dhabi Quest - Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Tori No Su - Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Talay - Le Méridien Abu Dhabi Soba - Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi China Restaurant Mercure Centre Hotel Wokcano - One to One Hotel, The Village Rouge - Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi Hoi Ann - Shangri-La Hotel Qaryat Al Beri Silk and Spice - Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche Sontaya - St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort Kazu - Yas Viceroy Hotel Noodle Box – Yas Viceroy Hotel The Wok – Danat Al Ain Resort Orient Café – Mercure Grand Hotel Jebel Hafeet
INDIAN Indigo – Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi Rangoli – Yas Island Rotana Angar – Yas Viceroy Hotel Tanjore – Danat Al Ain Resort
INTERNATIONAL Dine – Aloft Abu Dhabi Al Manzil – Al Raha Beach Hotel
Sevilla Restaurant – Al Raha Beach Hotel Al Dar – Al Rawda Arjaan Abu Dhabi Al Bathna – Armed Forces Officers’ Club & Hotel Essence – Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi C.Taste – Centro Yas Island Gems Restaurant – Cristal Hotel Abu Dhabi 2.35 – Cristal Salam Hotel The Garden – Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi Ingredients – Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa BBQ Al Qasr – Emirates Palace Cascades – Emirates Palace Las Brisas – Emirates Palace Le Vendôme – Emirates Palace CuiScene – Fairmont Bab Al Bahr Al Wahda – Grand Millenium Al Wahda The Gallery – Hala Arjaan by Rotana Vasco’s – Hilton Abu Dhabi Selections – Intercontinental Abu Dhabi Chamas Churrascaria & Bar – Intercontinental Abu Dhabi Nahaam – Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Rosewater – Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Horizon – Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana La Brasserie – Le Méridien Abu Dhabi L’Opera Brasserie – Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi Le Jardin – Mercure Centre Hotel Citrus – Millenium Hotel Abu Dhabi Resto – One to One Hotel, The Village The Village Club – One to One Hotel, The Village Horizon Restaurant – Oryx Hotel West Side – Oryx Hotel The Café – Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas Amerigos Mexican Bar & Restaurant – Park Inn Yas Island, Abu Dhabi Mint – Park Inn Yas Island, Abu Dhabi Ginger All-Day Dining – Park Rotana Teatro – Park Rotana Assymetri – Radisson Blu Hotel Abu Dhabi Yas Island Oceana Grill – Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi Noche – Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi Sofra Bld – Shangri-La Hotel Qaryat Al Beri Cloud Nine – Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort El Sombrero Mexican Restaurant – Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort Flavours – Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort Downtown – Sheraton Khalidiya Hotel La Veranda – Sheraton Khalidiya Hotel Corniche All Day Dining – Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche Optimist – The Royal Hotel Abu Dhabi Fairways – The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa Afya – Traders Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri Afya Beach Lounge – Traders Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri Choices – Yas Island Rotana Origins – Yas Viceroy Hotel Zest – Al Ain Rotana Hotel Ayla Restaurant – Ayla Hotel
Arabesque – Danat Al Ain Resort Flavours – Hilton Al Ain Paco’s – Hilton Al Ain Tides – Danat Jebel Dhanna Resort The Palm – Desert Islands Resort & Spa Al Badiya – Tilal Liwa Hotel
MEDITERRANEAN Azur Restaurant – Al Raha Beach Hotel Prego’s – Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi Breeze Lounge – Emirates Palace Mezzaluna – Emirates Palace Frankie’s – Fairmont Bab Al Bahr Porto Bello – Grand Millenium Al Wahda Bocca – Hilton Abu Dhabi La Terrazza – Hilton Abu Dhabi 18° – Hyatt Capital Gate Boccaccio – Intercontinental Abu Dhabi Bice – Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Pappagallo – Le Méridien Abu Dhabi Amalfi – Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi Sevilo’s – Millenium Hotel Abu Dhabi Beach House – Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas Filini – Radisson Blu Hotel Abu Dhabi Yas Island Oro – Rocco Forte Hotel Abu Dhabi La Mamma – Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort Olea – St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort Amici – Yas Viceroy Hotel Luce – Danat Al Ain Resort Casa Romana Restaurant – Hilton Al Ain Zaitoun – Danat Jebel Dhanna Resort Ghadeer – Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara
