Hot summer deals in Dubai

So you can’t afford to go on holiday – but you can afford to take advantage of living in Dubai. Check these bargains

Atlantis Hotel
Atlantis Hotel
Atlantis, The Palm
Atlantis, The Palm
Cavali Club
Cavali Club
InterContinental Dubai Festival City
InterContinental Dubai Festival City
Grand Hyatt Hotel
Grand Hyatt Hotel
Kempinski Hotel
Kempinski Hotel
Raffles Dubai
Raffles Dubai
Raffles Dubai
Raffles Dubai
Westin Hotel
Westin Hotel
Al Ain Rotana Hotel
Al Ain Rotana Hotel
Timeless Spa, Al Maha Resort
Timeless Spa, Al Maha Resort
Al Maha Resort
Al Maha Resort
Anantara, Desert Island Resort and Spa
Anantara, Desert Island Resort and Spa
Abu Dhabi Desert Islands
Abu Dhabi Desert Islands
Bab Al Shams Desert Resort and Spa
Bab Al Shams Desert Resort and Spa
Al Aqah
Al Aqah
Vocalist and guitarist
Vocalist and guitarist "Billy Lunn" of the band "The Subways"
1/22

Al Manzil Hotel: Summer specials start at Dhs474 for single occupancy, Dhs504 for double. Until September 19. Hot deal!

Lowdown: It boasts Nezesaussi, one of Dubai’s best (but worst-named) sports bars and views of the Burj Dubai.

Details: 04 428 6808 / www.southernsunme.com/almanzil

Area: Burj Dubai Boulevard, The Old Town

Arabian Courtyard: Prices start from Dhs300, single occupancy. Until mid-September.

Lowdown: A stone’s throw from the Creek, many of the rooms have views of the water – it’s heavy on the Arabian theme.

Details: Deal online only: www.arabian courtyard.com / 04 351 9111

Area: Bur Dubai

Arabian Park Hotel: Stay four nights, get one night free, Dhs280 single and double occupancy. Until September 20. Hot deal!

Lowdown: Small, well located and boasts a great little salt-water pool.

Details: 04 324 5999 / www.arabianparkhoteldubai.com

Area: Oud Metha

Atlantis: Summer value rooms from Dhs960 per night from Saturday to Wednesday – not inclusive of breakfast, but including a massage, Aquaventure access and more. Until September 19 (although it’s already fully booked until September).

Lowdown: If it wasn’t for the erratic service when it launched, Ossiano would have won our Best Seafood Restaurant this year. Now the waiters are back on form, so who knows about 2010…

Details: 04 426 2000 / www.atlantisthepalm.com

Area: The Palm Jumeirah

Capitol Hotel: Prices starting from Dhs350. Until September.

Lowdown: It’s situated close to Satwa’s vibrant streets and the beach. Plus it’s a smart hotel – though Club Rockwell downstairs is a tad dingy.

Details: 04 346 0111 / www.capitol-hotel.com

Area: Satwa

Dhow Palace Hotel: Rooms from Dhs400, including breakfast. Until September 30.

Lowdown: Shaped like a ship and Bur Dubai’s only five-star; Submarine club is packed come Thursday night.

Details: 04 359 9992 / www.dhowpalacehoteldubai.com

Area: Bur Dubai

The Fairmont Dubai: Get 20 per cent off the best available rates if you book three days ahead. Until September 30.

Lowdown: Romantic bar Cin Cin is worth a look and Cavalli Club is great for posers.

Details: 04 332 5555 / www.fairmont.com

Area: Sheikh Zayed Road

Hilton Dubai Creek: Dhs395 per room per night over the summer, plus 20% off at restaurants including Gordon Ramsay’s Verre. There’s a free shuttle to Hilton Jumeirah to use the beach too. For foodies, there’s a summer overnight package starting from Dhs1185 per couple which includes a three-course dinner at Verre, as well as an overnight stay, breakfast, and a morning Abra ride.

Lowdown: Creekside hotel with great views of this end of town, as well as being home to Gordon Ramsay’s Dubai base, Verre

Details: 04 227 1111/ reservations.dubai@hilton.com

Area: Dubai Creek

InterContinental: Pay for five nights at Dhs4,740 and get two extra nights free.

Lowdown: After saving a bit on the stay, splash out on Reflets Par Pierre Gagnaire, Time Out’s best restaurant of 2009.

