Hidden beneath the offices on the left just before the entrance to The Palace hotel’s main driveway, Saks has recently unveiled a new beauty area, where it is offering Dermalogica face mapping, tailored facials, and manicures and pedicures, alongside its existing line in hair dressing.
Opting to put the salon’s mani-pedi to the test (the foundation of good grooming), at the very least I expect to come out rid of dry cuticles, with softer heels and wearing a gleaming polish that will hopefully last for at least three days without chipping.
Step by step
Sitting in the waiting area in the main salon, I’m distinctly aware of some very powerful A/C, and am quietly grateful for the cardigan I thought to bring along just in case. Once I’m invited to take a seat in the nail room, it becomes clear this was an even better idea when a blast of cool air sends a shiver down my back and the sensation of sitting on the cool, stiff seat gives my legs goosebumps. Though it may not be as comfortable as some mainstream nail salons, the technicians at Saks are efficient though not abrasive; quick but not short. When I realise I’m not keen on the polish colour I’ve chosen – unfortunately after it has already been applied to all of the toes on my right foot – my therapist assures me it’s not a problem, and we can change the colour. I swap the nude for a bolder coral red, and I’m extremely pleased with the finished result. What’s more the whole mani-pedi takes only 60 minutes, without sacrificing any cuticle trimming.
My therapist applies a fast-drying agent which leaves my nails dry in seconds and I’m ready to go – though I can’t help wondering why they don’t use this in every salon. On the downside, while my toe colour remains intact for five days before chipping, the polish on my fingers starts to peel off mere hours after leaving the salon.
• The staff are friendlier than many nail salons.
• The salon itself is quiet and relaxed, which means grooming here feels like downtime rather than another stressor.
• The polish (they use Essie) doesn’t last very long.
• It can be chilly in the salon, so you’ll shiver unless you bring an extra layer.
This tiny salon in Media City is cosy and relatively quiet thanks to its small size. A good place to find some peace during your time out.
Mani-pedi from Dhs140. Building 10, Dubai Media City (04 391 6485).
Head here if you’re feeling a bit adventurous, with technicians keen to try out their magnetic, 3D nail art or feather nails.
Mani-pedi from Dhs150. Shoreline Building 10, Palm Jumeirah (04 437 6010).
Mani-pedi Dhs140. Saks Hair and Beauty Salon, The Palace, Old Town (04 430 8572). Until March 31, quote ‘Time Out’ and get a mani-pedi at the discounted rate of Dhs90, or a massage for Dhs200 (normally Dhs300).