“As expected, the Emirates experienced the most tremendous fireworks ever when it celebrated its 50th birthday at the end of 2021. The hotels have also been an exceptional story in their own right for years. This is also shown by two new highlights I visited: the St. Regis Dubai, The Palm and the Address Hotel Dubai Marina.” Kai Böcking
From the desert sands to prosperity – I am always impressed by how the United Arab Emirates (UAE) grew from hostile Bedouin tribes to become one of the richest countries in the world in such a short time. With the inauguration of the legendary Burj al Arab Hotel, which can be seen from afar as a white sail, the meteoric rise of the Emirates to a tourist hotspot with a unique luxury hotel boom began at the same time in 1999.
The hotel market leader of the seven emirates is still Dubai. New superlative hotels open their doors almost daily. And on the horizon you can already see the construction sites of the next mega tourist temples. What does a hotel in Dubai have to have these days? Location, location, location and a special concept.
The Address Hotel Group, which belongs to Emaar as the largest developer in the Emirates, had therefore always placed its first houses near the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa. Now, the latest Address hotel is located directly on the beach in Dubai Marina – and its location on Jumeirah Beach is even more spectacular, as it is the last high-rise building on the snow-white beach (photo below).
Pool breakfast on the 77th floor
From the 217 rooms and suites, there is a tremendous view of the Arabian Gulf and the new, largest Ferris wheel in the world. The lobby of the Address Beach Resort is a statement: a hall with white marble flooring, widely distributed seating groups that seem almost sterile with a view of the smooth sea. The reception is almost lost in this huge hall, thank God not the check-in service. And the room card made of bamboo is a small hint that environmental sustainability is also playing an increasingly important role in the UAE.
When I enter the room, I first have to hastily reach for my sunglasses. The floor-to-ceiling windows let so much sunlight into the room that I first have to get used to the magical view over the Arabian Gulf including the Ferris wheel. In terms of colour, gold tones, dark wood and marble dominate the scene. Those who dare and are not afraid of the heat can enjoy the view a little more directly on the balcony. For me, in any case, the perfect workplace.
Five restaurants operate at the iconic hotel, from Lebanese-Brazilian fusion cuisine to the stately breakfast bistro, the Beach Grill and the Asian fusion outlet on the 77th floor. The world up here is also the most Instagram-able spot in the Address Beach Resort. Because on the 77th floor is also the perhaps most spectacular, but in any case the highest infinity pool in the world. Unlike the two pools on the ground floor and the beach, only hotel guests have access to it. Not even the owners of the wickedly expensive residences, who live in a wing of the hotel, are allowed to splash around and celebrate themselves here – bätsch.
And if you want to send an even bigger exclamation point to the social media world with your selfie stick extended, you can order a floating breakfast for yourself and your loved ones – an experience that is truly unparalleled in terms of decadence, but is also simply spectacular in the world’s highest infinity pool.
More calm Ruhe in self-absorbed Dubai
A change of hotel to another new highlight in keeping with the 50th anniversary of the UAE: the newly opened St. Regis on the Palm Jumeirah is a little more sophisticated, but timelessly elegant. Influencers are sparsely represented here, but international leisure travellers come instead. This is already due to the location directly at the beginning of the Palm trunk, with direct access to the Nakheel Mall with 300 shops and its own Palm Monorail Station.
Upon arrival at the St. Regis Dubai, The Palm, the doorman in the finest grey cut opens the door and you glide into the truly fine St. Regis world. The luxury brand of the Marriott Group is a true place of tranquillity in hectic, self-indulgent Dubai. It doesn’t get noisy here, but exquisite.
There is a perfectly functioning 24-hour butler service for the 290 rooms and suites. I have rarely slept better in a hotel bed – and I know what I am talking about. And floor-to-ceiling windows in the rooms give a view over the palm tree, the sea and the Burj al Arab in the background.
Traditions should be cultivated, and this happens every afternoon at the St. Regis. At 5.30 p.m. on the dot, the hotel’s sommelier opens a magnum bottle of champagne with a sword in the stylish bar and serves it to the hotel guests free of charge. The Cordelia is a light-flooded, spacious sea food restaurant, including an oyster bar and bar area. Those who prefer to keep to themselves as ladies can celebrate afternoon tea at “Her by Caroline Astor” – very British with tea, cakes and sandwiches.
And no 5-star hotel in Dubai is complete without a pool. The St. Regis offers three options: the family pool, an adult-only pool and the pool in the hotel’s own beach club on South Beach, including a bar and a fantastic sunset.
Conclusion: It will remain exciting in Dubai for the next 50 years! Congratulations!
Kai Böcking …
has just completed a four-hour documentary on 50 years of the UAE for the TV channel Vox. He thought he already knew a lot from his hundreds of trips to the Emirates, but now he is taking a fresh look at a lot of things with the thousands of stories about the people there from all over the world.
Fotos: © Marriott / St. Regis Dubai; The Address Hotel Dubai Marina