tours Let those in the know showcase their city
brilliant brunches, cool cafés and gourmet delights
barter in the souks thrilling ways to and trawl the discover the best mega malls of the emirate
never miss a beat at these lively venues
YOUR GUIDE tO DUbaI’s mUst-havE vIsItOR ExpERIEncEs
Wellness Hours at Saray Spa. Renew for the journey ahead with 50% off massages.
Surrender your senses with treatments designed to rejuvenate your body, mind and soul every Sunday to Thursday. Book any massage between 9am to 2pm and receive 50% off. The price is based on the spa treatment selected. Saray Spa received an award for Best Male Spa at the World Luxury Spa Awards 2017 and Best Hydrotherapy Treatment at the Middle East Pool & Spa Awards 2016.
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai | Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay, PO Box 121000, Dubai, UAE T +971 4 414 6754 / 6755 | email@example.com | jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com
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*Terms & Conditions: Offer is valid until 31st August 2018. and subject to availability. Indulge in additional facilities such as Swedish Dry Sauna, Steam Sauna, Circulation Shower, Jacuzzi and a relaxation lounge. Not valid on public holidays. The 50% off is applicable on spa only, and the offer is excluding lunch.
Welcome to Dubai
e know it can feel a little overwhelming when you first set foot in Dubai. How exactly do you explore this ultra-modern metropolis? Where do you start? We love Dubai and we want to ensure that you feel the same, which is why we decided to create this handy-sized, helpful guide to ease you on your way.
Editorial Editorial Director John Thatcher Managing Editor Faye Bartle Art Art Director Kerri Bennett Designer Jamie Pudsey Commercial Managing Director Victoria Thatcher Group Commercial Director David Wade Commercial Director Rawan Chehab
Rather than present you with a long list of recommendations that would take you the duration of your holiday to read, our Dubai-based team of in-the-know writers has cherry-picked the city’s best bits, leaving you free to simply enjoy it. From the best restaurants with views to write home about to the boutiques brimming with homegrown designs, the coolest clubs and topnotch family entertainment – it's all inside these pages. We’ll also tell you which of the many organised tours are the best to take to see all the city’s ample attractions. All you need to do is enjoy the holiday of a lifetime. John Thatcher Editorial Director DXB City Expert Jumeirah Open Beach
Senior Advertising Manager Mia Cachero
Cover image: Skydive Dubai Images: Getty Images
Production Production Manager Muthu Kumar
F R I DAY
Treat yourself to a tantalising Friday Brunch to remember at Crescendo, Anantara The Palm. Experience a mouth-watering culinary journey through a selection of global ﬂavours in a relaxed, yet lively setting for friends and family. Every Friday 1.00 pm – 4.00 pm AED 365 per person, including soft beverages AED 525 per person, including house beverages AED 630 per person, including Italian sparkling AED 735 per person, including bubbly *Inclusive of 10% Municipality Fee, 10% Service Charge and 5% VAT
LIFE IS A JOURNEY. Visit anantara.com ANANTARA THE PALM DUBAI RESORT P.O. BOX 71607, EAST CRESCENT, PALM JUMEIRAH, DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES T +971 4 567 8304 • F +971 4 567 8009 • E firstname.lastname@example.org
The CONTeNTS Dubai Marina
The experts are on hand to help you discover the best bits of Dubai and beyond
Underwater, on the water, on the sand and in the snow: the ways to explore Dubai
So ThiS iS Dubai
Before you set off on the holiday of a lifetime, here's a quick history lesson
All you need to know when you From fine dining to homegrown touch down in Dubai, with top eateries and deliciously bellytips on getting around busting brunches
From hip hangouts to live music venues, we've rounded up the liveliest evening venues
The skinny on the top tourist districts to discover, including the most happening 'hoods
Trawl the mega malls and barter in the traditional souks â€“ it's time to hit the shops
Dubai is a dream destination for photography fans â€“ we showcase one stunning shot
GeT your bearinGS
in The frame
Produced for dnata by HOT Media Publishing FZ LLC. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from HOT Media Publishing is strictly prohibited. All prices mentioned are correct at the time of press but may change. HOT Media Publishing does not accept liability for omissions or errors contained in DXB City Expert.
Experience Polynesia in the heart of Dubai Parks and Resorts Step into an exciting world of curiosity with an unforgettable stay at Lapita, a unique gateway to the endless fun and enjoyment on offer at Dubai Parks and Resorts. Create moments to treasure with friends and family when you stay within Polynesian inspired rooms with complimentary theme park tickets*, bond over a meal at amazing restaurants or unwind at the Lapita lazy river. Exactly like nothing else.
Book now at lapitadubaihotel.com Tel +971 4 810 9999 Lapita, Dubai Parks and Resorts, Autograph Collection Hotels Dubai Parks and Resorts, Sheikh Zayed Road, P.O. Box 334221, Dubai, UAE LapitaHotel | LapitaHotel | LapitaHotelDubai *Terms and conditions apply
So thiS iS Dubai
Get the skinny on the city with a quick history lesson. Armed with knowledge, head out to discover all the emirate has to offer for the holiday of a lifetime
Explore the ambient souks with Arabian Adventures
SCRATCH BENEATH THE SURFACE A city of visual superlatives, it’s difficult to imagine Dubai without the gravitydefying presence of Burj Khalifa, the roar of supercars along its highways and wealth of plush malls, luxury hotels and record-breaking attractions. Back in 1833, the nomadic Bani Yas tribe – led by the Maktoum family – migrated from the country’s desert interior to what was just a small coastal fishing, pearling and trading settlement. Nothing much changed for the next 100 years until Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum became ruler and ordered that Dubai Creek be dredged to accommodate larger trading vessels, thus setting in motion the transformation of Dubai into a modern mega city. The discovery of ‘black gold’ in 1966
was the real game-changer with newly found oil wealth the catalyst for the establishment of the United Arab Emirates. In an historic first, the ruling tribes of Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah came together on 2 December 1971, followed by Ras Al Khaimah one year later, to form the country. Under the leadership of the UAE’s first president, the late Sheikh Zayed (ruler of Abu Dhabi), and with the can-do attitude of Sheikh Rashid and support of the rulers of the other five emirates, the rest, as they say, is history. The modern-day metropolis you’ve seen on TV is every bit as exciting as you can imagine. For a rich experience, we recommend that you get out onto the city streets, meet some of the more than 200 nationalities who are proud
to call Dubai home, and discover just what makes this one of the best destinations in the world to visit. The climate In April it’s getting hotter with temperatures reaching a peak of around 33°C (91°F) and lots of sunshine – be sure to slather on the suncream. The currency The UAE Dirham is what you’ll use. Notes come in 1,000, 500, 200, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5, and their value is pegged at Dhs3.67 = USD1. The weekend The UAE weekend falls on Friday/ Saturday. Friday is the holy day so bear in mind that some attractions may be closed until the early evening.
Youâ€™ve arrived and you want to get to your hotel ASAP. Read our quick tips to get you out of the airport and into holiday mode, pronto Marhaba meet and greet service
LEAVING THE AIRPORT There are plenty of public taxis available at the airport, although you may need to queue. Women can get a step ahead by hopping into one of the pink-roofed taxis reserved especially for female travellers and families, and driven by ladies. Your fare will include a set airport pick-up fee of Dhs25. Dubai International Airport is also connected to Dubai Metro at Terminals 1 and 3, with trains departing every 10 minutes from 5am (or 10am on Friday) to midnight Saturday to Wednesday and until 1am on Thursday and Friday. If youâ€™ve got extra baggage, best take a taxi, as metro travellers are restricted to one regular suitcase and one piece of hand luggage only.
All the major car hire companies have desks located after arrivals. Drivers must be at least 21 years old and in possession of a valid driving licence from their home country. Remember, we drive on right-hand side here.
When the time comes to leave, you'll enjoy a chauffeur pick-up from anywhere in Dubai, a quick journey through departures and access to the Marhaba lounge, where you can unwind and help yourself to the complimentary food and drink.
WHIZZ THROUGH WITH MARHABA
Take a load off by booking a Marhaba service (+971 4 389 8989, marhabaservices.com) that will help you make a speedy arrival and departure. When you touch down, the friendly staff will be waiting with a buggy transfer to passport control, where you'll be fast-tracked through the queue before a porter collects your luggage from the carousel.
You can pick up a visitor sim card for local use at the airport for just Dhs35. This connects you to the Visitor Mobile Line (VML) service for calls and texts at a fraction of roaming charges. Simply head to the Du shop in the arrivals hall at Terminals 1 and 3. Top it up easily with prepaid cards sold at all major convenience stores, supermarkets and Du outlets (du.ae) across the city.
Get Your BearinGs
If it's your first time in the city, you're probably not au fait with the hip and happening 'hoods. Here's the low-down on the top tourist districts to explore
XLine Dubai Marina
DOWNTOWN DUBAI Go big or go home is the name of the game here, with the area boasting an impressive collection of iconic attractions, including the world’s largest retail and entertainment destination, the tallest tower, a dancing fountain and spectacular opera house. You can easily spend an entire day trawling The Dubai Mall's 1,200 shops, posing for selfies along the Waterfront Promenade and enjoying dinner and drinks overlooking The Dubai Fountain. The Arabic-style shopping mall Souk Al Bahar has 22 eclectic venues to discover alone. Tick Burj Khalifa off your must-see list
DUBAI MARINA AND JBR Those with a taste for luxury will feel right at home in this vibrant district, which is one of the city's most popular residential neighbourhoods. Built around a man-made marina and flanked by a virtual forest of residential towers, Dubai Marina boasts two beachfront promenades – The Walk and The Beach at JBR. These are lined with hotels, eateries and super trendy shops. It’s largely pedestrian friendly but is bisected by Dubai Tram, which handily stops outside the popular Dubai Marina Mall, home to 140 retail outlets spread across four levels.
FIRST IMPRESSIONS Burj Al Arab Jumeirah and Wild Wadi Water Park
Marvel at the engineering feat that is Palm Jumeirah
JUMEIRAH The low-rise villa neighbourhood that spawned the Jumeirah Jane epithet (think 'ladies who lunch'), Jumeirah's domestic suburbia reputation has been given a makeover in recent years with the development of hip new retail, dining and entertainment enclaves such as La Mer, BoxPark, City Walk and food truck friendly Jumeirah Corniche. Topped at one end by Jumeirah Mosque and tailed by Burj Al Arab and the Madinat Jumeirah complex at the other, it’s a cross-cultural hotspot. Wild Wadi Water Park is a firm favourite among residents and tourists alike, offering 30 hair-raising rides and slides for all the family.
PALM JUMEIRAH Another of Dubai’s iconic man-made projects – best viewed from above to fully appreciate its creatively engineered design – Palm Jumeirah blends posh apartments and villas with luxury hotels and malls all the way from its trunk to the tips of its feathered fronds. Ride the Palm Monorail to Atlantis The Palm, Dubai and enjoy the thrills and spills of Aquaventure Waterpark. Be sure to check out the bevy of five-star hotels and their various eateries along the 11km-long crescent, from One&Only The Palm Resort to Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort.
Discover the historic charm of 'old Dubai' with Arabian Adventures
SHEIKH ZAYED ROAD The pulsing arterial vein cutting through the city, this 8km-long stretch of highway runs parallel to the coastline and is always busy. Numerous hotels are situated along its length, including JW Marriott Marquis Dubai – the world's tallest hotel. Gawp at the engineering marvel that is Dubai Water Canal or take a stroll and feel the grass beneath your toes at the popular Zabeel Park. Dubai Water Canal and JW Marriott Marquis Dubai
BUR DUBAI AND DEIRA On either side of Dubai Creek you can discover the heritage heartland of the city. Feed your appetite for culture on the Bur Dubai side at Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood, which is home to preserved wind tower houses, Dubai Museum and Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum House (one of the oldest buildings in the city). Take a Dhs1 ferry ride across the water to Deira to explore the traditional souks and sample the street food.
Brought to you by City Sightseeing, a dnata associate company; and Costa Coffee, an Emirates Leisure Retail brand
SO THIS IS DUBAI
April in DubAi
Get up off that sun lounger, there’s a world of activities and events to check out this month
join the frow
Junne Couture at Dubai Fashion Week
Admire the artistry at Dubai Fashion Week, which shines a light on readyto-wear and couture designers from Europe and the Middle East. Showcased under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Hend Al Qassemi, the fashion extravaganza is set to be a chic affair with a stellar line-up of runway shows. Mingle with stylists, editors and models, and you may even catch a glimpse of VIP guests such as Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana (granddaughter of the late king of Thailand) and Queen Zaynab of Nigeria. Taking place at Palazzo Versace Dubai from 26-28 April. It's free to attend, but reservations are a must. Email email@example.com
VAn GoGh AliVe Immerse yourself in the world of Van Gogh at this multi-sensory exhibition the whole family can enjoy. Van Gogh Alive – The Experience, taking place at Dubai Design District (d3) until 23 April, invites you to wander through the galleries and let the wave of light, colour and sound wash over you. It'll feel as if you're stepping right into his paintings. Tickets cost Dhs70 for adults and Dhs65 for kids. Available via the Dubai Calendar app, see visitdubai.com
be a super fan Natalia Dyer, star of Stranger Things, is among the celebs attending Middle east film & Comic Con – the region’s largest pop culture festival taking place from 5-7 April at Dubai World Trade Centre. Super fans can get their geek on and meet the actors and artists behind top titles such as Wonder Woman, Wolverine and Suicide Squad. Tickets are available at mefcc.com and Virgin Megastore outlets in the GCC.
All you need is a full day of fun with thrilling rides combined with delicious dining experience of our gourmet meals, join us at Wild Wadi Waterparkâ„˘ in a perfect location between Burj Al Arab Jumeirah and Jumeirah Beach Hotel. Buy your ticket online today on wildwadi.com or call us on +971 4 348 4444
worldtravellermagazine.com Your passport to the Middle East's first fully bookable travel inspiration website
Extend your journey with World Traveller magazine by heading online to read more inspirational and exclusive travel content and take advantage of upto-the-minute hotel and holiday features
Dream Read Click Book
THE TOURS Nature Safari
Bags unpacked, suncream slathered on â€“ itâ€™s time to get out and see what this city is all about. Take a cue from our friends at Arabian Adventures and City Sightseeing who are on hand to help you discover the best bits with their selection of top tours
TradiTional dubai CiTy Tour A ‘must-do’ for any visitor to the emirate
Take an abra ride across Dubai Creek
ask The CiTy experT MuhaMMaD Younus Tour guide, Arabian Adventures My favourite parts of the tour are stopping by the Gold Souk and the Spice Souk. The mixture of nationalities you meet at these marketplaces offers a truly authentic experience for all.
Departs from all emirates Discover the old, traditional neighbourhoods of Dubai and explore the city's rich heritage and trading culture, on top of browsing many vibrant souks.
Souk and Gold Souk ● Take the transfer back to your hotel
The FacTs how much: Dhs184 including VAT. english departures:
● Head to Jumeirah Mosque for a photo opportunity ● Continue to Zabeel Palace for another photo stop and onto the traditional side of Dubai ● Pass by Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood, which is known for its wind towers, and on towards Dubai Creek ● Visit Dubai Museum ● Take a traditional abra (water taxi) ride, crossing over Dubai Creek ● Follow our entertaining guide through the Spice
Daily (afternoon). Languages: English and German (daily); French and Italian (Sun, Weds, Fri); Portuguese, Spanish and Mandarin (Sat, Mon, Weds); Japanese (mornings on Sun-Sat and Fri afternoons); Russian (Mon and Thurs). availability: Year-round. Duration: Half- or full-day. Transport: Coach. activity: Moderate. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
Shop for treasures at the Gold Souk
WalkinG Food Tour oF dubai Discover the culinary highlights of the historic quarter
ask The CiTy experT aLex hevorhian Tour guide, Arabian Adventures Over 200 nationalities live in Dubai, adding to the variety of flavours on the food scene. The best way to delve in is by dining at all the hidden gems and all-time favourite eateries that feature in this tour.
