“The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry”. Thank you, Robert Burns, that’s certainly the case here. What was planned as a 4 part series, #myDubai Guide is now stretching to 5. Let me explain.
In this episode, we’ll finish off Jumeirah, spread our wings through Umm Suquiem and take in a little of Al Quoz and Al Barsha. This would not be a serious guide without them.
In Part #5 we’ll be all over Palm Jumeirah and Dubai Marina as promised. Until then, welcome to (the amended) Part #4 of #myDubai Guide.
Let’s crack on with where to #eat #drink #explore #shop & #stay.
Seaview Restaurant (Fishing Harbour, 2B Street, off Jumeirah Beach Road, +971 4333 5552)
With their own fishing boat moored in the harbour, Seaview Restaurant’s morning catch determines the daily menu.
Choose your fresh fish and the cooking method (grilled, barbecued, tandoored or steamed) then leave the cooks to it while you Sit back enjoying the views of the fishing harbour.
A cheeky chablis would be a perfect accompaniment to this fresh seafood experience, alas, Seaview Restaurant is not licensed. They do offer home delivery however so if you’re close by, phone in your order and enjoy a fresh seafood feast with your duty-free vino.
Madinat Jumeirah (King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Street, Umm Suqueim 3)
With almost 40 restaurants in this multi-hotel dining, shopping and entertainment hub, it’s difficult to single out just one. Here’s a link to all of them while I mention a couple of my faves.
Try fabulous overwater dining at Pier Chic. The menu is seafood focused without leaving meat-eaters and vegetarians hanging. The cocktail bar midway along the pier is a lovely spot for pre and post-dinner drinks.
Instagrammers be on the lookout for incredible views of the iconic Burj Al Arab popping up at Madinat Jumeirah’s many venues.
Travel first class with Burj Al Arab’s version of a progressive dinner.
Finally, indulge in dessert at Burj Al Arab’s iconic atrium lounge, Sahn Eddar, flanked by the imposing multi-level aquarium.
This is special-occasion-dining at its peak but considering the location and exclusivity of the seven-star Burj Al Arab, it’s not bad value for money.
Sanctuary Pool Bar (Rooftop, Level 24, Sheraton Mall of the Emirates Hotel, Al Barsha 1, Ph: +971 4377 2353)
Pop your togs in your bag and head to Sanctuary Pool Bar on Sheraton Mall of the Emirates Hotel’s rooftop for a drink and a swim. Daily specials, bar snacks and expansive views of Dubai await. A perfect place to watch the sunset.
Starwood Preferred Guests save 20%.
Madinat Jumeirah (King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Street, Umm Suqueim 3)
Pool and beach bars are scattered throughout the Madinat Jumeirah Hotels. Be sure to check each hotel’s T&Cs online for fees and access.
Burj Al Arab (Umm Suqueim 3, Ph: +971 4301 7600)
Access to Burj Al Arab is not possible without a reservation. So how do you get inside without blowing your budget? For a nosey through the hotel and fantastic photo opps, consider making a reservation for sundowners at Scape Restaurant and Lounge or Skyview Bar.
If you have the discipline to stop at one sundowner 😉 this is a wallet-friendly way of viewing this iconic hotel from the inside.
Dubai Offshore Sailing Club (Jumeirah Beach Road, Ph: +971 4394 1669)
Why not learn to sail in Dubai? Dubai Offshore Sailing Club offers short courses for adults and children.
In 2 days you can complete level 1 and find out if sailing is for you.
From Level 1, lessons continue until you can sail solo. Add racing courses, day passage sailing and more in-depth seamanship skills. Dubai Offshore Sailing Club members have access to the club’s boats for day hire.
Surf House Dubai (Cnr Jumeirah Road & 41A Street, Ph: +971 50 5043020 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Not a sailor but still want to get your dose of Vitamin Sea? Surf House Dubai will have you catching a wave in no time. Stand Up Paddleboarding is just as popular so head to Surf House Dubai early for morning sessions with Dubai’s skyline as your backdrop.
Surf House Dubai is currently offering “surfaris” to Sri Lanka and has plans for Morocco and Maldives. What a fun conduit to your next destination.
Nemo Watersports Jet Ski & Fly boards (Jumeirah Road @Umm Suqueim Fishing Harbour, Ph: +971 55 285 1012)
If you prefer mechanical rather than Mother Nature’s action (and let’s face it, some people do) then jump on a 1500CC Kawasaki Jet Ski to tour Dubai’s coastline. Nemo Watersports offer tours with a certified jetski instructor beginning with a safety and basic skills briefing.
The Flyboard experience also begins with a briefing. Learn how the fly board works and the best ways to manoeuvre it. Life jackets are supplied along with headphone integrated helmets so the certified instructor can coach you through improving your skills.
Wild Wadi Water Park (Jumeirah Road, Umm Suqueim 3)
For those of you with kids in tow, Wild Wadi Water Park is a must. Centred around the journeys of Arabic fictional character, Juha and his donkey, this water park has something for everyone.
30 rides ranging from toddler suitable to thrill rides for teens and adults will keep everyone happy and Wild Wadi’s adjacency to Burj Al Arab ensures spectacular Instapics.
Day passes, group discounts and combined packages with other Dubai attractions are available. Check their offers here and if you stay at any of Jumeirah Hotel’s properties entrance to Wild Wadi Waterpark is free.
Ski Dubai (Ground floor, Mall of the Emirates, Al Barsha 1, Ph: +971 4409 4000)
Not exactly on the beach but very close, Dubai’s Mall of the Emirates is globally recognised for its indoor snow park, Ski Dubai.
Get ready for your next real snow adventure with skiing and snowboarding lessons. Take to the slopes and hone your skills. There are rides, attractions and an arctic café for refreshments.
