Yoga with a view of an aquarium
Welcome to Atlantis, The Palm, the place every thing is larger, bolder, sunnier – and outrageously over-the-top and enjoyable. The enduring pink confection sprawls throughout the highest of the man-made tree carved into the Persian Gulf, and is dwelling to greater than 1,500 rooms and suites, 35 locations to eat and drink, one of many world’s largest water parks (with round 550 lifeguards – depend ’em!), a multi-storey aquarium, a pumping seashore membership and dozens of swimming swimming pools.
There’s even a helipad in case you’re a royal or a Kardashian checking in to the £28,000-a-night Bridge Suite that straddles the central arch.
We stayed in a barely much less extravagant – however no much less fashionable – Imperial Membership room within the East Tower. The huge digs, with refined ocean theme, had a cracking view over The Palm and the spectacular Dubai skyline.
The mattress was HUGE and the whole floor ground of my Kent terrace may match into the toilet.
The Imperial Membership package deal contains an array of perks: a chic lounge and terrace the place you possibly can take pleasure in complimentary breakfast, afternoon tea, and cocktails and canapes at joyful hour; entry to the youngsters’ and teenagers’ golf equipment; each day entry to Aquaventure water park and Misplaced Chambers Aquarium; a concierge service and cloakroom in case you arrive earlier than your room is prepared; spa and fitness center entry… you possibly can try any time you want, however you’ll by no means wish to go away.
Amid all of the bigness and brashness, what struck me most was the eye to element. Each ground tile, wall mount, stretch of wallpaper, tapestry, mural, door knob, window panel, carved pillar, gentle becoming and electrical swap embraces the Misplaced Metropolis of Atlantis theme.
Intricate coral, darting fish, dancing seahorses, foaming waves, swaying sea grasses, delicate shells and conches… it’s all brilliantly imaginative.
The resort has a chic design all through
And if the Lamborghinis and Ferraris within the parking zone don’t impress you, a column of three,000 items of hand-blown glass erupting from a fountain surrounded by eight twisting carved columns in the course of the foyer actually will.
With so many selections at mealtimes, it was a wrestle selecting breakfast, lunch and dinner spots. I’m not often keen on a buffet, however the breakfast spreads at Kaleidoscope and Saffron had been distinctive. Whether or not you simply need bacon and eggs or a visit world wide by way of dim sum, curry and noodles, they cater for each style.
The children had been notably delighted by the large chocolate fountains with all method of cookies, truffles, sweets and fruit to drench. Let ’em have it, they’re on vacation!
There are a number of celeb chef eating places – Nobu, Ossiano (nice for “underwater”cocktails), Ronda Locatelli, Hakkasan, Gordon Ramsay – however my favorite dinner expertise was on the Seafire Steakhouse and Bar.
This carnivore heaven serves steaks from a particular breed of Australian Black Onyx cattle in addition to closely marbled Kagoshima wagyu from Japan. Choose your reduce and add sides of mac ’n’ cheese, parmesan and truffle fries, wild mushrooms and broccolini.
The large water park
There are good touches – the menu lights up as you open it, and also you not solely have a sommelier recommending wines, there’s a person who comes spherical with a tray of knives from world wide so you possibly can select one to slice your steak with (I went for a hefty USA blade impressed by an indigenous looking knife… it made quick work of my Black Onyx ribeye).
There’s additionally a choice of particular salts, mustard and sauces. The savoury quick rib donuts and the s’mores Oreo chocolate lava cake bookended my meal slightly properly.
One other deal with was the superb Lebanese meals at Ayamna. This lovely restaurant is accessed by way of a sweeping tiled staircase, and you’ll sit inside in air-conditioned splendour or exterior on the palmed terrace, whereas waiters convey you dish after dish of Center Jap meze deliciousness.
Highlights for lunch included the spicy tuna tartare and the meat Wellington with truffle mash at Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Road Kitchen. And in case your children have recovered from all that chocolate for breakfast, take them for bowling and burgers at Wavehouse.
The Imperial Membership Room
One of many highlights of our keep was the WHITE seashore membership – my girlfriends and I spent a improbable day lounging in luxurious in a cabana on the pristine seashore, barely a ripple on the nice and cozy water, cocktails and sushi flowing, tunes pumping, lovely individuals posing within the pool and taking Insta selfies with the resort as a backdrop.
An indulgent signature remedy within the luxurious ShuiQi spa was the proper technique to spherical off the day… earlier than cocktails, in fact.
In the event you choose a bit extra motion, head to a cabana within the water park. Aquaventure is an insanely enjoyable time out, as you hurtle down all method of waterslides, looping at midnight, swooping by way of blind tunnels, rubber-ringing up and down slopes, capturing by way of pipes in shark-infested swimming pools, getting unceremoniously dunked on the finish of every one.
“Get pleasure from” the Odyssey of Terror, Shockwave, Medusa’s Lair, Immortal Falls, Poseidon’s Revenge and the aptly named Leap of Religion. These of a gentler persuasion can float down the lazy river, and there’s the Splashers play space for little ones.
On the different finish of the resort is a watersports centre the place you possibly can attempt every thing from paddleboarding to jet-skiing.
The resort has an aqua park to maintain visitors entertained
One other hit with visitors of all ages must be the Misplaced Chambers Aquarium – round 65,000 sharks, rays and vibrant fish that may be seen from a number of locations within the resort… together with the Ossiano restaurant, the Underwater Suite (lie in mattress and watch the marine life swim by), and if you do the aforementioned yoga in a particular chamber of a morning.
In the event you’d prefer to get even nearer, you possibly can don a wetsuit and a really fetching respiratory helmet and go for an AquaTrek Xtreme journey which takes you down 36ft to the underside of the large Ambassador Lagoon tank for a stroll among the many fishes. And the sharks…
It’s also possible to get PADI-certified on a scuba dive right here. A behind-the-scenes Fish Tales Tour of the fish hospital – sure, that’s proper – is fascinating.
See how the animals are cared for if they fall ill, watch how they prep and distribute the meals, and study breeding programmes for uncommon beasties.
As resorts go, Atlantis, The Palm is as extravagant and indulgent as they arrive. However, by Plato’s beard, it’s mindblowingly enjoyable.
E book the vacation: The Atlantis, The Palm resort in Dubai presents 4 evening stays in February for a household of 4 on room-only in a Palm Queen Room from £2,137; B&B from £2,807. Discover out extra at atlantis.com/dubai
Get there: Emirates flies to Dubai from Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester, Birmingham, Newcastle and Glasgow from £549 return. Discover out extra at emirates.com
Extra data: visitdubai.com