AN ICON OF THE ABU DHABI SKYLINE, JUMEIRAH AT ETIHAD TOWERS IS THE PERFECT SPOT FOR A CITY BREAK THIS SUMMER. DAVID TAPLEY CHECKS IN FOR A WEEKEND OF COMFORT, LUXURY AND DAZZLING DINING.


Etihad Towers should require very little introduction to residents and visitors to the UAE capital. The glass structures can be seen on fridge magnets, postcards and memorabilia throughout the city and the architectural marvel has become not only an iconic part of the Abu Dhabi skyline but a tourist attraction in its own right.

Comprising of five slender towers rising from the ground like shards of glass, the majestic building penetrates the skyline for all to see. More than just a five-star hotel and residential complex, this lifestyle destination saw Hollywood superstars Vin Diesel and Paul Walker jump a Lykan HyperSport supercar between the towers in the 2015 movie Fast & Furious 7, cementing the structure into movie history.

The stunt may be memorable but perhaps not as impressive as Jumeirah at Etihad Towers itself. The luxury hotel can be found within one of the glittering skyscrapers and is home to 382 rooms and suites, an elegant spa, private beach and a selection of 12 eclectic restaurants. The property is without a doubt one of the most luxurious hotels in Abu Dhabi. Situated on the upper level of a spiralled podium, the design is one that exudes elegance and class. Think deep carpets, gold embroidery and gurgling water features, though it’s the five spherical lamps punctuating the lobby that are most likely to to be remembered.

A HAVEN OF REFINED LUXURY

Our Deluxe King Room is located on the 44th floor of the hotel and we are immediately wowed by the impressive view from the floor-to-ceiling windows. All rooms at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers offer either cityscape or sea views and we were more than happy with the latter, as we could gaze along the Abu Dhabi Corniche, from Qasr Al Watan to the World Trade Centre. Taking in Marina Village, Al Lulu Island and the turquoise waters of the Arabian Gulf without having to get up from the bed.

Rooms are comfortable and stylish, offering chic interiors to complement those majestic views. The spaces have clearly been designed for relaxation, whether that be after a business meeting or a day relaxing at the beach. Aside from the large king bed, with its fluffy pillows and a delightful duvet that made it hard for us to get out of bed each morning, the room also featured remote-controlled curtains and lights, a 42-inch widescreen interactive HD LED TV and complimentary wi-fi access. Meaning we could stream Netflix and post on Instagram until our hearts were content.

Clocking in a generous 50sqm the Deluxe Rooms at Jumeriah at Etihad Towers put convenience first. A handy connectivity hub allowed us to quickly hook up our various devices with ease, so we could play music via the in-room speakers and watch movies from our laptop on the TV. An inviting chaise longue made for the perfect reading and napping area, come late afternoon when the sunlight hits just right.

A bathroom with a separate shower area is more luxurious than one might expect, clad in marble and featuring detailed mosaic tiling in gold and silver. It’s this sense of luxury combined with attention to detail that makes a stay at any Jumeirah property memorable. With toiletry bottles shaped like the towers themselves and special bath products, toys and slippers for those travelling with little ones. It’s as if no detail has been overlooked in planning the guest experience.

All bathrooms contain double sinks and a deep tub that is perfect for a long soak. A set of draws marked with a moustache (for him) and a lipstick (for her) contain several products that you may have left at home, such as mouthwash, toothbrushes, cotton buds and nail files. Again, emphasising that convenience and comfort are key to a stay at Jumeirah. Just wait until you experience the turndown service!

LOBBY LOUNGING

The Lobby Lounge offers a meeting point in the centre of the hotel. Bathed in natural light, the space acts as a hub for both guests and visitors and offers picturesque views of the ocean and private beachfront. The comfortable leather seating makes for an excellent option to spend an afternoon, whether it’s drinks, lunch or a light snack you’re after. The lobby lounge has garnered quite the reputation for having one of the best afternoon teas in town and we’re inclined to agree. A range of hot beverages are offered, accompanied by a pleasing selection of savoury sandwiches showcasing premium ingredients such as crab in the form of a tartine and a superb smoked salmon and avocado wrap.

The cakes and pastries are just as dainty and help to add to that air of sophistication associated with the Jumeirah brand, known for providing high levels of luxury and bespoke experiences. Delights range from the classic Paris-Brest to the fruity Strawberry Tart and the decadently the moist Chocolate Cake. The presentation in a quaint pink box compliments the entire afternoon tea experience.

BACK AT BRUNCH

BiCE is the hotel’s Italian restaurant and is a dining destination in itself, combining the authenticity of Italian cuisine with comfortable family-friendly dining. Seating is available either inside the spacious dining room or out on the terrace. Our weekend stay conveniently coincided with the launch of a new brunch that was too good an opportunity to pass up. A succinct menu is presented to the table from which you can select several antipasti dishes, pasta, main courses and desserts. The result is a leisurely afternoon of Italian classics combined with a good selection of beverages. We urge you not to resist the Fresh Burrata, Trofie al Pesto Rosso pasta or the indulgent tiramisu, which had us almost rolling back to our room.

NUTRITIOUS NAHAAM

Winner of not one, not two, but three FACT Dining Awards, Nahaam is recognised on the Abu Dhabi dining scene for their impressive Friday brunch. In this current environment, the all-day dining restaurant famous for its buffets has gone all out with a varied and nutritious a la carte menu that caters to everyone. From summer rolls and poke bowls, to wok-fried dishes and towering burgers, the food quality is high, the poolside views pleasing and the service exceptional. We’re left hoping that the menu becomes a permanent fixture at the chic and airy restaurant.

REST, RELAXATION AND RECREATION

One of the advantages of a summer staycation in the UAE is the ability to relax at the beach without having to hop on a flight. Jumeirah at Etihad Towers boasts pristine pools and a pleasant section of private beachfront.

We spent much of our stay lazing by the water’s edge and topping up our tan on a swathe of golden sand that wraps around the base of the glistening glass towers. Even with social distancing measures in place, there are still more than enough sun loungers to go around and the warm shallow waters are perfect for little ones. There’s a small pontoon that you can swim out to and plenty of opportunities for splashing about in the water. Whether you’re an in-house guest or just looking for some relaxation time using one of the day passes for the beach, the private beachfront offers intimacy and exclusivity, unlike anywhere else in the capital.

At the time of writing the three swimming pools, spa and a number of restaurants remain closed in line with government measures pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, with things changing almost daily, we hope that the remainder of the facilities will be up and running again soon. Even with things in a constantly changing state of flux, the team at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers are excited to welcome guests and continue to display their standard-setting levels of service.

Whether visiting for business, leisure or family-time, Jumeirah at Etihad Towers has all of the bases covered. Your stay will be comfortable and chic and it’s easy to see why this particular five-star property has become the jewel in the crown of the Abu Dhabi Corniche.

GO: CALL (0)2 811 5555 OR VISIT WWW.JUMEIRAH.COM FOR RESERVATIONS AND MORE INFORMATION.