REVIEW: Drai’s Dubai opening night

Las Vegas day-night club smashes its way into town

There’s always a palpable level of anticipation when a new club arrives in Dubai: what will it bring? Something we’ve never seen before? Is it somewhere I need to get on to my Dubai bucket list?

Drai’s made its way over from Las Vegas, where it has a big reputation. Known for daytime lounging by the pool and night-time partying, Drai’s was looking to bring its Vegas-honed swaggery to the new Soho Garden development at Meydan.

On arrival, don’t, as we did, stroll straight on into Soho Garden expecting to just happen upon Drai’s. We’re latterly informed that the new venue is located around the corner, and requires a short journey on a golf buggy – which seems to happen every time we visit Meydan.

Nevertheless, a big red carpet arrival, a blindingly large “DRAI’S” sign reminiscent of Gatsby-era parties (great for group silhouette shots and Instagram posing), and then you’re in, greeted by an amphitheatrically arranged array of private tables and sofas on the right hand side of the club, a low-level bar on the left, and an expansive swimming pool through the middle.

Sadly, the pool is too shallow for taking a dip in during the day, but that’s probably a wise move in hindsight when this place erupts into party mode at night.

And it does erupt. We’re there late into the evening on opening night and the place is packed, and featuring a surprise performance from UK R&B hero and definitely-not-always-in-Dubai Craig David, fresh from his appearance at the simultaneously occurring RedFestDXB 2018. Sadly, Canadian rapper Tory Lanez, originally penned in to headline the opening night, had to cancel his trip at the last minute, which was sure to be a disappointment to fans.

Bar prices, as you’d expect, aren’t cheap, but are definitely not the most expensive we’ve encountered over the past year. A quick glimpse at the bar menu put prices at between Dhs60 and Dhs70 for a drink, with premium bottles coming in at about Dhs1,700.

It’s another big addition to the Dubai nightlife scene, opening in spectacular style, and will surely prove to be wildly popular with the city’s party-lovers.

The Bottom Line
If you LOVE partying, you’ll probably love this too.

Free entry. Fri 1pm-late. Meydan Racecourse Grandstand, Nad Al Sheba, (052 388 8857).

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