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  • Thursday, August 14, 2014

    AroundTheUAE.com is a social media success!Our social media follow has been increasing at a really fast pace since the launch of AroundTheUAE.com and we would like to thank our followers on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest!

    It’s great to connect with our readers through these platforms and in celebration of our social media success, we will soon host some exciting competitions, allowing you to win hotel stays, restaurant visits, spa treatments and more.

    If you have not followed us, click on the links above, so that you’re in with a chance to win! And please spread the word with your family and friends, so that they are also connected with aroundtheuae.com.

    Watch this space for our next review, coming soon. And if you would like our team to review anything in particular, please get in touch by emailing aroundtheuae@gmail.com.

    Follow AroundTheUAE.com on social media and win prizes!

    Posted at  10:05 AM  |  in    |  Read More»

    AroundTheUAE.com is a social media success!Our social media follow has been increasing at a really fast pace since the launch of AroundTheUAE.com and we would like to thank our followers on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest!

    It’s great to connect with our readers through these platforms and in celebration of our social media success, we will soon host some exciting competitions, allowing you to win hotel stays, restaurant visits, spa treatments and more.

    If you have not followed us, click on the links above, so that you’re in with a chance to win! And please spread the word with your family and friends, so that they are also connected with aroundtheuae.com.

    Watch this space for our next review, coming soon. And if you would like our team to review anything in particular, please get in touch by emailing aroundtheuae@gmail.com.

    Monday, July 21, 2014

    Millennium Plaza Hotel is located on the Dubai International Financial Centre and Emirates Towers side of Sheikh Zayed RoadOur past recommendations for a staycation within the UAE have received an amazing response, so AroundTheUAE.com decided to extend its series with a brand new review. This time around, we stayed at the Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai, a five-star property we have driven past a million times before while zipping up and down Sheikh Zayed Road, but never actually visited... Until now!

    The hotel is located right opposite the Dubai International Financial Centre and Emirates Towers side of Sheikh Zayed Road – in fact, you literally step out of Dubai Metro’s Emirates Towers station and the hotel entrance is there, which is a boon for those looking to explore the emirate without the hassle of driving and parking in such a busy city.

    We arrived with great expectations, as the Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai was recently honoured at the World Travel Awards 2014 as Dubai's Leading City Business Hotel, which is quite an achievement considering the huge amount of competition in the market. However, were our expectations met? Well, the hotel’s valet and check-in services were a breeze and the onsite staff appeared to be a friendly and helpful bunch, which is always a good start!

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS!

    Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai offers 398 rooms and suites in total, spread over 39 floors. The building is actually 65-storeys, but the hotel rooms start from the 26th floor and last until the final 65th floor, which means there are unobstructed views of Dubai from each and every room, overlooking Sheikh Zayed Road, Zabeel Palace, Dubai Creek and Jumeirah beach.

    There are four restaurants and cafes on offer at Millennium Plaza HotelOptions range from the 34m² Superior Rooms to the 101m² Deluxe Suite, depending on your tastes and requirements. Standard features include the usual tea and coffee maker, large screen television with multiple channels, hair dryer, safe and air conditioning system – basically everything you would expect from a five-star hotel. We selected the Executive Suite, which provided more than enough space for our group of two adults and one small child. The décor and furnishing was top notch, offering a luxurious but homely environment.

    After unpacking, we decided to explore the facilities, which include the Club Lounge (exclusive for Club Rooms guests), and the Infinity Health Club & Spa, which has its own gymnasium, swimming pool and spa with relaxation room, sauna and steam. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to try out these facilities, especially as the summer weather was a little too hot for swimming, but hopefully next time. There is also a business centre and conference facilities on offer, which we’re told are popular with the business community.

    RESTAURANT REVIEW: PICANTE AT FOUR POINTS SHERATON, BUR DUBAI

    After touring the hotel, we had one thing on our mind… let’s eat! There are four restaurants and cafes on offer and guests can take their pick from Metro (international buffet), Al Mashrbia (local and mandi cuisines), Atrium Café (hot and cold drinks and snacks on the lobby level), and Infinity Pool Lounge (mocktails, juices and light snacks on the rooftop).

    Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai offers 398 rooms and suites in total, spread over 39 floorsWe visited Al Mashrbia for dinner and were impressed by the Arabic dishes on offer, such as Chicken Makboos, Harris, Mix Grill, Kabab Kofta and of course Mandi, to name a few. The next day, we want to Metro for breakfast and again the selection was generous and the staff even prepared some dishes we requested that weren’t part of the buffet – a nice touch!

    As usual with a weekend break, our stay at the Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai was over too soon. We had a very pleasant experience and hope to return in the future, and also try out their other properties in the UAE, such as Millennium Hotel Abu Dhabi, Grand Millennium Al Wahda and Millennium Airport Hotel Dubai – watch this space for those reviews soon!

