Jess and Dale were met off their Emirates flight in Dubai by Elegant Resorts' wonderful Arabian Adventures representative who whisked them through immigration and even waited whilst they browsed the duty-free shops. Then it was straight into their private chauffeur-driven car and on to Al Maha, A Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa that Jess describes as one of the most stunning resorts she’s ever seen − the epitome of peace and tranquillity. They were immediately greeted, by name − as they were throughout their stay − and taken to their Bedouin Suite, Suite 9. Jess says, that in her opinion, suites are more like staying in a villa and the stunning panoramic views of the desert, traditional Arabian décor, huge bed and beautiful bathroom with a huge bath and separate walk-in shower, all added to the very special feel of this very special place.
As they'd flown overnight they were extremely tired so chose to dine in their suite and their pasta and chicken Caesar salad were with them within half an hour - they were both excellent and really did hit the spot. Jess says that she didn't realise that salad could taste that amazing! Next morning, they woke to serenely beautiful views across the desert, views so good that they decided to eat breakfast whilst gazing out at the dunes and watching the local wildlife make an appearance, before relaxing by their private pool. Jess and Dale couldn't fault the service here and were impressed by the attention to detail, for example when housekeeping saw that they had drunk a lot of water, they replenished their suite with four extra bottles so that they wouldn't run out
On their final night at Al Maha, Jess and Dale dined at Al Diwaan Restaurant where they took a seat outside and as the lighting was quite dim − which only served to add to the atmosphere as far as they were concerned − menus had little lights clipped to them, which was very useful. Their five-course dinner started with a Watermelon Gazpacho, followed by starters of Tuna Steak and Lobster Ravioli, then a Mango Sorbet to refresh the palate, followed by mains of Fillet Steak and Sea bream Risotto (one of the best risottos Jess has ever tasted, and she does like her risottos) and finished with desserts of Banana Parfait and Passion fruit Soufflé. It was all absolutely amazing.
Jess and Dale recommend the resort for couples and people who want to truly relax, as even though it was full, they felt like we were the only people there.
The next day Jess and Dale were met by their Arabian Adventures representative and took a tour of Four Seasons Resort Dubai At Jumeirah Beach, before they checked-in to The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai where they were immediately escorted to the Club Lounge. Again, the service was faultless and nothing seemed too much trouble. They were greeted by name and were able to take advantage of all the benefits of the Club Lounge including the drinks service, including alcohol, from 12 noon to 10pm and the freshly-made snacks that included nachos. When they were shown to what was described to them as a 'small room', little did they know what was to come as the door opened. They were only given a Two Bedroom Presidential Suite. Jess said that it really did take her breath away and even Dale, who has stayed at many luxury properties around the world, was in awe. The front door opened up to a gorgeous living/dining area with a huge flat-screen television and there was a welcome bottle of red wine and a lovely card from the Ritz-Carlton team waiting for them. Other features of the suite included a master bedroom with a huge double bed and an open bathroom with a free standing bath and television, Hammam, sauna room, walk-in rain shower, double vanity and dressing area.
The next day they enjoyed breakfast in the Club Lounge, before heading to the pool where they were attended to by caring staff who made sure they were given bottles of water in little cool boxes so they stayed cold for as long as possible. In the evenings, their bed was decorated with rose petals and decorative creations fashioned out of towels. They truly felt looked after by everyone at the resort. That night they took a stroll down JBR Walk and viewed the gorgeous city, that Jess says is transformed into a really stunning sight with all its lights.
Their next stay was at Madinat Jumeirah, with the first night spent at Mina A’Salam in one of the newly refurbished sea view rooms, which looked over the sea and the gorgeous waterways which connect all three of Madinat Jumeirah's hotels. A bottle of chilled white wine was waiting for them, but they decided to save it for later and instead they ventured outside to the beach to catch the last of the sun. Jess said that she hadn't imagined that it would be quite so stunning, but it was pristine and the water was turquoise, and, of course she had to get her photo with the iconic Burj Al Arab in the background. That night, they went to the Club Lounge, also backdropped by stunning views of the Burj all lit up at night, and were served canapés and Champagne − which was topped up by the attentive staff, before trying Bahri Bar in Mina A’Salam where they sampled some delicious cocktails. For food and drink the resort is incredible in terms of choice and another of their highlights was visiting Madinat's famous ‘Souk’ on the second night where they dined on some of the most tasty burgers ever at 'MeatCo', ending the evening at ‘Amphitheatre’ chilling out on beanbags, sipping drinks and listening to live music.
The next day they took an abra (water taxi) through Madinat Jumeirah resort to Dar Al Masyaf where they checked-in to an Arabian Deluxe Arabian Summerhouse, which came compete with the most wonderful Butler, Raquel, who couldn’t do enough to ensure their stay was memorable. Jess says that the Summerhouse was stunning; with a large balcony looking out over the waterways, a massive bed with huge flat-screen television and a generously-sized bathroom with bath, double vanity and separate walk-in shower. Jess and Dale took advantage of the ‘happy hour’ where complimentary drinks are served between 6pm to 8pm, before sitting down to dinner at ‘Pierchic’ which is a stunning restaurant on a pier with views back across Madinat Jumeirah, where they savoured exquisite seafood including Lobster Bisque, Salmon and Yellowtail, all cooked to perfection. Sitting there savouring the food and the views, was the perfect way to say goodbye to Dubai.