This year, I have had so many visitors because it is my last year in Dubai. Trying to organise where to eat can be a challenge sometimes, but here are some of the best places I have found to bring visitors for amazing views, food and value too.
For most of the restaurants we used the Entertainer App. It costs around €60, but we made our money back that week multiple times, as we got buy one get one free on most meals. Even if you’re just visiting, I think it’s worth it. If you buy the bundle pack, you will get spa treatments and drinks included too. The isme by Jumeirah app is free to download and you get great offers and 10% off any hotels, bars and restaurants in the Jumeirah group. Fine dining made affordable!
For a fancy twist on Pub Grub, Pier 7 in Dubai Marina is a nice place to go. The views here are fab and you can see the marina lit up at night. We went to The Scene by Simon Rimmer, but there are 6 other restaurants there to choose from. It is happy hour there until 7:30 so you can get your first few drinks at a good price if you book dinner for 6:30 or 7. I also ring or email in advance and book an outside table with a view. (You can use the entertainer app here for buy 1 get 1 free mains!) Check out the other restaurants in Pier 7 on the link above for different cuisines.
If you can get to the Marriott hotel in the Marina around 5 or 6 PM before dinner, the Observatory bar has great views of the Palm Jumeirah that you can admire while having a drink. They do a happy hour and they are in the Entertainer too!
Next is my favourite – Prime 68. Prime 68 is a steakhouse located downtown in the JW Marriott Marquis in Business Bay area. This is the world’s tallest hotel and has some amazing views of the new Dubai Canal. The steak here is the best steak I have ever had and the sides aren’t bad either! Again, ring ahead and request a window table to enjoy a view of the canal and the city while you dine. It was my mom’s birthday when we went here, so they brought a cake and a card signed by all of the staff, which was a very nice touch. (This is in the Entertainer App too.) In this hotel, there is a highly rated Indian restaurant, Rang Mahal, if you prefer that type of cuisine instead, however, the Indian is not in the entertainer.
If you love a good steak, another amazing steakhouse to check out is Ruth Chris Steakhouse in the Address Hotel Dubai Marina. They have an a la carte menu or a brunch option on Friday afternoon or Friday evening. The food and service was just amazing.
On Fridays in Dubai, brunch is the done thing. Brunch here is all you can eat and drink for a number of hours – dangerous! Vida Hotel, Downtown does an afternoon brunch called the 3 in 1 brunch. This is a quiet-ish brunch, which is perfect for parents or is you’re looking for a more chilled vibe, and the food is great too. It is a picnic theme, so you can grab a picnic basket and fill it with wine, cheese, meats, breads, scones and a selection of salads. For mains, a sharing platter is brought to the table with a selection of meats and sides and then the dessert section has too many sweet treats to choose from. The wine was flowing and we sat poolside with views of the downtown skyscrapers. What more could you want? There are so many brunches in Dubai, here is a link to help you choose from the best brunches in Dubai.
If you’re looking for a good breakfast, head to JBR to Eggspectaion. I love breakfast here but the portions are huge so we don’t go often. You will normally have to wait minimum of 20 minutes to get your table but you can walk along the beachfront while you wait and they will call you when your table is ready. They serve all types of eggs, pancakes, waffles…the list goes on! After breakfast, you can chill at the beach for a couple hours and take in the views of the Palm and the new Dubai Eye.
Every tourist goes to Dubai Mall to see the fountains. I have seen the fountains hundreds of times and it is always so crowded there, so for a change, you can get the boat for 60 AED and see the show from the water. The fountain shows start at 6 and runs every 30 minutes. 10 minutes before the show you can board the Abra and see the show from the water. It’s inexpensive and a cool way to see the fountains without pushing in the crowd. Next to the Fountains is Souq al Bahar. Loca, is a great Mexican restaurant and sports bar inside. Here they serve freshly made guacamole, made at your table, nachos, enchiladas, tacos…a serious food coma waiting to happen! Happy hour here runs until 8pm too. You can request a table outside with a view of the Burj Khalifa, so if it’s cool enough to sit outside, email or ring ahead to secure a good table.
