Make the most of autumn’s cooler climes with good magazine’s pick of the city’s best day-in-the-sun deals. Choose from celeb-studded beach clubs, Ibiza-inspired settings and boutique, adults-only retreats.
NIKKI BEACH DUBAI
IN A NUTSHELL: A top spot for tan seekers
HOW MUCH? From Dhs300 with Dhs250 back on food and drinks
THE LOWDOWN: With its in-water loungers, Jacuzzis, inflatables and private beach, this city newcomer is an ideal spot for those looking to catch some rays without overheating. If you’re feeling hungry, you can order a signature ‘sushi and ceviche boat’, which arrives, as you’d expect, on a wooden boat. Be warned though: it’s a fabulously flash high-heels and bold swimwear affair, with dancers, live musicians and a commercial house music policy, so this is definitely one for a celebration rather than a buckets and spades day.
BEST FOR: A celebratory day off from real life.
Nikki Beach, Pearl Jumeirah, Dubai, daily 11am to 9pm. Tel: (04) 3766214, nikkibeach.com
IN A NUTSHELL: A beach club with impeccable Burj views.
HOW MUCH? Dhs395 with Dhs150 food credit back, Dhs195 with Dhs100 food credit back
THE LOWDOWN: The only way you’ll beat this beach club’s view of the Burj Al Arab is if you get on a boat – it’s quite literally under the shadow of the sail (and we mean that figuratively, you’ll still get a tan). With a beautiful white sand beach, an infinity pool and music that’s just loud enough to add atmosphere, go in the morning if you want to read a book, or head there in the afternoon if you’re after a livelier vibe.
BEST FOR: Families and couples looking for a stylish soak
Jumeirah Al Naseem, Dubai, daily 9am to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 3667680, jumeirah.com
LA VILLE HOTEL & SUITES
IN A NUTSHELL: A rooftop infinity pool with fabulous views.
HOW MUCH? Dhs100 weekdays, Dhs150 weekends, half price under-12s.
THE LOWDOWN: You’ll feel like a VIP the moment you step inside this gorgeous boutique hotel, but prepare to be really wowed when you head up to the rooftop infinity pool, which overlooks the Burj Khalifa – it seriously feels like you could swim right off the edge. It’s a small pool, with just a smattering of sun loungers, which makes it the ideal spot for a peaceful paddle, though one best enjoyed when you’ve left the littles with a babysitter. Be sure to stick around for sundowners at the poolside bar, Look Up.
BEST FOR: A boutique treat on a babysitter day.
La Ville Hotel & Suites City Walk, City Walk, Dubai, daily 7am to 6pm. Tel: (04) 4033111, livelaville.com
BURJ AL ARAB
IN A NUTSHELL: A luxury pool for your Dubai bucket list.
HOW MUCH: Dhs1,800 for an air-conditioned cabana for two people, or Dhs3,700 for four people, including soft drinks.
THE LOWDOWN: When it comes to experiencing life poolside in the most luxurious fashion, the Burj Al Arab terrace is one of the best in the world. A huge infinity pool surrounded by plump day beds juts out over the ocean, while over the bridge you’ll find another pool with a fully-stocked swim-up bar. In fact, the views here are so special, nobody will blame you if you forget the impressive sail structure towering above your head.
BEST FOR: A treat day for when you want to feel like a (childless) celeb.
Burj Al Arab, Beach Road, Dubai, daily 8am to 6pm. Tel: (04) 3017600, jumeirah.com
ADDRESS DUBAI MARINA
IN A NUTSHELL: A party pool overlooking Dubai Marina.
HOW MUCH? Dhs200 on weekdays, Dhs300 on weekends.
THE LOWDOWN: Whether you’re organising a birthday party, looking to impress out of town guests or simply wanting to forget you have children for a couple of adult-only hours, Address Dubai Marina’s fourth-floor infinity pool is a pretty special place to take a load off. Offering day passes, pitchers of margaritas, and a Mediterranean grill menu from Shades restaurant, it’s a stylishly lively spot for a soak surrounded by the soaring towers of the marina. Keep an eye on the Address’ website for ad hoc dip-and-dine deals too.
BEST FOR: Impressing visiting friends – the views are quite special.
Address Dubai Marina, Dubai, daily 7am to 8pm. Tel: (04) 4367777, theaddress.com
IN A NUTSHELL: An elegant spot for a sophisticated spa day.
HOW MUCH?: Free when you buy a spa treatment or stay at the hotel.
THE LOWDOWN: You can only use this hotel’s pool if you book in for a treatment at the spa, but if it’s a tranquil child-free day you’re after, look no further. Set under a canopy of palm trees and amid the blue and white architecture of this beautiful Deira hotel, the loungers here are like comfy sofas and the atmosphere is peaceful. If your idea of a dream pool day out is more naps and coconut water than Insta-snaps and cocktails, this is for you.
BEST FOR: A luxury spa day, alone or in pairs.
Park Hyatt, Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club, Dubai, daily 6am to 10pm. Tel: (04) 6021234, dubai.park.hyatt.com
ANANTARA THE PALM
IN A NUTSHELL: Family-friendly luxury, Thai style.
HOW MUCH? Dhs200, Dhs50 under-15s.
THE LOWDOWN: This super-sized, 50-metre-long infinity pool is a brilliant find for families. Leading out onto the resort’s private white sand beach, it rarely gets packed out, so it’s great for catching some sun while still being able to keep an eye on splashing little ones. There’s a covered Jacuzzi, bubble beds and a poolside play area complete with a bouncy castle and foosball, plus a swim-up bar with juices and ice creams, plus daily happy hour deals for the grown-ups. What more could you want?
BEST FOR: A luxurious day out with something for the whole family
Anantara The Palm, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, daily 9am to 8pm. Tel: (04) 5678888, anantara.com
RIXOS PREMIUM DUBAI
IN A NUTSHELL: A stylish pool right on JBR’s The Walk.
HOW MUCH? Dhs100 weekdays, Dhs200 weekends, half price under-12s, under-fives free.
THE LOWDOWN: Want the perfect #swanfloat shot? Azure Beach at the new Rixos is it. Climb aboard an Instagrammable inflatable in the well-sized infinity pool, or soak up the views from the comfort of your sunbed, with Dubai’s new ferris-wheel providing a spectacular backdrop. When the heat gets too much, you can retreat into the poolside lounge to cool off with a yummy cocktail or mocktail and a good food menu.
BEST FOR: All ages, though the favourable pricing for kids means it’s best for those not averse to splashing little ones.
Rixos Premium Dubai, JBR, Dubai. Tel: (055) 7779472, premiumdubai.rixos.com
For more fun in the sun, plan a weekend beach break to Six Senses Zighy Bay in Oman.