Dukes Dubai

Business Traveller (Middle East) - - Tried & Tested Hotel -

BACK­GROUND Dukes Dubai opened in April this year as the iconic Bri­tish lux­ury brand’s first ven­ture over­seas.

WHAT’S IT LIKE? The ho­tel is decked out in the same clas­sic dé­cor as its Lon­don sis­ter, though glitzy flour­ishes such as the lobby’s 1,610 Swarovski-crys­tal chan­de­lier do a good job of re­mind­ing you that you’re in Dubai, not Lon­don. In con­trast to its cosey, dimly lit lobby in Lon­don, the space here is tall and spa­cious, flanked by shelves of weath­ered nov­els and gilt or­na­ments, while in the cen­tral area, pairs of but­ton so­fas and silk arm­chairs clus­ter around cof­fee ta­bles en­livened by pots of fresh white lilies.

WHERE IS IT? On the west trunk of the Palm Jumeirah, about 35 min­utes from Dubai In­ter­na­tional air­port (al­low longer at peak times).

ROOM FA­CIL­I­TIES The ho­tel’s 279 rooms, which in­clude 64 suites, are spread across 15 floors. Still in the works are the up­per 16th and 17th floors, though these are ex­pected this De­cem­ber. An ad­di­tional 287 stu­dio and one-bed­room res­i­dences are also on of­fer for ex­tended stay guests. There are 12 room cat­e­gories rang­ing from the en­try level Dukes rooms, sit­u­ated on floors 1 to 13, to the lav­ish 203sqm Am­bas­sador suites which can ac­com­mo­date up to four peo­ple.

I stayed in a 32 sqm Su­pe­rior room, re­gally dec­o­rated in rich navies and cof­fee hues, and brightly lit by a tra­di­tional lamp chan­de­lier, deep ma­hogany fit­tings and art­work show­ing Lon­don cityscapes.

All rooms come with a wooden work desk, a 48-inch Sam­sung TV a Ne­spresso ma­chine and tea mak­ing fa­cil­i­ties. Ours had a cream sofa and arm­chair tucked into an al­cove next to the bed. Bath­rooms are fit­ted with sleek black and slate tiling and come with rain show­ers, and deep bath­tubs in Su­pe­rior rooms and above. The ho­tel has part­nered with a num­ber of well-known UK brands in­clud­ing per­fumers Floris, An­drew Martin fur­ni­ture and Lib­erty fab­rics in the 20 rooms on the women-only Duchess floor.

RESTAU­RANTS AND BARS The ho­tel has three restau­rants, a cigar lounge and cham­pagne and tea lounge, along­side the brand’s iconic Dukes bar. Lo­cated on the ground floor is GBR, the ho­tel’s all-day din­ing out­fit, where an im­pres­sive break­fast is laid on each morn­ing – high­lights in­clude the pan­cake and waf­fle sta­tion and a range of ob­scure trop­i­cal juices. The space is stylish and modern in de­sign, fea­tur­ing a monochrome check­ered floor, half-cres­cent leather booths and whim­si­cal lamp fix­tures on the walls and sur­round­ing col­umns.

Khy­ber is an out­post of the award-winning Mumbai flag­ship, a north In­dian restau­rant that has hosted the likes of Sir Paul McCart­ney, Richard Gere and Demi Moore. We had a fan­tas­tic meal there one evening, with an as­sort­ment of de­li­cious cur­ries and grill dishes.

The Dukes Bar juts out over the lobby on the mez­za­nine level, and is ac­cessed by sweep­ing stair­cases that lead up from the lobby on ei­ther side.

MEET­ING FA­CIL­I­TIES The ho­tel has seven “Bri­tish styled” meet­ing rooms and ban­quet­ing spa­ces with ca­pac­ity to host be­tween 10 to 150 guests.

LEISURE FA­CIL­I­TIES There is an 18-me­tre in­door pool and gym on the 14th floor. There is also an out­door pool, along­side a 200-me­tre pri­vate beach and kids club. Yoga classes take place by the in­door pool each week. Marisa Cannon

VER­DICT A classy op­tion that stands out among Dubai’s flashier five-star seg­ment. Staff are ea­ger to help with any re­quest, and the din­ing of­fer­ing is first-rate.

PRICE In­ter­net rates for a Dukes room in Novem­ber started at AED964.

CONTACT Dukes Dubai, Oceana Palm Jumeirah, Dubai. dukes­dubai.com

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