Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Bab Al Shams

A friend of mine was keen to explore a place called "Bab Al Sham" - he saw the sign posted on the large roundabout where Dubailand will be built. At the weekend we jumped into his huge 4x4 (Nissan Armada) and took the short drive of 37km through the desert.

The drive was actually quite interesting as at certain intervals there were large billboards of landscapes of various "world projects" that are being planned...for instance there was "Europa" and "Americas" - it all looked rather impressive.

Soon enough we arrived at Bab Al Shams - it is basically a luxury resort out in the desert. They offer lots of outdoor activities such as horse riding and falconery, also they put on traditional Arabic evening entertainment with Sheesha and belly dancing - sadly I did not get to see any of that on my short visit.

We had a little nose around and saw the very nice pool area but were not able to get into any of the rooms as they were fully booked at the time.

What did get our attention was the smell of grilled chicken kebabs - so my friend stopped in and tried their buffet lunch. It was excellent with a really good variety of food - my favourites being the grilled chicken kebab and the handmade ice cream. At 165AED not including beverages it was a little expensive but in the middle of the desert not many other options presented themselves.

The rack rate for a room starts at 1600AED a night (that is a lot!) but they have special offers at around half that price. I would go there for a weekend break providing the weather cooled down a little. The infamous "hair-dryer" wind was in effect and gave an amazing burning sensation on the toes of my flip-flopped feet. How people were enjoying the pool was a little beyond me in what felt like 50C temperatures.


nzm said...

You're right - the best time to go out there is in the cooler months - ride out about an hour before sunset, watch the sun go down on the way out and then have dinner at Al Hadheera desert restaurant.

Again - not cheap - but a fantastic experience.

We stayed there once - we were supposed to be there for 4 nights over Xmas 2004. We only lasted a night - rooms full of mosquitos and bored kids. There wasn't a lot for them to do out there once they'd been on a camel, swum in what was then a tiny pool before they extended it, and climbed a few sand dunes!

Blogged about the resort here

moryarti said...


Curiosity said...

Yes..i liked Bab al Shams..had dinner there three times in two weeks! all during the 'winter'and it was wonderful! especially being able to drive back to dubai in darkness and hence 'see'the millions of twinkling stars...reding things like this, I sure miss Dubai..but thats not home anymore...i am in much cooler climes and will soon experience my first snowfall..first time in my life :D