Palm-tree lined grounds, cerulean waters, velvet-soft sand, Georgie Bradley discovers Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort – a world away from the city’s bustling scene…
It’s just as well we’ve got images to show you here, because it’s hard to describe perfection. Especially when you think everything has been covered, more magical surprises turn up. Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort, is your ultimate ‘out of this world’ escape. When you come to Dubai, you don’t automatically relax.
There’s something about the pace of the daily grind that has you exhausted, even when you’re a spectator, so a bit of pause is essential when you venture to a global city like Dubai. Coming from Al Maktoum International Airport, I was in fact spared of the city’s cacophony and dizzying traffic and was instead treated to vast ripples of sand and the odd isolated building. With a journey time of no more than 45 minutes, I arrived at the hotel which finds itself well into the Palm, towards the end of the eastern crescent. You instantly feel perfectly secluded, despite being on a growing branch of the famous Palm, where hotels are sprouted left, right and centre.
The elegant lobby sets the tone for the hotel’s public areas, with its ornate finishings and
distinctly Thai touches. Check-in is met with a welcome drink – lemon grass infused, naturally – luggage is whisked off somewhere, all formalities are taken care of without fuss and I was set for my three days of slow enjoyment.
Set amidst lush tropical landscaping and carefully designed to maximise privacy, 293 luxurious rooms and villas are characterised by Asian inspired luxury, tasteful furnishings and spectacular views of the lagoons or the Palm. The impressive choice of private villas includes Beach Pool Villas each with a personal infinity pool. Over Water Villas are poised over the Arabian Gulf with glass viewing panels, and are completely unique to the Middle East. Families and friends travelling together will find that the Two Bedroom Anantara Beach Pool Villa provides the epitome of luxury, privacy, space and style. My room was perfectly ample in space, had everything I needed and was a joy to spend time in. And of all the hotel beds I have been lucky enough to get my beauty sleep in, the bed at Anantara, was possibly the most butter-soft bed I have ever slept in – so much so, I called about five people to talk about how heaven-like the mattress was.
Lazy days can be spent enjoying the exotic pleasures of the resort’s private 400 metre beach, as well as the three winding lagoons and shoreline infinity pool which look out across the Palm. Infusing exotic elements from the beautiful country of Thailand, where Anantara is rooted, floating market style boats will glide across the lagoons (a massively fun and unique touch), serving perfectly concocted cocktails and other refreshing beverages and Thailand’s famous three-wheeler tuk-tuks will transport you around the tropical resort. But the novelty of walking will have you doing more exercise than you probably anticipated!
Wellness takes pride of place at Anantara, as the hotel grounds make you feel at ease, are unobtrusive and have a calming effect – it must be the innate Thai influence. Stress slips as easily from your shoulders as a silky pashmina. Throughout my stay I barely left the property (because I really didn’t have a reason to/didn’t want to) and I felt like I had sufficiently recharged my batteries by the end of my short (but felt twice as long) stay.
Culinary experiences offer tantalising diversity for discerning palates. Crescendo, the all-day dining restaurant, serves a variety of international cuisine. You’ll definitely have a breakfast of champions there – pastries, noodles, sushi, gluten free bread, omelettes anyway you want, everything. It’s also a very big space so you never feel like you are squashed in.
Bushman’s Australian Restaurant & Bar, showcases the art of succulent flame grilled delights. I had a dinner there one night and was served exquisitely cooked Wagyu tenderloin steak, artfully presented starters dishes (an Heirloom Tomato Salad and Zucchini Carpaccio) and innovative sides (mashed potato with black truffle).
Dubai’s skyscrapers provide a twinkling backdrop to outdoor seated diners. And of course, there’s the Asian themed specialty restaurant, Mekong, which takes diners on a mouth-watering journey to complete your Thai experience. The Beach House expresses the rich simplicity of Mediterranean flavours in a breezy shoreline setting. Lotus Lounge, in the lobby, serves afternoon tea by day and cocktails at sunset. Mai Bar refreshes guests with an enticing beverage and snack menu in shady poolside bliss and at the swim-up bar.
For the ultimate in tailored romance, Anantara’s signature Dining by Design concept includes a choice of fine dining menus and intimate settings, a private chef and flawless service. What I loved best was how, when sauntering around the leafy grounds, I literally felt like I was in and amongst temples. The architecture is such that you are transported to a zen-like space where you have uninterrupted views of the grounds and there’s no element of where you are – bliss.
Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort, Crescent Road, The Palm Jumeirah, Dubai,
United Arab Emirates +971 4 567 8888