Located on the outer West Crescent of the Palm Jumeirah Islands, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray is a fair drive to downtown, the malls and most attractions, which is no doubt why there is a little bit of everything for almost everyone here.
At first, I wasn’t sure what it was trying to be—the family friendly haven, the high glamour hotel, the hip and happening party place, the beach resort—it has an eclectic range of personalities.
Enter into the lobby and, love it or hate it, it’s impressive. This, along with most of the indoor communal areas of the hotel, was inspired by the imperial palaces of the Ottoman era and is very ornate with lots of marble, colonnades, a large fountain with coloured lighting, and an incredible floral display. ‘Opulent bling’ sprung to mind and for the short spell that I visited, I loved it.
You would be forgiven for being overwhelmed here: it’s busy and there is such a diverse range of things to see and do that I’m sure you could stay a week and have a completely different type of experience every day: a spa day; a casual day by the pool or beach; sports; shopping in air-conditioned comfort at the sixteen boutiques along the hotel’s elegant ‘Avenue of Indulgence’; stopping to refuel with a coffee at the Sultan’s Lounge; or enjoying a long, leisurely brunch. Or you could take in a movie in the traditional cinema room; dine at one of the seven restaurants; have drinks on one of the terraces; enjoy a concert in the Music Hall (on show nights); or even watch football on the big screen at the cool and contemporary Voda Bar that’s open ‘til 3am. And there’s an eclectic mix of offers to match, from happy hours and ladies’ nights, to special menus and evening spa packages that you can’t fail to miss—just look on the various screens each day. With something to keep all ages happy including kids, fun-in-the-sun seekers and people who like to mingle, sadly there were moments that didn’t feel as luxurious as I’d expected.
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