Details: 04 701 1111 / www.ichotelsgroup.com

Area: Festival City


Four Points by Sheraton Downtown Dubai: Their Summer Sale Special offers Dhs600 per night with breakfast at the Eatery Restaurant.

Lowdown: A shiny modern hotel. Watch out for the prices at Italian, Centro Citta.

Details: This is an online-only deal, so visit www.starwoodhotels.com/fourpoints. Call 04 316 9800

Area: Bur Dubai

Grand Hyatt Dubai: Three-night stay for Dhs600 per night; four-night stay for Dhs570 per night; seven-night stay for Dhs540 per night, including free breakfast, lunch and dinner for children dining with parents, and more. Until September 30.

Lowdown: The food at Sushi is good, but pricey. You can enjoy the hotel room’s massaging showers and colossal tubs.

Details: 04 317 1234 / http://dubai.grand.hyatt.com

Area: Oud Metha Road

Grosvenor House: Dhs574 per person for two for Thursday, Friday or Saturdays, including brunch.

Lowdown: Bar 44 has great views of the city (and city life). Beware: the beach is a shuttle ride away at Le Royal Méridien.

Details: The deal is online only: www.starwoodhotels.com. Call 04 399 8888

Area: Dubai Marina

Jumeirah Emirates Towers: Weekend Promotion on Thursday, Friday and Saturdays: Dhs800 per person per night, inclduding a Dhs200 Emirates Towers shopping voucher, complimentary breakfast and 30 per cent off any hotel restaurant. Hot deal!

Lowdown: Check out new boutique Chloé. Enjoy the sparkling view at, erm, Vu’s restaurant and bar.

Details: 04 330 0000 / www.jumeirahemiratestowers.com

Area: Sheikh Zayed Road

Jumeira Rotana: Prices start from Dhs420. Until September 20.

Lowdown: A reasonably priced joint in just off Diyafah Street, Dubai’s most bustling strip, as well as the nearby free Open Beach, complete with superb running track.

Details: 04 345 5888 / www.rotana.com

Area: Satwa

Kempinski: Three-night stay for Dhs1,056 per night including breakfast and either a Dhs100 voucher at Mall of the Emirates, two snow park vouchers, Dhs100 at Magic Planet, or Dhs150 in the hotel’s restaurants. Until August 20.

Lowdown: Thanks to the views of Ski Dubai, the Swiss-style chalets actually work a treat. Try Almaz by Momo for top Moroccan fare.

Details Only available if you book online: www.kempinski-dubai.com / 04 341 0000

Area: Al Barsha

Majestic Hotel Tower: From Dhs350 for a single room per night, Dhs400 for a double per night. Until September 15.

Lowdown: The Music Room’s Filipino house rock band must not be missed at any cost.

Details: 04 359 8888 / www.dubaimajestic.com

Area: Bur Dubai

Media Rotana: Weekday rate from Dhs540 (with breakfast); weekend specials from Dhs780, with breakfast and buffet dinner, 30-minute massage and upgrade. Until September 15.

Lowdown: One of the city’s many Rotanas, it’s decent, if unoriginal.

Details: 04 435 0000 / www.rotana.com

Area: Al Barsha


Mövenpick: Stay seven nights and pay for five; stay three and pay for two; Dhs540 for single or double occupancy, including breakfast or upgrade to a higher room level. Until September.

Lowdown: La Veranda is a solid Italian joint, with DIY stations.

Details: Call 04 336 6000 / www.movenpick-hotels.com

Area: Oud Metha

President Hotel: Dhs250 for single occupancy; Dhs350 for double; Dhs450 for triple, all including breakfast. Price down by Dhs50 if you stay longer than three days. Until September 15. Hot deal!

Lowdown: Near Karama’s markets, this is the sort of two-star hotel you use as somewhere to simply sleep, rather than luxuriate in.

Details: 04 334 6565 / www.presidentdubai.com

Area: Karama

Raffles: Signature Room for Dhs960 for single occupancy on weekends (Thursday, Friday, Saturday).

Lowdown: Luxury shaped like a pyramid – what more do you need? Get 15 per cent off afternoon tea at the Salon with a Time Out City Card.

Details: 04 314 9888 / www.raffles.com

Area: Umm Hurair

Ramada Dubai: Dhs399 for single or double occupancy on weekends (Thursday, Friday, Saturday). Until September 19.

Lowdown: This apparently boasts the biggest stained glass window in the Middle East, one typically for business travellers.