Uncover the emirate's hidden dining gems
Pick the brains of your expert guide
Admire the street art
Departs from Dubai, sharjah and ajman Step away from the glitz and glamour and sample a variety of local street food flavours at the vibrant canteens frequented by the residents of Dubai. Uncover hidden gems of the city as you stroll along the historic 2nd December Street. Learn more about the culture and heritage of the Middle East from your entertaining and informative guide.
● Stroll through one of the older neighbourhoods and stop for a traditional Arabic fruit cocktail ● Meander further through the streets passing traditional and curio stores and learn some interesting facts from your guide ● Away from the five-star restaurants, experience this vibrant neighbourhood and sample dates, samosas and Arabic sweets, and pass by a fresh fish trading shop
● Learn more about the local culture by visiting a traditional abaya store and an oud (perfume) shop ● Stop for a meal at a classic street food canteenstyle restaurant considered a hidden gem in the city
availability: Winter only (1 October to 30 April).
Duration: Around 3.5 hours. Transport: Coach. activity: Moderate. Dress code: Wear comfortable walking shoes. Good to know: Make sure you arrive hungry.
how much: Dhs278 including VAT.
Departures: Mon, Weds. Languages: English (other languages may be available
To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
deserT dune buGGies Ideal for thrill-seekers looking for their next big adventure
Embark on a high-octane adventure amid the dunes Photography: @theskybeyond
Departs from all emirates Try a truly exhilarating adventure driving across the dunes in the latest, fully automatic, four-seater, offroad dune buggies. ● Follow your guide along the natural trail of the dunes ● Driving and safety instructions, as well as safety gear, are provided ● All dune buggies are fully automatic with seatbelts, roll cages and off-road suspension
● Enjoy exciting photo opportunities ● Book an Exclusive Buggy for up to four friends and take turns to drive or ride as a passenger ● Book a Driver Experience and you will have the chance to drive for at least 20 minutes out of the twohour experience, as you take turns with up to three other guests in your shared buggy ● Book a Passenger
Experience and ride along with our safari guide in the lead buggy
The FacTs how much: Dhs730 for drivers and Dhs315 for passengers. An exclusive buggy for up to four guests is priced at Dhs1,575 (all prices including VAT). Departures: Daily. availability: Year-round. Duration: Two hours in the dune buggies.
Transport: Four-wheel drive (sharing) and Can-Am Maverick X3 desert dune buggies. activity: Moderate. Good to know: Drivers must bring a valid driver’s license. Passengers must be at least six years old. Refundable deposit required. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
Join this tour and a portion of your fee will go towards supporting local conservation Get an up-close view of wildlife
Departs from all emirates The desert presents a unique opportunity to learn about and explore the natural habitat and fragile ecosystem. Take a leisurely sightseeing drive across Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve with the chance to see Arabian wildlife and learn more about sustainability and conservation efforts. ● Drive through Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve where you may spot Arabian wildlife, such as Arabian oryx and gazelle ● Assist in capturing data for the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve ● Get a coveted behind-
the-scenes look at a conservation reserve ● Pass by local lakes for a fantastic photo opportunity ● Photograph the wildlife and learn interesting facts from your expert guide
The FacTs how much: Dhs231 including VAT.
Departures: Daily (morning). availability: Year-round. Duration: Half-day. Transport: Four-wheel drive (sharing).
activity: Moderate. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
Drive through Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve
Modern dubai CiTy Tour
See the best of Dubai’s iconic landmarks in one, awe-inspiring journey Departs from all emirates Explore the iconic landmarks that make up the city’s futuristic skyline. From Palm Jumeirah and Dubai Marina to Downtown Dubai and The Dubai Mall – this tour takes in all the highlights. ● See Palm Jumeirah on a scenic drive ● Continue to popular residential area Dubai Marina and enjoy a picturesque 20-minute boat ride ● Take a walk through retail and entertainment haven The Dubai Mall passing by Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, which features a 10-million-litre tank (one of the largest in the world) containing more than 33,000 aquatic animals including the largest collection of sand tiger sharks on the planet – it's also home to King Croc ● Visit the observation decks at At The Top, Burj Khalifa for a bird's eye view of the city (purchasing an entry ticket is an optional extra) ● Enjoy the afternoon at your leisure in The Dubai Mall with its many dining and entertainment options
The FacTs how much: Starting from Dhs184 for children and Dhs236 for adults (excluding At The Top) and Dhs315 for children and Dhs368 for adults (including At The Top). Prices inclusive of VAT. Departures: Daily (morning). Languages: English and German (daily); French and Italian (Sun, Weds, Fri); Spanish and Portuguese (Mon, Weds, Sat); Russian (Mon and Thurs); Mandarin (Mon, Weds, Sat); Japanese (Mon and Thurs). availability: Year-round. Duration: Half-day. Transport: Coach (sharing). activity: Moderate. Good to Know: Ends at The Dubai Mall. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
ask The CiTy experT nabil almallah
Set sail across Dubai Marina
Tour Guide, Arabian Adventures Guests really enjoy seeing the amazing architecture and modern sights of Dubai while learning more about the city on this half-day tour.
See all that's shiny and new
abu dhabi CiTy Tour
See the UAE’s vibrant capital and its landmark buildings Get a taste for the royal life at Emirates Palace
ask The CiTy experT natalia Bashkirova
Departs from Dubai, sharjah, ajman and abu Dhabi Explore the sights and landmarks of Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, on a full-day tour from Dubai. ● Stop for refreshments on Yas Island, with views of Yas Marina Circuit, home of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ● Visit the traditional fruit, vegetable and date market ● Pass by the dhow and fish market area and see traders at work ● Stop at Marina Mall and opt to have lunch at one of the cafés. (Lunch is not included in the tour price due to the variety of options available) ● Drive along Abu Dhabi Corniche ● Pass by Emirates Palace, the Al Bateen area and the royal palaces
● Take a tour of Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. ● Return to Dubai and back to your hotel.
Tour the majestic Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
Tour Guide, Arabian Adventures It is always a pleasure to guide my guests around the UAE capital. The highlight of the tour is undoubtedly Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque – a masterpiece of modern Islamic architecture with a spectacularly decorated interior.
The FacTs how much: Dhs289 including VAT.
english departures: Mon, Tue, Wed, Sat.
Languages: English and German (Mon, Tues, Weds and Sat); French and Italian (Tues and Sat); Russian (Weds and Sat); Japanese only (Sun and Weds). availability: Year-round. Duration: Full-day. Transport: Coach. activity: Easy. Dress code: There is a strictly modest dress code for Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
abu dhabi aTTraCTions
Visit Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and the exciting attractions on Yas Island Departs from Dubai, sharjah, ajman and abu Dhabi Visit the top attractions in Abu Dhabi on a fun-filled tour of the capital. ● The tour starts with pick-up at your hotel before heading to Abu Dhabi along Sheikh Zayed Road ● Stop at the majestic Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque for a tour. One the world’s largest mosques, it features 82 domes, over 1,000 columns, 24-karat gold gilded chandeliers and the world's largest hand knotted carpet ● After the tour, leave the city and drive onto Yas Island ● Choose to spend an exciting afternoon at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. Alternatively, visit the many shopping, dining and leisure attractions at Yas Mall ● After a thrilling afternoon, depart for Dubai and back to your hotel
The FacTs how much: Including Ferrari World Abu Dhabi: adult Dhs520, child Dhs394. Visiting Yas Mall: adult Dhs289, child Dhs184. Prices are VAT inclusive. english departures: Sun, Thurs. Languages: English and German (Sun and Thurs); French and Italian (Thurs); Portuguese and Spanish (Sun, Tues and Thurs); Russian (Sun and Thurs); Mandarin (Sun, Tues, Thurs). availability: Year-round. Duration: Full-day. Transport: Coach. activity: Easy. Dress code: There's a strictly modest dress code for Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Good to know: Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is one of the largest indoor theme parks in the world with rides and experiences for the whole family. The biggest mall in Abu Dhabi, Yas Mall comprises 25 million square feet of shops and entertainment. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
Brave the thrilling rides at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi
See the city's major landmarks on this fun tour
sundoWner dune dinner saFari Embark on a magical safari experience to remember
Ride the ships of the desert
ask The CiTy experT FaisaL Khan Safari guide, Arabian Adventures This must-do safari is suitable for everyone. At the campsite there are lots of activities to try, such as sand-boarding, camel rides and even a spot of star-gazing. Guests always say how the memories will last a lifetime.
Departs from all emirates The mysterious desert is the ideal venue for a memorable evening. Watch the sun go down as you drive to our traditional Bedouin style camp where a delicious dinner awaits. ● Leave your hotel and the city behind, driving into the desert in Land Cruisers with our entertaining safari guide ● Enjoy the thrill of a dune drive across Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve ● Stop for falcon viewing (weather permitting) ● At sunset, stop for photos atop a dune ● Arrive at our Bedouin-style camp where desert activities and a bonfire await ● Experience a taster of desert activities including a
camel ride, sand-boarding and henna hand painting or discover shisha ● Move to the seating area and sample an Arabic style, three-course buffet ● Those aged 21 years and over can enjoy unlimited beverages (except on the eve of religious holidays) ● Watch a belly dancing performance (entertainment may vary during Ramadan and religious holidays) ● Souvenirs and photos are available to buy
Transport: Four-wheel drive (sharing). activity: Easy.
Good to know: There’s the option to upgrade to a private four-wheel drive vehicle, or to skip the dune
drive altogether. Toilets are available at the campsite. To book this tour, call arabian adventures on +971 4 303 4992 or visit arabian-adventures.com
Tuck into an Arabic style buffet
The FacTs how much: Adult Dhs395, child Dhs320. Inclusive of VAT.
Departures: Daily. availability: Year-round. Duration: Late afternoon to early evening.
CiTy oF liGhTs niGhT Tour See the city come alive with light and illuminate the night's sky
● Discover two sightseeing routes showcasing Dubai by night ● See all the major sights, including Burj Khalifa and Atlantis The Palm, Dubai ● Audio commentary in 13 languages
See the city after dark
See Dubai transform after dark into a sparkling city of lights while discovering its cultural heart. The 'Sunset Red' route invites you to explore the historic Dubai Creek, along with the Bastakyia, Shindagha and Deira districts where the traditional souks are located. Meanwhile, the 'Midnight Blue' route showcases the striking skyline, including the glittering Burj Khalifa, Dubai Marina and Atlantis The Palm, Dubai.
The FacTs Days of operation: Daily from 6-10pm.
What’s included: Hop-on, hop-off access to all City
Sightseeing buses on two routes for three hours. Good to know: Tour is free when purchasing a 1 Day, 3 Day or 7 Day City Sightseeing Dubai Pass; both routes are included in the ticket price and there is enough time to do both. Languages: English, Arabic, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, Hindi, Russian, Mandarin, Japanese, Turkish and Farsi. how much: Dhs180 per adult and Dhs120 per child. (Children: aged 6-11). Prices are inclusive of VAT. To book please visit citysightseeing-dubai.com, or call 800csDuBai (800 273 8224)/+971 4 316 7506
Pass by iconic attractions
CiTy siGhTseeinG Tour The ultimate city bus tour, with lots of added extras
See the city from the open top of a double-decker bus
● Four sightseeing routes ● Audio commentary in 13 languages ● Complimentary tickets to other attractions (see below)
Discover Dubai at your own pace. The 'hop on, hop off' concept is simple: a ticket is valid for one day or more, with more than 40 bus stops spread across four city routes. You decide when to ride, where to get off, and what to visit. The tickets come with lots of added extras and commentary in 13 languages. Operating from 9am to 10pm (varies on selected routes), 365 days a year.
The FacTs Days of operation: Daily,
from 9am to 5.30pm. What’s included: The 1 Day Pass includes: a dhow cruise at Dubai Creek, entry to Dubai Museum, a seat on the City of Lights Night Tour, a free cup of coffee at Costa Coffee when you purchase one, entry to Global Village (seasonal route) and a place on the Dubai Walking Tour. The 3 Day Pass includes: all the above inclusions, plus entry to Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, a one-hour Palm Jumeirah Cruise, and
a 20% discount at Sun& Mediterranean Lounge. The 7 Day Pass includes all the above experiences plus a ticket for the Flying Cup. Good to know: Before your 1 Day Pass has expired, you can upgrade to a 3 or 7 Day Pass. Languages: English, Arabic, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, Hindi, Russian, Mandarin, Japanese, Turkish and Farsi. how much: The 1 Day Pass is priced at Dhs260 per adult and Dhs160 per child;
3 Day Pass is Dhs350 per adult and Dhs250 per child; 7 Day Pass is Dhs450 per adult and Dhs350 per child. (Children: aged 6-11). Prices are inclusive of VAT. To book please visit citysightseeing-dubai.com, or call 800csDuBai (800 273 8224)/+971 4 316 7506
CitySightseeingDubai @cssdubai #cssdubai
The Fish House
Dubai’s cultural diversity is reflected in its culinary mosaic of fantastic restaurants – from the best Indian food this side of the subcontinent to sleek Japanese eateries and authentic Arabic mezze. It’s little wonder that world-renowned chefs are falling over themselves to open venues in the city 26
WHAT’S NEW IN TOWN? Seafood fans can enjoy the fresh catch at Dubai's latest boat-to-table concept, The Fish House at InterContinental, Dubai Festival City (+971 4 701 1127, firstname.lastname@example.org), which overlooks Dubai Creek. Plan your visit on a Tuesday when the Tower for Two (Dhs350) is available to order. It comes piled high with finger-licking seafood, including oysters, tuna tartar, ceviche, octopus, scallops and more. For street-style delicacies from Japan, you need travel no further than ONI Japanese restaurant, lounge and sake bar (+971 4 405 2333, onidubai.com) at Shangri-La Hotel on Sheikh Zayed Road. Its trademark dishes, such as sushi, robata and ramen, are made with ingredients sourced from Hokkaido, Japan’s 'hakodate asaichi' (that's 'morning market' to you and me). Pop-up concepts are becoming increasingly popular in the city, and Turkish kitchen Büyü (+971 4 435 5577, wdubaialhabtoorcity.com) at W Dubai – Al Habtoor City is enticing foodies until 14 May. This lively venue specialises in contemporary Anatolian cuisine, with shareable plates and rotating dishes served in a hip setting with Turkish music, art and bazaar-style shopping adding to the ambience. Chow down with the cool set at 701 (@701dubai), a creative space and art café in Business Bay. Opening on 18 April, you can mingle with the resident artists before tucking into Açaí bowls (and other such healthy fare) and sipping espresso brewed by local roasters. A place to see and be seen is the newly-revamped Asia de Cuba (+971 4 511 7333, asiadecuba.com) at The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina. Bag a seat on the wraparound terrace and sample executive chef Luis Pous' take on Asian-influenced Cuban food, with signature small plates such as octopus al ajillo with kale tabbouleh, lychee and garlic chips and entrees including miso glazed seabass.
Asia de Cuba
In The Know
The best burgers brunswIck sporTs club sheraton dubai mall of the emirates, +971 56 404 0685, brunswicksc.com There’s no secret ingredient here, just high quality Aussie meat, which makes for one of the best burgers in town.
burger fuel The walk, Jumeirah beach residence, +971 4 445 8220, burgerfuel.com The concept is 100% New Zealand grass-fed beef, 150g of which is chargrilled to perfection and placed within a wholemeal bun.
moylo’s Jumeirah beach road, +971 4 388 3140, moylosburgers.com A home-grown, hole-in-the-wall joint on Jumeirah Beach Road, where 100% wagyu beef is used in all its homemade burgers.
