THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCESM
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES

The 21 very best hotels in Dubai for 2024

Where to stay in the beachy, tourism capital of the UAE, from authentic Arabian retreats to ultra-modern international brands

Isabella Sullivan

22 May 2024

the best hotels in dubai

Dubai is a truly unique destination. The emirate, outwardly known for its flashiness and forward-thinking, has become one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, with luxury hotels and resorts rising rapidly from the desert sands. While the hotel scene has long been known for its flashy marques – with world-renowned brands like One&Only, Mandarin Oriental and Four Seasons, more recent years have seen a more soulful side to the city’s hotel scene emerge, with lifestyle hotels and quirky, design-led offerings. From city centre high rises to boho beach hangouts, here are the best hotels in Dubai for each traveller for 2024 and beyond.

The best hotels in Dubai for 2024

New: Arabian Boutique Hotel

Best for: Authentic Emirati design and charm
Location: Dubai Creek – a glimpse into old Dubai with souqs and abra
boats
Price tag: $$

Dubai has no shortage of luxury hotels – of palatial beach resorts and soaring skyscrapers. While these hotels charm, delight, and deliver, in their bucket loads, one category of hotel has long been missing in the emirate – the affordable, yet impeccably designed boutique hotel. Enter Arabian Boutique Hotel, a 20-room property on the shores of Dubai Creek from the family behind Dubai’s much-loved Arabian Tea House cafes. Emulating the feeling of Morocco and Europe and showcasing Emirati heritage and culture at the same time, Arabian Boutique Hotel transports guests back to Old Dubai, albeit an entirely more glamourous one. The property sits in the historic residences of Thani bin Abdullah Al Rumaithi and Al Durwais in restored coral-stone buildings and offers rooms and suites with whitewashed walls, pops of dark wood, plus high beamed ceilings with draped chandeliers and a charming mix of old and new: antique furnishings, avant-garde bathtubs, and furniture, plus all the modern amenities. Despite being a three-star hotel, there’s still room service throughout the day, and all rooms have mini-bars, hot and powerful showers (and bathtubs), biodegradable in-room amenities and robes and slippers. The hotel also has a lovely restaurant, Arabian Fish House – overlooking the promenade and Creek.
Al Fahidi, Dubai; arabianboutiquehotel.com@arabianboutique.hotel

bab al shams -courtyards-wide_001

Bab Al Shams, A Rare Finds Desert Resort

Best for: A glamorous desert escape
Location: Al Marmoom Desert Conservation Reserve
Price tag: $$$

For a fun, family-friendly taste of the desert, a short drive from the city, you can’t do better than Bab Al Shams, A Rare Finds Desert Resort. Following a huge renovation, the iconic and much-loved property has re-opened with a bang, offering an eclectic mix of velvet, gold and marble amongst the desert dunes. Spread across 16 two-storey buildings, the 115-room resort is the longest-running desert escape in the UAE (launched in 2004) and a popular weekend staycation spot. Arabic for ‘Gateway to the Sun’, much of Bab Al Shams’ favourite features remain the same, including the stunning swimming pool, the iconic Al Hadheerah restaurant, feature archways and the exterior facade. Many of the rooms boast private courtyards dotted with swaying desert palm trees – visitors can also opt for a suite with views straight out to the sand dunes. You’ll still find camels and belly dancers – a highlight to many when it comes to a desert escape – but alongside that, there is a more subtle approach to ‘Arabia’, an elevated F&B offering and a bit more style.
Low season doubles from AED720 per night, high season from AED1,530; Desert Resort, Al Qudra Road – opposite Endurance City – Dubai; babalshams.com

A view of the shared outdoor space of the Mandarin Oriental Jumeira featuring a long outdoor pool lined with palm trees, sunbeds, and beautiful green shrubbery.

