Want to escape for a long weekend or just treat yourself to a summer staycation? Here’s a selection of some of our favorite staycation destinations around the UAE
1. Action Packed UAE Staycation – Waldorf Astoria, Ras Al Khaimah
If you live in Abu Dhabi or Dubai you might want to venture a little further away for a UAE summer staycation. If so, consider Ras al Khaimah’s Waldorf Astoria with its huge stretch of private beach, 10 restaurants and lounges, two swimming pools, golf course, tennis courts and hair salon.
There’s also a kid’s club for youngsters aged between 4 and 12 that holds cooking classes, craft sessions, archery and other sporting sessions. If you’re worried a staycation might be boring, fear not.
There’s a ton of activities on offer for adults too including yoga, shell collecting, kite making, falconry and badminton! If you’re feeling less energetic, there’s a 12-room spa with a huge menu of treatments on offer, so you truly can just relax.
Address: Vienna Street, Al Jazīrah al Ḩamra, Ras al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED800* per night in June
2. Dubai Old Town Staycation – Zabeel House MINI Al Seef by Jumeirah, Dubai
This is unlike almost any other Jumeirah hotel in so much that it’s more of a design boutique hotel than sparkly skyscraper. It’s located right on the waters of Dubai Creek in Al Seef and has 150 “pocket rooms” with twin or king beds.
Every one has been expertly designed to look chic yet funky. They come with a Nespresso coffee machine, smart technology operated by an in-room iPad (!), a smart television, organic bathroom products and free WiFi. It’s one of the cheaper hotels in Dubai but because of the Jumeirah brand, you’re not in any way slumming it.
It also has a rooftop pool, steam room and sauna, and gym. If you want a staycation that allows you to step out to a world of activity on your doorstep, this is it.
Address: Al Seef Street Building B, 12331, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED274* per night in June
3. Ultimate Beach Staycation in UAE – Saadiyat Rotana Resort & Villas Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi
This new hotel (it opened in March this year) occupies a prime 9km of sandy beach on Abu Dhabi’s Saadiyat Island. At the time of writing there were still a few facilities waiting to open, but you can already enjoy a good selection of restaurants and cafes, including the Si Ristorante Italiano & Bar, the only Italian on the island, and the all-day Sim Sim restaurant.
If the private 9km stretch of beach isn’t enough for you, consider forgoing one of the 327 rooms and suites and treating yourself to one of the the 13 beach villas with private pool! There’s also a gym, Zen spa, mini golf course and kid’s club. Like at many of the larger hotels, you’ll likely find a significantly reduced rate during the summer months so it’s a good time to get a deal.
Address: Saadiyat Island, 48578, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED909* per night in June
4. A Real Summer Retreat – Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island Al Yamm Villa Resort, Abu Dhabi
If you’re sticking around in the UAE all summer, you really deserve to treat yourself! Book one of these 30 beach villas, which each come with private terraces and views of the mangroves or sea.
The more expensive villas also have small private pools and direct beach access. While some of the villas are very large, you’ll generally find couples enjoying the space rather than families. You can horseride in the ocean (selfie, anyone?!) have dinner under the stars, get a massage on the beach, kayak in the mangroves and snorkel in the shallows. Think Maldives but without the hassle of a flight! You even get a complimentary boat ride to the island.
Address: Al Yamm, Sir Bani Yas Island, 12452, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED1,263* per night in June
5. A Boutique Oasis Retreat for UAE Staycation – Telal Resort, Al Ain
There are just 23 rooms in this boutique hotel in Al Ain, making it one of the UAE’s smaller luxury facilities. As well as seven guest rooms, there are also one, two and three-bed villas which come with private swimming pools and all the mod-cons such as free WiFi, iPad-controlled technology and large televisions.
Despite its 5 star status, you’ll likely find yourself paying significantly less per night than you would in some of the country’s other desert resorts. It also has a spa, outdoor swimming pool, opportunities to ride horses and camels, and other outdoor activities. The Green Mubazzarah hot springs are only around 30 minutes’ drive.
Address: Remah – Al Ain, 200800, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED616* per night in June
6. Road Trip Staycation in UAE – The Oberoi Beach Resort, Al Zorah, Ajman
Get out of the big cities and head north to Ajman’s five-star Oberoi Beach Resort in Al Zorah. It can easily compete with some of the UAE’s other luxury hotels and sits within a stunning 247 acres of nature reserve.
It’s one of the more family-friendly establishments, with a children’s play area, sand boxes and children and toddler swimming pools. There’s also a spa with therapy and treatment rooms, gym, heated infinity pool, and plenty of activities around Al Zorah including golf, paragliding, deep sea fishing, kayaking and kite surfing. Also, it’s worth asking the hotel about any dining offers they have on over the warmer summer months.
Address: Al Zorah Al Ittihad Road, 18065, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED1,104* per night in June
7. Budget Hotel on The Palm – Aloft Hotel The Palm Jumeirah, Dubai
It’s not necessarily a ‘budget hotel’ in the traditional sense of the word, but as far as hotels on The Palm Jumeirah go, it’s a great budget option. As a relatively new outfit on the man-made outcrop (it opened in April this year), it offers a welcome alternative to the other five-star offerings which break most modest budgets whatever the time of year.
On the Eastern crescent, the hotel has seven restaurants and bars including a pool bar, as well as a large infinity pool, great views from most of the rooms, a business centre, gym and access to the beach. It’s currently offering summer deals – another great reason to book!
Address: East Crescent, The Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, 11111, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED467* in June
8. Staycation bolthole in UAE with a mountain view – JA Hatta Fort Hotel, Hatta, Dubai
The JA Hatta Fort Hotel is an oldie but a goodie and there’s something magical about escaping the cities and heading out into the mountains when you have the opportunity. It’s located around an hour’s drive from Dubai at the foot of the Al Hajar Mountains and as well as stunning surroundings (which are also perfect if you like to hike), it has all the usual amenities including swimming pools, gym, spa and restaurants, as well as six-hole golf course, ping pong, badminton and tennis courts, and archery courses. The green surroundings – even in summer – would be a very welcome break from the summer heat in the city.
Address: Hatta Mountains, Hatta Oman Highway, Hatta, 9277, United Arab Emirates
Cost: From around AED716* per night in June
9. Best Couples Staycations in UAE
The Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is considered one of the most romantic hotels in the world. Consider a visit for your own staycation in UAE as a couple.
Treat yourself to a staycation and you can take advantage of Burj Al Arab’s UAE residents offer. This includes benefits including 20% off on the best available suite rates. Relax in a duplex suite with panoramic views of the Arabian Gulf. Guests enjoy complimentary access to Buj Al Arab’s prestigious private beach.
10. Best Familiy Staycations in UAE
Why not take time-out with all the family and book a stay at the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Resort and Spa. The family beach resort has a 1.5 km private white sand beach. There’s an on-site kids and teens club so the children will be entertained while you enjoy the spa treatment rooms, whirlpool, sauna and watersports center.
11. Best Luxury Staycations in UAE
For an elegant staycation in the finest of luxury surroundings, book your room at the Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach. The beachfront property has enviable views of the Dubai skyline on one side and a view of the Arabian Gulf on the other. Expect pristine, stylish interiors, spacious rooms, the highest possible standards of hospitality and exceptional cuisine. Check in to one of the most opulent hotels you will find in the Middle East for your staycation in UAE.
*Content published April 2019. Prices correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change and/or availability.
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