IF THERE’S ONE THING THAT IMMEDIATELY ENTRANCES ANY HOTEL GUEST, IT’S THE LOBBY. AND THE LAVISH STAIRCASE AND MARBLE AND GOLD INTERIOR OF THE ST. REGIS DUBAI, AL HABTOOR CITY IS A SIGHT FOR SORE EYES, THE SECOND YOU STEP IN THROUGH ITS DOORS. FACT INDULGED IN A WEEKEND STAYCATION AT THIS GRAND PROPERTY AND HERE’S THE VERDICT…
As far as 5-star hotel brands go, The St. Regis is one of the world’s most renowned and opulent hospitality choices. The brand’s regal interiors and destination-specific exterior makes The St. Regis stand out in what has become a crowded market. The Dubai property is no exception. Resembling a majestic French country manor house or a faraway imperial palace, The St. Regis Dubai, Al Habtoor City extends the legacy of the Astor straight from New York to the UAE. Located on the arterial Sheikh Zayed Road, the hotel’s interiors are influenced by the city’s beaux-arts architecture of the original St. Regis in New York, and accentuated by bespoke elements such as the grand staircase and carefully selected artworks dotted around the hotel.
And what a GRAND staircase it is. The second we walk into the lobby, it’s phone’s out because this is one for the ‘gram. We could happily lounge about in this lobby all day long, drinking tea and coffee, and casually doing some work on the laptop. Alas, the room awaits us. We’re greeted with a warm smile and the check-in staff make a great first impression. They’re very efficient, fast and friendly, and before you know it, we’re up and in our Deluxe Room.
The hotel boasts a variety of rooms and suites – all decked out in the most sumptuous furnishings. We’re talking the kind of classic charm that you’d find in a sprawling apartment on the Upper East Side of NYC. With contemporary residential style and subtle aesthetic refinements, the Deluxe Room greets guests with a soothing colour palette of delightfully merged pastel tones. At 55m2 it’s a large space that has a very cosy, suburban feel. We could imagine having this as our bedroom layout should we ever happen to live in one of said apartments in any affluent areas of NYC.
The walls are covered in elegant paper, whilst everything from the chaise longue to the work desk, the chic blackout curtains and the soft carpet too are all the kind of choices that only a high-end interior designer could make. To put it simply, whatever you vision when someone utters “tasteful” or “classy” – that’s what you’ll find in this accommodation. A huge King Bed is so neatly done that we almost don’t want to even touch it. But when sleep calls, we slip in between the plush sheets and have a well rested night. All the rooms and suites at The St. Regis Dubai come with complimentary Wi-Fi as well as Butler Service – bonus!
You’ll find all your usual comforts in the room including a well-stocked mini bar, tea and coffee making facilities, plenty of water bottles, lush bathroom amenities and lots of storage – in fact, the walk-in closet is a beautiful surprise, as is the Manhattan-ready double-vanity bathroom with a deep-soaking, traditional white bathtub and marble all around. There’s no fighting here for sink time, and even the separate shower has a marble seat inside for a more leisurely start or end to the day.
When it comes to food at The St. Regis Dubai, you’ll be spoilt for choice with eight restaurants, bars and cafes to choose from. Tempt your palate with haute cuisine, unwind at one of the exclusive lounges, and spend time with friends at the courtyard café or sample gourmet beverages by the pool. The food and beverage options here embrace simple aromas and the buzz of the fashionable society of Dubai. Hot off its win as the Best Steakhouse in Dubai at the 2017 FACT Dining Awards, we decide to check out the one and only J&G Steakhouse for dinner. Again, from the second you enter, there is a mood-lit, jazz bar vibe straight out of New York.
The venue is the kind of sophisticated that you’d expect in a top-notch 5-star hotel that prides itself on refinement. Offering a collection of steakhouse classics, you’ll be greeted with an interior of natural dark wood, glamorous light fixtures and leather upholstered furniture; this is American steakhouse favourites presented with a modern flair. With premium meats, a variety of seafood and a comprehensive beverage list of robust vino and handcrafted cocktails, J&G Steakhouse is every fine-dining lover’s dream.
We would highly recommend the Grilled Black Pepper Octopus with Tarragon Purée, Onion and Lime – possibly the best version of Octopus we’ve tried in the city; and the Smoked Short Ribs with Parsnip Mousseline and Pickled Asian Pears – an innovative and tasty entrée. From the grill, we opt for the 180g Master Kobe Wagyu Fillet and the 320g Australian Black Onyx/Range Valley Striploin, with a side of Truffle Macaroni and Cheese, Potato Gratin and Creamed Spinach, and the Chimichurri and Peppercorn Sauce. There’s also an excellent choice of soups and salads as well as a “simply raw” section on the menu and, of course, delectable desserts like the mind-blowing Coconut Baked Alaska Rum Flambe. Satisfied is an understatement – you’ll be comparing every next meal to the one at J&G Steakhouse for a long time. For those who really want to get involved during their stay, the hotel also offers cooking classes and the must-try Caroline Astor Afternoon Tea – both will elevate your St. Regis experience.
Although the location of the hotel isn’t by a beach, you’ll instantly feel a very calming and serene vibe running throughout the property. The outdoor pool is flanked by lush greenery, making it feel like you’re on the rooftop of a stately New York building on a summer’s day! Refresh and unwind here while enjoying the personalised service of the pool butlers. Complimentary offerings are available throughout the day, including fruit sticks, smoothie tastings, sunscreen spritzing, refreshing cold towels and more.
A 24-hour fitness centre and an impressive Iridium Spa are also at hand for those who want to keep up their workout and relaxation game! Part of Al Habtoor City, Dubai’s first-ever integrated urban resort, The St. Regis Dubai sits alongside two other hotels, three high-rise residential towers, and a Las Vegas-style theatre that are all collectively located on the banks of the breath-taking Dubai Water Canal. So, if you’re staying in the cooler months, take advantage of the walking weather and check out the neighbourhood! We have only four words to sum up our stay: we will be back!
GO: CALL THE ST. REGIS DUBAI, AL HABTOOR CITY ON (0)4 435 5555 FOR RESERVATIONS AND MORE INFORMATION.