Mandarin Oriental Jumeira

Best for: Dubai glamour married with Asian hospitality, plus the Mandarin Oriental Spa.
Location: Low-rise, beachy Jumeirah, near upmarket residential areas and shopping malls
Price tag: $$$$

Few hotels have such an impressive hotel lobby as the Mandarin Oriental Jumeira. Gold spirals hang from the soaring ceiling, the tiles glow and the aroma of oud lingers in the air. The hotel sits in the north of Dubai’s Jumeirah district, adjacent to Downtown Dubai, and commands a beautiful stretch of beach. Often ranked as the priciest hotel in the city, after Burj Al Arab, Mandarin Oriental brings the brand’s signature Asian hospital to the UAE with its streamlined and modern rooms, five-star Mandarin Oriental Spa with relaxation rooms and innovative beauty and wellness treatments. Guests can lol on the private beach or by the outdoor pool, or in the rooftop pool of Tasca restaurant – operated by Portuguese star chef Jose Avillas – with dreamy views of nothing but the open ocean. Other eateries include top steakhouse Netsu and beachfront The Bay, where poolside classics are served with a side of sea views. The hotel also hosts the yearly Ibiza-born Sublimation pop-up, cementing itself as not overtly luxurious but cool and experimental.
Doubles from AED1,800; book now

A view of the shared pool space in the 25hours Hotel One Central in Abu Dhabi

25hours Hotel Dubai One Central

Best for quirky, Euro-cool vibe and excellent food and beverage
Location: The up-and-coming One Central Development, overlooking the Museum of the Future
Price tag: $$

German-born 25hours Hotels is one of the most under-the-radar brands right now, quietly opening some of the coolest hotels in Europe – in destinations like Berlin, Florence and Copenhagen – with its vinyl players and playful slogans like ‘Come as you are’. Going against the grain, the brand opened its first hotel in the Middle East, and outside of Europe, in 2021, in the up-and-coming One Central district, overlooking the Museum of the Future and acting not only as a beacon of the area’s new era, but as a sign of a new, progressive Dubai. The cheeky Euro-cool 25hours Hotel Dubai One Central shines through in the 434-room hotel – pushing boundaries with the first mixed-gender sauna in the Middle East and ‘let’s spend the night together’ emblazoned on pillows. The hotel itself is madcap, creative and a feast for the eyes – a ‘fountain of tales’ in the lobby, an ‘analogue circus’ of nostalgic tech, pottery and podcast studio on the second floor and beautiful rooftop pool with views of the museum. Rooftop bar Monkey Bar is a huge hit with the city’s cool crew, while other outlets include German Ernst Biergarten and modern Indian Tandoor Tina.
Doubles from AED 680; book now

A front view of the One&Only Royal Mirage featuring arabesque arches, latticed details, gold touches, and opulent fountains and gardens.

One&Only Royal Mirage

Best for Arabian glamour and beachfront
Location: Mina Seyahi near Dubai Marina, overlooking the Palm Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$$

One&Only Royal Mirage is easy to spot amongst the high rises that line the coast overlooking Palm Jumeirah. For starters, its low-rise complexes and villas are almost completely hidden by lush towering palm trees and gardens hiding tennis courts. Secondly, its private beach (home to the stylish Drift Beach Club) is double the size of its competitors. The hotel opened in 1999 and is still among the most revered and loved today. The Dubai grande dame embraces Arabian in its décor, with arabesque arches, latticed details, gold touches, opulent fountains, and gardens – spread from the Palace to the Arabian Court. There are 221 rooms, including standard doubles, suites and private villas, all of which channel the Arabian luxury feeling. A towering tired spa is a favourite with locals for day experiences and features a relaxing Hamman and plenty of treatment rooms. Dining hotspots are also fabulous, from outdoor Arabian The Courtyard to Jetty Lounge – perhaps the city’s most romantic sundowner spot. Insider tip? Book a ‘room’ at The Residence & Spa – a hotel within a hotel and exclusively part of Leading Hotels of the World. Guests stay in accommodation that feels like a private home and have their own private dining room, terrace, library and bar and adults-only pool: simply perfection.
Doubles from AED1,350; book now

Atlantis The Royal claimed Best Hotel in the Middle East

Atlantis The Royal

Best for: the shiniest rooms and interiors, most manicured grounds and everything on a serious scale
Location: Palm Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$
$

