Grandeur and Luxury: Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi
My partner in crime
Welcomed by fresh fruits and orange juice in the suite
(and I did some nail art myself with my vegan nail polishes)
This beach side restaurant with its breathtaking views is perfect for sunset and after hours
Opulence and grandeur is synonymous with Middle East and considering Emirates Palace is the property of UAE's richest Emirate Abu Dhabi no expense was spared at making this 21st century Palace hotel. No wonder it is the most expensive hotel ever built (a whopping $3.8 billion - no kidding!) and the place is indeed pure luxury where you are treated like a royalty. The hotel was built to create the most lavish seven star experience conceivable and they for sure succeeded at it.
We decided to stay at the hotel for the weekend and it was indeed an amazing experience. The service and attention to details is remarkable and the staff is super courteous. The moment you arrive you are presented with a 3-rose bouquet and some refreshments. The staff takes you to your room and the endless domes, huge chandeliers and lots and lots of marble and carvings leave you with awe and wonder. The grandeur of this place is authentic and it shows with the attention to detail paid to every part of the hotel - from decor to service.
We stayed at the three room Palace Pearl Suite, which was a nice mix of contemporary and royal style, features a dining and lounge area, a bedroom with barge balcony overlooking the sea, a dressing room and a huge bathroom. The suite had me at the bathroom which was a delight with its Jacuzzi, shower cabin and the incredible style with amazing chandeliers.
With a 24-hours butler service, a range of dining options, luxe tasteful interiors, 2 huge swimming pools, private beaches, awesome cafes, huge lawns and a host of amazing entertainment options the hotel provides an experience of sheer luxury and absolute coddling that would make you want to stay here forever!
Ideal for: Special occasions, indulgence, family break and unwinding
What: The Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi
Where: At the far end of the Corniche with a beautiful and grand facade surrounded by landscaped gardens, two swimming pools (East and West), its own beautiful white sand beach with breathtaking views of the sunsets and harbour.
Interiors: You can expect nothing but the best in terms of style, decor, luxury, grandeur and royalty when it comes to the Middle East and being the most expensive hotel ever built and a seven star property, Emirates Palace will floor anyone with just that. Think domes, gilded ceilings extravaganza, larger than life chandeliers, miles of marble, gorgeous dusky pink granite and rose colored marble facade.
The Rooms: They offer deluxe rooms and a range of suites, some of which are exclusively available only for royalties. We stayed at the opulent Palace Pearl Suite which was spacious at 1575 sq ft with a massive bedroom, a lounge and dining room, a dressing room and huge bathroom with Jacuzzi and shower. The suites are located in the dome area, where you are first taken inside through a door leading you to four clusters of suites leading to another area with large round table with a beautiful floral arrangement on top that finally takes you inside your suite through another door. Yes it took us also time to understand this arrangement, it's so easy to get lost - almost felt like a maze.
The tasteful decor is a nice mix of royal and contemporary with metallic and pearl effect furniture, beautiful chandeliers everywhere, including the bathroom, and the gorgeous pearl-effect entry door with beautiful carving all over it. The place is definitely less ostentatious than the Burl Al Arab suite that we stayed a few years ago.
The Bed: Comfortable and huge.They offer a selection of pillows and satin sheets that make for a pleasurable night's sleep.
Washroom: I think a room is only as good as its bathrooms, and the beautiful Italian marble clad massive bathroom with a Jacuzzi, a shower room and toilet was super impressive.
The Breakfast: A huge breakfast spread. The staff was not aware of what a vegan diet means, but when I explained they quickly suggested options and also offered custom-made vegan meals. They had soy milk so I settled for cereals in soy milk and some fresh fruits.
Dress Code: There are some strict dress codes to be followed at the hotel, and the restaurants require formal dressing, which means no shorts, flip-flops, mini skirts or sloppy outfits. When you read the dress code provided, it may shock and scare you (it sure did to me as all I planned on a lot of summer dresses and shorts) but with a few changes in my wardrobe planning it wasn't too bad. Plus the pool and beach side was relaxed.