    MORE HOTEL REVIEWS: Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City - 

    HOTEL REVIEW: Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai

    Posted at  3:23 AM  |  in  Hotel  |  Read More»

    Millennium Plaza Hotel is located on the Dubai International Financial Centre and Emirates Towers side of Sheikh Zayed RoadOur past recommendations for a staycation within the UAE have received an amazing response, so AroundTheUAE.com decided to extend its series with a brand new review. This time around, we stayed at the Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai, a five-star property we have driven past a million times before while zipping up and down Sheikh Zayed Road, but never actually visited... Until now!

    The hotel is located right opposite the Dubai International Financial Centre and Emirates Towers side of Sheikh Zayed Road – in fact, you literally step out of Dubai Metro’s Emirates Towers station and the hotel entrance is there, which is a boon for those looking to explore the emirate without the hassle of driving and parking in such a busy city.

    We arrived with great expectations, as the Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai was recently honoured at the World Travel Awards 2014 as Dubai's Leading City Business Hotel, which is quite an achievement considering the huge amount of competition in the market. However, were our expectations met? Well, the hotel’s valet and check-in services were a breeze and the onsite staff appeared to be a friendly and helpful bunch, which is always a good start!

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS!

    Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai offers 398 rooms and suites in total, spread over 39 floors. The building is actually 65-storeys, but the hotel rooms start from the 26th floor and last until the final 65th floor, which means there are unobstructed views of Dubai from each and every room, overlooking Sheikh Zayed Road, Zabeel Palace, Dubai Creek and Jumeirah beach.

    There are four restaurants and cafes on offer at Millennium Plaza HotelOptions range from the 34m² Superior Rooms to the 101m² Deluxe Suite, depending on your tastes and requirements. Standard features include the usual tea and coffee maker, large screen television with multiple channels, hair dryer, safe and air conditioning system – basically everything you would expect from a five-star hotel. We selected the Executive Suite, which provided more than enough space for our group of two adults and one small child. The décor and furnishing was top notch, offering a luxurious but homely environment.

    After unpacking, we decided to explore the facilities, which include the Club Lounge (exclusive for Club Rooms guests), and the Infinity Health Club & Spa, which has its own gymnasium, swimming pool and spa with relaxation room, sauna and steam. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to try out these facilities, especially as the summer weather was a little too hot for swimming, but hopefully next time. There is also a business centre and conference facilities on offer, which we’re told are popular with the business community.

    RESTAURANT REVIEW: PICANTE AT FOUR POINTS SHERATON, BUR DUBAI

    After touring the hotel, we had one thing on our mind… let’s eat! There are four restaurants and cafes on offer and guests can take their pick from Metro (international buffet), Al Mashrbia (local and mandi cuisines), Atrium Café (hot and cold drinks and snacks on the lobby level), and Infinity Pool Lounge (mocktails, juices and light snacks on the rooftop).

    Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai offers 398 rooms and suites in total, spread over 39 floorsWe visited Al Mashrbia for dinner and were impressed by the Arabic dishes on offer, such as Chicken Makboos, Harris, Mix Grill, Kabab Kofta and of course Mandi, to name a few. The next day, we want to Metro for breakfast and again the selection was generous and the staff even prepared some dishes we requested that weren’t part of the buffet – a nice touch!

    As usual with a weekend break, our stay at the Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai was over too soon. We had a very pleasant experience and hope to return in the future, and also try out their other properties in the UAE, such as Millennium Hotel Abu Dhabi, Grand Millennium Al Wahda and Millennium Airport Hotel Dubai – watch this space for those reviews soon!

    MORE HOTEL REVIEWS: Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City - 

    Friday, July 4, 2014

    There are 167 hotel apartments at Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media CitySometimes it takes a bad hotel experience to better appreciate the good. That was the case with our recent stay at Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City, which followed a mediocre (at best) night elsewhere in the emirate. At least with the Arjaan branded properties that AroundTheUAE.com has reviewed in the past, we’ve consistently had a pleasant time, and thankfully the Dubai Media City hotel didn’t let us down either.

    Finding the hotel is a breeze. It has a great location in the heart of media city, which will appeal to the business market, while leisure travellers will also be attracted to the fact that Dubai Marina and JBR are only a stone’s throw away, and even Palm Jumeirah, Mall of the Emirates and other Sheikh Zayed Road attractions are nearby.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS!

    Upon arrival, our car was swiftly handed to the valet team, while our luggage was loaded onto a cart and taken to the front desk, open 24-hours-a-day, from where guests can check into their rooms and even arrange their dry cleaning / laundry.

    Arjaan DMC has a great location in the heart of Dubai Media CityIn total, there are 167 hotel apartments at Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City, with options ranging from the 65sqm classic one-bedroom apartment to the 182sqm deluxe three-bedroom apartment. Regardless of which one you choose, a substantial range of common features is offered, including kitchenette (with a full size refrigerator, cooker, washer & dryer, and microwave), complimentary tea and coffee making facility, en-suite bathrooms in every room (with bathrobes and hair dryer), LCD multi-channel satellite televisions, and high-speed WIFI internet connection.

