What was once a small fishing village is now one of the biggest, most prominent cities in the world. Dubai has built a strong tourist industry by piquing people’s curiosity and luring visitors to this must-see location that also happens to be home to the world’s largest tower, underwater hotels, man-made islands, and spinning buildings. With deep cultural roots, the city also offers a rich heritage of poetry, storytelling, song, and dance.
Thanks to its spectacular skylines, audacious architecture, flourishing art scene, and obsession with style and fashion, Dubai has quickly become one of the most luxurious vacation destinations on the planet – especially for those more mature travelers hoping to treat themselves. In order to make the most of one’s trip, there are some secrets everyone should know:
When to go
For most of the year, Dubai is hot and steamy, which means the best time to visit is November through March, when the climate is more moderate. During these months, it is still possible to soak up the sun, but without passing out from the heat. Spring and autumn are also ideal for those hoping to relax by the sea. Regardless of the time of year, there are plenty of ways to stay cool – from staying in an underwater hotel, skiing indoors, or at a resort’s poolside deck.
Where to stay
The Al Haha Desert Resort and Spa is an award-winning luxury hotel that emphasizes its efforts to go green. Situated on a chunk of protected desert landscape, this hotel is modeled after traditional Bedouin tents, with lavish interiors complete with their own private swimming pools. With fine dining and a spa, there is very little reason to ever even leave this complex!
The Burj Al-Arab Hotel is probably one of the most luxurious and famous hotels in the world – and it definitely helped to put Dubai on the tourist destination map. Graceful lines and smart décor has attracted thousands of guests to the world’s first 7-star luxury suites-only resort, featuring deep pile carpets and acre-upon-acre of gold plate, is also one of the few hotels that offers a personal butler for each guest room.
Because there is so much emphasis placed on luxury, there are a wide variety of accommodations from online resources such as Expedia.ca to choose from ranging from the lavish to the opulent! All in all, these fabulous hotel make Dubai a luxury lover’s dream.
Things to do in Dubai
The Dubai Mall, or Mall of the Emirates, is one of the world’s most visited and largest shopping and entertainment complexes, with more than 1,200 retail stores, an underwater zoo, and an ice skating rink. While the shopping might be a bit underwhelming to the true luxury traveller, the experience of this mall is intriguing. For a completely unique take on shopping whilst on vacation, do not miss the indoor ski park, which is equipped with five slopes of varying difficulty, sled and toboggan runs, a climbing tower, and – yes – snow!
One cannot visit Dubai without a stop at Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building. A sight to behold, the observation deck allows for magnificent views of the entire city, though people with a fear of heights may want to stay on the ground floor! However, Burj Khalifa also features one of the city’s infamous Gold ATMs – an ATM that delivers gold rather than cash! One must see it to believe it!
Everyone that visits Dubai stops in at the Gold Souk, where it is easier than ever to haggle for gold and gold jewelry. Also for sale are diamonds, silver, and platinum. But, for something a little more off the beaten path and a lot of fun, try the Gold & Diamond Park, where jewelers are actually on call to recreate pieces from images or create customized designs.
For a true exercise of the excess, do not miss one of the many champagne brunches, which are held on Fridays. Brunch in Dubai is unlike most other cities – it is not a sedate culinary experience but more of a free-flowing, boozy buffet chock full of food, champagne, and a good time. So go ahead, indulge – but only on Fridays and only in hotel restaurants, as alcohol is not served elsewhere.
Every aspect of Dubai exudes luxury, so if your money is burning a whole in your pocket and you’re looking for a holiday that you will never forget, Dubai might just be the perfect destination for you.
Have you already been to Dubai? Let us know about your experiences in the comment box below!