THE TERM “STAYCATION”, REFERRING TO A HOLIDAY SPENT AT HOME RATHER THAN
abroad, is a clever little portmanteau of “stay-at-home” and “vacation” that has become ingrained in our vernacular. It’s used as liberally as sunscreen in the UAE, most probably because of the region’s concentration of superlative five-star hotels and resorts. Perhaps with the exception of the middle of summer, staying put in the UAE for a holiday never seems an arduous task when there are so many grown-up playgrounds beckoning with pleasure
seeking pursuits like brunches and beach days. Which is why in this special Arabia edition, we’ve dedicated a sizeable portion to reviewing some of Dubai’s finest luxury stays.
Few fashion houses conjure up such glamour than Versace and if you are a lover of the maison, I can wholeheartedly recommend experiencing the full immersion at Palazzo Versace Dubai (page 42), a five-star temple dedicated to Versace’s design manifesto and philosophy, with outstanding dining and opulence at every turn. For those who can’t make up their mind what they desire from a hotel (nightclubs and pool parties? Spas and champagne bars?), there is certain to be something to appeal at the Al Habtoor City trio: The St. Regis Dubai, W Dubai Al Habtoor City, and The Westin Dubai, Al Habtoor City. Dubai’s own “city within a city” (page 60) also happens to be home to the 1,300-seat theatre where Dubai’s first resident entertainment show, La Perle, opens this month. Of course, we haven’t forgotten the discerning families, and if you’re curious to discover what the recently opened Legoland® Dubai is like, let writer Cursty Mitchell guide you through her family’s enchanting experience staying at Marriott’s Polynesian-inspired Lapita Hotel Dubai (page 72), located inside the park – a bona fide dream come true for kids. Just over the border, writer Steven Bond recounts his experience visiting Riyadh, Saudi Arabia’s political, financial and administrative capital, as a guest of the new inaugural King Abdulaziz Camel Festival, held this year in March. Along with becoming better acquainted with beautiful dromedaries, Steven also had a chance to explore a little and muses on a city that is evolving at the kingdom’s own pace (page 50). Elsewhere in the issue, we feature a VIP guide to the thrilling night race, the F1 Singapore Grand Prix (page 38), Michelin-starred chef Virgilio Martínez shares his favourite haunts in Lima, Peru, for cerviche, cocktails and standout coffee (page 88), while Kris Karacinski reviews Audi’s S5 Coupé (page 104). Once again, I wish you another month of inspiring travels. I hope you enjoy the issue.