    We stayed in a deluxe two-bedroom apartment and were pleasantly surprised by the ample space on offer. As a couple with one small child, we loved the generous size and the tasteful Moroccan/Moorish style décor. We were famished after arrival and tried the ‘Arabesqué’ restaurant for dinner, which had enough variety to keep the entire family happy. Service was great, and the food, while falling short of being outstanding, was above average. Ditto for their breakfast and Friday brunch.

    If you fancy something different, in-room dining is available 24/7 and guests can also dine at the ‘Veranda’ poolside snack bar, located next to the hotel’s temperature-controlled outdoor adult and kids swimming pools and Bodylines health and fitness centre. What’s more, the building even has its own separate food court and souk, where you will find a small bank, barber shop, beauty salon, mini-market and more.

    Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City gets our stamp of approval for those staying with families or wanting the extra spaceOf course, a staycation in Dubai is not complete without exploring the local hotspots. To utilise its great location, the hotel offers a complimentary shuttle bus to Riva Beach Club on the Palm Jumeirah, together with a free pick-up and drop-off to Mall of the Emirates. It’s also close to the Dubai Metro, so getting around is not an issue.

    All-in-all, this was another great experience at one of Rotana’s Arjaan properties and gets our stamp of approval for those staying with families or wanting the extra space. We definitely look forward to staying there once again in the future.  If you want to find out more about the hotel, click here to visit their website.

    ALSO READ: Our hotel review of BurJuman Arjaan By Rotana, Dubai!

    HOTEL REVIEW: Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City

    Posted at  1:01 AM  |  in  Hotel  |  Read More»

    There are 167 hotel apartments at Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media CitySometimes it takes a bad hotel experience to better appreciate the good. That was the case with our recent stay at Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City, which followed a mediocre (at best) night elsewhere in the emirate. At least with the Arjaan branded properties that AroundTheUAE.com has reviewed in the past, we’ve consistently had a pleasant time, and thankfully the Dubai Media City hotel didn’t let us down either.

    Finding the hotel is a breeze. It has a great location in the heart of media city, which will appeal to the business market, while leisure travellers will also be attracted to the fact that Dubai Marina and JBR are only a stone’s throw away, and even Palm Jumeirah, Mall of the Emirates and other Sheikh Zayed Road attractions are nearby.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS!

    Upon arrival, our car was swiftly handed to the valet team, while our luggage was loaded onto a cart and taken to the front desk, open 24-hours-a-day, from where guests can check into their rooms and even arrange their dry cleaning / laundry.

    Arjaan DMC has a great location in the heart of Dubai Media CityIn total, there are 167 hotel apartments at Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City, with options ranging from the 65sqm classic one-bedroom apartment to the 182sqm deluxe three-bedroom apartment. Regardless of which one you choose, a substantial range of common features is offered, including kitchenette (with a full size refrigerator, cooker, washer & dryer, and microwave), complimentary tea and coffee making facility, en-suite bathrooms in every room (with bathrobes and hair dryer), LCD multi-channel satellite televisions, and high-speed WIFI internet connection.

    We stayed in a deluxe two-bedroom apartment and were pleasantly surprised by the ample space on offer. As a couple with one small child, we loved the generous size and the tasteful Moroccan/Moorish style décor. We were famished after arrival and tried the ‘Arabesqué’ restaurant for dinner, which had enough variety to keep the entire family happy. Service was great, and the food, while falling short of being outstanding, was above average. Ditto for their breakfast and Friday brunch.

    If you fancy something different, in-room dining is available 24/7 and guests can also dine at the ‘Veranda’ poolside snack bar, located next to the hotel’s temperature-controlled outdoor adult and kids swimming pools and Bodylines health and fitness centre. What’s more, the building even has its own separate food court and souk, where you will find a small bank, barber shop, beauty salon, mini-market and more.

    Arjaan by Rotana Dubai Media City gets our stamp of approval for those staying with families or wanting the extra spaceOf course, a staycation in Dubai is not complete without exploring the local hotspots. To utilise its great location, the hotel offers a complimentary shuttle bus to Riva Beach Club on the Palm Jumeirah, together with a free pick-up and drop-off to Mall of the Emirates. It’s also close to the Dubai Metro, so getting around is not an issue.

    All-in-all, this was another great experience at one of Rotana’s Arjaan properties and gets our stamp of approval for those staying with families or wanting the extra space. We definitely look forward to staying there once again in the future.  If you want to find out more about the hotel, click here to visit their website.

    ALSO READ: Our hotel review of BurJuman Arjaan By Rotana, Dubai!

