Fit for a Sheikh

An op­u­lent Ital­ian ex­pe­ri­ence im­bued with a glam­orous Ara­bian vibe, Palazzo Ver­sace Dubai fits right in with the city’s best-of-the-best port­fo­lio of at­trac­tions

Singapore Tatler Wedding - - CONTENTS -

Palazzo Ver­sace Dubai fits right in with Dubai’s port­fo­lio of top-class at­trac­tions

rriv­ing a few hours be­fore sun­rise does not take any­thing away from the awe-in­duc­ing ex­pe­ri­ence of walk­ing into Palazzo Ver­sace Dubai. De­signed like an Ital­ian palace but with Mid­dle East­ern ar­chi­tec­tural ele­ments, the entrance opens into a mas­sive lobby with Ro­man col­umns supporting ceil­ings hand-de­tailed in real gold. A grand chan­de­lier form­ing a flo­ral Ver­sace pat­tern ap­pears to be mov­ing with the breeze (I later find out it is made of three tonnes of hand-blown glass from the Czech Repub­lic). Slabs of ex­quis­ite white and grey Cremo Del­i­cato Ital­ian mar­ble dec­o­rate the up­per lobby, sur­round­ing a large Me­dusa mo­saic, Ver­sace’s logo. The floor of the lower lobby, a beau­ti­ful red-and-gold mo­saic in the de­sign of an iconic Ver­sace scarf, con­tains 1.5 mil­lion in­di­vid­u­ally-coloured tiles and took Ital­ian com­pany Fan­tini sev­eral years to com­plete. The palazzo is a place where Donatella and her fash­ion­able crew fit right in.

The 5.5-hectare wa­ter­front prop­erty is in Dubai’s Cul­tural Vil­lage, a rapidly de­vel­op­ing area that is home to highly sought-af­ter lux­ury res­i­den­tial es­tates such as the low-rise Iris As­mar and the 80-storey D1 Tower. The Dubai Mu­seum, tra­di­tional souks, and art and craft gal­leries are a 15-minute drive away, and fur­ther de­vel­op­ment is afoot close by, in­clud­ing The Tower, which aims to sur­pass Saudi Ara­bia’s Jed­dah Tower as the world’s tallest build­ing when it is com­pleted in 2020.

While there are plenty of at­trac­tions nearby, there are many com­pelling rea­sons to spend your en­tire trip ex­plor­ing Palazzo Ver­sace. Three large la­goon pools flank the ho­tel, com­ple­mented with but­ler-ser­viced ca­banas and cush­ioned daybeds. De­pend­ing on which pool you choose, you can en­joy a swim-up bar, a sandy beach area, a shisha lounge—of­fer­ing a se­lec­tion of Moroc­can, Turk­ish and Le­banese mezze—or an al­fresco res­tau­rant called Amalfi, which fo­cuses on clas­sic Mediter­ranean fare and piz­zas.

Break­fast at Giardino, with its ter­razzo floor and walls in­spired by Ver­sace’s jun­gle mo­tif wall­pa­per (and Jennifer Lopez’s in­fa­mous green Grammy Awards dress), is as colour­ful as its in­te­ri­ors, with large sec­tions of the buf­fet ded­i­cated to In­dian and Mediter­ranean bites as well as tra­di­tional Western fare.

For din­ner, head over to Enigma, where, over the course of the year, fa­mous chefs from around the world are in­vited to de­sign special menus. On this visit, chef Yunus Emre Ay­din brings Turk­ish cui­sine to life, with dishes such as ah­tapot— oc­to­pus cooked un­der­ground at 78 de­grees Cel­sius for eight hours—and seven spices lamb neck with fon­dant pota­toes.

Af­ter night falls, those look­ing for en­ter­tain­ment can visit Q’s, a live jazz lounge named af­ter Quincy Jones, or the smoke-free bar La Vita, which serves bou­tique wines by the glass and craft beers—a pop­u­lar at­trac­tion in gen­er­ally dry Dubai.

The Ul­ti­mate, the top treat­ment of the ho­tel’s full-ser­vice spa, lasts for seven—yes, seven—hours and 30 min­utes, which in­cludes a chauf­feur-driven Maserati pick-up and dropoff, a sig­na­ture ham­mam, mas­sage, fa­cial, mani and pedi plus plenty of bub­bly. There is even a very swanky Ver­sace Kids’ Club where the lit­tle ones can play on Ver­sace-printed mats and do some arts and crafts with­out dis­turb­ing other guests.

Donatella and her team spared no ex­pense on the in­te­ri­ors, de­sign­ing 12,000 pieces of fur­ni­ture ex­clu­sively for the ho­tel

Donatella and her team spared no ex­pense on the in­te­ri­ors, de­sign­ing 12,000 pieces of fur­ni­ture in the com­mon ar­eas, rooms and suites ex­clu­sively for the ho­tel. The hall­ways are fit­ted with plush hand­made car­pets made of New Zealand wool, tra­di­tion­ally used in palaces, and on the walls hang fash­ion il­lus­tra­tions of mod­els wear­ing the brand’s most iconic out­fits.

Each of the 215 rooms and suites fea­tures a pri­vate bal­cony or ter­race and fur­nish­ings straight out of a Ver­sace Home cat­a­logue— so­fas and throw pil­lows cov­ered in an­i­ma­land flo­ral-printed silk, or­nate head­boards, and silk sheets in com­bi­na­tions of earth tones and pas­tels. The one-bed­room suites have their own liv­ing rooms, guest bath­rooms, din­ing ar­eas and fully-equipped stud­ies com­plete with iPads and me­dia dock­ing sta­tions. The bath­rooms are just as spec­tac­u­lar, with more Cremo Del­i­cato mar­ble on the floors and mo­saics on the walls, full-sized bath­tubs, rain­for­est shower stalls and spa­cious walkin clos­ets with full-length mir­rors, dress­ing ta­bles and LED-lit van­i­ties.

Look­ing for rock-star ameni­ties? The two 1,200-square-me­tre Im­pe­rial Suites on the top two floors have mag­nif­i­cent mar­ble stair­cases lead­ing from their two bed­rooms to pri­vate ter­races with a pool and gar­den. El­e­gantly ap­pointed, the rooms are fur­nished with pieces from Ver­sace Home’s exclusive Via Gesù col­lec­tion. Suite guests have ac­cess to the ex­ec­u­tive lounge, limo trans­fers to and from the air­port, a 24-hour but­ler ser­vice, af­ter­noon tea and a two-hour happy hour. And with a staff-to­suite ra­tio of 3:1, Palazzo Ver­sace is clearly not for those who don’t like be­ing fussed over.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Singapore

© PressReader. All rights reserved.