Not to be mistaken with the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is not only Dubai’s most iconic building but also the most luxurious hotel in the world. Located steps away from the Jumeriah Public Beach and the Souk Madinat, the iconic white sail-shaped building hides a level of luxury accommodations and decor splendor within its walls that has no parallel. The Burj Al Arab is the only hotel in the world with seven stars and the fifth tallest hotel in the world sitting on a man-made island and connected to the Jumeriah beach by a private curving bridge. Once you embark on your journey via Emirates Business or First Class, make sure you order a negroni on your way to Dubai. Yes, the only airline we’ve flown where an actual proper negroni is served.
Walking into the Burj Al Arab is like walking into a tale straight from the One Thousand and One Nights —Arabian Nights. Gold leaf, a striking midnight blue color palette against bright reds and yellows showcase the elegance and opulence of this hotel. As you’re welcomed by the friendly bell boys immaculately dressed in white linen and by the portrait of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founder of the United Arab Emirates, get ready to indulge in a sensory experience driven by mosaics, patterns, bright colors, water features and of course the very welcoming Arabic hospitality.
Not only the Burj Al Arab offers a level of luxury and amenities we’ve never experienced before at any other hotel, but the 201 luxurious duplex suites are merely out of a dream. With nine world-class restaurants, five swimming pools, a private beach and a stunning spa like no other, this hotel will for sure knock your socks off, no matter how many fancy hotels you’ve stayed at before.
Once you stop drooling over the complex open atrium architecture with balconies on each floor that oversee the main entrance and the hotel lobby, get ready for the main course. The Burj Al Arab appoints a butler by floor level that not only will take care of everything you need during your stay —24/7—, but that will also escort you to your room and open the door for you every time you walk back into it, whether you’ve been gone for the day or just for a few minutes.
Much like a set of Pantone swatches, each balcony is color accented with a gradient that goes all the way from royal blue to turquoise and greens before evolving into a bright yellow at the very top floor. The curved shape of the terraces creates an incredible visual treat that gets further enhanced by gold leaf and capricious grandeur.
But the real treat, just as if the entrance to the hotel and common areas weren’t impressive enough are the two-story deluxe one-bedroom suites. The Burj Al Arab also offers two and three-bedroom family suites, a Diplomatic three-bedroom suite, a Presidential two-bedroom suite and the most luxurious of all, the Royal two-bedroom suite, a palatial retreat within 8,395 square feet —780 square meters. And when the most basic room, the deluxe one-bedroom suite looks the way it does, make no mistake at realizing this is indeed the most luxurious hotel in the world.
The 1,829 square feet —170 square meter— one-bedroom suite features a small office, a bar, a living room, a dining area, a walking closet with makeup area, a master bathroom with full-size jacuzzi and shower, a powder room and a grand staircase. The decor is very striking —not for everyone— with gold leaf accents and a blue, red and yellow color palette on the furniture, drapes and carpet.
Featuring imperial red granite stone throughout the master bathroom, lapis lazuli countertop in the powder room, exquisite marquetry woodwork on all doors, an elegant carpet that provides perfect contrast against the blue, red and gold tones in the room, and of course floor to ceiling windows with unobstructed views of Dubai and the Arabian Gulf —Persian Gulf. And just as if that wasn’t enough, the suites include a full set —Eau de Parfum and Eau de Toilette included— of his and hers full-size Hermès amenities.
Once you’ve settled in, it’s time to discover the rest of what that the Burj Al Arab has to offer. The North Deck is a humongous prefabricated decking structure brought in by vessel from Finland and home to the two massive pools —one an infinity pool and the other one located behind the small sandy beach in between them— at the Burj Al Arab. Right on this majestic deck, one can find Scape Lounge restaurant, a row of private cabanas, two outdoor bars, a third small pool, and Bab Al Yam, the casual restaurant where breakfast is typically served.
After the sun sets and the sweltering Dubai heat is more tolerable, several exquisite dining options are just an elevator ride away. If you fancy Levantine cuisine, Al Iwan will cater some of the best Arabic cuisine dishes you can find in Dubai, including a cappuccino topped with actual gold flakes. Now, if you are in the mood for a very high-end dining experience surrounded by the world’s largest aquarium within a restaurant, Al Mahara is right for you.
In the morning, make sure you check out the fitness center and Talise Spa after your round of cardio. An incredible spa to embark on a journey to explore your inner self, connect with your mind and body and relax like never before. At the end of the day, getting to Dubai from the U.S. wasn’t a short journey. With its Arabic architecture and its natural stone mosaic in white, green, red and black, this exquisite spa will leave you begging for more. With two separate indoor pools at the very top, you will for sure feel you are on top of the world. And if you like nature, make sure you pay attention to the peregrine falcons that are flown around the hotel grounds. A spectacle worth being part of as the falcon is the U.A.E.’s symbol.
And before time flies away while you’re enjoying the world’s most luxurious hotel, make sure you do as much sightseeing and watch shopping as you can. Within a short drive, you can visit the Mall of the Emirates with its impressive indoor ski resort —where you can ski down its slopes— and an incredible selection of luxury watch boutiques from Audemars Piguet to Rolex and everything in between.
Also, head over to the ultra-posh Dubai Mall —the world’s largest indoor shopping mall— where you will be able to visit the Burj Khalifa and go up to its observation deck on the 148th floor —at 555 meters high or 1,821 ft high.
While at the Dubai Mall, don’t miss stopping by the MB&F M.A.D. Gallery and the world’s largest Rolex Boutique. Lastly, pay a visit to Dubai’s Museum, the Dubai Frame —world’s largest picture frame sculpture— at Zabeel’s Park, the Dubai Marina, the Old Souk, the Souk Madinat and if you still have energy, time and any money left, head over to Abu Dhabi for the best that the U.A.E has to offer. Way more than the so many world largest’s things that are part of Dubai.
Dubai is for sure an incredible place to visit and staying at the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is a once in a lifetime experience worth every penny of its steep price. For the record, this trip and stay was not sponsored or paid by the Jumeirah Group of Hotels, Emirates Airlines or any of the watch brands on our wrist.
At the end of the day, you only live once and if you do it right, once is more than enough. On to another #watchlife experience.
For more info on the Burj Al Arab click here.