    Monday, April 28, 2014

    The Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai is located in JBRJumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) has long been established as one of Dubai’s premiere locations for residents to live, and even for residents and tourists to socialise. There’s a long stretch of beach to enjoy, plenty of restaurants and cafes, and even a decent selection of retail outlets. The district has, however, been subject to some criticism in more recent times, with negative reports about the overall upkeep of residential and communal areas, and general complaints about traffic congestion.

    But for every problem, there’s always a solution. In 2012, the media reported that an expansive retail, leisure and entertainment centre was being built as a new centrepiece of JBR, in a move that would “completely change the face of JBR Walk”.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS!

    The low-rise development, known as The Beach, would run 1km between The Hilton and Sheraton hotels, featuring over 70 brand new retail, food and beverage, and entertainment outlets, not to mention underground parking facilities to help with the traffic. Plus, congestion will be further eradicated once the tram system is completed.

    Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR offers 188 rooms and suites with beautiful views of the Arabian GulfDubai, known for its fast-paced developments, sprang into action and held a soft launch around 18 months later, in February 2014, attended by Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum and, randomly, Hollywood actor Will Smith.

    AroundTheUAE.com wasted no time in trying out ‘The Beach’ and booked ourselves into the nearby Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai. If you’re familiar with JBR, then the four-star hotel is hard to miss, and there’s free covered parking onsite, which is a bonus as parking can be an issue in JBR. We had some difficulty finding the actual entrance to the parking, so you’ll need to be a little attentive to avoid missing it!

    The check-in process was a breeze and we were impressed by the modern and colourful lobby, which has been designed as a nice open-space for guests. The staff was friendly too. With a total of 188 rooms and suites on offer, guests can choose from double and twin rooms, one and two bedroom suites, and a panoramic penthouse, all of which have kitchenettes to accommodate in-room dining.

    We decided to select the one bedroom suite, and being a couple with a small child, it was perfect for us. Space was certainly not an issue, with a kitchen area, lounge, bedroom and bathroom, and the design was once again modern, innovative and, dare we say it, a little bit funky. There was no window in the lounge, for instance, so they substituted with a make-shift indoor balcony with silhouettes of skyscrapers. Clever! Oh, and there’s free Wi-Fi throughout, which we always appreciate at hotels.

    An all-day restaurant, Flavors, serves buffets at breakfast, a la carte lunch and dinner
    Travelling to a hotel, even for a staycation, and unpacking can be tiring stuff, but don’t worry if you’re feeling a little peckish. There’s 24-hour room service, a coffee shop, and even an all-day restaurant, Flavors, located onsite, which serves buffets at breakfast, a la carte lunch and dinner, with both indoor and outdoor seating (with scenic views of the Hotel garden and the ocean). Of course, being JBR, you are a stone’s throw away from countless restaurants and cafes, so the options are practically endless! And yes, we checked out ‘The Beach’, which gets a ‘thumbs up’ from us… but we’ll save the details for a separate review in the future!

    Unpacked? Check! Eaten? Check! Now it’s time for some leisure pursuits! The beach is close by, and we mean the actual beach here, not ‘The Beach’ (to avoid confusion). Or you can make use of the hotel’s outdoor swimming pool and hi-tech fitness centre, with the latest cardiovascular and weight training equipment, including treadmills, step machines, cardio bikes, weight machines, and free weights. There’s also a spa, although we’re told it is not actually operated by the hotel, but available to guests. We didn’t have the opportunity to try it ourselves, but maybe next time!

    JBR is also close to many of Dubai’s leading attractions, such as Dubai Marina and Mall of the EmiratesJBR is also close to many of Dubai’s leading attractions, such as Dubai Marina and Mall of the Emirates, plus if you’re there on business, it close to Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, Jebel Ali Free Zone and other nearby hubs.

    All-in-all, we must admit that the Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR exceeded our expectations. It might not be a five-star hotel, but the service and the room were very pleasing and we would happily recommend to anyone who wants to stay in the heart of the action at JBR!

    The Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR is owned by R Hotels, a subsidiary of Ajman-based R Holding LLC, which also operates the Ramada Hotels & Suites Ajman, Ramada Beach Hotel Ajman and the Ramada Downtown Dubai.

    ALSO READ: Our hotel review of BurJuman Arjaan By Rotana, Dubai!

    HOTEL REVIEW: Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR

    Posted at  12:32 AM  |  in  Hotel  |  Read More»

    The Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai is located in JBRJumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) has long been established as one of Dubai’s premiere locations for residents to live, and even for residents and tourists to socialise. There’s a long stretch of beach to enjoy, plenty of restaurants and cafes, and even a decent selection of retail outlets. The district has, however, been subject to some criticism in more recent times, with negative reports about the overall upkeep of residential and communal areas, and general complaints about traffic congestion.

    But for every problem, there’s always a solution. In 2012, the media reported that an expansive retail, leisure and entertainment centre was being built as a new centrepiece of JBR, in a move that would “completely change the face of JBR Walk”.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS!