IncredIble IndIan Few chefs have mastered Indian cuisine quite like Michelin-starred Atul Kochhar, whose award-winning Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar (+971 4 414 3000, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife. com) graces the second floor of the world’s tallest five-star hotel, JW Marriott Marquis Dubai. Here, the varied menu sings with a cacophony of flavour and creativity, and we heartily recommend you indulge in one of the always great value tasting menus. Every bite is a delight. If there’s a sure thing in the restaurant industry it’s that an Indian restaurant operated by Taj Hotels is going to be good, if not very good. Falling very much into the latter category, Bombay Brasserie (+971 4 438 3100, tajhotels.com) sees chef de cuisine Ajay Negi conjure up flavours as vibrant as the restaurant’s interiors. The dum ki suneharl (slowcooked lamb shank and saffron) and beautifully flavoured paneer are
noteworthy highlights to be savoured. Bag the right table and you’ll also take in the sight of The Dubai Fountain. Gastronauts can embark on a spice-laden journey through the cuisines of northern India at Khyber (+971 4 455 1111, dukesdubai.com). This is the first outpost of the Mumbai favourite, which has enticed the likes of Sir Paul McCartney and Richard Gere to dine there. The culinary offering here is headed up by Chef Faizan Ali, who oversees a team of six north Indian chefs in the kitchen. Together, they conjure up expertly spiced signature dishes, such as tandoori raan. Be sure to bag a table on the terrace for 180-degree views of Burj Al Arab and the Dubai Marina skyline.
chInese crackers No self-respecting cosmopolitan city can call itself a self-respecting cosmopolitan city unless it has a Hakkasan (+971 4 384 8484, hakkasan. com). Happily, Dubai does (at Jumeirah Emirates Towers), and the high-end chain doesn’t disappoint with its chic, contemporary Chinese décor, expertly made dim sum and oh-so fashionable bar. Shang Palace (+971 4 405 2703, shangri-la.com) at the Shangri-La Dubai is an old favourite that never fluctuates from serving up outstanding Cantonese cuisine: case in point, the signature cod fish with grapes and well-balanced orange sauce. Another purveyor of high quality Chinese classics is Shiba (+971 4 381 3111, meydanhotels.com) located at The Meydan Hotel, where the interactive element of dining adds a sprinkling of theatre.
a True TasTe of The emIraTes
Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar
Considering all the many colourful cuisines Dubai has to offer, it might come as a surprise to learn that good Emirati food is not so easy to come by. However, slowly but surely more and
Enter through the gold Vault doors and unlock the secrets of this effortlessly cool space. Ladies will be treated to three complimentary delicious beverages. Come and discover unparalleled views of Dubai and enjoy the DJâ€™s innovative grooves. Tuesdays from 7pm to midnight.
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay, PO Box 121000, Dubai, UAE T: +971 4 414 3000 | email@example.com | jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com JW Marriott Marquis Dubai |
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Perfect pizza more authentic Emirati restaurants are cropping up across town. An enduring favourite is Al Fanar (+971 4 232 9966, alfanarrestaurant. com), located along Canal Walk in Dubai Festival City Mall. You can dine outside on floor cushions in the traditional majlis or at a table in the central courtyard area, which looks like a traditional Emirati home. The dishes on offer include chicken machboos (spiced chicken mixed with rice), grilled shaari fish and jesheed (baby shark cooked with onions and punchy spices). You’ll find camel on the menu at Aseelah (+971 4 205 7333, radissonblu. com/hotel-dubaideiracreek) in the Radisson Blu Hotel Dubai Deira Creek, alongside other dishes made using local ingredients, such as a tender Arabian lobster. For something different, The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (+971 4 353 6666, cultures.ae) offers interactive ‘cultural meals’ – so named because guests are encouraged to
Eataly the Dubai Mall, 800 328 259, eataly.ae Eataly’s simple margherita is so good, the tomato sauce so rich and flavoursome, you may well forgo fancy toppings for evermore.
tastE of Italy by HEInz bEck the Galleria Mall, +971 4 343 8292, tasteofitalybyheinzbeck.com Heinz Beck helms the threeMichelin-starred La Pergola in Rome. This, his casual café brand, serves up pizza with the most incredibly light bases.
DIfc Within Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is Gate Village, where amid the high-end galleries and auction houses are some of Dubai’s – and the world’s – best restaurants. Ranked in Restaurant Magazine’s 2016 list of the world’s best restaurants were the everpopular Zuma (+971 4 425 5560, zumarestaurant.com), where the outstanding Japanese food is best ordered to share, and La Petite Maison (+971 4 439 0505, lpmlondon.co.uk/ dubai). It uses produce from local UAE farms in a number of its fabulous creations, all of which have their roots in French-Mediterranean cooking. Dishes like the burrata and the salt-baked sea bass are legendary among Dubai gourmands Elsewhere, Peyote (+971 4 521 6300, peyoterestaurant. com) brings modern Mexican dishes to Dubai, courtesy of the man behind Maximo Bistrot, voted one of Latin America's top 50 restaurants. Artful dishes, such as tacos de tempura de gambas (tiger prawn tempura, chipotle mayonnaise and lime) are simply delicious.
bussola the Westin Dubai Mina seyahi, +971 4 511 7373, bussoladubai.com An old favourite that serves classic crusts from its al fresco upper deck location beside the sea.
La Petite Maison
Inviting all the Queen Bees Experience a night of absolute royal fun at Observatory Bar & Grill. Enjoy Queenprivileges from tiaras to free-flowing sparkling bubbly all night. Get into the role with your Queen squad and catch up with the girls, overlooking Palm Jumeirah and Marina or dance the night away with DJ Alona’s trendy mixes. Indulge in the ‘Only for a Queen’ menu featuring crafted cocktails and delicious bites. Quote “DXB CITY EXPERT” on arrival to receive a complimentary platter of canapés for your table. EVERY MONDAY FROM 8PM – MIDNIGHT Terms & Conditions: Quote “DXB CITY EXPERT” to receive a complimentary platter of canapés for your table of four. The offer is valid until 30 April 2018. This offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer, promotion and/or discount and cannot be exchanged for cash. DUBAI MARRIOTT HARBOUR HOTEL & SUITES King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Street, Dubai Marina, PO Box 66662, Dubai, UAE T. 971.4.319.4000 | marriottharbourdubaidining.com | firstname.lastname@example.org Dubai Marriott Harbour Hotel & Suites |
Carnival by Tresind
Folly by Nick & Scott
Born in the UAe Although Dubai has more than its fair share of excellent restaurants, a huge helping of them are franchised from elsewhere in the world. This includes its two most notable restaurants, Zuma and Le Petite Maison, both of which have ranked in what’s considered the most authoritative list of the world’s top 100 restaurants. However, if you want to head to somewhere you’ll only find in Dubai there are some outstanding options to choose from. With cracking views over Madinat Jumeirah and the sea, Folly by Nick & Scott (+971 4 430 8535, folly.ae), two longtime Dubai-based chefs with a rich pedigree – including a combined
eight years at Gordon Ramsay Holdings – offers up a thoughtful menu of modern European sharing dishes. The cooking is precise, the flavours impactful, and what they can do with a mere mushroom and plain old radish needs to be tasted to be believed. Adored by local gastronomes, Carnival by Tresind (+971 4 4218 665, carnivalbytresind.com) is wildly popular. Expect vibrant interiors and a toy merry-go-round in the centre of each table, alongside intriguing Indian dishes such as pink pani puri and the wonderful beetroot gol gappa. Playfully (naturally) described as Mediterrasian – a fusion of Mediterranean and Asian flavours –
the twists on classic dishes at Play (+971 4 225 6000, h-hotel.com) are a real delight. Be sure to order the duck gyoza and Takumi Wagyu ribs, both of which are divine. The always-buzzing lounge bar means the atmosphere is as playful as the menu. For something very different, Kishmish (+971 4 349 6665, kishmish. ae) in Dar Al Wasl mall, Jumeirah, brings Afghan street food to denizens of Dubai for the first time. Chef owners Iman, Fatima and Homaira have been family friends for generations, and this restaurant is the realisation of their dream to share the complex aromas and tastes of Afghan food with their adopted city.
THE DAYCATION BRUNCH AT LAPITA HOTEL Aloha! Relish in the magic and charm of Polynesia with an extensive buffet selection, fun activities and live entertainment. Fridays, 1pm - 5pm AED 245 with soft beverages AED 345 with house beverages AED 110 for children (4-12 years old)
Make it a Daycation with full-day pool access to the two outdoor pools and lazy river along with access to the Luna & Nova Kids and Teens Club from 1pm â€“ 5pm! Reservations: email@example.com experiencelapita.com +971 4 810 9421 Exactly like nothing else
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ADD A SPLASH TO YOUR SATURDAY AT BUSHMAN’S LAZY LUNCH. Splash into Saturday with free pool and beach access at Anantara The Palm Dubai before or after your lazy lunch at Bushman’s. Enjoy a refreshing morning swim before you dive into Aussie gourmet specialities. Or stroll along our private beach after an afternoon of delicious grazing. The Bushman’s Lazy Lunch runs every Saturday from 1.00 pm – 4.00 pm and free pool and beach access runs from 10.00 am - 5.00 pm AED 380 360 per person, including house beverages, pool and beach access Booking must be made only via restaurant reservations and wristband will be handed over from 10.00 am onwards Terms and conditions apply.
For reservations or more information, please visit dubai-palm.anantara.com, call 04 567 8304 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
THE FOOD ask questions on anything that relates to the Emirati culture – prepared by local chefs in order to preserve the traditions and customs of the Bedouin culture. They offer cultural breakfast on Mondays and Wednesdays, cultural lunch on Sundays and Tuesdays, cultural brunch every Saturday and a cultural dinner every Tuesday. Advance booking is required.
araBIC you’ll aDore For an authentic desert dining experience under the stars, journey to Al Hadheerah at Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa (+971 4 809 6194, alhadheerah.com). Take your pick from 14 live cooking stations offering Marina Social
traditional Middle Eastern dishes prepared using age-old recipes. Live entertainment adds to the ambience. Daily from 7.30pm to 11.30pm – go on Thursday and Friday evenings to see the fireworks. A hit among Dubai’s sizeable Lebanese community, Al Falamanki (alfalamanki.com) is an outpost of one of Beirut’s most famous restaurants. Like the original, this sprawling Jumeirah Beach Road branch features indoor and outdoor areas, homely décor and a soft soundtrack of old-school Arabic music. On the menu are hot and cold mezze, salads, grills and manakeesh, along with a selection of shisha. The done thing here is to order a load
In The Know
Big name chefs Jason atherton Marina social, InterContinental Dubai Marina. +971 4 446 6777, ihg.com Atherton’s Social concept has won an army of fans in London, and its Dubai offshoot is a great destination for dishes big on detail. DavID Myers Basta!, renaissance Downtown hotel, Dubai, +971 4 512 5522, basta-dubai.com One of three Myers' restaurants at this hip hotel, Basta! is a go-to for Italian staples like Florentine steak and Neapolitan pizza. heInz BeCk social, Waldorf astoria Dubai Palm Jumeirah, +971 4 818 2222, waldorfastoria3.hilton.com A master of modern gastronomy, Beck’s artistry is best conveyed through sublime dishes like saltbaked sea bass with cauliflower, truffle sauce and orange perfume.
tIMe For thaI Tong Thai (+971 4 414 3000, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com) at JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, showcases unique regional dishes alongside streetfood favourites and authentic yet inventive classics. Regularly voted the best Thai restaurant in the city, signature curries like creamy panang kung with tiger prawns and gai phad ka-prao with chilli and hot basil pack plenty of depth and flavour, while classics like tom yum and pad see-eiw have been honed to perfection. You’ll arrive at Madinat Jumeirah’s Pai Thai (+971 4 432 3232, jumeirah. com) via one of the resort’s abras, floating across a winding waterway – romantic, for sure. Equally satisfying is the food, particularly dishes like goong gratiemprik thai, for which crispy tiger prawns are teamed with garlic, coriander and a piquant green pepper sauce.
In The Know
Healthy heroes CoMPtoIr 102 Jumeirah Beach road, +971 4 385 4555, comptoir102.com The menu makes use of the best ingredients from local organic farms to serve up tasty and nutritious dishes that appeal to health food devotees.
WIlD & the Moon alserkal avenue, al Quoz, 800 9453, wildandthemoon.com Here, the vegan chef has developed a wholesome menu of plant-based recipes to which nothing has been added.
oMnIa GourMet Jumeirah Fish harbour, +971 4 343 7181 Somewhat of a hidden gem, chef Silvena Rowe serves up a menu rife with healthy options, from vegan through to paleo.
of dishes to share and settle in for a game of backgammon. Olea (+971 4 341 0000, kempinski. com) at Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates prides itself on authentic cuisine, thanks to its 14-strong team of chefs drawn from Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and Palestine. The relaxed space features a lovely outdoor terrace and menu highlights include the lamb kofta, served on a 1.5m-long skewer.
turkIsh DelIGhts In Souk Al Bahar, the outdoor terrace at Günaydin (+971 4 554 0700, gunaydindubai.com) is a top spot for views of Burj Khalifa and, at night, The Dubai Fountain. The Turkish ‘meatery’ serves meat in all its forms: traditional döner, succulent kebabs, juicy meatballs, and lovingly cooked steaks. Over at Grosvenor House Hotel, Dubai favourite Colin Clague can be found working his magic at high design Anatolian eatery Rüya (+971 4 399 9123, ruyadubai.com). Infused with caramelised and charcoal flavours, cağ kebabı (marinated lamb kebab) is the pick of the menu.
suBlIMe sushI anD sashIMI Beyond the elsewhere-mentioned Zuma, Dubai is home to a fair few standout Japanese restaurants, including outposts of Novikov and Nobu. Better still, TOMO (+971 4 357 7888, tomo.ae) at Raffles Dubai, is helmed by chef-owner Chitoshi Takahashi, who has devised a menu that’s vast and packed with fantastic authentic Japanese delicacies, best navigated with the help of your waiter. There’s more of a fun vibe over at Izakaya, which is located within JW Marriott Marquis Dubai (jwmarriottmarquisdubailife, +971 4 414 3000) – for a start, the so-called Wasabi Girl (she has wasabi coloured hair) makes the head-blowing Japanese mustard at your table. Yet the food is of serious quality; plump, fabulously fresh sashimi and inventive sushi creations are always on the mark.
Pan-asIan Flavours When you crave Asian food in any one of its guises, nowhere does it better than the award-toting Mekong (+971 4
THE FOOD RÃ¼ya
567 8304, dubai-palm.anantara.com) at Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort. Its lengthy menu includes myriad Thai, Chinese and Vietnamese highlights (the duck curry is a big hitter), which you enjoy on rickshaw-style seating. Taking her culinary direction from the many varied street foods of Korea, Thailand, China, Vietnam and Japan, Miss Tess (+971 4 438 3121, misstessdubai. com) brings an element of fun dining to Taj Dubai. where the eclecticism of the menu is matched by that of the interiors.
the BeaCh at JBr A brilliant pedestrianised area mere metres from the sand and sea, The Beach at JBR is the perfect place to head for a good-value feed for your family. Your best bet is to simply stroll the length of it, stopping to peruse the menus at places that catch your eye – there are myriad cuisines to choose from. Best oF BrItIsh The brainchild of MichelinOn Palm Jumeirah, housed in the starred chef Thomas Keller, beautiful Dukes Dubai, is Great British Bouchon Bakery at The Restaurant, otherwise known as GBR Beach at JBR (+971 4 419 (+971 4 455 1101, dukesdubai.com). It's 0772) is perfect for a morning the place to go for expertly cooked pick-me-up. Indulge in sticky (better than your mum makes) roast sweet pastries and a cup dinners with all the trimmings, fish and of custom-blended TK by chips with crispy batter, and comforting Equator coffee. cottage pie fashioned from slow If the ocean air puts you cooked beef. Bookend your mains with in the mood for seafood, a fabulous coronation chicken and a crack open a crab at Aprons sweet treat, such as the quintessentially & Hammers (+971 4 456 English cherry Bakewell tart, or sticky 7888, apronsandhammers. toffee pudding. com). Or, for good licensed At The Croft (+971 4 319 4794, options down this way, head thecroftdubai.com), modern British to DoubleTree by Hilton. It houses both The MAINE (+971 4 457 6719, themaine.ae) – part American brasserie and part European bistro – serving great seafood, and the always buzzing Ramusake (+971 4 5595 300, ramusake. ae), for modern Japanese.