Atlantis The Royal has lorded over the Palm Jumeirah skyline for years building anticipation and curiosity – and finally, in February 2023, it opened its doors for the first time. The who’s who of global celebrities were flown to witness the cantilevered design with fire and water fountains and watch a private concert with Beyoncé in its leafy, terraced grounds. The hotel itself is a true architectural feat and the interiors are shiny and modern – glossy whites, gold and blues – and entry-level rooms are extremely generous with beautiful sea views soaking tubs and walk-in dressing rooms. This is not a hotel or a resort, but a destination in itself. There are 17 restaurants and eight by celebrity chefs – including the first Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in the Middle East (now Michelin starred) and the world’s first Nobu Beach Club – retail shops from Valentino to Level Shoes and four wellness and beauty destinations. Guests have full access to sister property Atlantis The Palm and complimentary access to the world’s largest waterpark Aquaventure – linking chapter one with chapter two.
Doubles from AED2,125 (minimum two-night stay); book now

An overhead view of the modern Nikki Beach Resort and Spa Dubai featuring the resort's private beach and a private pool villa

Nikki Beach Resort and Spa Dubai

Best for: modern European vibes and endless, unobstructed sea views
Location: The Pearl Jumeira, a man-made island northeast of Downtown Dubai
Price tag: $$$

Whether it’s the smell of coconuts surrounding the gleaming modern resort, the unobstructed views of nothing but the ocean from its private beach, or the palm-lined driveway, Nikki Beach Dubai Resort and Spa Dubai has a way of transporting guests. The Dubai outpost of the famed hedonistic, Miami-born born brand is more elevated and refined than its competitors in cities like Marbella and Ibiza. Yes, the neighbouring beach club has submerged sun loungers, cabanas, bottle service and raucous pool parties, but the resort is peaceful and low-key. The 117 modern rooms are retro-futuristic, clad all in soothing whites, blues and grey, and offer built-in Nikki Beach playlists and bathrooms stocked with Main and Goetz. The real draw here is the private pool villas, available in up to three bedrooms and lining the beachfront. Café Nikki is a must-visit spot during the stay – an all-day waterside restaurant serving the freshest fish and a sophisticated Saturday brunch with unlimited wine, cocktails and food, and the Nikki Beach Spa, which welcomes you into its whitewashed oasis with health martinis and facilities like a bubbling mixed-gender vitality pool.
Doubles from AED1,000; book now

A view of the shared outdoor pool space of the Jumeirah Al Naseem in Abu Dhabi featuring sunbeds and cabanas overlooking the Burj Al Arab

Jumeirah Al Naseem

Best for: modern Arabian luxury, shared facilities from 7 other top Dubai hotels and an excellent location between old and new Dubai
Location: Madinat Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$$

Ask many residents what the best hotel in Dubai is, and they will likely say Jumeirah Al Naseem. This low-key luxury hotel is part of the Madinat Jumeirah complex – seven Jumeirah hotels (including the iconic Burj Al Arab) and a modern souk on the beachfront. Al Naseem is the Burj Al Arab’s sophisticated little sister – Arabian and palatial but modern and high-tech. The outside courtyard is filled with supercars and the cooling fragrance of oud envelops you upon entry. Guests can use the beachfront outdoor pool with its views of the Burj Al Arab and sleek modern rooms – with beachy hues and gulf views. The hotel is home to one of Dubai’s most fancy dining spots too, Turtle Lagoon, where fine dining establishments like Il Borro, Flamingo Room, Beefbar and Mayabay frame a serene lagoon shaded by palm trees.
Doubles from AED1,235; book now

Raffles The Palm Dubai

Best for: Unrivalled opulence and the most spacious rooms on Palm Jumeirah
Location: The outer crescent of Palm Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$

