Dazzling Dubai !

Catherine Fetherston on 13 March 2012

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In March I was delighted to be invited by the Government of Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing on a trip to Dubai. We flew from Heathrow and were extremely fortunate to be upgraded to business class! On arrival we were met and assisted on arrival by Arabian Adventures and transferred to our hotel. Throughout our visit we were transported by this company and I would highly recommend their services and excursions. We spent 2 nights at the Atlantis on The Palm Hotel; a fantastic location and a great spot if you like a busy, buzzing property. It features a great choice of restaurants, has its own aquarium and a waterpark next door called Aqua Venture, which is complimentary to all guests staying at the hotel. The Atlantis also has Dolphin Bay were you can arrange to swim with dolphins in a small group.

On our first evening we went to visit the Westin Mina Seyahi Beach Resort. It is located on the beach with great views across to the Palm. The bedrooms are spacious with beautifully appointed bathrooms, heavenly beds and mounds of pillows! The facilities were first class - various bars and restaurants, outdoor swimming pools, boutiques, business centre. The next day we went to the Madinat Jumeirah Group of hotels for a site inspection - this hotel was a real treat! Within this resort there are 2 grand boutique hotels and courtyard summer houses; traditional Abras; 44 world class restaurants and bars; free internet access in all rooms and suites; traditional souk; Talise Spa and wellness services ; 2 km of pristine, private beach; complimentary Wild Wadi Waterpark access; conference and banqueting centre; The Quay health club and The First Group Theatre! Then we were off to the Jumeirah Beach Hotel - premier lifestyle destination on Jumeirah Beach. The hotel offers 598 rooms and suites all of which feature fabulous views of the ocean through floor-to-ceiling windows. It is an excellent family beach resort again giving complimentary access to the neighbouring Wild Wadi Water Park. That evening we were hosted for dinner at the One and Only Royal Mirage after a hotel inspection which was again superb. The resort is split into three hotels on the same stretch of beach: The Arabian Court (which is really well suited to families), the Residence & Spa (adults only) and the Palace Hotel – you can dine in any of the hotel’s restaurants.

The next day we checked out of the Atlantis and moved to the Grand Hyatt Dubai located in the Bur Dubai district; another fabulous 5 star hotel with vast facilities to cater for everyone – business, leisure and great for families. After a site inspection we enjoyed lunch by the pools . We were really fortunate to experience the following excursions and I would highly recommend all of them. We had a city tour - which took us to the old town, we went to the gold and spice souks and we also experienced an Abra on the Creek. We went up the tallest tower in the world the stunning Burj Khalifa which was the highlight of my trip, travelling up to the 124th floor on the fastest elevator in the world! On ground level is the new downtown area that features the Dubai Mall (currently the largest shopping mall in the world) lots of shops, hotels and restaurants plus the superb fountain show. 4 x 4 jeep safari – we were collected and dropped back to our hotel in the air conditioned jeeps. This tour involves driving over sand dunes, a falconry show, drinks and a traditional dinner, belly dancing, henna tattoo and camel rides! On our last day we went up the Burj Khalifa, went through Dubai Mall to Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo and then after lunch we went to Ski Dubai! We had lunch at the Pullman Hotel Mall of the Emirates and then a beautiful a la carte meal at The Address, Downtown & The Palace-The Old Town & then we saw the Dubai Fountains before we started our journey home again – what a way to end our trip !

With five-star leisure facilities, guaranteed sunshine, beautiful beaches and Arabian hospitality, Dubai offers you a unique holiday adventure and only 7 hours flying time from the UK. Dubai is an all-year-round destination and offers something for everyone!

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