    The low-rise development, known as The Beach, would run 1km between The Hilton and Sheraton hotels, featuring over 70 brand new retail, food and beverage, and entertainment outlets, not to mention underground parking facilities to help with the traffic. Plus, congestion will be further eradicated once the tram system is completed.

    Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR offers 188 rooms and suites with beautiful views of the Arabian GulfDubai, known for its fast-paced developments, sprang into action and held a soft launch around 18 months later, in February 2014, attended by Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum and, randomly, Hollywood actor Will Smith.

    AroundTheUAE.com wasted no time in trying out ‘The Beach’ and booked ourselves into the nearby Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai. If you’re familiar with JBR, then the four-star hotel is hard to miss, and there’s free covered parking onsite, which is a bonus as parking can be an issue in JBR. We had some difficulty finding the actual entrance to the parking, so you’ll need to be a little attentive to avoid missing it!

    The check-in process was a breeze and we were impressed by the modern and colourful lobby, which has been designed as a nice open-space for guests. The staff was friendly too. With a total of 188 rooms and suites on offer, guests can choose from double and twin rooms, one and two bedroom suites, and a panoramic penthouse, all of which have kitchenettes to accommodate in-room dining.

    We decided to select the one bedroom suite, and being a couple with a small child, it was perfect for us. Space was certainly not an issue, with a kitchen area, lounge, bedroom and bathroom, and the design was once again modern, innovative and, dare we say it, a little bit funky. There was no window in the lounge, for instance, so they substituted with a make-shift indoor balcony with silhouettes of skyscrapers. Clever! Oh, and there’s free Wi-Fi throughout, which we always appreciate at hotels.

    An all-day restaurant, Flavors, serves buffets at breakfast, a la carte lunch and dinner
    Travelling to a hotel, even for a staycation, and unpacking can be tiring stuff, but don’t worry if you’re feeling a little peckish. There’s 24-hour room service, a coffee shop, and even an all-day restaurant, Flavors, located onsite, which serves buffets at breakfast, a la carte lunch and dinner, with both indoor and outdoor seating (with scenic views of the Hotel garden and the ocean). Of course, being JBR, you are a stone’s throw away from countless restaurants and cafes, so the options are practically endless! And yes, we checked out ‘The Beach’, which gets a ‘thumbs up’ from us… but we’ll save the details for a separate review in the future!

    Unpacked? Check! Eaten? Check! Now it’s time for some leisure pursuits! The beach is close by, and we mean the actual beach here, not ‘The Beach’ (to avoid confusion). Or you can make use of the hotel’s outdoor swimming pool and hi-tech fitness centre, with the latest cardiovascular and weight training equipment, including treadmills, step machines, cardio bikes, weight machines, and free weights. There’s also a spa, although we’re told it is not actually operated by the hotel, but available to guests. We didn’t have the opportunity to try it ourselves, but maybe next time!

    JBR is also close to many of Dubai’s leading attractions, such as Dubai Marina and Mall of the EmiratesJBR is also close to many of Dubai’s leading attractions, such as Dubai Marina and Mall of the Emirates, plus if you’re there on business, it close to Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, Jebel Ali Free Zone and other nearby hubs.

    All-in-all, we must admit that the Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR exceeded our expectations. It might not be a five-star hotel, but the service and the room were very pleasing and we would happily recommend to anyone who wants to stay in the heart of the action at JBR!

    The Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Dubai, JBR is owned by R Hotels, a subsidiary of Ajman-based R Holding LLC, which also operates the Ramada Hotels & Suites Ajman, Ramada Beach Hotel Ajman and the Ramada Downtown Dubai.

    ALSO READ: Our hotel review of BurJuman Arjaan By Rotana, Dubai!

    Monday, March 10, 2014

    ESPA occupies a large 2,000 square metre stand-alone building within Ritz-Carlton’s Venetian VillageAs one of the most luxurious and high-end spa brands in the world, ESPA is a perfect fit for the UAE, where customers are often looking for a touch of grandeur with their facials and massages. Abu Dhabi already boasts a popular ESPA spa at the five-star Yas Viceroy hotel, and another one has now opened at the stunning Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal… much to the delight of spa enthusiasts such as us!

    The beachfront spa occupies a large 2,000 square metre stand-alone building within the hotel’s Venetian Village, a nicely-designed waterfront residential area that is reminiscent of the much-loved piazzas found in Italy.

    ESPA’s interiors offer a tranquil and harmonious environment, using natural materials such as limestone, iridescent glass and brown onyx to invoke a sense of timelessness. The results are eye-catching, to say the least, with little touches that have obviously been inspired by the Bedouin culture of Arabia (not only the colours and textures of the interiors, but also the cardamom-infused Arabic coffee that welcomed us on arrival).

    There are 16 treatment rooms on offer, together with a striking Moroccan hammam, marbled steam rooms and saunas flooded with natural daylightSituated on two levels, there are 16 treatment rooms on offer, together with a striking Moroccan hammam, marbled steam rooms and saunas flooded with natural daylight.

