The venue: Taking place across the hotel’s Chinese Shang Palace restaurant and Vietnamese eatery Hoi An on the first floor as well as all-day-dining Dunes Café on the ground floor, this brunch offers three very different settings. Shang Palace seems the most popular and atmospheric, though none boast any remarkable views.
The food: Peruse the Dunes Café buffet featuring a decent selection that ranges from sushi to a carvery station, but don’t miss the à la carte selection, which features the majority of this Asian brunch’s namesake fare, with separate sections for Vietnamese and Chinese appetisers and mains. The first floor also houses
live Peking duck and summer roll stations.
The drinks: In addition to a frozen Mexican-themed mixed drink station in the lobby, guests can choose from a selection of relatively ordinary house beverages.
The crowd: In Hoi An, the crowd is mainly made up of couples and small groups, while Shang Palace seems a more family-orientated setting. Dunes Café, meanwhile, doesn’t fill up enough to fit a specific bracket.
The dress code: Smart casual – jeans and a shirt or a summery dress would be perfect, though we did see a few in more casual attire.
The service: Friendly and helpful, if a little slow with the drinks and slightly confused on the à la carte food ordering front – we do wish waiters would write things down.
Highs & lows: The food was decent, but not show-stopping. Spacing the brunch over two floors highlights the lack of variety, and we wouldn’t recommend those purchasing the house beverage package to navigate the stairs in heels.
Extras & entertainment: Nothing of note. The after party: Head to Balcony Bar (also on the first floor) and every second drink is on the house. For something a little wilder, there’s always nearby Double Decker…
Best for: anyone and everyone
Dhs260 (with soft drinks), Dhs375 (with house beverages), Dhs490 (with bubbly). Fri 12.30pm-4pm. Shangri-La Hotel Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road (04 343 8888).
A la carte