Of all the brilliant brunches that are available for your delectation across Dubai, dear reader, there are surely none that sound so typically “Dubai” than the Lotus Mega Yacht Brunch Cruise. It’s in the name, – you hear “mega yacht”, you think luxury, right?
And that’s what we expect from a brunch that advertises food from a five-star hotel, an outdoor pool, Jacuzzi and more. When we book our tickets online, we’re seriously excited.
We wake up like a kid on Christmas morning. But then: rain. We furiously check the forecast and see sunshine scheduled for later, so unperturbed by the unfortunate weather we head along, ready for a mega-yacht-pool-Jacuzzi-five-star-food party. Sounds epic.
The boat, as you’d expect, is impressive. It’s enormous, and once we stop off at the function bar we head straight for the upper deck. Hilariously, thanks high water levels (blame the rain), the roof of the boat has to be taken down before we leave Dubai Marina, and everyone on the top deck (even those in their finest gladrags) is required to sit down while the captain attempts to navigate the boat under the now extremely close bridge. In sodden and grey conditions, it adds to the afternoon’s humour. Once we’re out of Dubai Marina, the boat sets sail past Ain Dubai, round Atlantis The Palm and over to the Burj Al Arab, then back. DJ Dane Bowers (of Another Level fame) plus guests entertain throughout the afternoon, with a string of UK garage hits busted out one after the other. On the whole, we (and the crowd) love it.
That might be because there’s not much else going on. The pool remains unfilled all day, the Jacuzzis covered. That may be due to the rain (there’s no word explanation either way) but we’re disappointed not to have the chance to take a dip.
The live cooking stations consist of a few deep fryers, a small pizza oven and a couple of grills. Food includes dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets (genuinely), frozen pizzas and miscellaneous deep-fried food. It’s fine for picking, it’s just not what we’d expected There’s more inside, with salad and hot meals (spaghetti bolognese, curry etc), but on the whole this brunch is not about the food. Even our fresh burger disintegrates in our hands as we get our chops around it. The bar is fine, but it takes a while to get served, and you’re left feeling like you’re just not getting the best value for money.
It’s a shame, because on paper this looks amazing. And while it’s a lot of fun, it’s not for the reasons we’d hoped.
Dhs199 (soft drinks), Dhs349 (select beverages), Dhs499 (VIP). Fri-Sat, 1pm-5.30pm. Pier 7, Dubai Marina, tickets available at dubai.platinumlist.net.
The bottom line
Don’t expect luxury and you’ll love it.