Let the countdown begin! We visited every chilled venue in Dubai to find the city’s coldest spot
Movies & Munchies 29°C
Keeping cool in the pool is our main summer survival tactic, but at Movies & Munchies you can indulge in a movie marathon at the same time. Amid the peace of the Desert Palm resort on the outskirts of the city, film fans are invited to jump into the water and enjoy an al-fresco double bill every Wednesday. The Dhs30 entrance fee includes popcorn and a towel, and you can buy burgers and hot dogs to complete the experience.
Desert Palm Resort, near International City, Wednesdays from 7pm (04 323 8888)
Water temperatures off the coast of Dubai generally stick to 30˚C, but in Musandam there are chilly pockets if you dive 30 metres below the surface. Plus, the marine life is colourful and plentiful (expect to see turtles, dolphins and barracudas).
Al Boom Diving (04 342 2993). Dhs550 including equipment and shuttle transfer
Yes, staring into the cold eyes of the tiger sharks from Dubai’s Aquarium viewing tunnel doesn’t exactly make you want to get into the tank with them. But the thought of floating in ice-cold water during Dubai’s sticky summertime just might. We say freezing –
the water is actually 24°C, but trust us, you’ll need that full 5lb wetsuit they provide, and the funny shoes (we could have even done with some gloves). Not only do they keep you warm, they make you float.
After watching a quick safety video with
Al Boom’s friendly team – in which they assure us that while 791 people die each year as a result of faulty toasters, apparently just four are killed by sharks – you are led to the stairs leading down into the ‘cage’. This consists of bars around the sides and an acrylic panel at the bottom. Lots of smaller fish swim in and out of your ‘pen’, but the bigger fish – the stingrays, the groupers and, yes, the sharks – can only be spotted through the bottom screen. This window, coupled with your mask, means they come to resemble blurry blobs – just like the people down in the tunnel waving and taking your picture.
You even become part of the show for those on the glass-bottomed boat tours, which pass every 10 minutes. But through the rush of being a sudden celebrity, you will still feel the cold. After 30 minutes of bobbing about, it’s time to hit the steaming-hot showers, struggle out of the suits and make your way as fast as possible to Pappa Roti’s for a well-earned hot chocolate and bun. Becky Lucas
The Dubai Mall (04 342 2993). Cage snorkelling, daily 12pm-8pm, Dhs225 for
30 minutes’ floating time, minimum age
five years. Call 04 342 2993 or email
The Terrace’s spectacular raw bar is so cool, it’s on ice… literally. Packed full of caviar, oysters, salmon and a huge range of Russia’s drink of choice, the Slavic-themed icy
options are too good to pass up.
Park Hyatt, Deira (04 602 1234)
Cool spa treat
It’s the perfect summer treatment: a hydrotherapy bath followed by a thorough exfoliation, then an intensive layering of cooling body gel and lavender and peppermint oil. The whole 90-minute treatment ends with an express facial.
The Spa at The Address Dubai Mall (04 438 8888). Dhs460
Dubai’s largest skating rink is Olympic sized, and is great for lessons or something unique – such as disco skating sessions. Summer special: sign up for a week-long learn-to-skate programme and skate free for a month.
The Dubai Mall (04 448 5111). Dhs50 for
a public session; Dhs750 for a week of intensive beginner lessons
Galleria Ice Rink
Hyatt Regency Dubai, Deira (04 209 6550). Dhs30 for weekday sessions, Dhs35
at the weekend
In the right environment, fluctuating between hot and cold can have a number of health benefits: it increases circulation, helps remove toxins, boosts the metabolism and eases sore muscles. If there’s any time you need those symptoms treated, it’s in summer, when we all tend to sit around getting fat and building up toxins. The Spa at The Address Downtown Dubai has the answer. One room – the Ice Cellar – is dedicated to cold. It’s refrigerated and lined with crushed ice, which you can rub all
over your body. If you get too cold, hit the nearby Aroma Room: a steam room infused with essential oils.
The Address Downtown Dubai (04 436 8888). Free if you book a spa treatment
Armani/Spa, Armani Hotel, Burj Khalifa (04 888 3888). Dhs150 for an hour
So-called because at the end of this 90-minute treatment, a serum is applied to the face via an ice cube. Supposedly this stimulates endorphins, which are meant to generate a sensation of relaxation and wellbeing. Of course, the ice treatment is only a small part of an otherwise lengthy facial. It begins with a soothing face massage, followed by a refreshing, cooling mask and an eye treatment involving a mineral mask. After all that, out comes the ice. A tad stingy (it is ice, after all), we must say that after the treatment, our skin never looked better. Cooling and effective… nice ice, baby!
Lime Spa at the Desert Palm Resort,
near International City (04 323 8888,
Cryotherapy age-defying facial
Amara Spa, Park Hyatt Dubai
(04 602 1234). Dhs590
-4°C Snow bunnies rejoice! We all know Dubai features a place where you
can prance around in snow pants.
At Ski Dubai you can go skiing, snowboarding and sledding, or ride the chairlift for a hot chocolate (served with M&Ms!) at the alpine café.
Mall of the Emirates (800 LEISURE). Dhs180 for a two-hour snow pass
The coldest place in Dubai
Ice is the theme at this silly-but-fun venue. Tables, chairs and even glasses at this sub-zero bar are all sculpted in ice, and visitors are
given a ski costume to wear before entering (you’ll need it to survive
the chill). While the ice sculptures are a bit melty, the place still makes for a good time – while food is hardly the point of this venture, it’s actually not bad. Stop in for the novelty of the frozen restaurant/tourist attraction and, while you’re there, order a kebab or some lentil soup to stave off the shivers.
Times Square Centre, Sheikh Zayed Road (800 244 55688). Entry is Dhs60 (includes
a free hot chocolate)