1 Al Dawaar
Wowing international travellers for 40 years, the revolving restaurant had a major refurbishment a couple of years ago. While it has stood firm and unmoved (apart from the full rotation it turns each hour, obviously) the city has changed around it, so enjoy the views out across Old Dubai as you dig into your dinner.
Open Sat-Thu 12.30-3.30pm; 7-11.30pm; Fri, 12.30-4pm, 7-11.30pm. Hyatt Regency Dubai, Deira, www.hyatt.com (04 209 6914).
Despite being 442 metres and 122 floors up we still half expect to see Tom Cruise come crashing through the windows every time we visit. Even practised cynics are agog on a visit to the ultimate wow factor bar that has literally breath-taking views from the world’s most iconic skyscraper.
Open daily 7am-2am. Burj Khalifa, Downtown Dubai. www.atmosphereburjkhalifa.com (04 888 3828).
3 Observation Deck at 300
Abu Dhabi’s highest restaurant is a daytime specialist. In between the fists full of tasty cakes and delectable finger sandwiches of its afternoon tea spread you can wander across to the floor-to-ceiling windows and look out at the Arabian Gulf and Abu Dhabi as seen from the 74th floor of Jumeirah at Etihad Towers. Binoculars help you see a little further still.
Open daily 10am-7pm. Jumeirah Etihad Towers, Corniche West, www.jumeirah.com (02 811 5666).
“Only” 52 floors up this longstanding lounge isn’t the highest by any measure, but it is the location that makes this a must-visit for skyphiles. Looking down onto Dubai Marina, Palm Jumeirah and beyond it is a new perspective on a place you thought you had seen all of.
Open daily noon-1am. Marriott Harbour Hotel, Dubai Marina, www.marriottharbourdubaidining.com (04 319 4000).
5 Prime 68
We have no evidence whatsoever to support our hope that a hotel manager asked for this supremely stylish bar and grill to be added to the 68th floor just so he could honestly declare “the steaks are high”. It would be an elaborate set up for a classy punchline, but combining elaborate and classy is what they do here so it is possible.
Open daily 6pm-midnight. JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay, www.jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com (04 414 3000).
We love looking at the Burj Al Arab so it is a nice surprise to learn we’re just as fond of gazing out from it as well. Of course it has unrivalled and uninhibited views of the sea, but this swish lounge in the world-famous hotel also boasts an impressive vista looking back at the city on dry land. It is all seven star opulence and about as fancy as you’ll find.
Open daily 7am-10.30pm. Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Umm Suqeim, www.jumeirah.com (04 301 7600).
While other restaurants boast about their views this restaurant bar at Le Royal Méridien slowly rotates through 360 degrees on the 31st floor and offering diners truly panoramic views of, well, pretty much everything. As the capital sparkles you will realise even a traffic jam is beautiful from this high up.
Open daily 5pm-1am. Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi, Khalifa Street, www.stratosabudhabi.com (800 101101).