7 great staycation spots in the UAE
Rixos Bab Al Bahr
The Rixos Bab Al Bahr on Marjan Island has made much of its desire to attract guests from the emirates further to the south each summer – and have largely succeeded, with weekends in May and June pretty much fully booked. The private beach here is 345-metres long and sprinkled with private cabanas, while the resort also has a total of seven swimming pools – three outdoor, one adults only, one for kids and two spa pools for men and women respectively. If you have time, take a long, slow Turkish-style hammam in the resort’s Anjana Spa. There’s tons of restaurants too, so foodies will have no problem satiating their hunger.
Where: Al Marjan Island, Ras Al Khaimah
Price: From AED1,440 per night
Contact: +971 7 202 0000, website
The Fairmont Palm Hotel & Resort
Known for its celebrity appeal, Fairmont The Palm is offering guests the chance to indulge in its many features and services that includes four temperature controlled pools, prime beachside location and of course the chance of meeting a celeb from just AED900 per night.
Where: Palm Jumeirah, Dubai
Price: From AED900 per night
Contact: 800 2088, website
Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah
Arguably one of the best hotel in RAK, certainly the most striking with its unbeatable beach-front location and opulent Arabic inspired interiors. Only a 50-minute drive from Dubai, it offers palatial rooms, stylish dining and an 18-hole golf course – so good it has won plenty of awards.
Where: Vienna Street, Ras Al Khamiah
Price: From AED1,025 per night
Contact: +971 7 203 5555, website
The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina
With five pools, a spa, a fitness club and the beach at your disposal, the Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina is perfect for those looking for some r&r. The hotel is home to nine restaurants, all of which boast a number of mouthwatering dishes from across the globe. El Sur is perfect for those looking for a bit of a Spanish flare, Spice Emporium is perfect for Thai food enthusiasts while Bussola is home to some of the best Italian dishes in the region. The best bit is that you can get 50 percent off on all the activities and restaurants (except for El Sur and Bubbalicious) as part of their summer discount deal - just book before August 31.
Where: Dubai Marina
Price: From AED1,035 per night
Contact: +971 4 399 4141, website
No more than half an hour’s drive from Dubai and with its sugary white beaches and sun-soaked landscape overlooking the Arabian Gulf, Ajman could be the most underrated emirate for a weekend break. It’s the newest of the UAE’s Fairmont properties, offering 200 metres of pristine beachfront, sea view guest rooms, a gym and spa, infinity pool and it’s only 10 minutes from Al Zorah Golf Club. It’s a great spot for family fun: in fact they promise to be “prepared to make every child’s stay magical”, which says to us you parents will get some downtime, too.
Where: Sheikh Humaid Bin Rashid Al Nuaimi Street, Ajman
Price: From AED649 per night
Contact: +9716 701 5757, website
Sofitel The Palm Resort
Stretching over a private sandy beach on Palm Jumeirah, Sofitel The Palm Resort exudes the perfect mix of tropical with chic French touches without a lot of mileage to get there. The low-rise buildings, trickling stream and the lush greenery of gardens designed by French botanist Patrick Blanc add a sense of calm alongside an impressive line-up of facilities: 14 restaurants and bars, six swimming pools, a state-of-the-art SoSPA, tennis, water sports... and très chic rooms and suites.
Where: East Crescent Road, Palm Jumeirah
Price: From AED1,005 per night
Contact: +9714 455 6677, website
Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara
It’s touted as an “urban sanctuary in the heart of the capital” and the impressive waterfront hotel couldn’t feel more like a retreat if it tried. Relax in the Mangroves lounge or at the infinity pool – or just chill out in your luxury room. We recommend trying the delicious and authentic Thai cuisine at Pachaylen and maybe a pre-dinner drink at Impressions, the stunning rooftop lounge. The setting is impressive, but you can really unwind by opting for a relaxing treatment at the Anantara Spa with two Vichy shower rooms a dedicated slimming room and the vast Turkish hammam, featuring two private hammam rooms, an open hammam area, sauna and steam rooms.
Where: Abu Dhabi
Price: From AED600 per night
Contact: +9712 656 1000, website