If you looking for amazing Burj Khalifa views and great seats to watch the Fountain show, then Thiptara Thai restaurant in the Palace Downtown is a must. The food and views are second to none. We sat outside on the floating deck and had an amazing meal. To sit outside on this deck, there is a minimum spend of 350 AED per person, but there are still views inside if you would rather not have this minimum spend. This restaurant is in the entertainer too! Al Bayt in the Palace Downtown do a lovely Afternoon Tea for 170 per person and it is in the entertainer too, if you want to just visit this amazing hotel while you’re downtown.
For chill out days, Cove Beach, is a private beach with great views of the Burj Al Arab and 360 bar. It costs 150 dirham for one of the comfiest loungers ever and you have waiter service to you lounger for cocktails and food. The pizza flatbreads were amazing but we ordered a portion of wings and only 5 came, so maybe avoid those if you’re sharing or hungry! There are changing facilities here too where you can shower and dry your hair after a day at the beach if you want to head out straight after. Zero Gravity is another pool/beach that you can go to for the day. This has more of a party vibe than Cove Beach.
The Madinat Jumeirah is one of my favourite places for dinner. I love Pai Thai and rather than get a taxi to Al Qasr Hotel, we got a taxi to the Madinat Jumeirah and took a free Abra ride to the restaurant from outside Trader Vic’s restaurant. It’s a great way to see the views of the Burj Al Arab and the Madinat itself and you get dropped right at the restaurant. The thai food is so good here and we were all so full leaving. I requested a waterfront table here too in advance. (You can use the isme by Jumeirah app here for 10% off food and drink.) Trader Vic’s, Left Bank, The Meat Co. and Tortuga are other restaurants I would recommend in the Madinat Jumeirah. Or if you’ve got a sweet tooth, check out Black Tap. Wait until you see their milkshakes!!
Afterwards, you can get an Abra back to the Madinat or straight to Bahri Bar for a few drinks to end the evening, with more great views of the Burj Al Arab and the Madinat itself. (in Bahri Bar you can use the Entertainer cheers section on drinks or the isme by jumeirah app).
For the best Burj Al Arab views, Jumeirah Beach Hotel has a restaurant called a Villa Beach. Personally, I don’t think you can dine anywhere in Dubai with better views. The restaurant is located on the beachfront underneath the Burj Al Arab. Again, I requested an outside table close to the beach so we had the best views. The lamb, the beef and the sea bass were amazing here. (what’s even better, you can use the Entertainer App or the isme by Jumeirah App here) and for after dinner drinks, you can take 10 steps to the beach lounge on the same beach. (the isme by jumeirah app can be used for drinks too!) Pierchic is another dining option, however, it is more expensive. Or else you can head to Uptown in Jumeirah Beach Hotel for happy hour drinks and great views of the Burj al Arab and the city.
If you want to visit the Burj Al Arab, Scape restaurant has great food, however, you are so close to the Burj al Arab, you don’t have the best views of it. You can also go for drinks in the Burj al Arab in Gold on 27 or the Skyview bar, which has a minimum spend of around 350 AED
If you’re looking to head to Atlantis, The Palm check out Gordon Ramsey’s Bread Street Kitchen for some Beef Wellington or Seafire for a steak. For a more expensive meal, Ossiano, the underwater restaurant is here too. Unfortunately, only Bread Street Kitchen is in the Entertainer.
My parents stayed in Jannah Marina Bay Suites in the Marina area, but as it was the end of the Marina, the traffic wasn’t as bad as the regular Marina traffic. If you book directly with the hotel, you are more likely to get a Marina view, which my parents had.The rooms were clean, spacious and modern and the view from the room was great. (see the image below!) They were only a short walk from Pier 7 and JBR too and it had a supermarket, Tim Horton’s and an ATM opposite to it. I would definitely recommend staying here if you’re looking. If you booking through the hotel, rather than booking.com, you’re more likely to get a room with a view like this!
It was a great week of eating and drinking, with some amazing restaurant, views and deals! My parents are still raving about it all!
- Book restaurants in advance to get a table with a good view
- The Entertainer app and Isme by Jumeirah app will be very useful if you download them. You will save a lot and can use it for activities around Dubai too.
- Download apps like Guzzle, Dubai Deals, and Happy Hours to find great free drinks deals, what’s on and happy hours all over Dubai. (add Dubai to the name when searching in the App Store)
- Check out my Dubai – Things to do post for more tips or my Abu Dhabi post if you’re planning a road trip there from Dubai.
Top Tip Traveller 🙂