Christmas is a time of indulgence from the rich festive food and drink to splashing out on gorgeous gifts for loved ones, there’s no better time of year to treat yourself and loved ones to a little luxury. With festively adorned malls and markets the Emirate embraces the celebratory spirit with grace and style, where better for a Christmas escape than Dubai? And where more luxurious than the graceful Burj al Arab
Where to dine
The subaquatic depths of Al Mahara restaurant offer an extraordinary dining experience. Surrounded by a vast aquarium, shoals of colourful fish dart in and out of coral as you enjoy some of the best seafood in the Middle East. For three days this Christmas, Al Mahara is presenting an exquisite seven-course Festive Dinner that celebrates the bounty of the Arabian Gulf and beyond.
Where to drink
Bedecked in shimmering gilded tones, Gold on 27
glitters like a Christmas tree, high above the twinkling lights of the city below. Home to some of Dubai’s most innovative mixology, drinkers can expect some imaginatively mixed and beautifully presented cocktails, and mocktails, each telling a unique story. On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Gold on 27 will be serving special Christmas cocktails to toast the season, while an indulgent Christmas Afternoon Tea is also served on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
A little Christmas shopping
When it comes to shopping Dubai has the best malls in the world. What’s more, it’s even better at Christmas. Boxing Day marks the start of the month-long Dubai Shopping Festival, which takes place across the city’s key retail stores and malls. Take advantage of the incredible offers and pick up wonderful gifts from the likes of Tiffany & Co. and Cartier at Dubai Mall; one-of-a-kind artworks at Wafi Mall, and heirloom timepieces from Mall of the Emirates.
What Dubai may lack in snow, at least outside of Ski Dubai, it makes up for in festive cheer. An annual pantomime takes place at the beautiful Theatre by QE2, on the historic Queen Elizabeth 2 ship, this year’s performance of Peter Pan will take the family on a trip to Neverland for a memorable dose of slapstick humour. While over at Madinat Jumeirah’s Fort Island experience an authentic German Christmas market, bringing a little bit of wintery Bavaria to a sun-drenched corner of Dubai. Little ones keen to see Santa can take an abra ride with him around the island, alternatively just keep them busy at the gingerbread house making station while grown-ups indulge in delicious seasonal German treats at the market.
Where to stay
For an unforgettable Christmas experience stay at the world’s most luxurious hotel. Wake up on Christmas morning with your family at Burj al Arab, gazing over the shimmering waters of the Arabian Gulf. Relax and unwind on the hotel’s private beach or treat yourself to a radiant treatment at the Talise Spa. Tire the kids out with a couple of hours of adrenaline at Wild Wadi Waterpark. Before tucking into that delicious festive dinner we mentioned.