Il Borro Tuscan Bistro
If you’re looking for absolutely excellent Italian food, then there’s no better place in the city than Il Borro. A winner, and Restaurant of the Year, for a second year running, everything on the menu here is outstanding. From lobster linguine to octopus to the creamiest burrata you’ll find, dishes are well crafted and delicious. The ambience is lovely for both families or couples – by day or night – and its setting next to the Turtle Lagoon is delightful.
Open daily 12pm-3.30pm, 7pm-1am. Jumeirah Al Naseem, Madinat Jumeirah (04 275 2555).
A casual Italian restaurant from US Michelin-starred chef David Myers, BASTA! serves up hearty Italian dishes with heaps of flavour. Literally translating in English to “enough!” portions are generous and the dining room is bright, vibrant and fun. It’s a great place for a laid-back lunch or evening meal.
Open daily noon-midnight. Renaissance Downtown Hotel, Dubai, Business Bay (04 512 5522).
Il Ristorante – Niko Romito
This smart restaurant at Bvlgari Hotel & Resort is a new entry in the Italian category this year. It’s super smart and exclusive, yet doesn’t feel at all stuffy. The food is excellent and well presented. From homely dishes such as lasagne (in the fanciest way of course) to inventive creations such as potato ravioli with seafood ragout, all bases are covered here, and everything is wonderfully flavoured.
Open daily 12.30pm-3pm, 7pm-11pm. Bvlgari Hotel & Resort, Jumeirah (04 777 5433).
Savour traditional Italian cuisine with a modern twist. Begin with a classic aperitivo before journeying through the subtleties of a signature degustation-style menu. The décor is chic with a stylish bar and impressive city views.
Open daily 7pm-11.30pm. Armani Hotel Dubai, Downtown Dubai, www.armanihoteldubai.com (04 888 3666).
Offering traditional Italian cuisine and three restuarants in one, sample signature dining in the lower restaurant, a more casual vibe in the upper deck pizzeria or relish the sunset over a drink in the Bussola Lounge.
Open daily noon-3pm, 7pm-11pm. The Westin Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, Al Sufouh, www.bussoladubai.com (04 511 7373).
On two levels with an enclosed terrace and an intimate bar, Cipriani offers classic dishes from Harry's Bar – opened first off Piazza San Marco in Venice in 1931 – plus a variety of Italian specialties in a warm, elegant atmosphere.
Open daily noon-2am. Gate Village 10, DIFC, www.cipriani.com (04 347 0003).
Serving rustic-sounding Italian dishes but presented in a modern way, quality ingredients are the hero at MATTO. Industrial-style design and colourful murals on the walls contribute to a trendy atmosphere.
Open daily noon-midnight. The Oberoi Dubai, www.mattodubai.com (04 444 1335).
A range of pasta, seafood, grilled and roasted meats, sharing platters and desserts invoke the classic flavours of southern Italy and the Amalfi Coast. The décor imbues a rustic style with warm and welcoming terracotta colours.
Open daily noon-3.30pm, 7pm-11.30pm. FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai, Palm Jumeirah www.fivehotelsandresorts.com (04 455 9989).
This Italian concept blends Roman passion for food with Venetian hospitality and Milanese style and Piemonte offers a fine-dining experience. A terrace grants views of the Burj Khalifa where a DJ plays music into the night.
Open daily noon-3pm, 7pm-midnight. Gate Village 1, DIFC, www.robertos.ae (04 386 0066).
An extensive Italian menu features all the usual suspects – don’t miss the signature lobster spaghetti. Fairylight-strewn trees and tables adorned with crisp white cloths define the outdoor terrace and inside, colourful artwork lends a vibrant feel.
Open daily noon-1am. Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, Jumeirah 2, www.scalini-dubai.com (04 349 0068)