In The Know
Sublime steaks PrIMe68 JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, +971 4 414 3000, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com The premium beef here is sourced from choice suppliers across the globe and tastes superb, matched by the views from the 68th floor.
stk rixos Premium, +971 4 520 0000, togrp.com The Dubai outpost of the world famous steak restaurant offers a winning mix of STK classics and dishes created for Dubai only.
JW’s steakhouse JW Marriott hotel Dubai, +971 4 607 7977, marriottdiningatjw.ae Something of a Dubai institution, chef Mohammad Iqbal has been in the kitchen for over 20 years and knows each of his (many) regulars’ preferences by heart.
THE FOOD cuisine with a twist is the culinary mantra (we recommend you try the tongue and cheek pie, it's a surprisingly delicious revelation). With a focus on sourcing homegrown produce and working with local suppliers where possible, the menu is packed with the expected and the intriguing, and dishes such as snail gratin, foie gras-stuffed chicken and Chef Sentil's mum's curry are highlights. The Scene (+971 422 2328, thescenedubai.com) by TV chef and serial author Simon Rimmer is the frontrunner at Pier 7, a sevenfloor, seven-restautrant tower set on a (licensed) pier in Dubai Marina. Britishstyle comfort food is the gist of it – think succulent, deep-filled pies, ale-battered fish and chunky chips – but if you want something less filling, the grilled halloumi, pear and salted-hazelnut salad is delicious.
CarIBBean Queens Different to almost anywhere else in Dubai, Miss Lily’s (+971 4 354 4074, misslilys.com) brings a true taste of the Caribbean to these shores in the form of authentic Jamaican dishes. Hailing from New York, this is the first international Miss Lily’s outpost, and it’s something of a gem. Vibrant, fun and characterful, the self-styled ‘beach shack-meets-Jamaican diner’ boasts a number of must-try dishes including jerk corn grilled with toasted coconut, hot pepper lobster and a brilliant king crab with Scotch bonnet sauce. Ting Irie (+971 4 557 5601, tingirie. com) at Downtown Boulevard offers up Jamaican staples in a fun atmosphere courtesy of executive chef Craig Wong (of Jamaican-Chinese heritage), who has a CV boasting stints at multiMichelin-starred restaurants Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée and Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck.
BavarIan BItes Licensed from the original Hofbräuhaus in Munich, you’ll find Dubai’s outpost inside JW Marriott Marquis Dubai (+971
4 607 7588, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife. com), where it has built up a loyal crowd over 20 years. They come here for the first rate atmosphere and German staples – the outsized sausage platter will slay any appetite you care to bring to the table. Also ranking among Dubai’s oldest restaurants is Der Keller (+971 4 432 3232, jumeirah.com), at Jumeirah Beach Hotel, where amid the exposed brick walls and solid oak tables you’ll enjoy honed-to-perfection dishes like marinated braised beef and potato dumplings.
GooD Greek While Dubai is not exactly overflowing with Greek restaurants, it does boast some truly excellent ones. In-the-know locals will point you towards Elia (+971 4 359 8888, dubaimajestic.com), a cosy restaurant with a lovely glass terrace surrounded by greenery in the
Ask a top chef
Daniel Perez head Chef at el sur, the Westin Dubai Mina seyahi Beach resort & Marina
One of my favourite restaurants to visit in Dubai is Zuma (zumarestaurant.com). It has a great service and quality food – the business lunch is a handy way to sample the cuisine at a good price.
somewhat incongruous setting of the Majestic Hotel in bustling Bur Dubai. In the kitchen is Cretan head chef Poppy Kourkoutaki, while charming restaurant manager (and fellow Crete local) Margianna Mavridou heads up the front-of-house team. The menu is divided into Greek classics – the cheese saganaki and chicken souvlaki are standouts – and more contemporary interpretations such as slow-cooked veal cheeks with eggplant purée. Don’t leave without trying the freshly baked carob bread. From the same team, Mythos Kouzina & Grill (+971 4 399 8166, mythoskouzina.com) feels like a little Bridgewater Tavern
slice of Santorini hidden away in JLT’s Armada Bay Hotel. Kitted out like a traditional seaside taverna with whitewashed walls, rustic furniture and light blue banquettes, the simple menu is a mix of traditional dishes such as keftedakia (meatballs) and grilled calamari, together with home-style favourites like moussaka and gigandes (butter beans).
FaBulous FrenCh For decades Le Cirque was New York’s go-to spot for A-list celebrities and real estate tycoons (including a certain Mr Trump). Now at The Ritz-Carlton DIFC, Le Cirque (+971 4 372 2444, ritzcarlton)
In The Know
comfort food BrIDGeWater tavern JW Marriott Marquis Dubai +971 4 414 0000, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com The go-to place to enjoy high quality, filling fare. The fire-cracker calamari and parmesan truffle fries are both willing bedfellows with an ice cold brew.
BushMan’s restaurant & Bar
Bushman’s Restaurant & Bar
anantara the Palm Dubai resort +971 4 567 8304, dubai-palm.anantara.com Prime slabs of succulent Aussie meat are the norm here. However, to enjoy it you’ll be faced with the near-impossible task of forgoing the classic beef and mushroom pie.
Foodie districts DuBaI DesIGn DIstrICt The stunning Dubai Design District (d3) is home to some of the city’s most cutting edge design and creative firms, as well as The Design Quarter, where visitors will find homegrown restaurant concepts, innovate boutiques and unique art installations. Concept store meets casual restaurant, The Lighthouse (+971 422 6024, thelighthouse. ae), is headed up by one of Dubai’s best chefs, Izu Ani. The licensed venue has a superb mezze menu – order the marinated salmon with cranberries and baked feta with oregano – if you’re one for sharing. Also licensed here is the quirky (in a good way) Molecule (+971 245 4700, molecule.restaurant), which offers a ‘bistronomy’ (‘bistro’ meets ‘gastronomy’) concept for better-than-bistro-standard food, including a rich risotto with truffle, and Chez Charles Restaurant (+971 512 2444, chezcharlesrestaurant.ae), a modern brasserie which does staples like fish and chips, and carbonara very well.
leFt Bank souk Madinat Jumeirah, +971 4 368 6171, emiratesleisureretail.com You’ll love the water’s-edge setting and lively atmosphere at Souk Madinat Jumeirah’s perennial favourite. And you’ll be equally enamored with its black Angus wagyu burgers.
THE FOOD is proving equally popular. The menu, which comes with a hint of Italian inspiraton, contains just the right number of dishes to suggest that each has been honed to perfection – the subsequent taste test confirms it. A superb lobster risotto easily ranks among Dubai's 'musttry' dishes, while soft-as-butter Dover sole and a chocolate soufflé so light it could float from your table are among the notable highlights. Regardless of the quality of the food they serve up, it’s often difficult for Dubai’s many hotel-run restaurants to shake off that hotel restaurant vibe. So it’s to places like this we locals go for a hefty side of atmosphere to enjoy with our food at weekends. Let your waiter guide you to the menu highlights at Bistrot Bagatelle (+971 4 354 5035, bagatelledubai.com), which include sharing dishes such as a to-die-for black
truffle pizza and spicy lobster linguini. You’ll find it inside the Fairmont Dubai, on Sheikh Zayed Road.
Fresh FroM the oCean Catch (+971 4 357 1755, catch.ae) remains one of the hottest tables in town, with an atmosphere to match. Hailing from NYC, another good reason that this contemporary American seafood restaurant finds favour is, of course, its delicious food. You can have your fish prepared in a number of ways, but you don’t need to look beyond the simple grilled version. If you only have time to eat out once or twice while you’re here, make Catch a must-dine. Michelin-starred Brit Nathan Outlaw is chef patron at Nathan Outlaw at Al Mahara (+971 4 301 7600, jumeirah.com) the famed-for-its-aquarium seafood restaurant at Burj Al Arab. The menu
CluB vIsta Mare Fancy soaking up spectacular views of the cityscape when sitting down to dinner? Club Vista Mare, a Dhs120 million beachfront promenade of restaurants, bars and cafés on Palm Jumeirah, allows you to do just that. Among the dining venues, each with an al fresco terrace, is Breeze Beach Grill (+971 4 568 3000, a beach grill concept that has a raw bar and deli counter. There’s also Aji (+971 4 552 0244, aji.ae) – in case you're wondering, it's pronounced ‘ah-hee’ – which specialises in Japanese-Peruvian (Nikkei) cuisine. Come here on a Monday night from 8pm and ladies can enjoy three complimentary drinks and 30% off their food. It's packed and good fun to boot. To try food that might be new to your tastebuds, head to Gursha (+971 4 554 2665, gursha-dubai.com). It's an Ethiopian restaurant, where the food – the likes of spicy lentil stews and curries thick with caramalised onions and spices – is served to share and eaten with your hands, once you've scooped some up with injera, a thin bread. Aji
stk You know that part of the meal when the urge strikes to down your knife and fork, throw your napkin from your lap and stand atop the podium next to your table, where you dance with wild abandon? No? High time you had dinner at stk (+971 4 520 0000, togrp.com), then. The Dubai outpost of the renowned high-energy steakhouse marries the most mouthwateringly tender steaks with a live DJ and a feelgood soundtrack that gets progressively louder throughout the night, hence your desire to dance once you're done with dessert (or, like us, before you've polished off your mains). Fabulous fun and food to match.
CIty Walk A vibrant mix of cafés, restaurants, and unique boutiques, City Walk is at its best at night, when twinkling lights and neon illuminate the streets and purposely graffitied walls – by some of the world’s best known street artists – below. Along with DIFC and d3, it’s also an area that has a few licensed venues independent of hotels, in The Square. 42
Galvin Dubai (+971 4 590 5444, galvindubai.com) is the first venture outside the UK for Michelin-starred brothers Chris and Jeff Galvin. They describe their menu as the “best of British, with a Mediterranean Basin flair” and it’s excellent. Lima Dubai (800 5462 5462, limadubai.com) is a Peruvian hotspot from Virgilio Martinez, the chef behind Central in Lima, Peru, the fifth best
restaurant on the planet according to the coveted World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Headed by his Central protégé, Diego Sanchez, the top dishes here include an incredibly good octopus and corn brûlée. Also of note is Toro + Ko (+971 4 590 5433, torodubai.com) a Barcelona-inspired tapas restaurant and bar by awardwinning chefs Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette.
THE FOOD Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, and has tables set directly on the sand. It's simple, unfussy and amazingly atmospheric at night.
ItalIan lIke MaMa Makes It
In The Know
dinner with a view… …oF BurJ al araB shimmers, Madinat Jumeirah, +971 4 4323232, jumeirah.com A menu of home-style Mediterranean favourites is ably supported by a causal, toes-in-thesand atmosphere.
...oF BurJ khalIFa anD the DuBaI FountaIn katana, the address Downtown roundabout, +971 4 277 8808, katana-dubai.com Katana specialises in the robatayaki style of Japanese cuisine. It’s fabulous enough to match the view.
takes inspiration from Outlaw’s eateries in Cornwall and London, with signature dishes such as lobster risotto, crispy oysters and caviar, and the very British sticky toffee pudding (Outlaw got the recipe from his young daughter) all particular highlights. Meanwhile, if you’re keen to dine with the feel of sand between your toes, book a table at Fish Beach Taverna (+971 4 511 7139, fish-dubai.com). Specialising in fresh-that-day seafood, and with a rustic Mediterranean feel, this restaurant can be found on the water’s edge at Le Méridien Mina
One of the world’s tallest hotels, JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, is home to arguably Dubai’s best Italian – Positano (+971 4 414 3000, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com). The restaurant does the full range of Italian staples exceptionally well, so you don't have to look beyond the likes of the pumpkin tortelli in a rich, velvety butter and sage sauce. Down by the beach is the Hilton Dubai Jumeirah Resort, in which you’ll find the brilliant BiCE Ristorante (+971 4 399 1111, 3.hilton.com). For many a year this has ranked high among the best Italian restaurants in Dubai, with sublime examples of regional specialities cooked to impressively exacting standards. Likewise, you’d expect the Italian restaurant at Palazzo Versace Dubai to be somewhat of a showstopper, and thanks to chef de cuisine Andrea Gaia, that’s exactly what Vanitas (+971 4 556 8820, palazzoversace.ae) is. Gaia’s CV lists many a Michelin-starred restaurant, experience he brings to bear on the menu here. If you’re looking for Katana
…oF DuBaI MarIna 101 Dining lounge and Bar one&only the Palm Dubai, +971 440 1010, thepalm. oneandonlyresorts.com Drink in picture-perfect views while enjoying contemporary European fare from a menu rubber-stamped by super-chef Yannick Alléno.
that’s a good deal Join the fashionable diners heading to cavalli club, restaurant & Lounge, which, on Wednesday evenings, offers an unlimited selection of sushi and bubbles for Dhs299 per person from 8 :30pm to midnight. Simply settle into a leopard print chair, and soak up the atmosphere. At Fairmont Dubai on Sheikh Zayed Road. +971 50 991 0400, dubai.cavalliclub.com
Cavalli Club, Restaurant & Lounge
direction, the creamed black truffle risotto packs in outstanding flavour.
suPerB sPanIsh With an open kitchen, funky murals and baskets hanging from its high ceilings, Salero Tapas & Bodega (+971 4 341 0000, kempinski.com) at Kempinski Mall of the Emirates looks more hipster eatery than traditional tapas joint. However, the Spanish staff, led by head chef Oscar Leon, ensure the no-nonsense, garlic-smothered tapas are entirely authentic. There’s a great selection of hot and cold tapas to order, such as Galician-style octopus, along with three types of paella.
lovely latIn aMerICan There is currently fierce competition in Dubai for the tag of the city’s best Latin American restaurant, and in the thick of it is Waka (+971 4 444 1455, waka.
ae) at The Oberoi, Dubai. Here, Chef Roberto Segura dishes up authentic Latin American flavours combined with Japanese seasonings and using French techniques. Highlights of the menu are many – including some of the best ceviche in the city – but make sure you start with a bowl of Wakamole to share. Their welcome twist is the use of smoked avocado. While you’ll be right to love Coya (+971 4 316 9600, coyarestaurant.com) in the Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach (in particular, its Arroz Nikkei – a mix of Chilean sea bass, rice, lime and chilli – is fabulous), we also have a thing for the more casual Garden (+971 56 224 0956, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com) at JW Marriott Marquis Dubai. The chef is Peruvian, the staff are great, the vibe relaxed and the food very good value compared to its competitors.
Ask a top chef eros Brambilla head Chef, ravioli & Co. Dubai Design District
I have only been in Dubai for six months, but one place I rate is PLAY Restaurant & Lounge (playrestaurants.com), which has an amazing menu. The quality of food and the flavours is exquisite, and the dishes are beautifully presented.
THE FOOD Izakaya
Family Friendly eats Eating at your hotel can work out expensive – especially if you have a whole family to feed – but fear not: Dubai's restaurants are very family friendly and offer myriad options for good-value, great-quality fare. WITH LITTLE ONES Ideal for tiny tots is bookstore-slashcafé BookMunch (+971 4 388 4006, bookmunchcafe.com) in Al Wasl Square. It serves up tasty treats like blueberry pancakes and stocks plenty of children’s books and an area in which to read them, ensuring kids get food for thought as well as their bellies. Helmed by Tom Aikens, who remains the youngest UK chef to have scooped two Michelin stars, the concept at Pots, Pans and Boards (+971 4 456 1959, potspansandboards.ae) is based on Tom's own memories of home cooking and his family kitchen, cue a divine apple crumble, shepherd's pie, and toddler's play area. Somewhere very different, and always enjoyed by toddlers, is Café Ceramique (+971 4 344 7331, cafeceramique.ae) within Town Centre Mall. Here, kids get to paint their own ceramics as well as enjoy good quality staples like mac and cheese or pizza. WITH BIGGER ONES From NYC comes Black Tap (+971 4 422 9904, jumeirah), at Jumeirah Al Naseem, famed for its monster milkshakes. The Dubai outpost offers14 different kinds of burger and those famous milkshakes, piled high with toppings like chocolate brownies and cotton candy. You'll find friendly waiters and a huge dollop of fun at Claw BBQ (+971 4 432 2300, clawbbq.com) in Souq Al Bahar, a place for those who don't mind getting their hands dirty. Alongide stuffed claws are burgers and more traditional American treats. Come here early evening to enjoy Dubai Fountain views on your way out.