You might blink twice when first pulling up to Raffles The Palm Dubai. It’s best to do so in the daylight for maximum impact. The pastel-pink palace with its turrets and swirling balconies reminiscent of piped frosting stick out against the modern, stripped-back skyline of Palm Jumeirah’s outer crescent. Raffles The Palm Dubai is unique in the emirate: a French or even Rajasthani palace with ultra-modern amenities. Raffles, known for its iconic property in Singapore, took over the operation of the Kempinski Emerald Palace in 2021 and has rebranded it into a hub for beach stays and glamorous occasions. The experience starts upon entering the lobby, with its grand chandelier with Swarovski crystals (there are more than 6,000 in the hotel) and spiral staircases in red and gold leading to the Blüthner Hall – the setting for afternoon tea –  to the rooms (the most spacious on the Palm), which channel the Palace of Versailles with gold headboards, chaise loungers, silk wallpaper and plush drapes. There’s a private beach with views back onto the Palm Jumeirah and a sprawling indoor wellness centre with Cinque Mondes Spa. Dining-wise, head to Matagi for Japanese cuisine, Le Jardin for gloriously indulgent buffets – alfresco on the terrace or in the grand dining room – and Piatti for a beach club, Riviera feel. Make sure to grab a drink at the sultry Sola Bar – the hotel’s cavernous jazz bar serving killer cocktails.
Doubles from AED1,000; book now

the best hotels in dubai: park hyatt pool

Park Hyatt Dubai

Best for: The feeling of escaping to the Mediterranean and six-star facilities
Location: Dubai Creek Resort, moments from historic Dubai and attractions like the Gold Souk
Price tag: $$$$

Park Hyatt Dubai is a go-to resort for escapism in the emirate – located within the leafy Dubai Creek Resort and on the storied banks of Dubai Creek itself. Whitewashed walls, blue-capped domes and bougainvillaea create a Mediterranean-meets-Moorish vibe, which carries through the low-rise, grounds hiding swimming pools, gardens and a Myconian spa with striking blue and white tiles. Interiors, however, are firmly planted in the Middle East, and guests can expect soothing earthy gues and mashrabiya patterned woodwork complemented by the delightful fragrance of frankincense. Book into a garden room for direct access to the grounds and the beautiful nearby pool (home to chic beach club Twiggy) and enjoy award-winning dining destinations like Brasserie du Park – home of the decadent Traiteur Friday brunch – and Cap Cod-inspired NOÉPE, overlooking the marina. A hair salon by Rossano Ferretti, a handful of boutique, fitness centre and neighbouring golf course make this one of the most well-equipped hotels in Dubai, if not the region.
Dubai Creek Resort, Port Said; doubles from AED700; book now

An overhead view of Four Seasons Dubai at Jumierah Beach with a private beach, landscaped gardens, and an incredible view of downtown Dubai in the background of the image.

Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach

Best for: Traditional, beachfront location, Four Seasons Restaurant Village
Location: Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$$

Looking for a traditional luxury beachfront resort with old-school hospitality? Look no further than Four Seasons Dubai at Jumeirah Beach. This is the mother of all resorts: landscaped gardens, a private beach, outstanding facilities spanning indoor and outdoor pools, wellness areas and a dining village which happens to be one of the city’s hottest addresses (Nusr-Et, Mimi Kakushi and Scailini are all here). The Canadian luxury brand has embraced the locale with its arched arabesque corridors and gold accents, but there are all the hallmarks of the traditional Canadian brand Four Seasons customers will appreciate: the iconic Four Seasons bed, the Four Seasons service, to name a few. The breakfast buffet is particularly marvellous, with everything from acai bowl stations to towering bakery displays, setting you up for a day on the beach, swimming lengths in the glass-domed indoor pool, using the expansive gym or zooming into Downtown Dubai – the Burj Khalifa and skyline viewable from the hotel. Make sure to book a spot at Nammos, the famous beach club, straight from Mykonos.
Doubles from AED1,800; book now

A front view of the One&Only The Palm resort with a picturesque pool lined with palm trees and sunbeds.