    What’s more, there are separate outdoor relaxation areas for males and females, complete with their own private plunge pools and steps away from a pristine beach reserved for exclusive use of ESPA guests, who can also take advantage of the luxury resort’s striking scene-stealer, a massive 1,600-square-metre outdoor swimming pool.

    As you can probably tell, space is not an issue here (all of the facilities are open and roomy), and neither is choice. There are plenty of treatments available, many of which have been created especially for the Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal, such as the signature Oasis Ritual (described as “a revitalising and cleansing combination to awaken the senses, uplift the spirit and soothe tired muscles”).

    ALSO READ: Spa Review of Point Zero Floatation Center, Abu Dhabi

    Sounds heavenly, but we actually opted for the 90-minute Back, Face & Scalp Treatment, which is known as ESPA’s ‘hero’ treatment. The experience delivers triple results by targeting three key areas – the back, the face and the scalp – with a back exfoliation and massage, personalised facial and scalp massage. Our therapist knew exactly what she was doing, and we were left in a relaxed and peaceful state, wishing that the 90-minutes lasted a little longer!  There is actually an option to complement your back, face and scalp treatment with hot stones; extending the treatment to a total of 120-minutes… we will definitely consider that for next time!

    ESPA’s interiors offer a tranquil and harmonious environment, using natural materials such as limestone, iridescent glass and brown onyx Customers can use ESPA’s relaxation lounges after their treatment (or even before, if there is time). Again, there are separate male and female relaxation lounges. According to Ritz Carlton, there is a slight difference between the two. For ladies, the relaxation lounge combines a variety of elements creating an elegant and relaxing atmosphere in which guests can both lounge and socialise, while male relaxation area displays a relaxed atmosphere where guests can choose to lay down after a long day.

    All-in-all, we loved our visit to the EPSA at Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal... not only for the treatment itself, but the experience as a whole, with a fantastic environment and world-class facilities. As one of the newest spas in town, it has instantly become one of the best and we’ll be sure to visit again soon.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS! 

    For more information about ESPA or to make a reservation, you can email abudhabi.spa@ritzcarlton.com, call +971 2 818 8051 or visit http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/Properties/AbuDhabi/Spa/Default.htm.


    REVIEW: ESPA, Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi Grand Canal

    Posted at  8:35 AM  |  in  Spa  |  Read More»

    ESPA occupies a large 2,000 square metre stand-alone building within Ritz-Carlton’s Venetian VillageAs one of the most luxurious and high-end spa brands in the world, ESPA is a perfect fit for the UAE, where customers are often looking for a touch of grandeur with their facials and massages. Abu Dhabi already boasts a popular ESPA spa at the five-star Yas Viceroy hotel, and another one has now opened at the stunning Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal… much to the delight of spa enthusiasts such as us!

    The beachfront spa occupies a large 2,000 square metre stand-alone building within the hotel’s Venetian Village, a nicely-designed waterfront residential area that is reminiscent of the much-loved piazzas found in Italy.

    ESPA’s interiors offer a tranquil and harmonious environment, using natural materials such as limestone, iridescent glass and brown onyx to invoke a sense of timelessness. The results are eye-catching, to say the least, with little touches that have obviously been inspired by the Bedouin culture of Arabia (not only the colours and textures of the interiors, but also the cardamom-infused Arabic coffee that welcomed us on arrival).

    There are 16 treatment rooms on offer, together with a striking Moroccan hammam, marbled steam rooms and saunas flooded with natural daylightSituated on two levels, there are 16 treatment rooms on offer, together with a striking Moroccan hammam, marbled steam rooms and saunas flooded with natural daylight.

    What’s more, there are separate outdoor relaxation areas for males and females, complete with their own private plunge pools and steps away from a pristine beach reserved for exclusive use of ESPA guests, who can also take advantage of the luxury resort’s striking scene-stealer, a massive 1,600-square-metre outdoor swimming pool.

    As you can probably tell, space is not an issue here (all of the facilities are open and roomy), and neither is choice. There are plenty of treatments available, many of which have been created especially for the Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal, such as the signature Oasis Ritual (described as “a revitalising and cleansing combination to awaken the senses, uplift the spirit and soothe tired muscles”).

    ALSO READ: Spa Review of Point Zero Floatation Center, Abu Dhabi

    Sounds heavenly, but we actually opted for the 90-minute Back, Face & Scalp Treatment, which is known as ESPA’s ‘hero’ treatment. The experience delivers triple results by targeting three key areas – the back, the face and the scalp – with a back exfoliation and massage, personalised facial and scalp massage. Our therapist knew exactly what she was doing, and we were left in a relaxed and peaceful state, wishing that the 90-minutes lasted a little longer!  There is actually an option to complement your back, face and scalp treatment with hot stones; extending the treatment to a total of 120-minutes… we will definitely consider that for next time!