Details: 04 351 9999 / www.ramadadubai.com

Area: Bur Dubai

Renaissance Dubai Hotel: Standard room for Dhs480; Get a club room for Dhs660 per night for two nights and get one night free. Until September 7.

Lowdown: A relatively luxurious hotel in a downtrodden part of town. Enjoy the institution that is the international Spice Island buffet from just Dhs169.

Details: 04 262 5555 / www.renaissancehotels.com

Area: Bur Dubai

Shangri-la: Stay one night for Dhs2,000 and get a second night free, inclusive of breakfast, afternoon tea and cocktail.

Lowdown: Marrakech restaurant is a real find, with authentic live Moroccan music as well as fantastic food. One of the most stylish hotels on the SZR strip.

Details: 04 343 8888 / www.shangri-la.com

Area: Sheikh Zayed Road

The Westin: Pay for two nights, stay for three and also receive 20 per cent off all food and drink as well as treatments at The Heavenly Spa. Until September 30.

Lowdown: This one of the city’s more laidback five-stars, with a vast 1,200m stretch of beach and picturesque landscape gardens. And Italian restaurants don’t get a lot better than the beachside Bussola.

Details: 04 399 4141/ www.starwoodhotels.com

Area: Dubai Marina

XVA Art Hotel: Dhs605 for single occupancy, or Dhs660 for double occupancy, both with breakfast. Until July 30.

Lowdown: A retro hotel built more than 70 years ago, it has been restored and re-opened as a gallery, café and boutique hotel.

Details: 04 353 5383 / www.xvagallery.com

Area: Bur Dubai


Outside Dubai

Al Ain Hilton Hotel: Stay three nights and get one night free, or stay five nights and get two. Best rates start at Dhs522 per night, including buffet breakfast. Until the end of September.

Lowdown: Paco’s Mexican restaurant provides laidback guacamole-fuelled fun. And of course, check out the beautiful garden city of Al Ain.

Details: 03 768 6666 / www1.hilton.com

Area: Hilton Street

Al Ain Rotana Hotel: Special summer rates for classic rooms from Dhs575 per night. On Saturdays classic rooms start from Dhs331. Until September 15.

Lowdown: The Rotana’s service is stand-out, even if the brand is fairly standardised.

Details: 03 754 5111 / www.rotana.com

Area: Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Ain

Al Hamra Village Townhouse: Stay in a classic room for Dhs375, including breakfast. Until end of September. Hot deal!

Lowdown: With many substantial-sized chalets, it’s a peaceful little hotel village in itself.

Details: 07 244 6666 / www.alhamratownhouse.com

Area: Ras Al Khaimah

Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa: Fifteen per cent off all published rates. Promotional prices start from Dhs3,239 per night per Bedouin Suite. Also guests can stay for two nights and receive the third night for free. All include full board and two desert-based activities. Until September 17.

Lowdown: An Arabian take on the safari experience, complete with khaki-clad South African field guides and herds of wandering game (oryx, gazelle). Do the 5am nature walk, followed by a mid-morning dip in your private infinity pool, binoculars in hand.

Details: See www.emirateshotelsresorts.com for more on the deals. 09 244 9000 / www.al-maha.com.

Area: Dubailand

Anantara Desert Islands Resort & Spa: Stay two nights for Dhs1,624 per night and get one night free, including breakfast and two on-site activities. Check online for more packages. Until September 19.

Lowdown: The most absurd collection of wildlife and flora and fauna in the entire region. Brave all the adventure activities – we highly recommend kayaking through the mangroves. It’s a deathly dull drive there, however.

Details: 02 801 5400 / desertislands.anantara.com

Area: Sir Bani Yas Island, Al Ruwais, Abu Dhabi

Bab Al Shams: For UAE residents only: romantic escape package: Dhs1,350 per night, including bubbly, flowers, chocolates and breakfast in bed. For Dhs1,600 dinner is also included. Until September 19.

Lowdown: Check out the stunning desert restaurant Al Hadheerah. And get up early to go horse riding over the dunes at dawn.

Details: 04 364 7530 / www.jumeirahbabalshams.com

Area: Dubailand

The Chedi: For GCC residents only: stay two nights in a standard room for Dhs2,300; in a deluxe room for Dhs2,950; the suite for Dhs4,100 – all deals including breakfast. Until September 15.

Lowdown: The Chedi aims to improve your ‘chi’ or energy via expert feng shui, Balinese massages and the power of the sea.

