Occasionally a stopover destination for Kiwis and Aussies en route to Europe, Dubai is more than worthy of its own trip entirely. There’s so much to do in this desert city, from heading up the tallest building in the world to venturing out on a camel safari and shopping at the Dubai Mall. This city is always trying to outdo itself, giving the term, extra a whole new meaning. Here, lounging by the pool, people watching, and sipping cocktails is a must-do activity, especially since summer temperatures hover around 40 degrees. Regardless of your plans, you’re in store for an epic holiday and will need to find an equally amazing hotel to spend a few nights.
Here’s where to find the best hotels in Dubai.
Five Palm Jumeirah
Jumeirah is one of the best places to stay in Dubai and it’s loaded with hotels to suit all styles and budgets. For one, it’s centrally located and close to the beach. Our top pick for Jumeirah hotels is the FIVE Palm. The beachfront resort seamlessly fuses California cool with Dubai’s penchant for over-the-top luxury. Equal parts hotel, nightclub, lounge and culinary destination, FIVE Palm is the place to stay in Dubai. FIVE also boasts a slew of drool-worthy restaurants, pools and a gorgeous in-house spa. Our advice? Head to the rooftop pool, order a daiquiri and take in the expansive Dubai skyline.
XVA Art Hotel
Heritage, history and art merge at the evolving designer haven that is XVA Art Hotel. Located in Al Fahidi historical neighbourhood, the oldest community in Dubai, the boutique property has only 14 guest rooms, each uniquely designed with art as the focus. Each room beautifully showcases architectural and cultural motifs of the region, so if you’ve ever wanted to stay in an art gallery, this is your chance. XVA is also home to a delicious (and traditional) award-winning restaurant. Here, you’ll lose yourself in the maze-like alleyways of Al Fahidi, which is considered one of the most important heritage sites in Dubai.
One & Only The Palm
A stylish addition to the Dubai scene, One & Only The Palm with its neo-Andalusian interior, glossy floors and cappuccino marble is positively gorgeous. One of a handful of boutique hotels in Dubai, it’s a more tranquil option in this city of soaring skyscrapers and jaw-dropping architecture. Hide away in the low-rise property, which is thankfully within close proximity to the beach. If you’re here in the summer months, you can thank us later. Most of the rooms have sea views and if you want to really go all out, opt for the private pool room. Plant yourself in a daybed or a cabana by the pool and order cocktails on the pier. You’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the expansive skyline.
Whether you’re wanting to disconnect, recharge or stay connected, Vida is a lively, exciting place to spend a few days in Dubai. With a bunch of convenient amenities, you’ll instantly feel at home. A global lifestyle brand, Vida Hotels and Resorts have set out to create a modern, unique environment that can be as connected as their guest’s desire. Here you’ll find paradise-like pools, fitness centres and an extensive array of dining options. The surroundings are lush and you’ll encounter an eclectic mix of travellers ensuring a consistently lively atmosphere.
The Address Downtown
The Address Downtown is an award-winning, iconic flagship hotel and a veritable landmark of luxury situated in the centre of Downtown Dubai. If you’re wanting to be right near the action (and to spend some quality time shopping) this is the place to be—the Address is located right beside the Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Mall. Post shopping spree, put up your feet in their luxury spa and prepare to bliss out.
The Bulgari Resort & Residences
Bringing Italian elegance to the Middle East, The Bulgari Resort & Residences ooze elegance. This private island retreat, just off the coast of Dubai, offers a boutique, low-rise Mediterranean design that’s every bit as chic as you’d expect from this designer brand—it even has its own yacht club. Enjoy melt-in-your-mouth pasta at Il Ristorante-Niko Romito, then luxe out at the 1,700 square metre BVLGARI SPA. A true oasis, it boasts vitality pools, aroma steam rooms, a barber and of course truly epic beauty treatments. Our tip: try the majestic hammam journey that lasts goes for five indulgent hours.
Rove Downtown Dubai
A feast for design-hungry eyes, Rove Downtown’s lobby certainly encourages lingering. The rooms in this outstanding four-star hotel are equally impressive. Guests of all ages congregate around contemporary art displays, co-working spaces and hidden PlayStation hub furnished with beanbags. A boutique cinema, gym and rooftop pool add to the many attractions. The only problem here, you probably won’t ever want to leave.
After you've checked in, it's time to tick off all the best things to do in Dubai.
Image Credit: The Bulgari Resort & Residences, Five Palm Jumeirah, The Address Downtown, One & Only The Palm