Temperatures start to rise in the Arabian Gulf in spring, which is why you’ll want to base yourself close to the beach or a nice cool pool. Fortunately the region – and its new hotels – has plenty of spectacular choices, along with an ever-expanding food scene and plenty of options for Arabian retail therapy.

Abu Dhabi

Base yourself on Saadiyat Island for the loveliest waters in the UAE, home to dolphins that come right up to the beach. There are a few resorts that share the long sweep of white sand here, but stay at the Park Hyatt for palm-shaded pools and glimpses of gazelles wandering the greens at the adjacent Saadiyat Golf Club. Awarded one of Abu Dhabi’s four Michelin stars, Talea by Antonio Guida at the Mandarin Oriental Emirates Palace is a gorgeous spot for excellent Italian food and wine. For local flavours, head to friendly Al Mrzab where huge piles of Emirati machboos, a local take on biryani, are served in cosy curtained cabins. Go to the Jean Nouvel-designed Louvre Abu Dhabi for the architecture and art and stay for the museum boutique where you’ll find excellent selections of books on regional art, as well as gift items by local designers.

How To Get There

Fly with Etihad
The buzzing capital of the UAE, Abu Dhabi is one of the most exciting cities in the world. Not just because of the year-round sunshine, spectacular hotels, stunning beaches, chic dining scene and full-throttle entertainment on offer. But because whatever you’re looking for from your trip, you’ll find it in Abu Dhabi. Fly with Etihad and start your adventure in the UAE capital.

Where To Stay

Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi
Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi is an exclusive sanctuary of contemporary luxury located on an environmentally protected, natural sand beach on Saadiyat Island. The resort is adjacent to Saadiyat Beach Golf Club and minutes away from the city’s prime business district and the Abu Dhabi Corniche.


Opened in January, One&Only One Za’abeel is the brand’s first urban resort and is home to The Link, the world’s longest cantilever, filled with stellar restaurants and topped by a spectacular infinity pool with some of the city’s best views. On the fourth floor of the hotel, the theatrical StreetXO by Dabiz Muñoz, currently the world’s top chef according to the Best Chef Awards, showcases the rock star style, irreverence and exceptional cuisine that have earned him three Michelin stars and countless global accolades. Located in Dubai’s faux-old neighbourhood of Al Seef, the new Afaneen Collective is a group of independent shops that feature products connected to Emirati culture. From modern takes on traditional leather sandals at Tamashee to Emirati pickles at Malleh Gourmet and spice route-inspired chocolate at Mirzam, you won’t find better authentic souvenirs.

Where To Dine

Barfly by Buddha-Bar
Indulgence has a new address at Barfly by Buddha-Bar, the Dubai’s latest rooftop hotspot at Hilton Dubai Palm Jumeirah. Mystic interiors coupled with an expertly created menu, which boasts an international cuisine with Asian fusion, just add a dose of enigmatic atmosphere which evokes mystery and dynamism as you unveil the personality that Barfly brings.

Bull & Bear
Bull & Bear, a cornerstone of culinary distinction located at the Waldorf Astoria Dubai DFIC, echoes the timeless allure of the American Steakhouse. Rooted in the elegance of the original 1931 New York venue, the restaurant seamlessly marries tradition with contemporary flair. Set against the backdrop of DIFC, indulge in exceptional cuisine while enjoying stunning views. Tradition meets innovation at Bull & Bear, defining a dining experience that resonates with sophistication.


Opening this spring in Muscat’s Shatti Al Qurum neighbourhood, the new Mandarin Oriental Muscat is a great base for getting to know the Omani capital’s cultural sites, and coming back for a sundowner and dinner on the beach. Sicilian chef Claudio Diele heads the kitchen at beachside Zuka at the Jumeirah Muscat Bay resort, where the laidback menu includes grilled local tuna, Middle Eastern mezze, and some of the city’s best pizzas. Muscat-born perfume brand Amouage’s exquisite fragrances are loved by connoisseurs around the world. Head straight to the source at The House of Amouage Visitor Centre to learn about the brand’s heritage and craftsmanship, see the bottling process, and pick up your favourite scents in the boutique.

Where To Stay

Alila Hinu Bay
With its secluded location on the cerulean blue shores of Oman’s southwest coast, Alila Hinu Bay serves as a tranquil retreat. Take in the wonders of its pristine private beach and discover the Dhofar region’s incredible wildlife, culture and architectural ruins.

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