SEAFOOD Finz – Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi Le Café & Caviar Bar – Emirates Palace Sayad – Emirates Palace Cedar Lounge – Fairmont Bab Al Bahr Fishmarket – Intercontinental Abu Dhabi Scott’s – Jumeirah at Etihad Towers The Beach – Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana Oceans Seafood Kitchen & Lounge – Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi Sennara – One to One Hotel, The Village La Mer – Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche Turquoiz – St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort Nautilus – Yas Viceroy Hotel
STEAKHOUSES Rodeo Grill - Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi Marco Pierre White Steakhouse & Grill 18 OZ – One to One Hotel, The Village Park Bar & Grill - Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas 55 & 5th, The Grill – St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort Blue Grill – Yas Island Rotana Suhail - Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara
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Millennium Hotel Abu Dhabi
Al Markaziyah Sevilo's runs a Mamma Mia Serata promotion every Thursday offering guests an Italian feast of antipasti dishes, two mains and dessert for AED160. Citrus – International Cristal Cigar & Champagne Bar – Champagne bar Marakesh – Moroccan Sevilo’s – Italian
Novotel Abu DHABI GATE
Bain Al Jessrain A wide selection of cuisines from around the world is served in the daily buffet at Horizon for lunch and dinner Restaurant – International Al gabbiano - Italian Al Nassim Pool bar – Snacks
One to One Hotel The Village
Choose from a wide selection of fresh-caught seafood dishes for AED85 per person at the Sennara luncheon every Saturday. Over at Wokcano the emphasis is on Filippino dishes this month with an open buffet for AED90 per person. The Village Club serves up tasty barbecues in an alchol-free environment. 18 OZ – Steakhouse Resto! – International buffet Sennara – Lebanese seafood The Village Club – International Wokcano – Asian
Al Khalidiyah 5. Bord Eau, Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat al Beri 6. Marco Pierre White Steakhouse & Grill, Fairmont Bab al Bahr 7. Filini, Radisson Blu 8. Le Deck, Monte-Carlo Beach Club
Choose steak, salad and seafood from the à la carte menu and enjoy a dazzling view of the city as you dine at Horizon before heading to Blueline Bar for a nightcap. Blueline Bar – Bar Horizon – International Horizon Restaurant – International West Side – International
Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas
Saadiyat Island 6 8
The Café will play host to an international buffet featuring an array of Arabian specialities for iftar this month priced at AED170 per person. For some of the best steak in town, book a table in the evenings at Park Bar & Grill, where grade A cuts of beef are complemented by premium vintages from the venue's extensive wine cellar. Beach House – Mediterranean Park Bar & Grill – Steak and seafood/bar The Café – International The Library – Tea lounge The Park Bar – Cocktail bar
Park Inn Yas Island, Abu Dhabi
Every Wednesday Ameringo's Mexican Bar & Restaurant honours the simple steak. Choose your favourite cut from a wide selection and complemenet it with a range of sauces and sides. Amerigos Mexican Bar & Restaurant – Mexican Mint – International buffet
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Soak up the creative atmosphere at Teatro and take your pick from the mouthwatering selection of fushion dishes on the menu which hail from Thailand, Japan, Italy, India, China and beyond. To sample some authentic Arabian cuisine book a place at the Ginger All-Day Dining iftar where guests can enjoy an iftar buffet for AED160. Ginger All-Day Dining – International buffet Cooper's Bar & Restaurant – British gastro pub Teatro – International
Radisson Blu Hotel, Abu Dhabi Yas Island
Assymetri is holding an iftar buffet every night throughout Ramandan for AED145 per person. Groups of 40 or more guests can enjoy the lavish spread at a discounted rate of AED99 per person. Assymetri – International buffet Fast Track Lobby Bar – Cocktail lounge Filini – Italian restaurant and bar
Ritz-carlton abu dhabi. grand canal
Bain Al Jessrain Executive chef David Gache and his team have created a sumptuous feast of traditional Arabian cuisine featuring live cooking stations, hot and cold mezzah and a mouthwatering camel and lamb ouzi. Nearby Dolce, the coffee and sweets café, will set the stage as an elaborate dessert and shisha haven available for guests to enjoy late into the night Giornotte – International The Forge – Steak house Li Jiang – Asian Mijana – Lebanese Sorso – Bar Dolce – Italian Café Al Fresco – Pool bar Alba – lobby lounge
