Following on from my previous post about the Dubai Summer Surprises, I thought I'd write a review on the hotel that I stayed in while up in Dubai on the weekend. I stayed in the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray resort which is effectively a Turkish palace themed resort, tucked away on the outer-most frond of the Palm in Dubai. The hotel is pretty big - over 400 rooms and also 38 4 and 5 bedrooms villas available for rent as well.
The hotel takes quite a long time to get to - about 35 minutes from the airport, and 20 minutes from Dubai Mall / Mall of the Emirates. A taxi costs around 70 Dhs from the Dubai Mall (or to for that matter). Most of the reason for the delay is that the roads on the Palm have speed bumps very frequently, presumably to stop people from speeding on the island, which makes sense really.
The hotel is, however, a resort first, and a hotel in it's purest sense of the word, second. So really it's quite nice that the hotel is a little bit out of Dubai - it's only a $15-20 cab ride back to the main city if you want to go, but the peaceful atmosphere you get for being tucked away right at the end of the Palm is fabulous.
|Amusing irony... married couple staying in a twin room with the bed made up like that!|
|The view as you enter the room|
|The tub was big.... really big.|
The room I stayed in was a twin, with twin queen sized beds, a balcony, then the wash room, separate shower, and the biggest bath tub I've ever seen in a hotel room.The picture we took could not even fit the entire thing in. It fits two people more than easily :) They have all their bath products produced by the rather exclusive and fancy Asprey of London's Purple Water product line. Very swish! A 75ml bottle of this stuff costs $17 from Asprey, to give an idea of it's fanciness :)
Now, this is a resort, and not just a hotel, and there are a lot of extra things here, including a fully fledged dinner theatre for 370 people, called the Mehteran Theatre & Event Centre (pretty neat I think). I understand that dinner shows will be starting very shortly, so if you are into cabaret and similar things, you might want to check this out.
However, the biggest draw for people to this hotel is the spa. Billed as the biggest spa of it's kind in the UAE, it is simply huge. The Talise Ottoman Spa is spread over 2 floors, covering 8,000m2 and is split into 2 - Males and Females, along with 42 separate treatment rooms and 3 Turkish Hammams, you know, because 1 or 2 just isn't enough.
|The entrance to the spa|
The spa was remarkably busy, with it being quite tough to even get an appointment for a particular treatment there, but general access to the main facilities is included with your room - there's the Hammams, indoor pool, ice room, steam room, "adventure shower" and a bunch of other stuff too.
The hotel, also, obviously, has a nice and extensive offering of beach and swimming pools. The view below is from the main lobby of the hotel.
The pool is patrolled by 3 life guards to ensure the safety of those using it. Coming from Oman where its all too common that there are no life guards at all, it was refreshing to see. The pool staff also provide ice buckets with bottles of water so you can cool off on one of the many sun loungers dotted around the pool and the beach.
Also at the resort, are 8 separate restaurants, a vodka bar, and a Cigar lounge. I only tried out the signature restaurant, Lalezar, and the main buffet restaurant, Imperium. Lalezar is a traditional Turkish restaurant and was very very good. It was fairly pricey, but not outlandishly expensive for this part of the world. A mixed mezzeh starter, 2 soups and 2 mains with some drinks brought the bill to around Dhs 700. The atmosphere, and the food were really enjoyable, I would definitely go again.
|This was the French-Vietnamese restaurant, Voi, aesthetically, my favourite restaurant in the resort.|
The vodka bar, named Voda Bar, had me smiling because I was trying to figure out if the designers were having a laugh or not. The bar was very nice to look at for sure, but look at the chairs.... could you imagine a patron of the bar, smashed up on Vodka, trying to negotiate those chairs gracefully? haha. It looked very smart though!
|These are the seats at the Vodka bar...|
|Random weird chairs|
The hotel has a Facebook page here, and bookings can be made via it's website here. Rooms start at Dhs 900.