As Dubai residents, there’s a perception that a staycation involves a visit to a far-flung Emirate. But we’re here to make the case for a cool city break that’s a stone’s throw from home.
We recently checked in to the Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Waterfront. No long drive needed. We checked in to our blissful city retreat a mere matter of minutes after leaving the office, which meant we were able to switch off for the weekend in record time.
Walking into the modern and stylish lobby of the newly opened five-star hotel, we are instantly welcomed by friendly, professional staff, and dazzled by the modern architecture. The hotel has 432 stylish rooms and suites, many with private balconies that offer spectacular views of either the Burj Khalifa or Dubai Canal. Our room boasts a spectacular city view, overlooking the growing Business Bay area.
There are amenities to suit every member of the family. From a kids’ club to keep the little ones busy, to the Dreamworks Spa and Gotha Club Dubai for adults. After check-in, our first stop is at the fully equipped gym for a pre-brunch workout. We don’t have time to make our way over to the outdoor pool for a vitamin D fix in the Dubai winter sun. But we make a mental note to head down the following day.
Dine In Style
When it comes to dining options, the Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Waterfront, caters to every taste. The jewel in the hotel’s crown, however, has to be the Backyard Brunch at FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar.
After having settled in to our room and worked up an appetite with a quick gym session, we make our way down to the barbecue-style brunch, which is hosted on a beautiful outdoor terrace. It’s certainly a brunch where you can indulge, with a vast selection of smoked meats and Midwestern seafood on offer, as well as plenty of cold salads and roasted vegetable dishes to enjoy.
We start with a selection of hot starters delivered to our table – the chicken wings and Caesar salad are both highlights. We enjoy sitting back and relaxing, over a refreshing drink, as the country band sings and strums on their guitars – George Clooney and O Brother, Where Art Thou? fans will certainly appreciate the band's lively version of Man of Constant Sorrow.
One of the must-try dishes at the Backyard Brunch has to be the slow-cooked beef brisket. Tender and juicy, and served with lashings of sweet barbecue sauce, it’s a true taste of the American deep south, right here in Dubai.
Make sure you leave space for a visit to the dessert room, or for one of FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar’s very indulgent milkshakes. They are like a dessert in a glass, and worth every sip!
Time To Chill
When the brunch winds down, we do, too. We stay out on the terrace as the sun sets, enjoying the music from the DJ and a few chilled drinks.
Later, we make our way down to Makar. With grand, dark furniture, impressive paintings and tartan upholstery, you’d be forgiven for thinking you’d found yourself in a cosy Highland pub! This sophisticated Scottish bar reminds us of chilly winter nights, sat in front of a warm fire after feasting on a hearty meal washed down with a very warming drink.
As well as an extensive menu of tipples synonymous with Scotland, there are delicious dishes on offer. We particularly enjoy the sharing platter of mini Angus sliders, sausage rolls, Scotch eggs, bridie pie and proper Scottish chips! Phenomenal, hearty food and a true taste of Scotland. We’ll be back to tuck into it again soon.
Time To Say Goodbye
After a great night’s sleep in our cosy room, we wake up feeling fresh and ready to take on the day.
We start with breakfast at the Larder, a New Nordic eatery that offers a varied menu of lighter dishes. We particularly enjoy the breakfast buffet, which offers a healthy selection of locally selected, organic produce. We admire the cool Scandi design over a refreshing smoothie – a perfect way to start the day.
INFO: From Dhs560 per night, Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Waterfront, Business Bay, Dubai, 04 249 7800, radissonblu.com/en/hotel-dubaiwaterfront