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Hotel review: St. Regis Abu Dhabi

By Sophie McCarrick | June 22, 2017

St-Regis-Abu-Dhabi

Beat the heat this summer and head to St. Regis Abu Dhabi, where you’ll find a multitude of exciting culinary offers to keep you and your taste buds entertained indoors

What’s it like?

Upon arrival at the property, the luxurious experience begins. Centred with a stunning grand staircase, The St. Regis Abu Dhabi has one of the most beautiful and sophisticated lobby’s I’ve seen in this region, and the whole welcome experience oozes tasteful opulence. Decorated with deep golds, creamy marble, regal reds, and crystal chandeliers, it’s a gorgeous hotel inspired by the legacy of the Astor family from New York’s Gilded Age and local heritage of the UAE’s capital.

Boasting 283 guestrooms and suites from the 33rd to the 49th floor, rooms offer stunning views over the Arabian Gulf. Once checked, the St. Regis Butler Service sweeps in to warmly greet and ensure everything you need is in order – a very nice touch that wasn’t at all intrusive.

With the day ahead, we head to Nation Riviera Beach Club to cool off, which is just across the road from the hotel but accessible via an air conditioned underground tunnel. It’s an exclusive beachfront with pool (which is cooled) and beach access, equipped with a fitness facility, an adorable little water park called ‘Treasure Island Children’s Club’, a swim-up bar and on-the-beach eatery ‘Cabana Bar & Grill’. If you don’t fancy the little stroll over to Nation Riviera, the hotel also has a rooftop swimming pool (also cooled) with bar, and plenty of sun loungers. To continue the relaxation, the Remede Spa is located on the same floor, as well as a gym.

What’s to eat?

When it’s time to eat we head to Villa Toscana, the hotel’s Italian restaurant serving traditional Tuscan cuisine. As we sit I get that “the food here must be good!” feeling, as I notice more than six tables full of Italians chatting away, passing pans of creamy looking risotto back and forth. And, my gut instinct was right! Dinner begins with warm, doughy focaccia, served with high-quality olive oil and balsamic – dreamy. Highlights of the evening include burrata with papa al Pomodoro, focaccia crouton and emulsion of basil pesto, porcini risotto with fried oyster mushrooms (the seafood risotto was also scrumptious!), the pappardelle pasta ‘Senese style’ in dolceforte lamb sauce with sage and roasted pine nuts, and the succulent grilled rack of lamb, which was subtly marinated in rosemary and mint. All pasta here is made in-house and speciality ingredients are sourced freshly from Italy – and you can tell! Villa Toscana is open for dinner and hosts a Saturday Tuscan Brunch from 12.30 – 4pm each week, with prices starting at Dhs160++ with soft beverages.

If you fancy something a little closer to home, Azura, specialises in Arabic fare and shishas overlooking the Corniche. This spot is idyllic for sundowners over the coast (camera at the ready!).

During the day, we enjoyed lunch at Cabana Bar & Grill where there’s everything from freshly grilled prawns and steak, to burgers, sandwiches and salads. This venue is also open for dinner at night; a nice spot for a romantic evening with your toes in the sand.

Next up, offering everything from breakfast, lunch, dinner and brunch, the Terrace on the Corniche is the hotel’s signature all-day dining restaurant. Serving a range of cuisines, this place serves something for everyone, from gorgeous grills, to freshly prepared sushi rolls. During brunch, don’t miss the room hidden in the Cigar Lounge next door, dedicated to chocolate, and chocolate only!

Across the road next to Nation Riviera, there’s also Asia da Cuba – a Latino-inspired restaurant, and Catch, a seafood-led outlet.

Unmissable gourmet experiences: In line with all its grandeur, St. Regis Abu Dhabi offers a host of food-driven experiences that I’d highly recommend planning your visit around.

First up, on the last Friday of every month (expect during Ramadan), the property’s Abu Dhabi Suite – which is officially the world’s highest suspended suite that spans between the 48th and 49th floors – opens for an exclusive brunch journey that explores the bedrooms, cinema, spa and two-floor majlis. For 50 diners at a time only, expect to delight in a cinema full of candy, a dedicated cheese and dessert room, a caviar ice-bar, an oyster room, and roaming chef stations – you can even pop to the suite’s private spa for shoulder massages or manicures! Brunch in the Clouds is exclusively an adult only affair, priced at Dhs500++ per person or Dhs750++ with bubbly.

Next up, and not for the faint-hearted (or vertigo sufferers), once a month St. Regis Abu Dhabi opens its helipad for 20 members of the public to experience a ‘Helipad Sunset Supper’, 255 metres in the air. Met on the rooftop helipad by a brigade of chefs, butlers, mixologists, waiters and a saxophonist, the experience includes culinary treats like premium caviar, fresh oysters and extravagant canapés and more. Priced at Dhs400++ or Dhs550++ with bubbly, the concept runs throughout winter months only on the second Friday of each month.

Bottom line:

This hotel allows you to take things down a notch and offers all you need for a revitalising and luxurious weekend away, whether it be for a romantic stay with your other half, or a family staycation with the kids.

For more information or to make a hotel or restaurant reservation, call +971 (2) 6944444 or visit stregisabudhabi.com.



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