We reveal the best places for a girls' night out for free
Is there anything better than a great night out with your friends? Indeed there is – a free one. Round up your pals and explore some of the city’s best bars without having to spend a single dirham, courtesy of Dubai’s unique, ever-evolving ladies’ night scene. But hold on there – these days it’s not just the womenfolk who can have all the fun. More and more of the city’s bars and restaurants are hosting special gentlemen’s nights, with drinks deals and discounts exclusively for the (mostly) hairier gender. We introduce you to Time Out’s ten long-time favourites, plus a host of must-try new nights in some of Dubai’s hottest new hangouts (where you might even get free jewels). Whether you’re a no-messing-around, straight-from-the-office type or are in more of a who-cares-if-it’s-Tuesday-i’m-wearing-Louboutins frame of mind, there’s something for everyone at these top school night soirees.
Aquara at Dubai Marina Yacht Club The deal: Three free selected beverages One of the city’s most consistently popular Tuesday night affairs sees ladies treated to free drinks as well as hair and make-up tips. Whether drawn by the strong female contingent or the excellent Marina views from both inside and out on the lengthy terrace, the ratio of men to women is typically evenly balanced. Dress up if you like (the majority of patrons do) but there’s no need if you don’t fancy it – the general vibe is relaxed and fun, and things can get a little noisy as the evening wears on. Free. Tue 8pm-late. Dubai Marina (04 362 7900).
Mahiki at Jumeirah Beach Residence The deal: Free nibbles after 8pm and unlimited mixed drinks from 9pm For Tiki-themed fun dancing to pop classics, Mahiki’s Pin Up Tuesday night is hard to beat. It’s a particularly good spot for those who love nothing more than dancing into the wee hours on a school night to shake off those mid-week cobwebs. Though the music might be cheesy, the outfits certainly aren’t – this is the kind of place where the ladies dress to kill, and there’s very little straight-from-the-office attire to be found. If you’re in search of a quiet catch-up, this isn’t for you. Free. Tue 7pm-3am. Umm Suqeim (04 382 7731).
Pure Sky Lounge at Hilton Dubai Jumeirah Beach Residence The deal: Unlimited pink drinks for ladies This glamorous spot on the 35th floor has a great terrace with views over the coast, making it a popular destination for both genders – though on Tuesdays, the females heavily outnumber the males. This weekly night of free pink drinks sees the city’s ladies turn out to sip beverages from options including sparkling grape or short drinks with three rosy-hued mixers, while listening to chilled, funky tunes. A tip: reserve a table, as the bar can get pretty busy from sunset onwards. Free. Tue 9pm-11pm. Dubai Marina (04 374 8888).
Blends at The Address Dubai Marina The deal: Three free selected mixed drinks The energetic atmosphere at Blends has made it something of a Marina institution, partly thanks to its large dancefloor, typically crowded after midnight with patrons shimmying to commercial R&B, dance and pop tracks. If you don’t fancy dancing with your free drinks, there’s plenty of seating dotted around, and while there are a few male drinkers in the house, the turnout is mainly female. Free. Tue 8pm-11pm. Address Dubai Marina (04 436 7777).
Boudoir at Dubai Marine Beach Resort & Spa The deal: Unlimited mixed drinks and bubbles Perhaps one of the city’s most famous ladies’ nights, Tuesdays at Boudoir are a dressy affair. Last year saw this classic boutique club benefit from a revamp – the vibe is still every bit as swanky, and the crowd are there to see and be seen (dress casually enough and the door staff might not even let you in). Expect to be blinded by the flashing of cameras for selfies and sparklers on large bottles of expensive beverages. Free. Tue 10pm-3am. Jumeirah Beach Road, Jumeirah 1 (04 345 5995).
Embassy at Grosvenor House Dubai The deal: Three free selected drinks This high-end London import is set across three floors, complete with views of Dubai Marina and the Palm Jumeirah, and a dancefloor that lights up. It’s another spot for those who like to throw on their most sparkling outfits for a slice of mid-week clubbing, and less a place to drag your meeting-weary behind straight from the office to moan about the boss. Tue-Wed 8pm-10pm. Dubai Marina (04 317 6000).
Healey’s at Bonnington The deal: Three free selected drinks While this offering has evolved over the past 12 months, its popularity hasn’t waned. Despite this being a ladies’ night, the crowd is a very even balance of men and women as the latter enjoy three free selected drinks. There’s a DJ spinning familiar tracks and a terrace if you fancy kicking back under the stars (the bar’s interior can sometimes get quite smoky), and if you feel peckish, we highly recommend the pizza. Wed 8pm-11pm. Jumeirah Lakes Towers (04 356 6000).
Maya Lounge at Le Royal Méridien Beach Resort & Spa The deal: Three free selected drinks A beachside al fresco venue, it’s easy to see why girls flock here on a Sunday to enjoy the Mexican-themed canapés and drinks. While a DJ plays Latin beats and the cool breeze drifts in off the sea, you’d be forgiven for thinking you’d been transported to a paradise resort in the Americas. Another aspect of this night is the option to pool vouchers with girlfriends to get a pitcher of mixed drinks or a bottle of grape. Sun 7pm-10pm. Dubai Marina (04 399 5555).
The Dek on 8 at Media One Hotel The deal: Unlimited mixed drinks This Gossip with the Girls night at the poolside al fresco bar offers free-flowing mixed drinks accompanied by chilled out beats from DJ Natalie Brogan. Ideal for those who prefer to skip a wardrobe change before heading out, the vibe is laid-back with many more ladies than lads in the crowd. Wed 8pm-11pm. Media One Hotel, Dubai Media City (04 427 1000).
Oeno at Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina The deal: Unlimited bubbles Oeno comes into its own on its ladies’ Goddess Night, as well as Wind Down Wednesdays when there’s a cheese night and Market Fair Thursdays which sees bottle bargains galore draw crowds. On Tuesdays, Dubai’s womenfolk turn out for a catch-up and drinks. There may be no dancefloor, but that doesn’t stop a good 50 percent of attendees dressing to impress. If you’ve come straight from work, no fear, because the other 50 percent didn’t have the time or inclination to throw on their most vertiginous heels either. Tue 7pm-11pm. Umm Suqeim (04 511 7136).