Posts for the 'UAE' Category


Fire & Ice, Raffles Hotel, Dubai

Most of the best restaurants in Dubai are located in the hotels, and Fire & Ice is no exception. A sophisticated grill situated in the Raffles Hotel, Dubai, its dark, earthy colours and brickwork décor gives the restaurant the look and feel of a big hitting New York steakhouse. Flickering flames guard the open kitchen and this adds to the sense of the restaurant’s drama. Raffles Hotel predominantly caters to a corporate clientele so the design of the restaurant suits its customers well. Fire & Ice specialises in a variety of quality cuts of meat prepared to your liking, although there is also a reasonable range of seafood choices.

Being part of the family that includes the famous Raffles Singapore, it would be remiss to not begin the meal with a Singapore Sling, or in this case, a Dubai Sling (AED70 – about £12), a delicious mix of Plymouth gin, coriander, chilli gomme, fig preserve, lemon soda and angostura bitters. Fire & Ice also has an extensive list of 700 wines, and was awarded the Wine Spectator’s 2013 Award of Excellence.

Our meal started with an amuse bouche of cured salmon perched on top of some pickles and bell peppers that had been fragranced with saffron and coriander seeds. It was delicious from the superb spicing, and the salmon was sweet and delicate.

Cured salmon

Cured salmon

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Bateaux Dubai and JA Ocean View Hotel, Dubai

From Bahrain I headed to the eating, shopping, beaching and partying mecca that is Dubai. Hotels are plentiful here, and there is a hotel to suit every type of budget. I stayed at the four-star JA Ocean View Hotel, a family hotel with an eye-catching lobby and comfortable rooms decorated in seafaring blue. Each of the rooms are well-kitted and spacious with a balcony that looks out onto the beach (hence the name), although at the moment there is a fair bit of construction work taking place on the beach promenade which is currently scheduled to finish around October 2014. Facilities at the hotel include an outdoor pool, a spa and a gym, and being a family hotel, there are a number of children’s activities to help keep the little ones amused.

Sea View Room

Sea View Room

There are five restaurants at the hotel including the Brazilian churrascaria Fogo Vivo and Le Rivage, a beautifully decorated restaurant where the buffet breakfasts, buffet lunches and themed dinner nights are held. The standard of the breakfast is ok, but there is a good amount of choice to tickle every fancy. I was also interested to discover that Girders, the hotel’s British sports bar has a giant TV screen and runs ladies nights every Tuesday where ladies can drink free champagne between 8pm to 10pm and free cocktails thereafter until midnight.

Le Rivage

Le Rivage

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Pierchic at the Al Qasr Hotel, Dubai, UAE

Pierchic - a view of the jetty

Pierchic – a view of the jetty

With a six-hour stopover in Dubai as I made my way home from Doha to London, I decided that there was just enough time to head out to dinner in Dubai. The alternative would have been to spend six hours shopping at Dubai airport, an option that I considered rather dangerous. And besides, I prefer eating so much more than shopping. But the difficulty was – where to go?!?! There are just sooooooooooo many restaurants in Dubai! I ultimately ended up at Pierchic, a seafood restaurant that is one of the nine dining options in the luxurious Al Qasr, a hotel that is part of the glamorous Madinat Jumeriah Hotel Group. Pierchic has won a string of awards including Dubai Time Out’s Most Romantic Restaurant of 2013 and Best Seafood Restaurant of 2012.

Pierchic sits on a jetty that stretches from the hotel’s edge onto the Persian Gulf. And with its position perched on the water it offers amazing views of its neighbour, the world famous seven-star Al Burj Arab Hotel which is also part of the Madinat Jumeriah Group. With views like this, it is easy to see how Pierchic can lay claim to being one of the most romantic restaurants in Dubai. Allegedly, the restaurant books out for Valentine’s Day six months in advance and has been the site of many a wedding proposal.

Pierchic and views of Burj Al Arab

Pierchic and views of Burj Al Arab

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