Alserkal Avenue Art District (Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz)
A stone’s throw from Ski Dubai will land you in Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz. This industrial warehouse area surrounds a significant art district.
Twenty warehouses in the 4.5 square kilometre area are home to non-profit art studios, concept stores, internationally recognised galleries, independent cinema, community-led cultural initiatives and more.
Whether you’re a collector, an artist or just curious to see the burgeoning art scene in this part of the world, a visit to Alserkal Avenue will surprise and delight.
Mall of the Emirates (Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Barsha 1, Metro Station – Mall of the Emirates)
Dubai’s first major retail player, Mall of the Emirates (MOE) initiated the “retail resort” market. Joining over 600 retail outlets, MOE houses previously mentioned Ski Dubai along with Magic Planet Family Entertainment area and a 14 screen VOX Cinema.
The “retail resort” term refers to the connected Sheraton and Kempinski Hotels with their entertainment and dining options and adjacent to the mall are Novotel and Ibis Hotels offering more.
Gold and Diamond Park (Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Quoz Ph: +971 4362 7777)
In #myDubai Guide Part #1, we visited the Gold Souk in Old Town on Deira side. The authentic open-air market is definitely worth a visit for the old souk experience.
However, if you’re in Dubai for a special occasion with that special someone and the splurge urge hits then Gold and Diamond Park is the place to go.
Quality stones, craftsmanship and design are guaranteed by certification and valuations supplied for insurance. Purchasing here is recommended over the gold souk in Deira for the attentive service, air-conditioned premises and lack of crowds.
Souk Madinat (Madinat Jumeirah, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud St, Ph: +971 4 366 8888)
Traditional souk ambience with a contemporary twist, Souk Madinat is a taste of old Arabic retail in modern times. Lanterns, silverware, homewares and fashion are sold from barrows, temporary stands and stalls.
Getting used to smoking a shisha after dinner? You’ll have plenty to choose from to take home. Thinking of updating your living room? There are cushions, throws, side tables and serving trays to remind you of your Arabic adventure.
Madinat Jumeirah Hotels (Madinat Jumeirah, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Street, Ph: +971 4 366 8888)
Connected via waterways, the grand design of Madinat Jumeirah Hotels replicates a Sheikh’s residence. Jumeirah Al Qasr, Mina A’Salaam and Al Naseem Hotels offer luxurious rooms and suites with ocean and canal views.
Hop on an abra and cruise the waterways to the many dining and entertainment venues throughout the entire Madinat Jumeirah complex. Even if you’re not staying here, it’s a lovely place to wander.
Jumeirah Dar Al Masyaf’s summer houses take luxury accommodation to the next level. 1, 2 and 3 bedroom villas offer OTT opulence while the granddaddy of them all, the Royal Malakiya Villa includes 3 bathrooms, private plunge pool, jacuzzi, open terraces and butler service in its 644 square metre space!!
Sheraton Mall of the Emirates Hotel (Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Barsha 1, Mall of the Emirates Ph: +971 4377 2000)
With views of Burj Al Arab in one direction and Burj Khalifa in the other, Sheraton Mall of the Emirates Hotel (SMOEH) is conveniently located.
SMOEH is perfect for families with a rooftop pool, spa, dining venues and Mall of the Emirates entertainment and shopping. Mall of the Emirates Metro station is attached giving easy access to the rest of Dubai and the beach is only a 4km cab ride.
Entry level rooms are generous at 35sqm sleeping 4. Off-peak offers are available and if you’re a Starwood Preferred Guest you’ll receive savings and upgrades relevant to your membership tier.
Burj Al Arab (Burj Al Arab, Umm Suquiem 3, Ph: +971 4301 7600)
Just in case you have the purse to afford this self-proclaimed 7-star Dubai icon, entry-level Deluxe 1 bedroom suites off-peak begin at around US$1300 per night. In fairness, there are packages including spa treatments, dining offers and free stays for kids but, I know for me, this one is best left to the celebs. 😉
Jumeirah Beach Hotel – Closed until October 2018
All eyes will be on Dubai for Expo 2020. In preparation for this 6-month event, construction and refurbishments are in full swing. Doors are closing, some permanently and others to enhance their beauty.
The wave designed Jumeirah Beach Hotel adjacent to Burj Al Arab is out to impress so they’ve shut up shop to inject new life. Opening again in October 2018 in readiness for their 21st birthday in December, we’re waiting in anticipation for the new Jumeirah Beach Hotel to be revealed.
Please refer back to #myDubai Guide Part #1: The Historical Hub where Islamic laws and sensibilities have been outlined.
In #myDubai Guide Part #4’s beach dominated area swimwear and beach attire are totally fine, but still be mindful when dining and moving around the resorts.
Religious holidays will affect restaurants and bars opening times and the serving of alcohol. Check the Islamic calendar before confirming your stay.
The Über app works without a hitch, however, if supporting local is important to you, download the Careem app. Careem allows booking in advance, on the spot and fixed priced fares to neighbouring emirates. Join through this link and we’ll both save a few dirhams on our next ride.
Taxis are inexpensive and plentiful in Dubai. The different roof colours indicate specific taxi companies and a pink roof will have a female driver.
Rental cars are reasonably priced in the UAE. Insurance covers all Emirates but if your plan is to cross the border into Oman special insurance is required. Ask about this before booking your car to avoid any misunderstandings.
Emirates Airline, Dubai’s national carrier, operates 3,600 flights per week through Dubai International Airport connecting over 150 destinations.
Add another 110 or so with Fly Dubai (Emirates’ low-cost arm) and then many more with other international carriers and getting to Dubai via air is as easy as booking online.
Dubai, with a population of only 3 million-ish, has a vast array of fun-filled entertainment. There is seriously something for everyone and that’s a thing we love….
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