ROSEWOOD ABU DHABI
Al Maryah Island Sambusek serves authentic Lebanese fare with an emphasis on fresh seafood while Aqua offers a special antipasti selection for lunch to accompany à la carte dishes based on Northern Italian cuisine. For a romantic meal in a cozy setting head straight to Catalan. Catalan – Spanish La Cava – Wine cellar Hidden Bar – Lounge bar Aqua – Italian Sambusek – Lebanese
AL MAQTA HOTEL
Al Riyadiya Soak up the sultry atmosphere at Rouge, where a blend of Chinese and Japanese dishes are served then head upstairs to Blue, where a bar made from semi-precious stones and sultry mood lighting sets the tone. Oro – Italian Oceana Grill – International Rouge – Asian Brown's Tea Lounge – Light bites Noche – South American Blue – Cocktail bar
Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri
Bain Al Jessrain Make your way to Sofra Bld for an iftar buffet featuring traditional Arabian cuisine complete with tasty Ramadan juices for AED199 per person. Al Hanah – Wine bar Bord Eau – French Hoi An – Vietnamese Pearls & Caviar – Mediterranean restaurant and bar Shang Palace – Chinese Sofra bld – International
Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort
Al Markaziyah A daily iftar will be held at Flavours throughout the month of Ramadan while sohour is ailable at Bravo Tapas Bar & Restaurant with shisha, snacks and seasonal games. Those who want to sample some authentic Latin American cuisine can head over to El Sombrero Mexican Restaurant where the chef will be whipping up traditional chiles rellenos from July 15 to 31. B-Lounge by Beachcomber – Outdoor lounge Bravo Tapas Bar & Restaurant – Spanish Cloud Nine – International El Sombrero Mexican Restaurant – Mexican Flavours – International La Mamma – Italian The Tavern – English pub The Beachcomber – Tapas
Sheraton Khalidiya Hotel
Al Khalidiyah Downtown restaurant has a three-course set dinner menu every night starting from AED99, which includes soup, main course and dessert. During the day there is a business lunch from noon to 4pm for AED85. Downtown – International La Veranda – International buffet The 3rd Avenue – Bar
Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche
Al Markaziyah Feast on fresh Gulf seafood prepared in a French style at La Mer or dine on aromatic Thai cuisine at while Silk and Spice. Throughout Ramadan, diners can enjoy a feast of Arabian and International cuisine at the Corniche All Day Dining iftar. Corniche All Day Dining – International Jazz ’N Fizz Bar – bar La Mer – French seafood Silk and Spice – Thai
The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort
Saadiyat Island Soak up the stunning view of Saadiyat Beach while enjoying exquisite fare at Southeast Asian eaterie, Sontaya or head down to Turquoiz and select some seafood specialities from the new menu. 55th&5th, The Grill – Steakhouse Olea – Mediterranean Sontaya – Southeast Asian Turquoiz – Seafood
T HE GUI D E / T A S T E
Yas Island Eateries
The Royal Hotel Abu Dhabi
Al Markaziyah Al Hawara offers Lebanese cuisine on the rooftop with stunning views of the sea while Basil serves tasty Indian fare, including some very spicy curries. Al Hawara – Lebanese Basil – Indian Optimist – International
Al Ain Rotana Hotel
The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa
At Zest, there’s steak ‘n’ barbecue night every Monday from 6.30 to 10.30pm where guests can select their favourite cuts to be grilled before their eyes for AED168 per person. Seafood night at Zest takes place every Wednesday from 6.30 to 10.30pm and costs AED185 per person.
Sas Al Nakhl Mouthwatering pastillas and delicious tagine followed by exotic desserts are on the enormous menu at Agadir, which serves some of the best Moroccan cuisine in town. Relax after a game of golf at The Retreat or round off the night with a cocktail at Lemon & Lime.
Agadir – Moroccan Fairways – International Lemon & Lime – Bar The Retreat – Bar
Afya – International buffet Afya Beach Lounge – Barbecue
Ayla Restaurant will host an elaborate iftar buffet every evening throughout Ramadan for AED95 per person. Children under 12 years of age will receive a 50 percent discount on the feast while the under sixes dine free of charge. Larger groups of 100 guests or more can book the Bawadi Ballroom which has been adorned with Ramadan-themed decorations to provide a perfect iftar setting.
Yas Island Rotana
Ayla Restaurant – International Tamra Cafe – Tea lounge
Danat Al Ain Resort
Some of the best steaks in town are accompanied by a selection of fine wines from Argentina, America and Australia at Blue Grill. A wide selection of cuisines from across the world is available at the Choices buffet.