Details: (96 8) 2452 4400 / www.ghmhotels.com

Area: Muscat, Oman

Cove Rotana: Book a classic room for Dhs440 on weekdays and Dhs660 on weekends. Until September. Hot deal!

Lowdown: Located on a beautiful stretch of beach, and tastefully decorated. It’s also less than an hour away from Dubai.

Details: 07 206 6000 / www.rotana.com

Area: Ras Al Khaimah


Golden Tulip Khasab Hotel Resort: On weekdays special rates of Dhs585 for a double room, including breakfast at the Dibba Restaurant. Until September 15.

Lowdown: Take advantage of the scuba diving trips, safaris, and dhow cruises .

Details: (96 8) 2673 0777 / www.goldentulipkhasab.com

Area: Khasab, Oman

Hatta Fort Hotel: Dhs999 per chalet-style room per night from Saturday to Wednesday; Dhs1,399 in a chalet-style room per night on Thursdays and Fridays. Both include breakfast, lunch, dinner and house drinks.

Lowdown: The’70s-inspired hotel is quaint, and the surrounding rocky scenery a refreshing change from Dubai’s skyscrapers.

Details: Call 04 852 3211 and quote ‘TimeOutHatta’ or email hfh@jaihotels.com / www.jebelali-international.com

Area: Hatta

Hilton Fujairah: Dhs600 is the best rate for a basic room on weekdays; Dhs690 on weekends; buffet breakfast is included. Until August 31.

Lowdown: Octavia Bistro do creative cocktails, while Neptunia, the Mediterranean restaurant, puts on many a themed night.

Details: 09 222 2411 / www1.hilton.com

Area: Ghourfa

InterContinental Al Ain: Stay in a standard room for Dhs463 or a deluxe for Dhs579. Until end of August.

Lowdown: If you’re traveling with children, they’ll love the network of swimming pools.

Details: 03 768 6686 / www.ichotelsgroup.com

Area: Kuwait Area, Al Ain

Le Méridien Al Aqah Beach Resort: On weekdays Dhs698 is the best rate for a standard room, including breakfast and dinner. Until September 18. Hot deal!

Lowdown: While you’re here, check into the spa and try out its exotic Thai, European or Aromatherapy treatments.

Details: 09 244 9000 / www.starwoodhotels.com/lemeridien

Area: Al Dibba Road

Liwa Hotel: Special weekend rates of Dhs637 for standard rooms, including breakfast. Until mid-September.

Lowdown: This is one of the best hotels in the area, probably because this is about the only hotel in the area. Expect basic food and a surreal retro vibe.

Details: 02 882 2000 / www.ncth.com

Area: Liwa, Abu Dhabi

Mercure Grand Jebel Hafeet Hotel: Special weekend rates for a standard room at Dhs650 including breakfast. Until after Ramadan.

Lowdown: Tennis courts, spectacular views, and it’s very blowy on a windy day (beware short tennis skirts).

Details: 03 783 8888 / www.mercure.com

Area: Jebel Hafeet, Al Ain

Shangri-la: For residents of GCC countries, best rates start from about Dhs750 for the Al Waha Superior Room, including breakfast. Until September 19.

Lowdown: A stunning location, perched on a peninsula, offering a perfect blend of rugged landscape and luxurious service. Check out the spa, or just be a cheapskate and visit for lunch or coffee.

Details: (96 8) 2477 6666 / www.shangri-la.com

Area: Muscat, Oman


Dubai’s best concierge: Joseph David, The Palace Hotel

What’s the most important skill required to be a good concierge?
Apart from knowledge about the city, passion, commitment and always having a positive attitude.

Strangest request you’ve ever had?
A Kuwaiti sheikh was once desperately looking for pesticide on a Friday morning to treat his Palm tree farm.

Most common questions?
Directions, the best beaches to spend the day on and the best restaurants to try.

Most expensive thing you’ve bought for a guest?
A high-end watch.

Laziest requests?
To buy the guest a nail cutter.
Joseph won last year’s Concierge of the Year Competition, organised by Wafi and the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing.

Can you live in a hotel?

Musician – and jaded traveller – Billy Lunn of The Subways on life on the road
'Hotels are the most sterile environments to be in. They all look the same: they all have the same pictures on the walls, the same terrible TV shows, the same tacky bedsheets. But at least it’s a rare chance to get away from the tour crew, because we spend most of our time on the tour bus.’

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