Travelling someplace new and looking for a comfortable stay
that doesn’t cost your entire travel budget? Or perhaps you’re on the lookout
for a weekend getaway within the UAE itself?
Take the hassle out of bookings (and the travel agent’s
commissions!) by downloading the OYO app. Available both on the Apple and Android
Play Store, the OYO (or On Your Own) app is the world’s third largest
hospitality chain, and has already been in the UAE for a year now.
If you’ve been following my Insta Stories, you already know where we were last weekend 😊 We were in Al Ain, the ‘garden city’ of the UAE. We had a room booked at Al Ain Rotana, one of the oldest properties in the Emirate which also happens to be the only 5-star property of Al Ain as of now.
We drove into Al Ain a little past 12 noon on a Friday afternoon. Loved cruising through the near-empty roads! We were there in a little over an hour.
The beauty of the Al Ain Rotana property is its flat, spread-out structure. Not your typical towering hotel building here, but rather a collection of mid-heighted structures with a spread of exclusive villa properties, spacious greens and wide, inviting pool areas.
Last weekend, we stayed at Radisson Blu Ajman, and had
dinner at Filini. The fully licenced Italian restaurant has stunning, welcoming
interiors complete with a real-life Vespa at the front, a rose-gold coffee urn
and other interesting artifacts from an Italy we envision when flipping through
2019 has been a super busy year so
far, but busy in a good way. All my weekends have been packed with socializing
or eating out or photography activities and I’ve been craving a good old quiet,
under the covers laid-back break.
I recently got an invite to spend a
night at the Marriott in Al Jaddaf, Dubai and thought this would be the
perfect low-key break I’ve been wanting so badly.
Last weekend, my wee family and I headed off to Ras AL Khaimah for a staycation at Acacia Hotel. A drive across the brilliantly red dunes with scenic views of the sea heading towards Um Al Quwain is always a retreat in itself for city dwellers like ourselves.
Acacia Hotel, operated under Bin Majid Hotels & Resorts, is a 4 star property located in the heart of the industrial area of Ras Al Khaimah. The property was built in 2010, and has an airy, welcoming vibe about it. The check-in process here was smooth, and as we got there at 2.30 pm (and the buffet lunch closes at 3.30 pm!) we dumped our belongings in our Junior Suite and headed off to Al Nakhla.
I am insanely jealous of all the UAE residents who get to hibernate off to exotic locations across the globe just when the summer heat starts spiking up. With no holidays clocked up at work, I have to make do with the weekends. But hey! Living in the UAE, we are spoilt for choice with some of the best hotels and resorts.
Ringing in the end of July, my little fambam and I packed up the four-wheeler and headed to the greener pastures of Al Ain. I feel a sense of calm just driving into Al Ain. It must be the lush greenery and the absence of towering, tall buildings that city dwellers like me silently crave.
We were invited for a staycation at Danat Al Ain Resort. The Danat collection of properties expands across the UAE, and this includes the Tilal Liwa Hotel we had visited around this time last year. I for one love a property that reflects the cultural vibes of its adopted home country (unlike the very commercial run of the mill properties that look identical regardless of where you are). Every property under the Danat collection has been accentuated with a touch of Arabesque charm.
If you’re following me on Instagram, you might have noticed my overflow of Insta Stories from last weekend. My wee family and I were invited over for a staycation at Media One Hotel, and I have to say this has to be one the most Instagram-worthy hotel stays I’ve been to in Dubai!
Media One Hotel had us click-happy for a number of reasons. First off, its so refreshingly different from the staycations I’ve been to in the recent past. Media One Hotel makes suave, ‘run of the mill’ sophisticated, uptight interiors look so cliche! This 4 star property can best be described as an artsy boutique concept and has, so far, been a well-kept secret among Media City coworkers.
We went on a mini road trip to the capital last weekend, and decided to spend the last few days of Ramadan in Centro Capital Centre. Conveniently located in the hub of Abu Dhabi’s business district, this 3-star property has proven to be a very popular hotel among business executives. The pricing is very reasonable without compromising on the quality of the experience itself.
Infact we had a dejavous experience! Walking into the lobby, I mistook this property to be Capital Centre Arjaan by Rotana And even told the receptionist I’ve been here before! When we stayed at Capital Centre Arjaan by Rotana, we were upgraded to a suite but they don’t have suites in Centro Capital Centre. The bedding, the sofa and even the accessories look identical to our last stay, with everything being compressed into a smaller, cozier space.
Last weekend saw our little family packing up our overnight bags and heading off to the capital. Located in the heart of the financial hub of Abu Dhabi, Capital Centre Arjaan by Rotana seems to be an unlikely choice for a family getaway. With offices and convention centres a stone’s throw away, the hotel has a regular influx of business guests. However, much to our delight, the property also proved to be a nest of comfort as a home away from home.
About a week ago, I headed off with the family for a mini break to Tilal Liwa Hotel. Located 175 kilometers beyond central Abu Dhabi, Tilal Liwa Hotel is located in Madinat Zayed – the Western region of Abu Dhabi, in close proximity to the Saudi border. Getting to the hotel from Dubai entails an infinitely long road-trip across the desert, and adds to the thrill of adventure and exploring a brand new territory right in our very own backyard.
Tilal Liwa Hotel is a strikingly Arabesque 4-star property that was originally created for VIP guests and royalty visiting the annual Camel Beauty Contest. Yes, such a thing exists – and only in the UAE! Celebrating its tenth year, this event showcases the best breeds of camels both from the UAE and beyond. During the event, the occupancy at Tilal Liwa is on record high. However, given the unique concept of this beautiful property, the hotel has been opened up to the public and is slowly but surely gaining a steady stream of tourists and local staycationers alike.