Al Nyadat East
Best for stunning views: Nautilus – Yas Viceroy Abu Dhabi hotel Overlooking the Yas Marina, this Abu Dhabi seafood restaurant is one of the city's most alluring dining destinations. Contact 02 6560600. Best for 'steak lovers': Blue Grill Steakhouse – Yas Island Rotana Hearty steaks from the US and Australian Prime Angus Beef are the star dishes of this trendy restaurant, with choice cuts chargrilled to order. Contact 02 6564000. Best for a taste of the exotic: Jing Asia – Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi Yas Island Chefs prepare pan-Asian food to order from live cooking stations, creating a fun and interactive atmosphere. Contact 02 6563053. Best for a lively atmosphere: Amerigos Mexican Bar and Restauant – Park Inn by Radisson Abu Dhabi, Yas Island For creative dishes including prawn ceviche, quesadillas, fajitas and enchiladas. Contact 02 6562222.
Bain Al Jessrain Enjoy flavours from around the world in the beachfront Ramadan tent where the culinary team from Afya have prepared a lavish iftar spread for AED130 per person complete with Arabian deserts and Ramadan juices.
Blue Grill – Steakhouse Choices – International buffet Rangoli – Indian Y Bar – Bar
The Wok has a seafood night every Tuesday for AED99. Alternatively, visit Arabesque on Thursdays for its buffet of lobster, shrimps, oysters and mussels, for AED140.
9. Park Bar & Grill, Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas 10. Sayad, Emirates Palace 11. Bubbalicious Brunch, The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa
Al Nawafeer Terrace – Arabic snacks and shisha Arabesque – International Horse & Jockey Pub – English pub Luce – Italian restaurant and nightclub Shooters – Sports bar Tanjore – Indian The Wok – Asian
Yas Viceroy ABU DHABI
Indulge in an Arabian feast at award-winning Atayeb where Chef Wafaei and his team have prepared an elaborate buffet of traditional dishes. Diners can enjoy the mellow sounds of live oud music and listen to tales from Arabian Nights as they enjoy their meal before retiring to Luna Lounge where an air-condition tent has been erected for shisha and tea overlooking the race track at Yas Marina Circuit. Food will be served from sunset onwards for AED175 per person or AED120 a head if you join them for sohour, which is available from 9.30pm to 2am.
Hilton Al Ain
Feast on Arabic food at Makani Café then enjoy shisha under the stars in the gardens accompanied by Arabic music from 8pm to 1am. Casa Romana Restaurant – Italian Flavours – International Makani Café – Arabic Paco’s – Tex-Mex Snooker Bar – Sports bar
Mercure Grand Hotel Jebel Hafeet
Amici – Italian Angar – Indian Atayeb – Arabic Kazu – Japanese Nautilus – Seafood Noodle Box – Asian Origins – International buffet Rush – Cocktail bar Skylite – Cabana lounge
Eden Rock serves tasty Arabian fare while at Lawrence’s Lounge Ladies receive a free cocktail on Thursday nights. Eden Rock – Arabic Le Belvedere – French-Mediterranean Lawrence's Lounge – Bar Orient Café – Oriental
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Min Zaman – Lebanese Moodz – Lounge bar and club Trader Vic’s – French Polynesian restaurant and bar Zest – International
Traders Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri
Best for authentic Italian: Filini – Radisson Blu Hotel, Abu Dhabi Yas Island Savour simple Italian dishes from the seasonal menu in a contemporary setting. Contact 02 6562000.
Danat Jebel Dhanna Resort
Tides serves Asian and Continental dishes while Zaitoun offers Italian fine dining Relax at Gazebo with a shisha in the evenings. C-View – Lobby lounge Gazebo – Shisha café L’Attitude – Cocktail bar and lounge Tides – International Zaitoun – Italian
Desert Islands Resort & Spa
Sir Bani Yas Island Book a table on the terrace at Amwaj restaurant and enjoy a selection of dishes from the modern tapas style menu in a stunning, waterfront setting before indulging in some of the chef's homemade ice cream. Alternatively, dine on delectable seafood at Samak, where the resident salt guru can advise you on the best condiments to complement your dish. Samak – Seafood The Lounge – Lounge bar Amwaj - Tapas The Palm – International
Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara
Liwa Desert Treat the taste buds to an eclectic feast at the Al Waha buffet, which features food from countries around the world. Prices range from AED130 per person for breakfast to AED175 for lunch and AED200 for dinner. Book the couple's dine-by-design experience and enjoy a tent to yourselves in the middle of the dunes with a private butler to wait on you. Prices start at AED520 for the four-course meal option. Al Liwan – Lobby lounge and bar Al Waha – International/Emirati Ghadeer – Mediterranean Suhail – Steakhouse
Tilal Liwa Hotel
Madinat Zayed Enjoy Thursday's seafood barbecue night at Al Badiya restaurant for AED160 or book a table during the week for delicious international cuisine Al Badiya – International Al Liwan – Snacks Layali – Bar
As a general rule, all hotels will add a 10 percent charge to restaurant bills in addition to the six percent fee levied by the government. Most menus state whether these taxes have already been incorporated into the meal prices or not but check with the waiter if it is unclear.