Pots, Pans & Boards
best of the
brunch In the bigger-is-better city of Dubai, the word ‘brunch’ takes on a very different meaning to elsewhere in the world. Here, brunch is not a laid-back midmorning weekend meal to be enjoyed with a friend in a nice café; it is an all-youcan-eat, all-you-can-drink lunchtime feast that involves cuisines from every corner of the globe. A Dubai brunch isn’t just a meal, it’s an experience – and something everyone needs to try at least once during their holiday
Best for... showstopping food What? The World of Nobu brunch Why? Taste signature dishes from 10 Nobu restaurants around the world, such as egg toban with dry miso from Malibu and the famous black cod yuzu miso via West Hollywood. Discerning diners will salivate over the 1kg tin of caviar from La Maison Nordic. Even the entertainment – including Japanese drummers and a violinist – is something special. When? Fridays, from noon to 3pm. Where? Nobu, Atlantis The Palm, Dubai. +971 4 426 0800. Cost? From Dhs395 with soft drinks to Dhs650 with bubbles. Three vegetarian packages are also available, from Dhs350.
Best for... A roaring good time What? The Fogo Churrasco Brazilian Brunch Why? Famous for its authentic churrasco gaucho experience, where meat is carved tableside, this popular Brazilian steakhouse is throwing open its doors for a lively brunch experience. Indulge your carnivorous cravings and sip signature drinks, such as the Frosty Brazilian mocktail, before shimmying over to the dessert trolley, which is piled high with papaya cream, homemade Brazilian flan, Rio meringue and crème brûlée. Take advantage of the balmy weather by booking a table al fresco – the outdoor terrace has great views of Burj Khalifa. When? Fridays from noon to 4pm. Where? Fogo de Chão (it's pronounced fogo-dee-shown) in Central Park Towers, DIFC. Cost? Dhs299 with papaya cream, homemade Brazilian flan, Rio meringue and crème brûlée or Dhs439 with house beverages and signature cocktails.
Best for... A chic setting
Best for... Picky eaters
Best for... Asian flavours
What? Riviera Chic Brunch Why? Inspired by the South of France, this sophisticated brunch delivers authentic Mediterranean inspired dishes to your table. From hearty Bouillabaisse to La Tarte de Saint-Tropez (a dessert pastry consisting of a filled brioche), your taste buds will be transported to le Midi. You can get firmly in the spirit of things thanks to the French band playing popular songs, and by challenging your fellow brunchers to a game of pétanque. There are a number of packages available but we recommend you go all out with the Magnifique Package, which buys you caviar to taste and access to the swimming pool. When? Fridays from 12.30pm to 4pm. Where? The Restaurant at Address Boulevard. +971 4 888 3444 Cost? Dhs325 for the Leger Package (including soft drinks); Dhs425 for the Joli Package (house drinks); or Dhs525 for the Magnifique Package (bubbly, premium quality caviar and pool access).
What? Family Grazing Brunch Why? The little ones are well entertained at the dedicated kids' club complete with gelato cart and face painting. Foodies can take their pick from the live cooking stations, with pizza, pasta and traditional desserts among the highlights. When? Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 3:30pm. Where? Jumeirah Creekside Hotel. +971 4 256 7440. Cost? Dhs195 with soft drinks or Dhs345 with selected hops, grapes and sparkling. Under 12s eat free.
What? Dim Sum Brunch Why? Fans of dim sum need look no further than this award-winning Chinese restaurant located in the heart of Dubai's financial district. It serves an eye-popping selection of fried, steamed, vegetarian and even gluten-free dumplings – with a trio of new varieties (like the scallop dumpling) having just popped up on the menu – delicately prepared with fresh ingredients. The venue has a relaxed vibe, so feel free to take your time working your way through the unlimited dim sum on offer. You can choose to pair your meal with soft drinks such as Chinese tea, or push the boat out with bubbles, depending on how much you want to spend. When? Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 3:30pm. Where? Royal China Dubai, DIFC. +971 4 354 5543. Cost? From Dhs188 to Dhs488 depending on the drinks package. If you're easily dumplinged out, an à la carte menu is also available.
Thereâ€™s no shortage of retail therapy in Dubai, from traditional souks to edgy concept stores and hip weekend markets. The main malls are open until late. The Dubai Mall, for instance, is open from 10am-11pm Sunday to Wednesday and from 10am to midnight Thursday to Saturday â€“ enjoy! 48
An OPEn-AIR RETAIL AFFAIR While the weather's still kind, get outside and explore the growing number of al fresco shopping spots that characterise the city. From plush European-style boulevards to artisan markets selling handicrafts you can't find anywhere else, there is plenty to tempt your credit card. Among the newest destinations on the scene is La Mer (800 637 227, lamerdubai.ae), where stylish boutiques – think Via Rodeo, Trina Turk and Beach Bunny – rub shoulders with cool cafés along a strip of golden sand just off Jumeirah Beach Road (after Etihad Museum). Over at Dubai Creek, Al Seef (800 637227, alseef.ae) delivers a cultural vibe with its setting inspired by a traditional Arabian neighbourhood. There you can pick up everything from high-end fashion to Emirati handicrafts. For a more modern feel, City Walk (+971 4 317 3999, citywalk.ae) has a profusion of funky designer-centric boutiques such as Karl Lagerfeld, Michael Kors, M Missoni, Paule Ka and Whistles among others, as well as the upmarket Parisian department store Le BHV Marais. Find it at the junction of Al Wasl and Al Safa. Nearby on Al Wasl Road, BoxPark (+971 4 317 3999, boxpark.ae), draws a hip crowd to its shipping containers housing contemporary fashion from the likes of Urbanist and OnePiece. At the Dubai Marina end of town, The Beach at JBR (+971 80 063 7227, thebeach.ae) blends boho chic market action with holidayaccessories-oriented stores including Sauce-on-Sea, bordered by a esplanade packed with eateries.
MEGA MALLS Supersizing the retail scene since the early noughties, the city’s mega malls entice shopaholics to put on their comfiest sneakers and pound the marbled walkways. With over 1,200
stores (and counting), The Dubai Mall (800 38 224 6255, thedubaimall. com) is the grande dame of the city’s shopping scene and the mother of global retail experiences. Its luxury shopping district Fashion Avenue has recently been expanded to welcome more than 150 luxury brands to the fold, including Boucheron and Casa Loewe, with works of art and eateries dotted around to break up your spree. Next, click your heels together like Dorothy and transport yourself to Level Shoes luxury footwear emporium before loading up on labels at anchor brands Bloomingdale’s and Galeries Lafayette Dubai, which has a dedicated glamour area showcasing dresses by designers including Alberta Ferretti, Carolina Herrera, and Jason Wu. Family-friendly entertainment can be found at Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, the Olympic-sized ice Casa Loewe, The Dubai Mall
rink and 22-screen cineplex. Plus, there's a profusion of cafés and eateries at which to refuel along the way. Another power player, Mall of the Emirates (+971 4 409 9000, malloftheemirates.com) has a handsfree shopping service so you can drop off your bulging bags at designated points and have them delivered directly to your hotel. It'll free you up to continue exploring its four floors, anchored by ‘absolutely fabulous’ department store Harvey Nichols Dubai and the high-end Fashion Dome. Once you're all shopped out you can hit the slopes at Ski Dubai, or enjoy a five-star snack menu by Gary Rhodes, from the comfort of your reclining seat at the 24-screen Vox Cineplex. Dubai Creek has its own mega mall experience at Dubai Festival City (+971 4 800 332, festivalcentre.com) where mid-range brands rub shoulders with
the Singapore-born department store Robinsons. Here you’ll find homeware goodies from the UK’s John Lewis and a collection of exclusive fashion labels. Located on the waterfront with a dedicated promenade, take time out from browsing its 400 stores for a dhow boat ride or to watch the nightly fire, light and water show. At the other end of the city, fronting a vibrant waterfront residential area, Dubai Marina Mall (+971 4 348 4848, dubaimarinamall.com) is a no brainer if you’re looking to shop at a more leisurely pace. It's compact compared to the city's larger retail havens, and is peppered with a trendy selection of high street brands and a chilled collection of restaurants, many with outdoor terrace seating ideal for a lingering lunch overlooking the water. The only themed mega mall in the city, Ibn Battuta Mall (+971 4 362
FACE vALuE Camel milk has long been credited with impressive skinnourishing properties and you can try it for yourself in soap form. The Camel Soap Factory soaps are handmade in the UAE and blended with ingredients, such as tea tree and rosemary, for an extra beauty boost. Available at balmessence.com Robinsons
1900, ibnbattutamall.com) pays architectural homage to the travels of the legendary Arab explorer of the same name with a succession of interlinked spaces reflecting global culture, from China to India. Wander through the dedicated exhibition before letting loose in the 400-plus stores or hitting the lanes of the busy bowling alley.
MINI MALLS Not enough time (or patience) to trawl the jumbo malls? Dubaiâ€™s growing community of suburban mini malls will hit the spot. Kick-start your mall crawl opposite Burj Al Arab on Jumeirah Beach Road at the aptly named The Mall (+971 4 348 4848, themall.co.ae), which is home to a coterie of 55 hand-selected retailers including French fashion brand Escales and Boho Beachwear. Further along the road, a stoneâ€™s throw from Jumeirah Corniche, is Sunset
Mall (+971 4 330 7333, sunsetmall. ae). Be sure to pay a visit to Rivaage, which plays host to international designers such as Badgley Mischka, Vera Wang and Vivienne Westwood. With more than 140 stores to explore, the Italian Renaissance themed Mercato Mall (+971 4 344 4161, mercatoshoppingmall. com) is another top stop-off. Label lovers should check out pre-owned designerwear store Bagatelle, while Armani Jeans, GANT and Charles & Keith are among the high-street stores popular for a fashion fix. Hugging a corner spot on the adjacent Al Wasl Road is the boutique Galleria Mall (+971 4 344 4434, galleriamall.ae) at which hip stores, such as trendy Californian beachwear label Beach Bunny and Saucettte (the kidswear offshoot of hugely successful local brand Sauce), cater to a wellheeled local and international clientele.
LOCAL dESIgnER Selma Benomar Born and raised in Morocco, Selma Benomar is well-known among the emirate's style set for her eponymous luxury kaftan brand. Her focus is on creating pieces that depict the authentic Moroccan style, combined with modern elements. Visit her atelier in Al Barsha. selmabenomar.com
such as Canella Hostal, so shopping there is a little like picking up the wearable version of a future Picasso. With a flagship store at City Walk II, Bambah (+971 55 224 1538, bambah. com) is the place to go for statement pieces guaranteed to inject some fun into your wardrobe – think generous ruffles, bare shoulders, oversized bows and colourful floral prints. The brainchild of UAE-based designer Maha Abdul Rasheed, it's easy to see why stars such Emma Roberts are fans. More homegrown talent is in favour with the A-list, with bold designs by Dubai-based Madiyah Al Sharqi receiving the nod of approval by actress Sofia Vergara and model Karolina Kurkova, among others. Make a beeline for her latest collection, which is available at Symphony in The Dubai Mall (+971 4 310 6904, bysymphony.com). Dubai based Lebanese designer Dima Ayad (themodist.com) is yet another local success story and is one of just a handful of people creating looks to suit all body shapes.
Pôlette Concept Store
nuTRITIOuS dATES For an edible souvenir, look no further than a box of succulent dates. Historically, this distinctive fruit was a vital nutrition source in Arabia, and can now be enjoyed dipped in chocolate, stuffed with almonds or teamed with candied orange peel, among other sweet touches. bateel.com
The region’s young design guns are taking the fashion world by storm and many homegrown Emirati and Middle Eastern brands are thriving. Haute couture luminary Rami Al Ali rules the regional high-end fashion roost from his Al Wasl Road villa (+971 4 394 5607, ramialali.com). A Paris Fashion Week regular known for his ultra feminine gowns, you can book a personal consultation at his atelier or check out his ready-to-wear line at Harvey Nichols - Dubai. The local branch of French fashion institute, Esmod Dubai, is responsible for a wave of fresh graduate talent and you'll be pleased to learn that it has its own dedicated retail outlet, Pôlette Concept Store (+971 50 879 6518), at City Walk. It's the only retail start-up platform in the world to launch university students’ fashion brands, and to stock pieces from celebrated alumni
CooL CoNCEPT STorES It’s hardly surprising that, with around 200 nationalities residing in Dubai, international design influences are making their mark on the city with a growing cadre of cool concept stores. A recent high-profile opening is BEYOUboutique (+971 4333 0373, beyoudubai.com) at Dar Al Wasl Mall in Jumeirah. Founded by Sheikha Maytha Hasher Al Maktoum and Sheikha Wafa Hasher Al Maktoum, it houses more than 100 new and emerging brands such as AWS, Nigwah, Homa Q, and Maysson. Popular creative hub Dubai Design District (d3), which is dedicated to startups, naturally has its finger on the pulse with d3 Collective (+971 4 554 3540, dubaidesigndistrict.com) a premier platform for established and emerging names such as Osheq, DRESSADDICT by Artem & Victor and Taupe. Equally edgy is O Concept Store (+971 4 345 5557, oconceptstore. ae) in Jumeirah, which combines
THE SHOPS BEYOUboutique
fashion and art and attracts young and passionate designers, artists and collectors from all over the world. Comptoir 102 (+971 4 385 4555, comptoir102.com), nestled in old Jumeira, has a laid-back vibe with an organic café, garden and terrace area boasting an eclectic mix of fashion, homewares and furniture from around the globe.
SoUK SPECTACULAr The emirate is famous for its atmospheric souks, which are a treasure trove for everything from gold jewellery to aromatic spices. Put your best bartering skills to the test (it’s the done thing) at the glittering Dubai Gold Souk on the Deira side of Dubai Creek. A hub for gold traders since the 1930s, its 300 or so shops are thronged by tourists seeking a gilded buy. It's easy to arrive by taxi, but if you really want to ‘go local’ hop aboard a motorised abra at Bur Dubai Abra Station and set
sail for Deira Old Souk Abra Station (operating from 6am to midnight, from Dhs1 per person per trip, see rta.ae). Close by, the blink and you’ll miss it Spice Souk is home to a fragrant clutch of market stalls fronted by hessian sacks overflowing with aromatic spices. Stock up on the best Iranian saffron, the Emirati spice mix bezar, as well as pungent dried local lemons to add a citrusy note to a stew or tagine. For a fragrant buy of a different kind, head to the Perfume Souk, which is great for getting your hands on the traditional Arabian scent, oud, as well as potent essential oils. Dubai Textile Souk, back on the opposite bank of Dubai Creek, is a fabric nirvana for shoppers with an eye on bespoke tailoring. The colourful souk has everything from swathes of sari silk to bolts of embroidered cotton. For a more polished experience, head to Souk Madinat Jumeriah (+971 4 366 8888, jumeirah.com), which
LOCAL dESIgnER NADINE KANSo This Beirut-born jewellery designer's bi-coastal lifestyle informs her work. Her Bil Arabi line takes inspiration from the Arabic alphabet, with rings, bracelets, pendants and earrings crafted from 18-karat gold and embellished with precious and semi-precious stones. bilarabi.ae
LOCAL dESIgnER BUTHAINA rAIS The force behind Mixari (meaning the celebration of receiving the bride’s dowry from the groom’s family), Buthaina is known for designs that blend colours, fabrics and vibrant patterns – all with a modern touch. Available at Robinsons, @mixaritailoring
Black Amber Dubai
has been designed in the style of an authentic Arabian marketplace, and explore the labyrinth lanes lined with barrows and stalls selling souvenirs, jewellery, oud and other trinkets. Similarly, Souk Al Bahar (+971 4 362 7011/12, soukalbahar.ae) in Downtown Dubai has over 100 shops selling everything from carpets to handicrafts, jewellery, art and perfume.