One&Only The Palm

Best for: A peaceful romantic getaway
Location: Outer Crescent, Palm Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$$

One&Only The Palm is the more subdued, smaller sister to One&Only Royal Mirage’s grand reputation and grounds. Located on the outermost reaches of Palm Jumeirah’s western crescent, it feels worlds away from the city (a 20-minute drive from the mainland or a free water taxi to Royal Mirage across the bay. The 90-key hotel is Andalusian in its façade ad style reminiscent of Alhambra Palace and lures couples with its private spots and secretive feel. It may be smaller than its sister, but it’s not short on any facilities. Palm trees frame the private slick of golden beach and the pool, loungers and private cabanas – which are rentable and come with shower rooms, TVs, air con and private terraces. The Guerlain Spa – all pink and waterfalls – will melt away any stresses, not that there are many at the languid resort, a hotel home to a restaurant by triple-Michelin-star-winning chef Yannick Alléno. Rooms come with balconies or furnished garden patios, are stocked with Acqua di Parma amenities and top suites and villas even have private pools – cementing its status as one of the most romantic resorts in the emirate.
Doubles from AED2,340; book now

A beautiful view of the rooftop pool at Four Seasons DIFC in downtown Dubai.

Four Seasons DIFC

Best for: a luxury city-centre escape
Location: DIFC, Dubai’s thriving financial centre
Price tag: $$$

For city breaks, business stays, and those who like to be close to the action, Dubai’s DIFC is the perfect location. Four Seasons DIFC brings the best qualities from its iconic Jumeirah Beach Resort and packs it into a glitzy high rise in the heart of the district’s swanky Gate Village development. Much like its resort counterpart, it’s in the heart of one of the city’s hottest dining and art trade areas (the hotel is neighbours with LPM, Zuma, Christie’s and Sotheby’s, to name just a few), and is a short walk from the Arts Club and ICD Brookfield. Previously an apartment block, Four Seasons DIFC’s 106 rooms are the work of hospitality designer Adam Tihany and are earthy and modern with warming gold and wood touches. There’s all you need for business or play: elegant in-room desks and a stylish all-day lobby lounge for meetings, and a rooftop, complete with rooftop pool, fitness centre kitted with Cybex equipment and tranquil spa. The Luna Bar and Churchill are favourites with the after-work crowd, and renowned chef Michael Mina leads the renowned Mina Brasserie.
Doubles from AED1,500; book now

An overhead view of the Ritz-Carlton JBR featuring the largest private beach in Dubai. The view also features a look into the outdoor space including expansive gardens and swimming pools.

The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai

Best for: A peaceful and private stay with an extensive beach and acres of lush gardens
Location: Jumeirah Beach Residences
Price tag: $$$

There are few true Dubai grand dames, but The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai in JBR is one of them. The hotel boasts the largest private beach in Dubai, and its low-rise cluster of rooms and suites linked by gardens and swimming pools has earned its position as a favourite with families and couples alike. A winding, palm-lined drive leads to a portico where an expansive lobby looks out onto the sea and beach. There are six pools in total and eight restaurants, plus manicured lawns home to 12 species of bird. Rooms look onto the sea or garden and all come with a terrace or patio, traditionally Ritz-Carlton with their fawn or patterned carpets and dark wood accents. Families will delight in facilities like tennis courts, a kids’ club, two family pools and two pools for children, along with a spa complex and hair salon with plenty of rooms, vitality pools, saunas and experience rooms. Eight restaurants make not leaving the property a real possibility: from Southeast Asian Blue Jade and trendy Tamoka beach bar to Italian Splendido, one of Dubai’s most underrated and romantic restaurants with white-clothed tables under festoon lighting and protected by palm trees.
Doubles from AED1,005; book now

An interior view of ME Dubai featuring  a soaring gleaming white atrium bearing Zaha Hadid's signature organic curved design with multiple levels and pops of bright pink and yellow against the gleaming white.

