Dubai for Wellness and Shopping

Sandra Burnley on 15 October 2010

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Our journey began with a very pleasant flight with Etihad the national airline of the United Arab Emirates. They fly into Abu Dhabi but the journey is only about 50 minutes into Dubai.The service on board was excellent and the cabin crew highly attentive.We were lucky enough to fly back Business Class on return which was wonderful I cannot recommend highly enough from the flat beds to the wonderful service as well as the sublime food and drink,before we had even boarded we were given a spa treatment at the wonderful Six Senses Spa in Etihads Executive Lounge.

We spent the first 2 nights at a brand new hotel The Pullman at the Mall of the Emirates.This is a very contempory hotel with the benefit of the Mall which is attached and the Metro is on the doorstep.

We visited some wonderful hotels but my favourites were (in order) The Ritz Carlton personally thought this has the best location ,the beach here is beautiful ,the rooms superb,but best of all the service was faultless.I would advise upgrading to a club room here as the cost includes some drinks and food and use of a lounge..and works out being very good value.

I also love the Royal Mirage at the One & Only for the same reasons being location ,the rooms in particular the suites here are amazing and again the service.

Lastly the Palace in the Old Town (which is actually the New Town )...this hotel is superb.Whilst not on the beach is had a great spot for viewing the dancing fountain ,The Burj Khalifa and is on the doorstep of The Dubai Mall.The food here deserves a special mention we had a buffet and I have never seen anything like it in my life. One of my highlights was the Jeep Safari which they do late afternoon when its cooler...this is such good fun we laughed so much then afterwoods you are taken to a "camp" in the desert where they serve a barbeque as well as belly dancing and you can get a henna tattoo done.

We were lucky enough to go up to the "At the Top" experience at the Burj actually go up to floor 124 so not right to the top but the views from here are amazing and the lift goes up in 60 seconds but you hardly feel a thing!

Tom Cruise has been filming on the Tower this week suspended half way up it...he wanted to do the stunts himself for the new Mission Impossible film...if you ever see the Tower you will realise how brave or crazy he is ! it looks great on the film though.

We had a flying visit round the Dubai Mall which is vast full of top designer shops and high street ones. Shopoholics would be in heaven.

Our last 2 nights were spent at the Desert Palm which has its own polo fields. Its about 20 minutes from town and feels like a retreat. Many of the villas here have their own pools which I though were a good size and would be perfect for a family though some would be ideal for honeymoon too.

Things I didn't know were the friendliness of the people, and there are so many cultures living and working happily side by side.It can be an expensive destination though there are many cheaper hotel chains present as well as fast food chains for those on a budget. Most of the hotels we visited did have their own spas in house too.

I would say you can make Dubai the holiday you wish to have be it a beach holiday,a city break or some of the best shopping in the world,or be it active or relaxing.

Many use it as a stopover en route but it doesnt have to be that really. Please email me if you need any more information

Thanks Sandra

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