Dubai and toddler? Not necessarily everyone’s first thought when they think of Dubbers, but Dubai has been on my bucket list since I can remember and since having MB and moving back to the UK from Asia I have missed the East. The other half has been to Dubai a handful of times for business and I have friends who live there, so I guess I had either #FOMO or I simply just wanted to see it with my own eyeballs and it truly is a place you have to see to believe.
We flew 7 hours from London Heathrow to Dubai, this was the longest we had flown with the mini human in a while so I was nervous, but I always forget how much Max just loves the novelty of the airport. Give it time son. He was so busy spotting planes and people watching that there was no time for a tantrum. Once he realised that the airline had the movie; Madagascar and that there were free snacks everything was A OK. The time flew by. Also I had made a very important Mulberry purchase so I was busy daydreaming…
Once we arrived in Dubai, we were taken by taxi to our first hotel, where we were staying with the Mr, because he had to work. The taxi driver was so friendly and I remember being really encouraged by her incredible pride for Dubai, she didn’t hesitate to advise us on where to take Max, which I was very grateful for as we had no itinerary for this trip. The hotel was called Dusit Thani and it was beautiful, a great tall tower with a rooftop pool and views to die for. The interior was “Thai fusion” which was very welcoming, calming and clean. The staff were so helpful and went out of their way to help Max giggle. Max, the blonde-haired, blue-eyed boy got some serious attention as you can imagine. He stuck out like a sore thumb in the Emirates. Apart from the views and the location (Dubai Mall was 10 minutes away) Dusit Thani Dubai hotel was perfect, we had a suite room, which included a king bed and a sofa bed for Max. Every morning we had incredible buffet breakfasts of fruit, pastries, eggs, pancakes, noodles, cheese, porridge…the list goes on. Everyone was catered for and there was even a ‘Jones the grocer’ on the ground floor so this Mama and Papa could get their Flat Whites on the daily.
To travel anywhere in Dubai you needed a car and with 6 lane roads we were not going to chance driving, especially when it was incredibly easy to get around by taxi. The most frustrating thing about Dubai is the traffic – everyone drives everywhere and you get stuck in one way systems, but luckily for us we never wanted to go that far so it was not a massive dilemma, but you cannot visit Dubai and not NOT sit in the blazing heat, which we did. Often. We visited Dubai mid November and it was hot, like 30 degrees hot, but according to my friend Simone who lives in Dubai it was ‘sweater weather’. She is Irish. So from what I can gather, if we had visited at any other time of the year, we might have melted away. Everywhere including taxi’s had air conditioning so the heat was not noticeable until you stepped outside. We also made sure we had a pool close by at all times to dunk into as and when we wanted to cool off. Max seemed confused about the heat, his routine back home had been coat/scarf/gloves so he couldn’t believe his luck when he was wearing shorts, but he realised that luck soon ran out when I grabbed the SPF bottle of doom.
After a few days at Dusit Thani and having had many adventures around the Dubai Mall, because it is the biggest and best-est mall on the planet (does your shopping centre have an aquarium with a killer croc?) we ventured to the infamous Palm and stayed at the Rixos Hotel for some rest and relaxation. The palm is bonkers, made up of islands to create what looks like a palm tree from high above – the Palm Dubai needs to be seen to be believed. We stayed at the opposite end to the famous Atlantis hotel, after hearing that the Atlantis was the Vegas of Dubai (figured Vegas/Dubai was not kiddo appropriate). The Rixos had everything you want for a relaxing getaway, yes even with a toddler, the rooms were gorgeous, large and had incredible views of the Palm. We had the sea and we had the pool. It was dreamy and we spent our days, chatting, eating, swimming and playing Paw Patrol. It was pure bliss.
We visited Dubai for a bit of work and a little relaxation and that is what we got, but I cannot wait to go back with Max to see more of it as we could see it had so much to offer kids of all ages.
Best Coffee in Dubai
My lovely buddy and fellow coffee snob/lover drove me to Raw and I was blown away by the experience, they are literally roasting on the premises, the smell is divine and the coffee is incredible. It is a huge space and there are even toys upstairs so the kids are happy whilst you sip on your flat white. Raw coffee company seemed to be one of the main coffees available in all the great coffee places we tried so visiting the actual HQ and talking away the afternoon with fine company and caffeine was heavenly. The La Marzocco coffee machine in personal size was also available to buy – anyone who knows what I am even talking about, will know how hard it was to walk away from Dubai without it.
Another great coffee recommendation – Arrows and Sparrows is instagram worthy, beautiful, bright and latte art to die for. We actually stopped by for coffee and we ended up staying for a gorgeous brunch with pastries and juices and coffee ( of course). Cannot recommend this cafe enough to people who like their coffee with a side of white marble.
Gorgeous venue situated on kite beach, so you can enjoy your smashed avocado and espresso with a stunning view. Park House had great service, great menu, tasty food and the kids were entertained with crayons and colour me place mats.