ME Dubai

Best for: Show-stopping design, hedonistic suites, flashy dining
Location: Business Bay
Price tag: $$$

Design lovers and those with a penchant for all things futuristic will delight in ME Dubai, the second Dubai outpost from the Spanish hospitality group Melia. As the only hotel in the world to be designed both in and outside by the late great Zaha Hadid, the hotel is a visual feast. ME Dubai itself is housed in the Opus by Ominyat building in Business Bay, a thriving business district on the edges of Downtown Dubai, resembling an ice cube melting in the sun. Guests step into a soaring gleaming white atrium bearing Hadid’s signature organic curved design with multiple levels and pops of bright pink and yellow against the gleaming white. Hadid’s signature aesthetic continues in the futurist rooms, sometimes stark and clad in vivid colours: The ME Suite is one of the city’s most impressive and akin to a New York City penthouse with ginormous TV, bar, pool table and multiple living spaces. The spa, too is colourful and quirky with hanging lights in treatment rooms and geometric shapes and sloped ceilings. While the hotel’s f&b journey has been long and long and winding, but it’s getting back on track, and guests can dine at the in-lobby coffee shop and café, tapas bar or renowned Japanese restaurant Roka.
Doubles from AED1,150 per night; book now

A lobby view of the St. Regis Dubai The Palm featuring eye-catching arrangements, lighted ceiling designs, and a golden spiral staircase.

The St. Regis Dubai, The Palm

Best for: traditional all-American hospitality, shopping
Location: Palm Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$

The St. Regis Dubai, The Palm brings old-school American glamour to Palm Jumeirah, emulating the spirit of the original NYC outpost but with a sprinkle of Dubai magic. Opened in 2021, the hotel occupies nine floors of the Palm Tower, a soaring new landmark on the trunk of the Palm Jumeirah, and has direct access to Nakheel Mall. The lobby is gold-dipped and gleaming, and rooms – looking out onto the trunk – are clad in soothing whites and pinks with oceanic accents and shell-inspired motifs. Bathrooms have glass walls (with frostable screens) making them appear even bigger and brighter. There are plenty of St. Regis Hallmarks – the St. Regis bar where the famed sabrage ceremony takes place and the Iridium Spa – plus two pools (one adults-only) and ladies-only tearoom named after Caroline Astor, mother of founder John Jacob Astor. Access to shopping hub Nakheel Mall and a short lift journey from Sushisamba Dubai and Aura Skypool – a sky-high pool club and hangout – make this location seriously enviable. Over a year after opening, the hotel finally made the most of its beachy destination by opening beach club Kyma Beach in partnership with Rikas Group behind venues La Cantine du Faubourg, Mimi Kakushi and supermodel beach club Twiggy by La Cantine).
Palm Tower, Palm Jumeirah; doubles from AED785 a night; book now

An overhead view of Jumeirah Al Qasr featuring a long, grand driveway lined by tiered fountains and bucking horses.

Jumeirah Al Qasr

Best for: Being transported to One Thousand and One Nights
Location: Madinat Jumeirah
Price tag: $$$$

The name says it all: Jumeirah Al Qasr is nothing short of a palace. The hotel is part of Jumeirah’s Madinat complex but feels separate thanks to its own driveway – arguably the city’s grandest – long and lined by bucking golden horses and tiered fountains. The hotel takes inspiration from an Arabian place (or Qasr) and is themed on One Thousand and One Nights, and as a result public spaces are opulent, a five-tonne Swarovski chandelier hangs in the lobby, and rooms are resplendent and arabesque – overtly regal with purples and gold and toe-sinking carpets un-needing of the gold satin slippers (minimalist and modern lovers, stay clear). Get into the spirit of things and ride an abra boat through its winding waterways to dinner in the Madinat or return to the present day with Pier Chic – a bright Italian restaurant jutting out into the ocean with striking Burj Al Arab and Palm Views, and trendy French Riviera. All hotels in the complex share the Talise wellness centre with spa and gym, accessed by the hotel’s roaming fleet of buggies which whizz guess from their villas and rooms to yoga sessions, brunches, shopping sprees and spa treatments.
Madinat Jumeirah; doubles from AED1,275; book now

An exterior side view of the Al Maha Desert Resort featuring private glamping villas settled among glorious burnt-orange dunes.