KEEPSAKES To TrEASUrE Shop wisely and you can find a meaningful memento of your trip. Located on Al Wasl Road, o’de rose (+971 4 348 7990, o-derose.com) is a treasure trove, with hand-embroidered camel design cushions, Huda Al Nuaimi’s blingtastic handmade earrings and hand of Fatma keepsake trays. Camel milk chocolatier Al Nassma (al-nassma.com, The Dubai Mall and Souk Madinat Jumeirah) and luxury date purveyor, Bateel (bateel.com, all major malls), offer a double edible
whammy with a respective selection of engraved and Arabesque designed wooden gift boxes filled with delicious cacao dromedaries and plump dates. Art fans will enjoy browsing Gallery One (g-1.com), a homegrown gallery shop concept showcasing art on everything from postcards to beautifully printed notebooks. If you're in the market for a more substantial purchase, you can pick up a limited edition print signed by the artist. There are 10 stores in Dubai.
BArGAIN HUNTErS While the discount store phenomenon hasn’t quite made it to Dubai, there are still bargains to be had. A 30-minute taxi ride out of town, Dubai Outlet Mall (+971 4 423 4666, dubaioutletmall.com) is a repository for previous season style. Bag an affordable new wardrobe from highstreet names like Aldo, Esprit, Monsoon and Mango, with the odd designer find. If you’re more a fan of Paris Fashion Week than Primark, The Outlet Village
THE SHOPS (+971 4 317 3999, theoutletvillage. ae) in Jebel Ali is your best bet. Three department stores and more than 125 top brands including DKNY, Tom Ford, Jimmy Choo and Armani can be found inside its Tuscan inspired interior. Stylish piazza cafés add to the Italian vibe. If you have a soft spot for French fashion, check out the So Chic (sochic.ae) boutique at Blanc d'Ivoire Dubai on Al Wasl Road. Raid the rails bursting with pre-loved designer clothes, shoes, handbags and accessories, carefully sourced from the best wardrobes of Dubai. Similarly, RETOLD (shopretold.com) on Umm Suqeim Road is brimming with preloved steals from the likes of Diane von Furstenberg and Jimmy Choo.
BEST of BESPoKE Few of us can afford a trip to Savile Row and Dubai’s community of nimblefingered tailors and seamstresses is a great alternative. Local fabric stores are
in abundance and you can have a made-to-measure suit or dress whipped up in just a few days. The traditional go-to areas for sharp tailoring include Karama, where Dream Girls (+971 4 337 7287) is a long-standing favourite among ladies who lunch. Boutique bespoke tailors are also on hand for special occasion glam. Scissors Tailoring Studio (+971 50 961 7959) at Kempinski Hotel & Residences Palm Jumeirah specialises in custom clothing and alterations for women. The master tailoring team at Threads & Tailors (+971 4 347 7719, threadsandtailors.com) in Al Barsha have dressed tennis legend Roger Federer, and create bespoke and made-to-measure suits and shirts at reasonable prices. Lastly, Black Amber Dubai (+971 4 4429315, black-amber.com) in Dubailand promises top-notch tailoring for gentlemen plus readyto-wear clothing under one roof.
STORy OF A SCEnT For an aromatic reminder of your holiday, pick up a scent from a local perfumer such as Lootah. The fine fragrance company has been around since the 1950s and specialises in oriental and French heritage inspired contemporary perfumes, as well as incense, fragrant oud, oil, and agarwood. Try its latest launches Petal (for her) and Lavish (for him). Dhs350 for 100ml. loootahperfumes.com
Where to stop for an energy boost GALErIES LAfAyETTE, LE GoUrMET, CITy wALK
wAGAMAMA, THE DUBAI MALL
oPErATIoN: fALAfEL, THE DUBAI MALL
The second outpost of this interactive food hall, Galeries Lafayette, Le Gourmet is located beside Le BHV Marais. This stylish, sociable stop-off has six different open-kitchen concepts under one roof. We recommend the stone-baked pizza from L’Italien. Open daily from 11am to midnight. +971 4 403 3033.
If you're craving Asian flavours, Wagamama has plenty to satisfy the taste buds. Its new location in The Dubai Mall, just a short walk from The Dubai Fountain and Burj Khalifa, is ideal for beating shopping-induced hunger pangs while on the move. Open daily from 11am to midnight. +971 4 320 3237, wagamama.ae
Marking its 10th location worldwide, Operation: Falafel at The Dubai Mall brings a much-loved Levant street-food experience to the emirate's busy shoppers. The herbed and spiced Chicken Shawerma is sure to be a hit. Open daily from 10am to 1am. +971 4 329 2936, operationfalafel.com
Sleep is overrated. With all that Dubai has to offer, we say see and do as much as you can during your stay and save those zzzâ€™s for the flight home 56
THE GREAT OUTDOORS It's high time to make the most of the city's al fresco attractions before it gets too hot, starting with Dubai Miracle Garden (+971 4 422 8902) tucked away in Al Barsha South – the region’s biggest flower park with more than 45 million flowers forming a rainbow of colour. Not your traditional garden, the flowers are also used to create unique floral sculptures with the pièce de résistance a gigantic Emirates A380 jet, which has earned the garden a Guinness World Record for the world’s largest floral installation. Adjacent is Dubai Butterfly Garden (+971 4 422 8902, dubaibutterflygarden. com), which is home to thousands of species of butterfly housed in temperature-controlled domes. Stroll through their habitat as the kamikaze insects flit and flutter around you, and be sure to check out the museum. Having recently welcomed a fresh new wave of attractions, The Yard (meraas.ae) in the up-and-coming Al Khawaneej area, is the place to go for a picnic by the lake. Grab some tasy bites from the food trucks at Last Exit D89, or the organic farmer’s market, and stroll along the shaded walking trails until you find your ideal spot in the landscaped gardens by the water. Throw a coin in the wishing well, check out the street art and let the little ones pet the farm animals. If you're feeling romantic, you can write a message on a padlock and fix it to the railings of Promise Bridge. Active types can swing through the trees, Tarzan style, at Aventura Nature Adventure Park (aventuraparks.com), in Mushrif Park’s ghaf tree forest. No walk in the park, it features a series of elevated obstacles of varying levels of difficulty. From the low-lying Rangers circuit to the high-altitude zip-line, there’s something for adventurers of all abilities. Open green spaces dot the city and Zabeel Park (+971 4 398 6888) is a local community favourite. Set around a picturesque lake, amenities include
Dubai Miracle Garden
Aventura Nature Adventure Park
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The AcTiviTies boat rides (from Dhs40 for two people), picnic areas, park tour train rides and edutainment options such as the Space Maze and Alternative Energy Zone. Rent a bicycle and explore at your own pace but be sure to check out the park's latest attraction, The Dubai Frame (+971 800 900; dubaiframe.com), which houses a 150-metre-high observation deck offering stunning views of the city. Stay there until the sun sets and then head over to Dubai Garden Glow (+971 52 478 5605, dubaigardenglow. com), which is home to three magical attractions: a glow-in-dark garden comprising 10 million energy saving bulbs and yards of recycled luminous fabric; an awesome dinosaur park displaying more than 100 animatronic dinosaurs; and an ice sculpture park created with 5,000 tons of ice.
FAMILY-FRIENDLY FUN The kids will be bouncing off the walls at the regionâ€™s largest indoor trampoline park, Flip Out Dubai (600 567 568, flipout.ae) Al Quoz, which boasts more than 200 interconnecting trampolines and 10 trampoline-based attractions, including the Double Decker Kidsâ€™ Arena for little ones. Just around the corner is another well-sprung facility, Bounce (+971 4 321 1400, bounce.ae), which also has wall running, foam pits, dodgeball, and the X-Park Adventure Challenge Course with its zip line, bouldering wall and sea of pipes for nimble feet to navigate. Get them thinking about their career choices early at edutainment centre KidZania (advance bookings via +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures.com or City Sightseeing Dubai kiosks at major
ASK A LOCAL Iliana Ilieva, Manager Inflight Media, flydubai With its beautiful restaurants and shops overlooking the dhows bobbing in the water, Al Seef (on the banks of Dubai Creek) captures the spirit of old Dubai in a modern setting.
malls), which is located at The Dubai Mall. There, little ones can try their hand at 80 different jobs, from Emirates A380 pilot (there’s even a simulator) to chef. Gamers flock to Hub Zero (advance bookings +971 4 303 4992, arabianadventures.com) at City Walk where you can take out the Resident Evil bad guys on a trackless 3D interactive zombie hunt, don vision-enhancing goggles for a game of Battlefield, or take your seat in the 4D cinema experience for Asura’s Wrath, complete with leg ticklers, vibrating seats and water and wind effects. The latest addiiton to the family centric collection of activiities in and around the popular Kite Beach strip, XPark Jr. (+971 4 328 4175, xparkjr. com) play park blends desert and forest influences to create an all-new adventure destination. Kids get to splash in streams, climb trees and hang out in treehouses as well as explore meandering paths, cascading fountains and the onsite petting zoo. With a mud kitchen also part of the outdoor fun, dont forget to pack a change of clothes. A relative newcomer is OliOli in Al Quoz (+971 4 432 3232, olioli.ae) – a novel venue that curates content from the best children’s museums, science centres and art studios from North America, Asia and Europe. Kids can take part in hands-on activities designed to nurture curiosity, imagination and exploration, with eight galleries spread over two floors. A standout feature is the region's first textile playground by artist Toshiko MacAdam – a large-scale structure weighing 1,000 kilos, made from brightly-coloured crocheted and knotted nylon. Experience what it's like to be at the centre of an elephant herd or in the deepest ocean depths at Orbi at City Centre Mirdif (theplaymania.com). The first Orbi outside of Japan, it fuses nature content by BBC Earth with cutting-edge technology by SEGA to immerse guests into the heart of the natural world via a visceral, multi-sensory experience that's sure to wow.
bEAchES AND pooL ActIoN If you’ve flown in from cold and rainy climes, soaking up the sun will be at the top of your agenda. The emirate's newest stretch of beach, La Mer (meraas.ae) in Jumeira 1, features more than 130 shops, cafés and restaurants surrounded by 2.5 kilometres of sandy beach. Check out the kids' playground by the seashore, bounce around at the Hawa Hawa air-filled trampoline zone or grab a bite at one of the licensed eateries. If you like your beach time with a side of action, head to Kite Beach
(kitebeach.ae) at the Umm Suqeim end of Jumeirah Beach Road. A firm favourite among the kite-surfing fraternity (lessons available if you dare) its community vibe is centred around a clutch of on-trend cafés and familyfriendly facilities, like XDubai Skatepark and a 14km-long jogging track. For a dash of glamour, The Beach at JBR (+971 800 637 227, thebeach.ae) is sure to appeal, with its meandering walkway bisecting a profusion of cafés, restaurants and shops and a stunning stretch of sand. Rent an umbrella, listen to the waves lapping at the shore Saray Spa
SARAY SpA Make your way through the ornate carved doors to this pampering haven, which is inspired by Arabia's historic caravanserais. Treatments blend ancient healing techniques with locally-sourced, natural ingredients to restore and renew. +971 4 414 6754, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com
MANDARA SpA Give your complexion a boost with the new Natura Bissé treatments on offer at this Balinese spa at The H Dubai. There's a variety of massages, body rituals and facials on offer but we rate the Oxygen Facial for pepping up travel-weary skin. From Dhs350 per person. +971 4501 8270, spa.h-hotel.com
IRIDIUM SpA Enjoy a personalised massage using luxurious ESPA products at Iridium Spa at The St. Regis Dubai. Whether you prefer a muscle-kneading Swedish massage, a traditional Balinese treatment or a calming hot stone session you're sure to emerge relaxed and refreshed. From Dhs590 per person for 60 minutes. +971 4435 5500, iridiumspadubai.com
VR Park From whizzing down the side of Burj Khalifa like a stunt double to skydiving like a pro, you can experience an adrenaline rush without the risk at the all-new augmented reality and virtual reality theme park at The Dubai Mall. The twostorey VR Park is packed 62
with games, rides and experiences to suit all ages, such as Burj Drop (which sees you flying down the side of the world's tallest tower) to the hair-raising Dune Bash experience where you'll brave close encounters with camel spiders, scorpions, snakes and other creepy crawlies. Gamers will love
PAYDAY 2â€™s VR heist and the challenge to survive a zombie infested hospital in the apocalyptic The Walking Dead Outbreak. Open from 10am to 11pm Sunday to Wednesday and 10am to 1am Thursday to Saturday. Experiences are priced from Dhs15 to Dhs45 per person. vrparkdubai.com
ASK A LOCAL Houri Elmayan, Managing Director, PR Wonderland Forget the lavish tourist sites and discover the city’s rich cultural heritage with a visit to Dubai Museum followed by an abra ride across the Dubai Creek, which costs just Dhs1 each way. You’ll see Dubai in a completely fresh way.
and check out the view of the underconstruction Ain Dubai Ferris wheel. Nearby, Azure Beach at Rixos Premium Dubai (+ 971 52 777 9472, azure-beach.com) has a Mediterranean vibe, with comfy poolside cabanas and giant inflatables to mess around on. More fun can be had at Barasti pool and beach at Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina (+971 4 318 1313, barastibeach.com), which has a dedicated watersports centre offering everything from windsurfing to sailing. On Palm Jumeirah, RIVA Beach Club (+971 4 430 9466, riva-beach.com) is popular among the social set. Hire a day bed, go for a stroll along the stretch of private white sand and take a dip in the temperature-controlled swimming pool.
FEEL ON TOP OF THE WORLD No prizes for guessing what is Dubai’s number one visitor attraction. At 456
metres above sea level, the observation decks at the world’s tallest tower, At The Top, Burj Khalifa, may not invite you all the way to the tip – that’d be the radio mast at 828 metres – but they’re high enough to give you a head rush. Step inside the high-speed elevator and be transported in the blink of an eye to the entry point on Level 124, which offers panoramic views through floor-to-ceiling windows. Brave souls can move onto the outdoor deck on Level 125 for more prime vistas. Spring for a premium ticket for At The Top SKY and you’ll enjoy VIP access to the very highest observation deck on Level 148, a private tour guide and exclusive lounge access. Early risers can join one of the new sunrise sessions that begin at 5.30am every Friday and Saturday while the weather's cool enough, offering access to the observations decks on Levels 124 and 125, as well as a light breakfast at The Café. RIVA Beach Club
ALL THE FUN OF THE DUbAi FOUNTAiN Back on solid ground and coming in at second place on the tourist wish list is The Dubai Fountain. With thousands of robotic jets hidden beneath the 30-acre Burj Khalifa lake, it’s the tallest performing fountain in the world. Set to a rotating musical repertoire featuring the recorded likes of Andrea Bocelli and Lionel Ritchie, as well as Arab and African artists, the visual artistry will give you goose bumps. Its powerful jets shoot water 500 feet into the air – the equivalent of a 50-storey building. Shows take place daily at 1pm and 1.30pm (1.30pm and 2pm on Fridays) and every 30 minutes from 6pm to 11pm. Plump for a prime viewing spot from a lakeside restaurant table, or catch it for free from the Waterfront Promenade. Those who want to get closer to the action can step onto The Dubai Fountain Boardwalk for a Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood
stroll past all the action – you’ll be just nine metres away from the jets at its closest point. Open from 5pm to 11pm daily. Dhs20 per person (for ages four and over). Tickets are available at the fountain promenade, Burj Park and At the Top, Burj Khalifa ticket counters. For fountain fun on a slightly smaller scale, the IMAGINE light, water and pyrotechnics spectacular at Dubai Festival City is sure to impress. Giant aqua screens, surround sound, lasers and the largest water screen projection in the world combine with 30 fountains to create a breathtaking display. The show takes place hourly every evening from 8pm to 10pm (11pm at weekends).
sTEP bAck iN TiME Peel back the shiny sweetie wrapper that defines modern-day Dubai and discover the city’s rich cultural heritage. Step back in time with a visit to Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood (+971 4 353
9090, dubaiculture.gov.ae) on the bank of Dubai Creek. In the early 1900s the area was populated by affluent merchants and traders and bordered by Al Fahidi Fort, which houses Dubai Museum. Today, its collection of beautifully preserved traditional wind tower homes are museums, art galleries and cultural spaces connected by a maze of winding alleyways and quiet courtyards. Etihad Museum (etihadmuseum. dubaiculture.ae) tells the story of the formation of the United Arab Emirates in 1971. Located next to Union House in Jumeirah, the striking structure resembles a manuscript with seven tapering columns representing the pens used to sign the unification agreement. Photographs, films, documents, personal artefacts and interactive pavilions provide a fascinating insight into the history of the UAE, before and after unification.
