restaurant by Alain Ducasse, a 500-meter beach, a sumptuous spa, and a private cinema. On the West Crescent of the Palm Jumeirah, the world’s largest man-made island. The hotel overlooks the Arabian Gulf and offers unique vistas of the Dubai Marina skyline, Burj Al Arab and Burj Khalifa.
Hop in a cab and you’ll be at Aquaventure water park in five minutes, Dubai Marina (15 minutes), Mall of the Emirates (20 minutes) and Downtown Dubai or Dubai International airport (35 minutes).This regal property impresses from the moment you step into the lobby with a grand atrium hand-painted in 24-carat gold leaf, a shimmering chandelier with 40,000 Swarovski crystals and eight dramatic columns made from unique pink Portuguese marble.
Custom-designed furniture, classical friezes and landscaped gardens inspired by the Palace of Versailles add to the neoclassical grandeur. Service is impeccable, from the signature ‘Lady in Red’ ambassadors who greet guests and can personalize your stay even before arrival, to the efficient butlers who are happy to unpack your suitcases or make reservations. The staff goes above and beyond – we requested bumpers for our baby’s cot and they went out and bought some especially for us.
Guests can watch a movie in the 80-seat private cinema, enjoy a round at the 18-hole putting green, take a dip in the outdoor lagoon pool or the city’s largest indoor pool before booking in for a treatment at the Cinq Mondes Spa, a sanctuary with 23 treatment rooms, traditional deep-soaking Japanese wooden bathtubs, separate male and female hammams and a vitality pool. The rooms are some of the most spacious in Dubai, even the entry-level come with expansive outdoor terraces, lounge areas, walk-in wardrobes and huge marble bathrooms with separate tubs and showers, twin vanities and Salvatore Ferragamo toiletries.
Furnished in either gold or platinum tones with crystal chandeliers (even in the bathrooms), high ceilings and bespoke furniture, rooms are fit for Louis XIV and are serviced 24 hours a day by a butler. For even more stately splendor, book a suite with separate living rooms and bedrooms or one of the stand-alone four- or five-bedroom Royal or Imperial villas flanking the gardens with their own rooftop or outdoor pools. Eight restaurants and lounges include the elegant Le Jardin, overlooking the gardens where European breakfast dishes such as pastries, cheeses, and eggs are served alongside Arabic mezze.
Palatial Blüthner Hall with its marble columns, red drapes, and grand piano serves themed afternoon teas, while laid-back Villamore is the spot for fresh, organic Mediterranean fare. For a unique dinner, experience tries All’onda where Italian dishes get a Japanese or Indian twist like king prawn risotto with Madras curry and lobster tagliatelle with white miso butter or experience miX by Alain Ducasse, the Michelin-star chef’s first restaurant in Dubai, which offers a menu of seasonal French dishes. Double rooms from AED 1,850 (£395) in low season; and from AED 2,600 (£554) in high.
Breakfast is excluded and costs AED 215 (£45). Free Wi-Fi. This resort is at the top end of the market – the complimentary 24-hour butler service in all categories, enormous rooms with private terraces and exquisitely handcrafted interiors make it worth the splurge. Quite possibly the most family-friendly resort in Dubai. Little princes and princesses get the royal treatment with mini bathrobes and slippers and a turndown sweetie service from a royal carriage. Restaurants offer children’s menus and activity packs full of coloring books, pencils, stickers and paper crowns.
The cavernous Little Kingdom club has its own soft play room, art, and crafts section and activities like regal dress up and mini medieval banquets, while teenagers have their own space with video games, arcades, and football.