Susan Hegarty 06 May 2008
We flew direct with Etihad Airways to Abu Dhabi, the flight and service was extremely good and I would certainly recommend them. They have also recently increased their luggage allowance to 30kgs per person which is a big bonus especially when you see how many amazing shopping malls there are in Dubai!

Etihad provides a bus service at no extra cost to its customers into the centre of Dubai. We checked into our hotel, The Palace Old Town for the first few nights of our stay. This hotel is located within walking distance of the new Dubai Mall and overlooks Burj Kailefa, the tallest building in the world. It is a gorgeous hotel built in traditional Arabian style with great facilities including a good choice of restaurants, a spa and lovely pool.

Most visitors planning a trip to Dubai think that they must stay on the beach but this is not the case, you generally pay a big supplement to be at the beach and most hotels in the city offer much better prices and offer free shuttles to the beach for their customers. Taxis are also extremely cheap and the new metro is very good value and easy to use.

While in Dubai we visited quite a few hotels. Some of my favourites included The One & Only Royal Mirage, The Westin Mina Seyahi and The Madinat Jumeriah Complex. They are all gorgeous and perfect for a romantic break or honeymoon. The Jumeriah Beach was very bright and airy and an ideal family destination with great pool, beautiful beach and lots of kid’s facilities and activities as well as being next door to one of the best water parks I’ve ever visited.

Another favourite of mine was The Grand Hyatt Dubai, while not at the beach; the facilities were excellent with a huge outdoor pool, lovely spa and indoor pool, large selection of bars and restaurants and a great atmosphere.

For the last few nights of our stay we checked into The Kempinski Mall of the Emirates. As a self -confessed shopaholic I was in heaven! The lobby of the hotel had direct access to the mall and the view from my room of the Burj at night all lit up was spectacular.

We were lucky enough to go on a desert safari which was a lot of fun with a dinner in the desert afterwards, the setting sun surrounded by miles of sand dunes was very special and I would definitely recommend this trip.

We also got to experience dinner and a light and sound show in a desert resort, amazing! If you are looking for something a bit different, a few days away from the hustle and bustle of Dubai in one of these desert hotels, would be amazing, in some, each room comes complete with its own swimming pool.

This was my second time in Dubai and it won’t be the last. It really ticks all of the boxes, the most beautiful white sand beaches with turquoise waters, the most luxurious hotels, incredible shopping and duty free and great family facilities including 2 of the best water parks in the world.

To find the best hotel to suit your personal needs, please contact me.