    ESPA’s interiors offer a tranquil and harmonious environment, using natural materials such as limestone, iridescent glass and brown onyx Customers can use ESPA’s relaxation lounges after their treatment (or even before, if there is time). Again, there are separate male and female relaxation lounges. According to Ritz Carlton, there is a slight difference between the two. For ladies, the relaxation lounge combines a variety of elements creating an elegant and relaxing atmosphere in which guests can both lounge and socialise, while male relaxation area displays a relaxed atmosphere where guests can choose to lay down after a long day.

    All-in-all, we loved our visit to the EPSA at Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal... not only for the treatment itself, but the experience as a whole, with a fantastic environment and world-class facilities. As one of the newest spas in town, it has instantly become one of the best and we’ll be sure to visit again soon.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS! 

    For more information about ESPA or to make a reservation, you can email abudhabi.spa@ritzcarlton.com, call +971 2 818 8051 or visit http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/Properties/AbuDhabi/Spa/Default.htm.


    Thursday, February 27, 2014

    Eastern Mangroves Promenade has been designed to resemble a traditional souk-style avenueWith a continuous stream of new restaurant openings in Abu Dhabi, the UAE’s fine dining landscape seems to be undergoing a complete transformation.

    This revolution is not only taking place in the capital’s more established downtown neighbourhoods, but also in exciting new developments such as Yas Marina, Al Bandar and Eastern Mangroves Promenade. There’s a reason why people are flocking to these up-and-coming areas… they’re more scenic, open spaced and alluring!

    During our first visit to Eastern Mangroves Promenade last week, AroundTheUAE.com headed straight to Peppermill, the area’s flagship Indian restaurant. The promenade itself is a visual treat and has been designed to resemble a traditional souk-style avenue. In addition to Peppermill, other restaurants such as Carluccios, Boa Steakhouse and Flooka are located within an arch-fronted open colonnade, overlooking the lush green mangroves and azure waters of the Arabian Gulf, as well as a 30-berth marina.

    ALSO READ: Don't miss our restaurant review of Rhodes 44, St. Regis Abu Dhabi

    It's certainly a feast for the eyes… and an ideal prelude before indulging in a feast for our stomachs! Peppermill is marketed as a “colonial Indian dining concept that contemporises the traditional cuisines from different parts of India”. The spacious interiors have clearly been influenced by this theme, boasting of colourful designs that are traditionally Indian, yet with a contemporary touch. There’s enough space to accommodate up to 100 patrons at a time, we’re told, including private dining rooms.

    Peppermill's interiors have colourful designs that are traditionally Indian, yet with a contemporary touchThe menu features a selection of Neo-Indian style dishes from the colonial era, when European cooking styles were brought to subcontinent. Peppermill’s chefs apparently spent months choosing the best ingredients and spice combinations to reflect this historical period. Now that’s dedication!

    For starters, we tried the Murgh Chaap (chicken marinated in crumbed masala deep fried and served with mint chutney) and Karare Palak Chaat (batter fried fresh spinach topped with mint, tamarind chutney and yoghurt). The latter was actually one of the chef’s specials and comes highly recommended – the crispy texture and burst of different flavours make the snack-sized chaats very moreish.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS! 

    There are 16 varieties of kebabs to choose from at Peppermill, including lamb, chicken and vegetarian options. We went for the Kakori Kebabs, made from lamb that has been minced several times over, blended with exotic spices and herbs, hand rolled over iron skewers, and slow cooked in a clay oven. The end result is succulent and melts in the mouth. You can clearly taste the freshness of ingredients and traditional spices.

    Peppermill at Eastern Mangroves is a welcome addition to the range of Indian restaurants in Abu Dhabi
    Next, we decided to try something new and ordered the Murgh Goan Vindaloo (a spicy chicken dish made with potatoes, garlic and a hint of malt vinegar, simmered in rich tomato gravy) and Shahi Aloo Gobi (potato and cauliflower florets tossed with tomatoes, onions and cumin seeds, finished with fresh grated ginger and coriander), accompanied by plain and garlic naans. We would describe the first dish as an acquired taste, while the Shahi Aloo Gobi was impressive and soon wiped clean from our plates!

    Despite our full stomachs at this stage, there’s always room for dessert, and we opted for the chef’s special once again – Shahi Tukda (toasted brioche caramelised and served with pistachio kulfi, drizzled with saffron sauce and topped with a biscotti). Now, we admit to having a sweet tooth, which could mean we’re biased, but this was the perfect way to finish our meal and actually ended up being a highlight of the visit.

    All-in-all, we give Peppermill at Eastern Mangroves our thumbs up and it's a welcome addition to the diverse range of Indian restaurants in the UAE capital. It has already accumulated a score of 4.5 out of 5 on TripAdvisor.com, ranking 120 of 1,555 restaurants in Abu Dhabi (at the time of publishing this review).