Al Maha, a Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa

Best for: a surreal experience glamping under the desert stars
Location: Dubai Desert Conservation
Price tag: $$$$

Things change suddenly when driving from Dubai to Al Maha, a Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa. The high rises and residential compounds give way to sandy planes, and eventually when entering Dubai’s protected desert conversation, glorious burnt-orange dunes. As far as desert retreats in the UAE go, Al Maha is regarded as one of the most luxurious and romantic. Set within 225 sq kilometres of protected land, it’s home to picture-perfect private pool villas with tented ceilings and modern facilities like private en-suite bathrooms and air conditioning. Guests spend their ways gazing out onto the hypnotising dunes, even more so at sunset, enjoying desert activities like desert drives, camel rides and archery, and the resort’s sumptuous spa. This is one of the best hotels in Dubai for a honeymoon proposal, milestone celebration or bucket-list trip.
Tents from AED3,090; book now

An exterior view of the Address Beach Resort featuring one of the world's tallest infinity pools, and overlooking downtown Dubai, with spectacular sea views.

Address Beach Resort

Best for: sea views, one of the world’s highest infinity pools
Location: Jumeirah Beach Residences
Price tag: $$$

Emaar Hospitality dominates Downtown Dubai with its high-rise hotels offering Burj Khalifa views, so when the brand opened its first beach resort in 2021 the emirate was intrigued. Being Emaar, a company predominantly known for its building developments, the structure is magnificent – lording over lively Jumeriah Beach Residences and Bluewaters Island and home to one of the world’s tallest infinity pools (77 floors up). There are all the signature Address touches at Address Beach Resort: the same iconic fragrance in the gleaming lobby, the same modern Arabian rooms and hospitality, just with a stunning beachfront location and endless sea views. Tiered garden terraces and sea-level swimming pools will reassure those with vertigo and the hotel has some seriously impressive dining outlets: Sunset Hospitality’s Mott 32, and 77th floor Zeta Seventy Seven.
Doubles from AED1,065; book now

An exterior view of The Palace Downtown, a hotel modeled on a traditional Arabian Palace. The exterior walkway runs between two ponds, lined with palms.

Palace Downtown

Best for: the feel of a remote Arabian palace within walking distance from Dubai Mall and Burj Khalifa
Location: Downtown Dubai
Price tag: $$$

Palace Downtown is almost incongruous in the development of ultra-modern and shiny Downtown Dubai. The hotel, modelled on a traditional Arabian Palace, is an oasis of calm just a stroll across the bridge to Dubai Mall, Burj Khalifa and Souk Al Bahar (home to Time Out Market Dubai) and is the perfect spot for those wanting low-rise tranquillity and gardens, but being right in the heart of the city. Book into a ground-floor terrace suite for views of the Dubai lake and fountains or, for even better views, book a table at famous Thai restaurants Thiptara or Argentinian Asado. The hotel is all about opulence: from the gilded interiors and Arabian-inspired spa to the famed seafood brunch at bright and breezy Ewaan.
Doubles from AED825; book now

An interior view of a beautiful resort space inside Address Sky View with interior trees, floor-to-ceiling windows, and ample seating.

Address Sky View

Best for: modern Arabian hospitality and a city centre oasis
Location: Downtown Dubai
Price tag: $$$

One of Address’ most impressive hotels, Address Sky View is now an iconic part of the Downtown Skyline – its cantilever roof and pool taking inspiration from Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands. The hotel itself is a work of design art – inside are all soaring ceilings and the signature Address fragrance lingers throughout. Rooms and suites are elegant and neutral, with wall-to-wall floor-to-ceiling windows offering city or Burj Khalifa views. A city centre high-rise has an impressive outdoor space with a terrace garden and large swimming pool – a second is 75 floors up on the rooftop, adjacent to CÉ LA VI restaurant – also from Singapore and one of Dubai’s most sought-after reservations. Restaurants like Amalfi-inspired Lucia’s, Beirut-born Amelia and the signature Address The Restaurants make this hotel as much as a hospitality landmark as a place to bed down.
Doubles from AED975; book now

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