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THE HERITAGE VILLAGE Designed to resemble a traditional oasis village, this quaint attraction provides an interesting glimpse into the emirate’s past. There’s a Bedouin tent, reconstructions of original date palm houses, an example of the ancient falaj irrigation system and a small spice shop selling dried herbs and other trinkets.
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bin t ed e m tre al mushrif s m a a oh if children garden m hal al mushrif k palace abu dhabi equestrian club & abu dhabi golf club
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Al Maha Arjaan by Rotana C3 Al Maqta Hotel G7 Aloft Abu Dhabi F7 Al Raha Beach Hotel M5 Al Rawda Arjaan by Rotana D4 Armed Forces Officers’ Club and Hotel G8 7 Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi D3 8 Centro Capital Centre by Rotana F7 9 Centro Yas Island M4 10 Cristal Hotel Abu Dhabi C3 11 Cristal Salam Hotel D3 1 2 3 4 5 6
12 Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi C3 13 Crowne Plaza, Abu Dhabi
Yas Island M4 14 Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi E5 15 Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara G6 16 Emirates Palace A5 17 Fairmont Bab Al Bahr H7 18 Grand Millennium Al Wahda D4 19 Hala Arjaan D2 20 Hilton Abu Dhabi B4 21 Hyatt Capital Gate Hotel F7 22 InterContinental Abu Dhabi B5 23 Jumeirah at Etihad Towers B5
sh k pa hal rk ifa
abu dhabi national exhibition centre
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MINISTRY OF INTERIOR
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Abu Dhabi TOURIST MAP HOTELS
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EMIRATES PALACE The iconic palace stands in pride of place at the tip of the Abu Dhabi Corniche and embodies the luxury lifestyle the capital has cultivated. Until recently the most expensive hotel ever to be built, the impressive structure is richly adorned with precious materials. 12 different shades of marble can be spotted in the cavernous atrium, while the central dome holds dual records as both the largest in the world and the greatest gilded expanse ever created in one building.
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by Rotana B5 25 Le Méridien Abu Dhabi D3 26 Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi C3 27 Mercure Centre Hotel C3 28 Millennium Hotel Abu Dhabi C3 29 Novotel Abu Dhabi Gate I8 30 One to One Hotels - The Village D4 31 Oryx Hotel B4 32 Park Inn, Abu Dhabi Yas Island M4 33 Park Arjaan by Rotana H6 34 Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas G1 35 Park Rotana H6
36 Radisson Blu Hotel, Abu Dhabi
M4 Yas Island 37 Rosewood Abu Dhabi D3 38 Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri H7 39 Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort C2 40 Sheraton Khalidiya C3 41 Sofitel, Abu Dhabi Corniche C3 42 Staybridge Suites, Abu Dhabi Yas Island M4 43 St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort F1 44 The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, H7 Grand Canal 45 The Royal Hotel Abu Dhabi D3
46 The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf
Resort & Spa
47 Traders Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri H7 48 Yas Island Rotana M4 49 Yas Viceroy M4
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Abu Dhabi Mall D3 Al Muhairy Centre C4 Al Raha Mall M5 Al Wahda Mall D4 Avenue at Eithad Towers B5
YAS WATERWORLD Yas Waterworld is the newest addition to the islandâ€™s impressive portfolio of sport and leisure attractions. Included among the 43 rides, slides and attractions here is the first hydromagnetic-powered six-person Tornado waterslide and the largest FlowBarrel 10 Double sheet-wave ride in the world.
FERRARI WORLD ABU DHABI The first ever Ferrari theme park is home to Formula Rossa, the fastest roller coaster on the planet, which reaches speeds of up to 240 kilometres per hour. Other rides include G-Force, which climbs up through the open roof, affording spectacular views of Yas Island, before hurtling 62 metres back to earth and the Fiorano GT Challenge, which offers an exhilarating simulated racing experience. There are rides for all the family here, from fast-paced coasters to leisurely tours and interactive games.