    Quite impressive, considering it’s only a few months old!  Eastern Mangroves is actually the brand’s third outlet, with sister branches in Abu Dhabi’s Al Wahda Mall and Dubai’s Al Barsha district, and judging by their success, we’re sure there’s more on the way!

    RESTAURANT REVIEW: M's Seafood Bistro at Le Méridien Dubai Hotel

    RESTAURANT REVIEW: Peppermill at Eastern Mangroves, Abu Dhabi

    Posted at  1:31 AM  |  in  Restaurant  |  Read More»

    Eastern Mangroves Promenade has been designed to resemble a traditional souk-style avenueWith a continuous stream of new restaurant openings in Abu Dhabi, the UAE’s fine dining landscape seems to be undergoing a complete transformation.

    This revolution is not only taking place in the capital’s more established downtown neighbourhoods, but also in exciting new developments such as Yas Marina, Al Bandar and Eastern Mangroves Promenade. There’s a reason why people are flocking to these up-and-coming areas… they’re more scenic, open spaced and alluring!

    During our first visit to Eastern Mangroves Promenade last week, AroundTheUAE.com headed straight to Peppermill, the area’s flagship Indian restaurant. The promenade itself is a visual treat and has been designed to resemble a traditional souk-style avenue. In addition to Peppermill, other restaurants such as Carluccios, Boa Steakhouse and Flooka are located within an arch-fronted open colonnade, overlooking the lush green mangroves and azure waters of the Arabian Gulf, as well as a 30-berth marina.

    ALSO READ: Don't miss our restaurant review of Rhodes 44, St. Regis Abu Dhabi

    It's certainly a feast for the eyes… and an ideal prelude before indulging in a feast for our stomachs! Peppermill is marketed as a “colonial Indian dining concept that contemporises the traditional cuisines from different parts of India”. The spacious interiors have clearly been influenced by this theme, boasting of colourful designs that are traditionally Indian, yet with a contemporary touch. There’s enough space to accommodate up to 100 patrons at a time, we’re told, including private dining rooms.

    Peppermill's interiors have colourful designs that are traditionally Indian, yet with a contemporary touchThe menu features a selection of Neo-Indian style dishes from the colonial era, when European cooking styles were brought to subcontinent. Peppermill’s chefs apparently spent months choosing the best ingredients and spice combinations to reflect this historical period. Now that’s dedication!

    For starters, we tried the Murgh Chaap (chicken marinated in crumbed masala deep fried and served with mint chutney) and Karare Palak Chaat (batter fried fresh spinach topped with mint, tamarind chutney and yoghurt). The latter was actually one of the chef’s specials and comes highly recommended – the crispy texture and burst of different flavours make the snack-sized chaats very moreish.

    CLICK HERE TO VISIT AROUNDTHEUAE.COM'S FACEBOOK PAGE - LIKE US TO STAY UPDATED ON THE UAE'S LATEST ATTRACTIONS! 

    There are 16 varieties of kebabs to choose from at Peppermill, including lamb, chicken and vegetarian options. We went for the Kakori Kebabs, made from lamb that has been minced several times over, blended with exotic spices and herbs, hand rolled over iron skewers, and slow cooked in a clay oven. The end result is succulent and melts in the mouth. You can clearly taste the freshness of ingredients and traditional spices.

    Peppermill at Eastern Mangroves is a welcome addition to the range of Indian restaurants in Abu Dhabi
    Next, we decided to try something new and ordered the Murgh Goan Vindaloo (a spicy chicken dish made with potatoes, garlic and a hint of malt vinegar, simmered in rich tomato gravy) and Shahi Aloo Gobi (potato and cauliflower florets tossed with tomatoes, onions and cumin seeds, finished with fresh grated ginger and coriander), accompanied by plain and garlic naans. We would describe the first dish as an acquired taste, while the Shahi Aloo Gobi was impressive and soon wiped clean from our plates!

    Despite our full stomachs at this stage, there’s always room for dessert, and we opted for the chef’s special once again – Shahi Tukda (toasted brioche caramelised and served with pistachio kulfi, drizzled with saffron sauce and topped with a biscotti). Now, we admit to having a sweet tooth, which could mean we’re biased, but this was the perfect way to finish our meal and actually ended up being a highlight of the visit.

    All-in-all, we give Peppermill at Eastern Mangroves our thumbs up and it's a welcome addition to the diverse range of Indian restaurants in the UAE capital. It has already accumulated a score of 4.5 out of 5 on TripAdvisor.com, ranking 120 of 1,555 restaurants in Abu Dhabi (at the time of publishing this review).

    Quite impressive, considering it’s only a few months old!  Eastern Mangroves is actually the brand’s third outlet, with sister branches in Abu Dhabi’s Al Wahda Mall and Dubai’s Al Barsha district, and judging by their success, we’re sure there’s more on the way!

    RESTAURANT REVIEW: M's Seafood Bistro at Le Méridien Dubai Hotel

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