1897 For sophistication, elegance and creative mixed drinks, head to 1897 on the second floor of the Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates. The plush lilac seating will keep you rooted for hours while you quaff signature drinks. The venue is cosy and snug, with a smart grown-up feel. Kempinski Hotel, Mall of the Emirates, Al Barsha 1, www.kempinksi.com (04 409 5999).
With images of Che Guevara, dark wood fans and tropical mixed beverages, this Cuban inspired bar comes into its own after dark and becomes a thumping nightspot playing an eclectic mix of music from commercial dance to hip-hop, electro to dub-step. Ibis Al Barsha, Al Barsha 1, www.ibishotel.com (04 399 6699).
Maxx Music Bar and Grill
Maxx takes its cue from the underground music bars in London and New Orleans. There is exposed brick and dark leather furniture, making it the ideal place for gigs. If you like a good serving of live music with your meals then check out Maxx on a Friday for the Jam Nights, where singers and musicians can kick it with the resident band. Citymax Hotel, Al Barsha 1, www.citymaxhotels.com (04 409 8000).
The Q Underground This nightspot is a den of activity on the lower floor of the Holiday Inn Al Barsha. It’s unpretentious and relaxed with a welcome vibe, which we love. The venue hosts a number of different events from karaoke and quiz nights to electro house music club night Analog Room. Holiday Inn, Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Barsha 1, www.hialbarshadubai.com (04 323 4333).