When faced with the challenge of finding a holiday to celebrate a double 60th birthday with the whole family, it seemed a near-impossible task. The birthday couple enjoys the finer things in life. Daughter number one is almost 40, a single party girl, who loves fitness, water sports, and tranquil spas. Daughter number two and her husband have two young children, and son number three and his partner are expecting their first baby. Quite a challenge, but we found the perfect place in Dubai!
Dubai is located on the southeast coast of the Persian Gulf and is one of the seven Emirates that make up the United Arab Emirates. Dubai’s year-round warm weather, innovative construction, and vast shopping malls have made it a popular holiday destination for people from all around the world.
Located just outside Dubai, the Jebal Ali Palm Tree Court forms part of the award-winning Jebal Ali Golf Resort. It is a desert oasis with four refreshing pools, stunning white beach and lush nine-hole golf course that all take advantage of the guaranteed sunshine.
The warm welcome that we received on arrival was complimented by the calm inviting lobby where we were offered refreshing fruit cocktails and local dates to revitalize us from our journey. The staff was quietly accommodating and we were escorted via private caddy through the manicured grounds to our suites.
Located only steps from the beach, a variety of suites are available to suit every need. They were well appointed spacious rooms with luxurious ensuites, comfortable sitting areas, and private balconies or terrace gardens. All were flexible enough to satisfy the singleton, romantic couple, and family of four. Suites are available with adjoining sitting/dining rooms that can double up as the children’s bedroom or for those wishing to entertain.
To satisfy those who like the finer things in life, The Residence offers the most elite luxury accommodations. The beachfront suites have a contemporary feel and include every modern comfort you could possibly desire. Residence guests have access to a private pool, restaurant and the relaxing Signatures Lounge. The Residence butler service ensures every need is met. They organise all aspects of your stay from dinner and spa reservations to trips into Dubai and excursions.
The warm sea and stunning white beach are complimented by the four refreshing pools. All have a full bar service, including sunken bar seating and an abundance of sun loungers and parasols. We did find that you need to get out early to reserve the best sunbed, though, and get your last orders in at the pool bar by 5pm.
Miss “nearly 40” was kept entertained in the well-equipped gym with tailored personal training sessions. Down-time was spent, by most of us at some point, in the modern yet elegant Spa, which offers over 40 face and body treatments and complementary access to the wet spa and relaxation facilities.
For the action lovers there was plenty to do. Golf, water sports, horse riding, camel rides, tennis, squash, mini golf and shooting were all available.
The large hotel next door houses a shopping mall, restaurant, children’s entertainment clubs and a crèche. Whilst hotel guests, in theory, did not have access to the Palm Tree Court, in practice, a few did venture across to take advantage of the facilities.
When it came to food, seven diverse restaurants ensured we had a variety of high quality dining experiences throughout our stay.
Breakfast was served in the bustling, family-friendly La Fontana and also in the tranquil White Orchid. Both offered an extensive buffet of delights from around the world, from fresh fruit to perfect poached eggs, full fry ups to home-baked pastries. Whatever you fancy it was available.
La Fontana and two beach restaurants provide the same menu for lunch and the sports bar and restaurant served food and drinks all day. If you dine alfresco, you do have to watch out for the pesky birds that fearlessly hone in on your lunch!
In the evening, La Traviata served delicious Italian food and La Fontana provided a themed buffet with entertainment. The White Orchid transforms into an exquisite 5-star Far East fusion restaurant. Its ambient atmosphere, sparkling glassware, impeccable flavors, and service made us feel like we were in a Michelin star restaurant.
For something a little different, DiVAZ is a unique floating restaurant moored in the marina. We chose from a large display of freshly caught fish, which was prepared to our liking below deck – a great experience for the whole family.
A highlight of the trip was an evening on the Bateaux Dubai, the resort’s dinner boat that explores the waterways of Dubai Creek by night. Freshly prepared gourmet cuisine was enjoyed in the comfort of the air-conditioned glass enclosure, as the lights and sights of Dubai leisurely pass by.
The resort organized for us all to make the most of the location by seeing Dubai from every angle. We took a water taxi along the coast of Dubai to view the incredible beachfront skyline. A seaplane flight gave us a whole new perspective on the Palm and The World Islands, enabling us to see their true unique genius. To ensure we marked the big 6-0, they kindly put a giant Happy Birthday along the beach for us all to see as we flew back into the resort bay.
It is worth mentioning that locals do take advantage of the resort during their weekend (Friday and Saturday), so it did get a little busier on those days.
Whilst it may sound vast the resort remains intimate and easily accessible. The level of service was outstanding and staff was warm, friendly and obliging. With our diverse family group, the challenge of keeping everyone happy was certainly a momentous one, but the Jabal Ali Palm Tree Court exceeded all our expectations.