Best bars in Dubai for drinks before dinner

Time Out Dubai has a guide to the Best bars in Dubai for drinks before dinner (aperitif), including bars in Downtown, Dubai Marina, Sheikh Zayed Road

Whether you’re sipping bubbly at Mercury Lounge in Jumeirah or ice cold hops at Estrellas Skyline Lounge in Bur Dubai, the city is full of great bars that are perfect for a pit stop pre-dinner. Here are ten of our favourites.

04 446 6669 Dubai Marina

If you’re after a drink with Dubai Marina views, then you’re not short of options. However, if you’re looking specifically for juniper-based drinks, there’s really only one place to head, and that’s Ginter.

The bar has a huge menu of drinks, with juniper hailing from Scotland to London, Oregon to California. There’s also a large choice of mixed drinks. They come at a cost though – ranging from Dhs60 to Dhs100.

It’s therefore sage to visit during “The No Rush Hour”, which runs from 5pm until 1am on a weekday and offers 50 perfect off selected drinks.

Bar bites are tasty enough but also on the pricey side (Dhs65 for sliders), so things can rapidly add up if you get peckish and carried away.

Drinks are expertly made and the location is top. That being said, it’s not the slickest of bars. The terrace is nice enough in cooler months, and offers great views, but the service is slow, the furnishings are a little tired and the outdoor space is narrow and lacks vibe.

Inside the windows are big and the décor is vibrant, but it’s all rather clinical, all with a sort of airport lounge-type feel to it.

For juniper drinks, Ginter’s worth a visit, but for a bar experience with Marina views there are still better in the area.

The bottom line
Excellent menu, but visit at hapy hour.

050 648 3083 Business Bay

Burj Khalifa – check, city skyline – check, blooming shrubbery – you bet.

Treehouse is the type of place you should definitely take visitors. The view from the rooftop terrace is out of this world and showcases the city from its very best angle. At sundown it’s stunning, and when the buildings all light up it’s pretty special, too.

Once you peel your eyes away from the spectacle in the distance you can go on to appreciate the beauty of what surrounds you.

As you might expect from the name, Treehouse has taken the garden theme and given it the Alan Titchmarsh treatment. Fairy lights entwine the branches of strategically-placed trees, while lush foliage runs between low sofas and tables.

Dancing flames seem to move in time to the chilled-out electro music and the vibe is laid-back, yet strangely sort of enchanting.

Drinks come in on the pricey side, as you’d expect for the views, although there are a range of speciality mixed drinks that have been carefully thought out. There’s also a daily happy hour from 7pm until 10pm, which is worth heading to this Business Bay bar for.

We’re fans, and we reckon you will be too. What’s not to like?

The bottom line
A garden path we’d happily be led down.

04 386 8111 Bur Dubai

Is there anything better than being at a rooftop bar with stunning views across Dubai? We can’t think of many, and happily, a visit to Estrellas will give you incredible views of Downtown and Business Bay.

Located in Port Rashid, this bar has everything you could want – amazing views, pool, ladies night and even a glass floor for those brave enough to look down.

If you’re visiting midweek it often gets busy, especially on a Wednesday, which is ladies’ night, where women get two free drinks. There’s also a daily happy hour from 7pm to 9pm, with drinks at Dhs30, which also explains the bustle.

The bar is incredibly busy on our visit, so we don’t get a seat immediately, however, the waiters are good on their promise and let us know as soon as a table becomes available. We sit back and take in the panoramic views.

If you get peckish there’s an extensive food menu ranging from bar snacks to curries and steaks – you certainly won’t go hungry here.

In a city packed with trendy rooftop locations, this might not be first on your list, however, if you’re in the area, we recommend you pop in. You won’t be disappointed with Estrellas Rooftop Lounge.

The bottom line

Top views and a cool vibe. Worth a visit.

04 270 7804 Jumeirah 2

What a view. That’s the first thing you’ll think when you walk into the Four Seasons’ stunning rooftop lounge. (Well, maybe, if your first thought wasn’t “Why have a swing seat and stick a sign on it saying, ‘No swinging’?”).

Other thoughts are likely to include “Gosh, this grape is actually quite reasonably priced considering I’m staring right at the Burj Khalifa from the roof of a five-star beach resort” and “Please can I move in?”.

This is a truly beautiful spot, with a great open space for mingling while taking in the Dubai skyline, alongside cosier, more secluded seating areas that offer a little more privacy (and optional shisha).

Though Mercury tends to get busier later in the evening, don’t pass up the chance to soak up the scene early, particularly closer towards summer, when you’ll be able to watch the sunset reflected back at you from Sheikh Zayed Road’s skyscrapers.

A great spot for visitors (and anyone pretending to be one).

The bottom line
Stylish rooftop with super views.

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