I have to be honest. It’s taken me a long time to sit down to write this post. Some articles are easier than others, and there is something so special about Four Seasons Dubai that maybe I wanted the experience to marinade before I let it all out. Perhaps I wanted to keep it to myself and bask in complete selfishness. Maybe I was nervous that I couldn’t do it justice on paper (read: screen). But alas, here we are, and I will do my best to transform the over-the-top experience so that you, the reader, can feel transported to the UAE if only for a moment.
I landed at Dubai International and had no idea what to think. I had just flown from Krabi, Thailand, to Hong Kong to Dubai via Cathay Pacific for a five day stint in the Middle East, and all I knew was that it was HOT. Whoa. And I thought Thailand was warm…
I pulled up the elite post code of Jumeirah Beach to a well-heeled, energetic crowd in the lobby of Four Seasons. There was no glistening chandelier or gaudy water feature in the middle of the foyer. Instead, I was met by a geometric dome, glass and an abundance of light. The Shai Salon with its prime sea view was calling my name, but its vibrant yellow seating and calming tea would have to wait. My generously-sized suite and its tub was calling my name “Lesssllleeyyyyyyyy” ever so softly. International travel doesn’t look or smell good on anyone!
…with this mosaic-tiled wall as the backdrop for a dramatic free-standing oval tub? PURE INDULGENCE. The design features a white marble floor, silver-leaf ceiling, and a custom Murano glass pendant. A special highlight is the TV hidden in the vanity mirror. I die.
It’s a no-brainer that all Four Seasons hotels and resorts strive to be a notch about the rest. If you’ve visited Dubai, you know that anything that the city touches is extraordinary. Now, put a Four Seasons property inside Dubai and BOOM. A paradisiacal community exists for any guest who books a reservation. A self-guided tour while on property should be worked into any guest’s itinerary just to witness the amount of detail that goes into such a place.
The dramatic walkway leading out from the dome to the natural beach at the edge of the Arabian Gulf is one of my favorites scenes on property. Passing by two pools on either side with luxury cabanas and wafts of what’s sure to be amazing poolside cuisine, I couldn’t help but to act like a complete paparazzi for a hot second (and when I say hot, I mean really, really, really hot).
When you look up ‘paradise’ in the dictionary, Merriam-Webster says “See also: Four Seasons Jumeirah Beach.” Okay, not really, but it should.
Don’t even get me started on this floating dock. What is life?
If you’re a spa snob, you should probably just snob it up here in either the indoor pool or in one of the 10 luxe treatments rooms. To say they are devine is an understatement. If you still have some money to spend, don’t miss the hotel’s five shops down my favorite corridor that ever lived.
I don’t think I’ve ever had a proper breakfast of champions until I landed here at Suq (meaning “market” in Arabic). If you can dream it, Chef Jagath can make it…I truly mean that.
The buffet breakfast is truly a luxurious extravaganza with baked eggs in bread bowls, made-to-order waffles, Indian fare and the most unique homemade granola I’ve ever witnessed. My compliments to the Chef for making the most delicious green smoothie I’ve ever had. You, sir, have major talent.
Definitely worth mentioning is my dinner at Sea Fu, Four Seasons’ beachfront venue that whips up scrumptious Asian-influenced delicacies by the beach. (If you’re staying over the weekend, don’t miss the Saturday brunch here, which translates to the popular Sunday brunch in the States. Dubai’s weekends are Friday and Saturday instead of Saturday and Sunday!) I don’t know what was more enjoyable: the live DJ, my dim sum platter, or my night cap upstairs at Hendrix Bar. As the gin and tonic trolley came wheeling my way, I leaned back in my oversized club chair and took in the smell of cigars. The bar’s modern take on the classic British gentleman’s club was an establishment for the serious drinkers of the world, and I figured I could act the part for one night alongside other frequenters of the bar. Note* To have an alcohol license in Dubai, the bar must be connected to a hotel.
We’ve gone through the accommodations, the cuisine, the amenities, the sophisticated luxury that’s all in the details, but what about if you want to go off property? HELLO. Ever heard of the Burj? I thought so. What about the monstrosity that is Dubai Mall? Mmmhmm. I couldn’t believe my luck when the property offered to put me in the hotel car for an entire day to show me the city life. While many hotels and resorts want to keep you on property as long as possible in order for guests to, I don’t know…say spend more money, Four Seasons Jumeirah Beach encourages city exploration via hotel Bentley pimped out with the best amenity of all: wifi.
Now, for that double dose of greatness may I introduce to you: Four Seasons DIFC (Dubai International Financial Center). Calling all business travelers: This one’s for you. Well, this one’s for everybody really, and here’s why.
The boutique-style sanctuary that is FS DIFC is a must-see. What it lacks in beachfront property and a resort-like atmosphere, it makes for in urban vibes, prime location, intimate feel and a rooftop walled pool. With just 106 rooms, FS DIFC exudes privacy. I opted for the Studio Suite with its unmistakable view of the towering Burj Khalifa outside my floor-to-ceiling windows. Special shout out to internationally renowned designer Adam D. Tihany for creating a contemporary oasis that I called home for a few days.
With the heat index higher than the amount of destinations on my travel itinerary, I felt as though my face needed some major TLC. I headed to the 7th floor and let my senses indulge in all the spa things. After my face felt like it was renewed, rejuvenated and reborn, I may or may not have reversed everything by immediately making my way outside to the pool. But, come on, can you blame me?
That’s what I thought. LOOK AT THIS THING. I’VE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING SO BEAUTIFUL IN MY LIFE. I feel like I’m shouting, but I kind of want to. I want to tell everyone how amazing this body of water really is. Who needs Jumeirah Beach when this exists above your hotel?!
I love anything tied to a theme, but add food to it and I’m bound to fall in love. Paying tribute to the classic American eatery, Michael Mina’s diner is outfitted with a decorative counter, plush booths, and my personal fave – a jukebox. You better believe I waltzed over and turned on ‘Midnight Train to Georgia’ so that the entire restaurant could sing in unison while devouring signature burgers, duck fat fries and milkshakes. …and yet I still wonder what I did to gain weight on my five week trip to the Middle East and Asia. #smh
Care for a Cocktail
Rooftop Luna Sky Bar is everything with its view of the Dubai skyline. I honestly could not tell you what I ordered to drink because it didn’t matter. I could’ve been served sugar water for all I knew. I was totally engrossed in my surroundings, but then again, can you blame me?
It was time to wrap things up for the night, but not before having one more beverage in Churchill Club. I was no cigar connoisseur, but it didn’t take a smoker to know this place was special. The secluded enclave off of Luna Sky Bar was just what the doctor ordered – one more whiskey drink before advil the following morning.
I want to give a special thank you to the friendly faces that made me feel especially at home during my time on property including Clem, Claire, Simon, Lorenzo, Lawrence, and Chef Jagath at FS Jumeirah Beach and to Joe, Carlos, and Clifford at DIFC. Also many thanks to those working behind the scenes. I hope to see you again at Four Seasons Dubai!