Dubai also has a thriving art scene that runs the full gamut of styles and influences. Hip art hub Alserkal Avenue (+971 50 556 9797, alserkalavenue. ae), in the Al Quoz industrial district, comprises around 15 galleries including The Third Line (+971 4 341 1367, thethirdline.com) and Gulf Photo Plus (+971 4 380 8545, gulfphotoplus.com). Street art initiatives are also adding new creative impetus to the city’s public spaces. Check out the Dubai Walls project (dubaiwalls.com) at City Walk where the work of 16 renowned artists including Ron English, Nick Walker and Blek Le Rat take pride of place, or the Dubai Street Museum project on 2nd December Street in Satwa, which draws on themes from the UAE’s history and heritage for an eye-catching stroll. For a high-brow evening out, get tickets to Dubai Opera (+971 4 440 8888, dubaiopera.com), which offers an impressive line-up of local and international operatic, ballet and musical productions. The building itself is an architectural wonder with a dhowshaped design by Janus Rostock a stylish tribute to Dubai’s maritime history. For more top tier entertainment, the emirate’s first in-residence show, La Perle by Dragone (advance bookings via +971 4 303 4992, arabianadventures.com) is sure to impress. A masterpiece by Franco Dragone, the show takes place in a purposebuilt, state-of-the-art aqua theatre at Al Habtoor City, and is awash with awe-inspiring aquatic and aerial feats, creative imagery and cutting-edge technology. La Perle takes place twice a night, five days a week.
SWING INTO ACTION Most of the world’s golfing greats have teed off onto Dubai’s flawless fairways and the emirate is recognised as a major golf destination. The first all-grass championship golf course in the Middle East when it opened in 1988, Emirates Golf Club (+971 4 380 1234, dubaigolf. com) remains a firm favourite among Dubai old timers and club-toting
visitors. Annual host of the 'Major of the Middle East', the European Tour Omega Dubai Desert Classic and the Omega Dubai Ladies Classic, it has two 18-hole par 72 championship courses and an iconic clubhouse inspired by the shape of a traditional Bedouin tent. The Majlis course has open horizons and stretches of sand along with more traditional bunkers, while the 2005 Nick Faldo-redesigned course has a wadi (valley) running through it. The Faldo is also the only 18-hole course in the region to offer night golf. Swanky residential community and golf club Jumeirah Golf Estates (+971 4 818 2000, jumeirahgolfestates.com) has a duo of Greg Norman-designed championship courses, Fire and Earth, Alserkal Avenue
In The Know
Artistic flair The Third Line +971 4 341 1367, thethirdline.com The latest exhibition at The Third Line, which represents contemporary Middle Eastern artists, sees the return of Abbas Akhavan with his third solo show at the gallery entitled Recently. The collection of recent works explores the award-winning artist’s ongoing research about the environment, animals, saints, weaponry and poetry, to name a few. Until 21 April. Open Saturday to Thursday from 10am to 7pm.
The AcTiviTies Bollywood Parks Dubai
inspired by the great parkland courses of Europe and North America. The Earth course is home to the annual DP World Tour Championship, the grand finale of the European Tour’s 47-tournament Race to Dubai. The city's newest course, Trump International Golf Club, Dubai is the first in the Middle East to bear the Trump brand name. The par 71 course was designed by Gil Hanse, and also features the largest clubhouse in Dubai, a 9-hole, par 3 academy course and double sided driving range. Arabian Ranches Golf Club (+971 4 366 4700, arabianranchesgolfdubai. com) offers an 18-hole, par 72 signature desert-style grass course designed by Ian Baker-Finch in association with Nicklaus Design. You can unwind after a round at the Spanish Colonial Clubhouse.
THEME PARK FUN Thrill-seekers, screamers and scaredy cats can test their limits at Dubai Parks and Resorts (advance bookings via +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures. com) in Jebel Ali thanks to its roster of rides spread across three theme parks and a water park. Wet and wild fun of the tot-friendly variety is mandatory at Legoland Water Park. Once you’ve dried off, you can explore the six themed lands at the adjacent Legoland Dubai, home to 40 rides, shows and attractions, and 15,000 scale Lego models. Fans of the Hindi film scene can get their Shakrukh Khan on at Bollywood Parks Dubai with a host of rides and attractions inspired by nine all singing and dancing Bollywood films, complete with 30 colourful live shows a day. Cricket fans will love Lagaan,
a motion simulator ride based on the cricket-themed film of the same name. Sit down and strap yourself in for the ride of a lifetime at Motiongate Dubai with rollercoasters, multimedia ‘dark rides’ and live shows based on blockbuster film characters including Ghostbusters, Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, The Hunger Games and The Smurfs, who even have their own village. Fear factor alert: not all rides are suitable for tender young minds – or adults of a nervous disposition – so check before you ride. Linking the parks together is Riverland Dubai, a free-to-enter retail and dining zone set on a (manmade) river. Divided into The French Village, Boardwalk, India Gate and The Peninsula, there are more than 50 shops and eateries to choose from. For air-conditioned theme park kicks,
GET ON TRACK Supercars are a common sight in Dubai – even the police force has a Bugatti Veyron and a Lamborghini Aventador, among other cars, in its fleet – and motoring fans will be pleased to learn that you can do more than snap a selfie next to these gleaming vehicles. At Dubai Autodrome (+971 4 367 8700, dubaiautodrome.com) you can slip behind the wheel of a single-seater F3 race car, McLaren, Audi TT or R8 supercar. Track experiences combine classroom and behind the wheel training from a professional racing driver, before you’re let loose to do a few laps on your own. The complex is also home to Dubai Kartdrome, which has a 500-metre indoor track suitable for kids aged seven and above, which is able to handle up to 10 karters at any one time. The1.2-kilometrelong outdoor circuit is designed for more confident drivers who can test their mettle on its 17 corners, tunnel and bridge. All the karts are equipped with timers making sure the competition is fierce.
head to IMG Worlds of Adventure (advance bookings via +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures.com or City Sightseeing Dubai kiosks at major malls), the world’s largest indoor park, which has four zones: Cartoon Network, Marvel, Lost Valley-Dinosaur Adventure and IMG Boulevard. It’s an animation superhero love fest with more than 20 rides and attractions, including a first-of-its-kind Hulk 3D ride with 18 IMAX projectors and a seriously bone-chilling Haunted Hotel (for those aged 15 and over). Adrenaline fiends will feel their heart rate rocket on The Velociraptor roller coaster, which hits speeds of up to 100kph in just 2.5 seconds. Gentler fun can be had at the Ben 10 5D cinema experience and at live stage shows featuring characters from LazyTown. There are 25 retail outlets plugging original merchandise. Wild Wadi Water Park
If you’re eager for more, Global Village (+971 6 362 4114, globalvillage. ae), in Dubailand, features Honey, I Shrunk The Kids sized replicas of some the of the world's top landmarks. It's home to 30 pavilions representing more than 75 countries with an entertaining line-up of stunt shows, rides and music concerts plus firework displays on Friday and Saturday evenings at 9pm, but you better be quick, as the six-month multicultural festival draws to a close on 7 April. Entry is Dhs15, or free for children under three years old. Family tickets are available.
THRILLS ANd SPILLS Belly flops and swan dives are par for the course at Dubai’s gold standard water parks, with fun for water babies of all ages. Located in front of the sail-shaped Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Wild Wadi Water Park (advance booking via
Dubai Ice Rink
+971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures. com) was first on the scene and remains a popular choice with over 30 rides and attractions. From kid-friendly slides and the relaxing lazy river to the truly terrifying Jumeirah Sceirah (which propels you to speeds of 80 km/h), it’s wet and wild all the way. On the crescent of Palm Jumeirah, Aquaventure Waterpark (advance booking via +971 4 303 4888, arabianadventures.com or City Sightseeing Dubai kiosks at major malls) at Atlantis The Palm, Dubai delivers 17 hectares of H2O action. Dare to make the dramatic descent that is the Leap of Faith, jump in a two-person inner tube and journey through the Tower of Neptune to a shark-filled lagoon, or relax in a private poolside cabana.
In Jebel Ali, Legoland Water Park (advance bookings via +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures. com) at Dubai Parks and Resorts is designed especially for families with kids aged two to 12. Slide, splash and swim through 15 Lego-inspired water slides, raft rides and pools or construct your own Lego raft. For something on a smaller scale, head to JBR where you can find AquaFun (aquafun.ae) outdoor inflatable water park, which challenges you to run, jump and slide your way over 74 obstacles without falling off. Open daily from 9am to 6pm. Tiny tots can be guided to the nearby Splash Pad (splashpaddubai.com), which has a giant tipper bucket,
water squirters, climbing frames and more. Open from 9am to 8pm.
EXPERIENCE SNOW ANd ICE Where else but Dubai can you lay on the beach in the morning and go skiing on real snow in the afternoon? A winter wonderland in the middle of the desert, Ski Dubai (advance booking via +971 4 303 4888, arabianadventures.com or City Sightseeing Dubai kiosks at major malls) at Mall of the Emirates boasts the world’s first indoor black run, a waddle of people-friendly penguins and is the de facto destination for skiing, snowboarding and tobogganing. Don’t fret if you haven’t packed your salopettes, as you can hire clothing and equipment on-site. Book a lesson
or watch the free penguin parade between 2pm and 8pm daily. An Olympic-sized rink, Dubai Ice Rink (advance bookings +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures.com or City Sightseeing Dubai kiosks at major malls) at The Dubai Mall has public sessions for beginner and intermediate skaters. Catch a snowflake on your tongue at one of the regular snowfall sessions, with Penguin Pal skating aids available for little ones (minimum one metre tall) and Snowmen for wobbly adults or kids 12 years or above.
FUN ON THE WATER Watersports fans are spoilt for choice in Dubai. Get out on the water and enjoy the best views of the skyline on a jet-ski tour. Jet Ski Sightseeing Tours (advance booking via +971 4 303 4888, arabian-adventures.com) invite you to follow your guide on a safe, set route across the warm Arabian waters on
the latest Sea-Doo jet-skis either as a driver or passenger â€“ you can take turns with a friend (each jet-ski can accommodate two people). A Go-Pro camera can be rented and fitted to your jet-ski for an additional cost. Younger family members can dip their toes into the maritime lifestyle with a sailing lesson or short course by Watercooled Dubai (+971 4 887 6771, watercooleddubai.com), based at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Dubai - Jumeirah Beach, while seasoned sailors can hire a Hobie catamaran or RS500 performance dinghy. From Dhs200 per hour.
GET A FALCONâ€™S EYE VIEW A sure-fire way to make the folks back home green with envy is to tick skydiving off the bucket list. At Skydive Dubai (skydivedubai.ae) you can leap out of an aeroplane, tethered to a professional, for a tandem jump experience over
In The Know
Animal magic dubai Safari Al Warqaa 5, dubaisafari.ae A vervet monkey, 22 blackbuck antelopes, three Arabian wolves, 12 corn snakes and two Nile crocodiles are just some of the new arrivals at Dubai Safari Park. The 119-hectare wildlife park, which opened late last year, is now home to 2,500 animals representing more than 250 species from around the world. The park, which is built on a former landfill site, aims to raise awareness about wildlife conservation though a series of interactive activities and encounters. Open from 9am to 7pm daily. Entry costs from Dhs2085 (those aged under 3 or over 60 go free). See Instagram.com/ DubaiSafariOfficial
The AcTiviTies Palm Jumeirah. It’s also the best vantage point from which to view the scale of the fronded island – unless you’ve got your eyes closed. Seawings (advance bookings +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures.com) offers scenic flights, including the Dubai Creek Silver tour, a 40-minute ‘dock to dock’ seaplane excursion above Dubai Creek, Palm Jumeirah, Burj Khalifa and more. Alternatively, take a helicopter ride (advance bookings +971 4 303 4992, arabian-adventures.com) for a bird's eye view of the iconic landmarks and make the most of the incredible photo opportunities along the way. Private charter flights available upon request. For an exhilarating experience that keeps your skills firmly at the helm, iFly Dubai (+971 4 231 6292, theplaymania. com) lets you defy gravity in its indoor wind tunnel.
MEET THE MARINE LIFE Dunk your head beneath the blue Arabian Gulf waters to discover more of Dubai’s coolest attractions. Home to over 65,000 marine animals, The Lost Chambers Aquarium (advance bookings via +971 4 303 4992, arabianadventures.com or City Sightseeing Dubai kiosks at major malls) at Atlantis The Palm, Dubai will enchant visitors of all ages. It has over 20 themed exhibits housing marine creatures from all over the world. Book a behind-the-scenes tour or be brave and dive with sharks. Besides its retail pull, The Dubai Mall is home to Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo (advance booking +971 4 303 4888, arabian-adventures. com or CitySightseeing Dubai kiosks at major malls), one of the largest suspended aquariums on the planet. Marvel at more than 140 species
of sea life, including more than 300 sharks and rays, or rent some scuba gear and sidle up alongside the inhabitants of the 10-million-litre tank (no diving experience required). Meanwhile, the zoo offers a sneak peek at the habits of other water loving creatures such as penguins and giant spider crabs, but the star of the show is the famous 750kg King Croc. Conservation is the buzzword at the turtle lagoon at Jumeirah Al Naseem (+971 4 366 8888, jumeirah. com), home to the Dubai Turtle Rehabilitation Project, which is run in collaboration with Emirates Wildlife Society. To date, the project has seen the release of over 560 rescued sea turtles back into Dubai’s waters. It is open daily, with 20-minute feeding sessions taking place at 11am on Wednesdays. Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo
Lucky Voice Dubai
Evenings out are packed full of fun, with Thursday and Friday nights usually the busiest. The legal age to drink alcohol in Dubai – and enter a nightclub – is 21, so if you're blessed with youthful looks, be sure to bring your ID. We’ve included a taxi reference for each of our featured venues to help you find your way 72
The besT live music The city is awash with live musical talent from Aussie rockers and Filipina soul divas to Britpop artists. New to the mix is Indian gastropub and social spot Bar Baar (taxi: Majestic Hotel & Tower, +971 4 501 2631), meaning ‘again and again’ in Hindi, which hosts regular live music sessions with an in-house band and visiting musicians. Open daily from noon to 3am. For a slice the French Riviera’s legendary nightlife, head to La Petite Maison Dubai on 3 April (taxi: Gate Village 08 DIFC, +971 4439 0505) which is putting on an evening with The Troubadours – a rock, jazz, and pop act direct from Nice – to serenade you as you dine. For a dose of singer/songwriter talent, head to Q’s Bar and Lounge (taxi: Palazzo Versace Dubai, +9714 556 8865), Quincy Jones’ first-ever bar and lounge, which welcomes an impressive roster of resident acts throughout the year. Unwind and enjoy the beats in the living room styled space. Open from 7pm to 2am, Tuesday to Saturday. With a global reputation for awesome live music, it's no surprise to find a Hard Rock Café in town (taxi: Dubai Festival City Mall, +971 4 232 8900). Check out wall-to-wall musical memorabilia, including a bolero jacket worn by the late Prince and Mick Fleetwood’s Tama drums, before rocking out to live and loud sounds. Open from noon to 2am Monday to Sunday. Ramp up the fun factor at Lock, Stock & Barrel, which has two venues in the city (taxi: Grand Millennium Dubai, +971 4 514 9195 and taxi: Rixos Premium Dubai, +971 4 520 0049) each spanning two floors and kitted out with pool tables and 'stool and booth' seating fronting the main act’s central stage. Open from 4pm to 3am Monday to Friday (the Barsha Heights venue opens slightly earlier from 1pm to 3am on Fridays) and 2pm to 3am on Saturday and Sunday.