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SHEIKH ZAYED GRAND MOSQUE Built by the late Sheikh Zayed to help build a bridge between faiths and create greater cross-cultural understanding, the Grand Mosque is a must-see for any visitor to Abu Dhabi. The third-largest mosque in the world, this majestic structure is wrought from over 1,000 columns and 82 domes embellished with semi-precious stones, gold and marble. Inside, the spectacle is equally impressive with glittering chandeliers, spectacular floral motifs adorning the walls and a vast hand-woven Persian carpet in the main prayer hall.
AL MAQTAA BRIDGE
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16 Marina Mall 17 Paris Gallery 18 The Souk at Qaryat Al Beri
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YAS MARINA CIRCUIT Home to the annual Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Yas Marina Circuit is one of the capitalâ€™s most famous sporting attractions. Visitors can experience it all year round at one of the many events on the annual calendar or on a tour that takes in its state of the art facilities, from the drag strip and karting centre to the track itself, which boasts the longest straight in Formula 1.
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J HERITAGE/CULTURE Al Hosn Palace Al Qibab Art Gallery (Villa 3, Street 5, Al Zaab) 1 2
Ask the concierge desk for a copy of the Concierge Abu Dhabi foldout map with tips on what to see and do in the city
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6 Boutik Mall 7 Carpet Souk 8 Central Market 9 Dalma Mall 10 Fotouh Al Khair Centre 11 Hamdan Centre 12 Iranian Souk 13 Khalidiya Mall 14 Liwa Centre 15 Madinat Zayed Shopping
and Gold Centre
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3 Cultural Foundation C4 4 Falcon Hospital N5 5 Gallery One A1 6 Ghaf Art Gallery C5 7 Hemisphere Design Studio & Gallery D3 8 Heritage Village B4 9 Manarat Al Saadiyat E1 10 Salwa Zeidan Gallery C5
Abu Dhabi City Golf Club Abu Dhabi Golf Club Al Ghazal Golf Club Saadiyat Beach Golf Club Yas Links
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Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre Al Bateen Dhow Yard Al Maqtaa Bridge Breakwater Bus & Taxi Terminal
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Emirates Palace Ittihad Square Khalifa Mosque Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
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Second Mosque 11 Volcano Fountain
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SPORTS AND ACTIVITIES Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club Abu Dhabi Sailing & Sub Aqua Club 1 2
Al Forsan International Sports Resort Art Marine yacht charters Falcon Aviation Services (helipad base) 6 Ferrari World Abu Dhabi 7 International Marine Sports Club 8 Monte Carlo Beach Club 9 Shooting (Caracal Shooting Club) 10 Yas Marina Circuit 11 Yas Waterworld 12 Zayed Sports City
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My life in Abu Dhabi Rashad al Ghadban, public relations manager at Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi, offers an insight into both culture and entertainment in the UAE capital
1 Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi 2 Al Hosn Fort
I moved to the UAE capital in July last year to take up my post at Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi. Before that I lived in Lebanon where my family is originally from. Abu Dhabi is one of the best cities in the Middle East to live and work in, thanks to a great infrastructure, a high quality of life and a pleasant working culture. It also has a richly cosmopolitan society and offers a really welcoming environment for newcomers from all over the world. Visitors will find excellent opportunities here for exploring Emirati culture with plenty of historic sights, including the beautiful Al Hosn Fort in addition to more modern features, such as the up-and-coming Saadiyat Cultural District that will soon be home to the Louvre Abu Dhabi, Guggenheim Abu Dhabi and Zayed National Museum, among other institutions.
All this is mapped out in an interesting interactive exhibition at Manarat al Saadiyat, which is well worth visiting. There’s also a great place to eat here called Fanr restaurant that serves an excellent selection of traditional Arabic dishes and some delicious light bites. Just down the road from Saadiyat Island is Yas Island, which is the best place to go in Abu Dhabi for sport and leisure activities. It’s not just the highprofile attractions that make Yas Island the capital’s entertainment hub but also the huge number of events that take place here throughout the year. There’s always something exciting going on in Abu Dhabi, whether it’s the much-anticipated annual Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, which takes place in the first weekend of November every year, or a major international star brought over to appear live in concert.
Visitors will find excellent opportunities here for exploring Emirati culture with plenty of historic sights, including the beautiful Al Hosn Fort
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Published on Jun 26, 2013