The Troubadours are coming to La Petite Maison Dubai
Q’s Bar and Lounge
Oh what a night Ladies' nights are a 'thing' in the emirates and Dubai is dame crazy when it comes to free beverages for womankind. On Monday evenings, Japanese Peruvian hotspot Nobu Noir (taxi: Atlantis The Palm, Dubai, +971 4 426 2626) serves complimentary cocktails and a selection of tapas for Dhs40 from 8:30pm, with DJ David DeLuca taking you back to the turn of the millennium with R&B hits and funky old school anthems. A success since day one, Sparkle in the Sand at The Beach House, Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort (+971 4 567 8302) promises a stunning Tuesday night setting and two hours of unlimited bubbles for Dhs75 from 8pm. The first 50 guests through the door receive a silk pouch containing a gem, one of which will be the real deal. Guests have until 10pm to visit Dhamani in the hotel lobby to find out if their stone is genuine. Also on Tuesdays, No Buts, Just Fine Cuts at STK JBR (taxi: Rixos Premium Dubai, +971 4 323 0061) offers women 25% off food and three drinks on the house from 6pm to 1am. Those who want to hop between venues should head to The Square at City Walk, which hosts the Ultimate Ladies Night every Wednesday, with three venues – Toro + Ko, LIMA Dubai and Galvin Dubai – offering fab promotions with entertainment, guest DJs, and unlimited sparkling drinks.
OnE FOR thE BOYS Invest in a bit of male bonding over the male equivalent of a gossipy girls’ night out at some of Dubai’s best venues. Tuesday’s are reserved for ‘bromance’ at Grapeskin at City Walk (taxi: La Ville Hotel & Suites, +971 54 309 5948) with a dedicated Gents Night for bites and banter. Enjoy two glasses of grape or hops from 8-11pm (with Dhs25 drinks thereafter) plus a meaty charcuterie platter. On Wednesdays from 8:30pm, guests can enjoy a signature cocktail on
arrival followed by a protein-rich sharing menu at the gentleman's evening at Seafire Steakhouse & Bar (taxi: Atlantis The Palm, Dubai, +971 4 426 2626). The top floor of all-American gastropub Cook Hall is the setting every Saturday for the Man Cave experience (taxi: The Westin Dubai, Al Habtoor City, +971 4 435 5577). Pull your own craft brew, score with FIFA on the Playstation 4, shoot a game or pool and feast on comfort food and bottomless beverages for Dhs299 for three-and-ahalf hours from the time you arrive.
SPOtS FOR SUnDOwnERS As the sun dips below the horizon it's time to enjoy that 'perfect storm' combination of a cracking sunset and chilled drink of choice. You El Chiringuito Dubai
can soak up spectacular views of Madinat Jumeirah as you watch the sun disappear into the sea at folly by Nick & Scott (taxi: Souk Madinat Jumeirah, +971 4 430 8535). The venue boasts two outdoor terrace bars that are increasingly popular among the city’s social set. There is a dedicated sundowners menu Sunday to Thursday from 5-7pm, featuring a tempting selection of drinks. A perennial favourite, 360° (taxi: Jumeirah Beach Hotel, +971 4 406 8741) offers panoramic city views from its Arabian Gulf perch out on a private jetty, with Burj Al Arab on one side and twinkling lights of the Jumeirah coastline on the other. With a stunning deck and indoor nightclub, arrive at sunset and party on until
The NighTlife THREE CRACKING
Conquer your nerves and channel your inner music star by taking to the stage and impressing the crowd at these top karaoke venues…
1. Blind Dragon (taxi: Al Habtoor City, 2. Imported from London, Lucky Voice +971 4 437 0033), in entertainment hub The Atrium, on the banks of Dubai Water Canal, is the sister venue to the original A-list LA hangout. The opulent Asian-themed lounge has both public and private karaoke suites in which you can enjoy cocktails and light bites as you sing out the tunes. Open Tuesday to Saturday, from 5pm until 2am.
the wee hours. Open from Sunday to Saturday from 5pm to 3am. If you fancy lazing by the swimming pool, Kalsa (taxi: Jumeirah Al Naseem, +971 4 432 3232) provides a scenic setting – simply order drinks to your cabana and unwind in your beachwear. Open daily from 9am to 8pm. Another prime spot is Observatory – Bar & Grill (taxi: Dubai Marriott Harbour Hotel & Suites, +971 4 319 4000). Located on the 52nd floor of the property, it offers awesome views of Dubai Marina and Palm Jumeirah. Plus, there’s a daily Happy Hour from 4-7pm. Lastly, Treehouse (taxi: Taj Dubai, +971 4 438 3100), is known for its views of the city skyline towards Burj Khalifa. Make yourself comfortable as, after
3. Head to Nippon Bottle Company
Dubai (taxi: Grand Millennium Hotel, +971 4 429 9999) is a top spot for testing your rap skills, singing soft-rock anthems or belting out cheesy pop tunes to your heart’s content. Eleven private pods allow groups of six to 18 people to warble away without (much) fear of embarrassment, while the 15,000-song playlist means you’re guaranteed to find the perfect tune for you.
(taxi: Dusit Thani Dubai, +971 4 343 3333) for #BeltItOutMondays – one of the newest karaoke nights on the scene that takes place every Monday from 8pm until midnight. There's no cover charge or entry fee. All you need to do is rock up and pluck up enough courage to sing your favourite karaoke songs. The friendly audience will cheer you on.
dark, this trendy open-air lounge comes to life with 'light deep' house music played by resident DJ Taylor. Open daily from 7pm to 2am and on weekends from 7pm to 3am.
Along the Palm Jumeirah crescent you’ll find El Chiringuito Dubai (taxi: Rixos The Palm Dubai, +971 4 277 9180). Reserve a Bali-inspired sun bed, sit back and sip your drink while snapping a selfie or two at this cool Ibizan beach club import. Soak up the good vibes on the beach terrace by the waters edge, and join the musical Nomad ceremonies after the sun sets. Open from 10am until 7pm Sunday to Thursday, and 10am to midnight on Friday and Saturday. A beach club meets open-air party, Zero Gravity (taxi: Skydive Dubai, +971 4 399 0009) attracts big name acts like Paul Van Dyk and Mark Ronson and its relaxed vibe draws a diverse crowd of fun seekers. The Ritual Friday festival is great for soaking up
BEaCh CLUBS Slip a kaftan over your bathers, whack on some designer shades and you’ll fit right in among the party people at play at Nikki Beach Resort & Spa (taxi: Pearl Jumeira, +971 4 376 6162). Just like its stylish global counterparts in Miami, Marbella and elsewhere, the beach club at the Dubai outpost hosts a revolving roster of resident and guest DJs from its luxurious island setting and is open daily from 11am to 9pm (entry is free, from Dhs150 for a single sun lounger).
Smirnoff Sound Collective, Barasti Beach
the sunshine at the pool and beach before hitting the dancefloor. Open from 10am to 3am. Free for ladies, or Dhs100 for men after 9pm. On the Dubai-Abu Dhabi border, around 25 minutes from Mall of the Emirates, Blue Marlin Ibiza UAE (taxi: Golden Tulip Al Jazira Hotels & Resort, +971 51 133 3400) lures house music party diehards in their thousands to enjoy the Balearic beach vibes. On 6 April, you can join international party brand Paradise for a day-to-night event. Its mastermind Jamie Jones will lead the DJ roster, and the entire space will be brought to life with lights, dancers and fantasy themes.
SEaFROnt SEttingS Feel the sand between your toes at one of Dubai’s chic beachfront hangouts. With the JBR skyline as the backdrop and views of Palm Jumeirah, Bliss Lounge (taxi: Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort, +971 4 315 3886) is a chichi little locale frequented by the ‘in’ crowd seeking top DJ action, custom cocktails and chilled beach vibes. Open daily from 12.30pm to 2am.
So photogenic you’ll feel like you’re starring in a magazine shoot, The Jetty Lounge (taxi: One&Only Royal Mirage, +971 4 399 9999) rocks white linen style with beautifully landscaped surroundings, catering to an upmarket audience of international jet setters. Open daily from 2pm to 2am. Further along the coast, Key West Bar & Grill at Nikki Beach Resort & Spa (taxi: Pearl Jumeira, +971 4 376 6000) opens early every evening for aperitivo hour, offering a boutique collection of drinks from the Caribbean and Latin America. The light and airy venue has stunning beachside views – take a wander across the white sand beach and chill among the coconut palms. Open daily from 5pm to 1am. Crank it up a notch at Barasti Beach (taxi: Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, +971 4 318 1313), which is hosting the biggest global EDM festival of the year (in 2017, 30,000 people partied there). Taking place from 5-7 April, Smirnoff Sound Collective is welcoming Quintino, Yves V and Dante Klein, among others. The best bit is, it's free to enter.
Just like any city known for great nightlife, Dubai is home to a few spots that are famous for delivering an evening to talk about. Barasti (taxi: Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, +971 4 399 333) has been ruling the roost for 20 years, pulling in thousands of revellers every weekend. It combines live music, daily sunbathing sessions, a sandbetween-your-toes dance floor and more serving stations than you can shake an empty glass at. The Irish Village (+971 4 282 4750, theirishvillage.com) in Al Garhoud is another muchloved gem. The haunt of many a local (friendly) expat, the traditional interior opens out onto a large garden dotted with picnic tables. It has a great line-up of events that take place year-round. There's also a second outpost now open at Riverland Dubai. Join the newbies, for whom a night spent at Rock Bottom Café (taxi: Ramee Rose Hotel, +971 55 200 9333) is like a rite of passage. Its Barsha Heights venue is especially popular, with nightly DJs spinning club music and a live band. The Irish Village
The NighTlife Rita Ora at Base
jUmPing SUPERCLUBS Glow sticks at the ready. Dubai’s big, bigger, biggest mentality has made it to the dance floor with a slew of funky clubs to keep you going all night long. Open until the start of Ramadan in May, White Dubai (taxi: Meydan Racecourse Grandstand Rooftop, +971 50 443 0933,) is the sister lounge and club to the Beirut original. Just like its Lebanese sibling, it’s high on the glam factor, with a good-looking crowd partying on the wrap-around rooftop terrace from Thursday to Saturday. Also at Meydan is Soho Garden (+971 56 822 2559), a social spot with a pool area for daytime fun, and four bars to lean on. Open Wednesday to Sunday from 5pm to 3am.
Midway along Sheikh Zayed Road is the luxurious BOA Lounge & Club (taxi: W Dubai – Al Habtoor City, +971 56 501 2039), which dominates the 32nd floor of the hotel and affords stellar views of Dubai Water Canal and the Arabian Gulf. The lounge is open daily from 8pm to 3am while the 1,000-capacity club is open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11pm. For a wild time, head to Inner City Zoo nightclub in JBR (taxi: Rixos Premium Dubai, +971 58 867 5357). Sophisticated but edgy, the place has a real buzz about it with resident DJs Emma Love and Henry X taking to the decks Monday to Friday, bringing a blend of house and R&B to the venue. For old school jams,
the ‘Disco Made Me Do It' bash on Fridays is solid fun, with free drinks for ladies from 11pm to 1am. Open from Monday to Friday from 11pm to 3am. You can dance your socks off at open-air mega venue Base (taxi: Dubai Design District, +971 55 313 4999). This homegrown house and hip hop concept fits 2,000 dedicated clubbers on the dancefloor with a state-of-the-art sound, lighting and pyrotechnics system. It recently hosted Rita Ora, and there are many more events to come.
FOR SOmEthing a Bit DiFFEREnt We’re not sure why it hasn’t been done before, but Stereo Arcade
FIVE OF THE BEST
roofTop Terraces Make the most of the balmy weather by heading outdoors for drinks with a view
2. For an Arabian style experience, visit The Rooftop & Sports Lounge atop the Arabian Court at One&Only Royal Mirage (+971 4 399 9999). Under a canopy of stars, sink into the majlis style cushioned seating around the central dome and sip cocktails until late. Open daily from 5pm to 1am, with live music on selected evenings.
1. If you fancy nursing a handpoured drink, head to the Polynesian-inspired LANI Rooftop Lounge (taxi: Lapita, Dubai Parks and Resorts, Autograph Collection Hotels, +971 4 810 9421), which has a fun yet chilled out vibe. Unwind to the downtempo beats while taking in the panoramic views of the theme parks.
3. Soak up views of the Madinat Jumeirah waterways, with Burj Al Arab illuminated in the distance, at Bahri Bar (taxi: Jumeirah Mina A'Salam, +971 4 432 3232), a popular jazz and soul venue where you can sip drinks and share some mezze. Open from 4pm to 2am Sat to Weds and 4pm to 3am Thurs and Fri.
5. Pan-Asian restaurant Karma Kafé (taxi: 4. Situated on the 16th floor of the fashion-inspired FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai, The Penthouse (taxi: FIVE Palm Jumeirah, +971 4 455 9999), spotlights some of the best DJs and dance acts around at its al fresco club night every Thursday. The venue boasts one of the most Instagrammable views in Dubai. Open daily, call for timings.
Souk Al Bahar, +971 4 423 0909) has a stunning terrace area directly overlooking Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Fountain. The ‘Sake in the City’ ladies’ night on Tuesdays offers three free drinks and 50% off the food menu.
The NighTlife (taxi: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Dubai – Jumeirah Beach, +971 52 618 2424) combines an arcade housing over 50,000 games with a slushy machine, hotdog stand and more. The stereo element sees the hi-tech club play '80s and '90s hits every weekend. If you like your entertainment a little more outlandish, head to Cirque le Soir (taxi: Fairmont Dubai, +971 50 995 5400). The emirate's offshoot of the London A-list haunt is open Monday to Friday from 10.30pm to 3am, featuring performances from a beautifully bizarre cast of contortionists, stiltwalkers and fire-eaters, alongside some of the city's best DJs. Tucked away on the ground floor of Conrad Dubai – is Little Black Door (+971 55 623 1620). You’ll have no problem spotting it as the ‘little black door’ is actually huge. All you need to do is knock to enter and wait for it
to swing open. Once inside, you’ll find a classy, club-style lounge complete with crystal chandeliers hanging from leather-clad ceilings, opulent furnishings and distressed-brick walls. The resident DJs play neo-soul and classic jazz. Open from 7:30pm to 3am from Monday to Sunday.
CaSUaL hangOUtS If you're tickled by novelty cocktail cups, Trader Vic’s JBR (taxi: Hilton Dubai Jumeirah, +971 4 318 2530), which opened in March, has you covered. The Tiki-themed venue is the place to go for signature drinks, including JBR's bespoke Koana Puffer concoction, in photo-worthy containers. Grab a seat on the outdoor terrace for views of the Arabian Gulf towards Palm Jumeirah and try to time your visit during happy hour (5-8pm, Sunday to Saturday).
With its large outdoor terrace Café Artois by Bridgewater Tavern (taxi: JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, +971 4 414 6755), is ideal for a chilled afternoon in the sun, with tasty barbecue food and a huge craft hop selection to enjoy at the picnic tables. Open from 4pm Sunday to Thursday and from noon on Friday and Saturday. A long copper bar, dark wood floors and exposed stonework shipped all the way from Scotland lend Copper Dog (taxi: Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Dubai – Jumeirah Beach, +971 4 559 5355) a cosy country atmosphere just like the original Scottish Highlands pub. Choose from a broad menu of drams, craft hops and pub grub enjoyed to live music. It’s also a nice spot for a quick nightcap. Open from noon to 2am Sunday to Thursday and from 10am to 2am Friday and Saturday.
Trader Vic's JBR
in the frame
From its arts and culture hotspots to its rolling desert dunes, Dubai is a dream destination for photography fans, with something new to snap at almost every turn. In each issue, we invite a keen photographer to share one of their favourite pictures
The eyes have IT
The city is home to striking street art and this depiction of a woman wearing a burqa (a traditional leather face covering typically worn by older generation Emiratis) is one of the many Instagram-worthy murals at Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood. It is captured here by Dubai-based travel writer and photographer Natasha Amar (@thebohochica).
A TIMELESS ARABIAN
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